Poetry: 'Deeps and Shallows' by Kevin Grant

 Kevin Grant, who was an interregnum managing director at The Catholic Herald in 2004, and director and general manager at the paper in the 'seventies, has realized a life-long ambition with the publication of his poems.

Entitled "Deeps and Shallows, Verse captions to a minor life", the collection is bracingly illustrated by Kevin's nephew Jake and includes a few essays "to keep the groups of verses apart".

The book was launched at a reception in The Gallery at Foyles, Charing Cross Road, London, on Tuesday evening. The earliest poem, Remembrance
Day, dates from 1945 while The Essex Girl is among several Kevin Grant has written this year.

Mr Grant, who was managing director of The Universe 1986-87 and deputy MD 1977-83, has gathered his political satires as Thumbprints in the Archives, his more personal items as Unintended Baggage, and his "lightweight bravura" under Jurassic Port.

A religious section is styled As It Was, As It Is, his rhymes for children appear as a Nursery Versery and some sport snippets are titled In Grey Pavilion.

Walter Hooper, an Anglican clergyman who became a Catholic in 1988 is "literary executor and advocate" of C S Lewis whom he served briefly as secretary and whose own works on Lewis include C S Lewis: A Complete Guide to his Life and Works (1998). He was the first person to be presented with a copy of "Deeps and Shallows" by Kevin Grant.

Mr Hooper said: "These winsome verses have revived my interest in poetry. They combine delight with sudden, unexpected profundity."

Kevin Grant's own version of O Sole Mio, taking the song as a warning from the Mafia, was the highlight of the launch party for his book.

The lyric tenor Eamonn Mulhall, of the Royal College of Music, charmed and amused the 85 guests when he sang Kevin Grant's Listen Mya Sunshine.

Earlier the actress Sarah Sherborne read her own selection from the poems, including The Essex Girl, Decibel Jezabel and Slaughter by Metaphor.

Welcoming his guests Kevin Grant emphasised his personal belief, spelt out in the book, that: "The host is always the receiver, the guest always the

Illustrator Jake Grant later joined his uncle in signing copies for the guests who came from all walks and stages of Kevin Grant's life. Kevin was
born on 29 October 1933.

Deeps and Shallows, Verse captions to a minor life, a £9.99 hardback, 112 pp, is published by Words Ink, and will be available at good bookshops or from Prompt Reply, PO Box 2001, Petworth GU28 9YA, promptreply@btconnect.com

LONDON - 19 October 2007 - 278 words

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