School of English


(PhD, Kent)


I teach at undergraduate and postgraduate levels and supervise postgraduate research students in Creative Writing (Poetry). My research interests are contemporary Anglo-American poetry and poetics, especially the experimental or innovative. I am particularly interested in the long poem, the series and the sequence. My first collection of poetry, Tokaido Road (CB editions 2011) was nominated for the Forward Best First Collection Prize and was awarded the Aldeburgh First Collection Prize that year. My second collection, Owhere (Templar 2012) won a Templar Poetry Pamphlet Award that year. In addition to these, my poetry publications include Continental Drift (Shearsman 2014), the chapbooks Meridian (Oystercatcher 2016), Zyxt (Oystercatcher 2015), and a libretto Tokaido Road: A Journey after Hiroshige (Shearsman 2014). My poems have appeared in leading journals and anthologies including The Forward Anthology, the Times Literary Supplement, Tears in the Fence, The Long Poem Magazine and the Golden Handcuffs Review. I regularly give workshops, lectures and readings, including festival appearances such as the Aldeburgh and Ledbury Poetry Festivals, the Sounds New Poetry Festival, the Wise Words Festival, the Canterbury Festival, and the London Poetry Series X-ing the Line. 

I am especially interested in collaborations with other writers, with artists and musicians. I worked with composer Nicola LeFanu to adapt the Tokaido Road poems into a libretto; the opera, featuring Okeanos Ensemble and Caroline Clegg as director, received its premiere at the Cheltenham Music Festival in 2014 and toured throughout the UK in 2015. You can see a pre-performance discussion with myself, the composer, the producer and the director, followed by a performance of the opera on YouTube here:

The full journey of the creation and production of the opera is documented in a blog:

In 2017-18 Tokaido Road will be published in Japanese, including images of each of the 55 Hiroshige (Hoeido edition) woodblock prints and commentary in both English and Japanese on the historical and cultural significance of the locations featured in the poems and prints.

I am currently working on a new collection titled Meridian. I am walking the 270-mile Greenwich Meridian Trail from Peacehaven to the Humber in order to investigate the way that landscapes are disturbed and reordered by history and memory.

Memorial Ground is a piece composed by David Lang, and the concert took place in Studio 3  last week featuring the Cecilian Choir. The Canterbury concert piece was arranged and conducted by Daniel Harding, incorporating poems by Siegfried Sassoon and myself. It was commissioned as part of the nationwide 14-18NOW project. It was a joint collaboration between the Music Department, Studio 3 Gallery, Special Collections and Archives at Templeman Library and the School of English. Further performances are planned. 

Contact Information


Office: R.W3.W7 (Rutherford College)

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Also view these in the Kent Academic Repository

Gaffield, N. (2016). Meridian. [Online]. Hunstanton Norfolk: Oystercatcher Press. Available at:
Gaffield, N. (2015). Zyxt. Hunstanton, Norfolk: Oystercatcher Press.
Gaffield, N. (2014). Tokaido Road: A Journey after Hiroshige: Libretto to the opera by Nicola LeFanu. [Online]. Bristol, England: Shearsman. Available at:
Gaffield, N. (2014). Continental Drift. [Online]. Bristol: Shearsman. Available at:
Gaffield, N. (2012). Owhere. Derbyshire: Templar Poetry.
Gaffield, N. (2011). Tokaido Road. [Online]. CB editions. Available at:
Gaffield, N. (2015). Susan Howe's Landscapes of Language: 'Articulation of Sound Forms in Time' and 'The Liberties'. Women: a cultural review [Online] 26:270-284. Available at:
Gaffield, N. (2015). "Springtime in the Rockies". Sonofabook 1:19-29.
Gaffield, N. (2014). 5 poems from The Eastbridge Fibonacci. Litmus Magazine [Online]:77-80. Available at:
Gaffield, N. (2012). Ten Poems Glover, J. ed. Stand 197 [Magazine] 11:36-40.
Conference or workshop item
Gaffield, N. and LeFanu, N. (2015). Tokaido Road: from page to stage. in: Institute of Musical Research.
Gaffield, N. (2014). Nancy Gaffield introduces Hiroshige's 'Tokaido Road'. in: The Poetry Station. Available at:
Gaffield, N. and LeFanu, N. (2014). Tokaido Road Premiere: Cheltenham Music Festival Pre-performance talk.
Gaffield, N. and LeFanu, N. (2014). Pre-performance talk: Tokaido Road the Journey. in: Pre-performance talk.
Gaffield, N. (2013). The Poem and the Journey.
Internet publication
Debney, P. and Gaffield, N. (2015). Four Ghazals for Tony Frazer [Internet]. Available at:
Gaffield, N. and Herd, D. (2014). The Eastbridge Variation: Sounds New Performance at Eastbridge Hospital. [Poetry reading].
Gaffield, N. (2013). Poetry Reading with Kiwao Nomura. [Live performance]. CB editions.
Debney, P. and Gaffield, N. (2012). Four ghazals. [Live performance/spoken word].
Gaffield, N. (2012). Owhere Pamphlet Launch. [Live performance]. Templar.
Gaffield, N. and Debney, P. (2012). Common Objects: Four Ghazals. [Live performance].
Gaffield, N. (2012). Aldeburgh Poetry Festival: First Collection Prize Winner Performance. [Live performance]. CB editions.
Gaffield, N. (2018). Tears in the Fence Caddy, D. ed. Tears in the Fence:119 -122.
Gaffield, N. (2014). 'Ko Un - First Person Sorrowful' Frazer, T. ed. The Shearsman Review Online [Online]:n/a. Available at:
Gaffield, N. (2014). Seeing through Language: the Poetry and Poetics of Susan Howe, Lyn Hejinian and Rosmarie Waldrop.
Total publications in KAR: 25 [See all in KAR]
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School of English, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NX

The University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NZ, T: +44 (0)1227 823054

Last Updated: 22/11/2016