Bloodaxe Poetry Introductions are a new kind of anthology aimed at the general reader as well as the poetry lover. Compiled by Staying Alive editor, Neil Astley, each book in the series covers four leading contemporary poets in depth, with substantial selections covering the whole range of each writer's poetry, as well as intriguing and illuminating background material, including profiles, interviews, essays and commentary by the poets. The first Introduction brings together four writers from different ethnic backgrounds whose poetry explores questions of cultural identity, race, gender and exile as well as celebrating cultural difference, love, courage and the human spirit. Elizabeth Alexander is a leading American poet whose work has been inspired by the 'rich infinity' of the African-American experience. Her's is a vital and vivid poetic voice on race, gender, politics and motherhood. Moniza Alvi left Pakistan for England when a few months old. Drawing on real and imaginary homelands, her poems are 'witty and imbued with unexpected and delicious glimpses of the surreal' (Maura Dooley). Imtiaz Dharker was born in Pakistan, grew up a Muslim Calvinist in Glasgow and now divides her time between India and Britain. Her main themes are childhood, exile, home, displacement, religious strife and terror. Jackie Kay was an adopted child of Scottish/Nigerian descent brought up by white parents. With humour and feeling, her poetry explores gender, sexuality, identity, racism and cultural difference as well as love and music.