When Adam Johnson, a young gay man from Cheshire, arrived in London in 1984, he possessed insatiable curiosity, irresistible charm, and unfocused literary ambition; when he died nine years later, he had become one of the most accomplished English poets of his generation. This collection of his poems charts that astonishing transformation. It is compelling as a record of a few short years of serious writing. Johnson's poetic imagination, shaped by his close observation of the natural world, proved no less adept at dealing with the ironies and tragedies of urban life. A love of music, painting, and literature--of cultural life in all its forms--is matched by a delight in human relationships. Many of his poems are dedicated to lovers and friends, across the dinner table or at journey's end. His celebratory relish for lived experience remains undiminished even in his last poems. This edition is prepared largely from the author's signed typescripts and includes previously unpublished work.