Many bemoan the negative impact social media has had on reading and on the simple act of contemplation. But despite the predictions of entire generations becoming attention-deficient and culture-blind, sales of poetry books are surging.

According to book sales monitor Nielsen BookScan, well over one million volumes of poetry were sold in 2018 to the value of £12.3m, a £1.3m increase on the previous year. Interestingly, just over 40 per cent of those sales were from people aged 13 to 22.

Poetry hasn’t been this popular since a bunch of school kids stood on their desks intoning “O Captain, my Captain!” at a watery-eyed Robin Williams back in 1989. So what the hell is going on?