Michael Haslam was born in Bolton, Lancashire in 1947, and educated at Bolton School and Peterhouse, Cambridge. Initially published in the network associated with 'The Cambridge School of Poetry' in the 1960s and early '70s, he became widely known through the publication, to great acclaim, of his collected poems, A Whole Bauble (Carcanet, 1995). A revised and reconsidered edition of this work has recently been published under the title Mid Life by Shearsman Books in 2007.
In 1970 he moved to Foster Clough, near Hebden Bridge in the Calder Valley and, as he says
by the late 1970s merely living here had become my sole poetic subject. He still lives in the same house. Having worked as a labourer most of his life, thanks to a legacy he is now able to devote his time to writing.