W. S. Graham was more aware than most poets of the problematic nature of text. In editing his New Collected Poems for Faber and Faber, I was forced to confront in practical form some of the difficulties he explores in his poetry. The article explains why a new edition of the poems was necessary, and the rationale behind their selection. It then goes on to consider issues of textual accuracy that arose during the editing process. Finally it discusses the reasons behind the decision to include notes, and the ways in which our understanding of the poems can be changed by extraneous knowledge. The resulting collection is not, and could never have been, definitive, as Graham himself would have understood.