WHEN reclusive poet Margaret Griffiths died alone at her Poole home her work might have been lost forever.

But a collection of her poems have now been published in a book, thanks to an online community determined she be remembered.

Margaret’s death in July 2009 at the age of 62 went undiscovered for days, and with no known family, just a handful of people attended her funeral.

Yet her passing was mourned across the globe by the friends and admirers she knew through online poetry forums, where she posted under the pen-names Maz or Grasshopper.

Though she herself had lost vast swathes of her work, they scoured the web, retracing her online footsteps to retrieve as much of it as possible.

Meanwhile, solicitors searched for a next of kin who could grant permission for the work to be published.

After months of work by a team of 17 from as far afield as Australia, Canada, and the USA, more than 300 of her poems now feature in a book entitled Grasshopper, after her nom de plume.

David Anthony, 62, the retired CEO of Hitachi, was among those pursuing publication.

He said: “There was such a contrast between her outgoing internet personality and her reclusive attitude in the real world. She had a lot of friends on the internet, and huge admiration and respect for the quality of work she produced, and the quality of help and advice she gave to other writers.”

Grasshopper was published by Arrowhead Press, which had recognised Margaret’s talent in her lifetime. Never seeking notoriety, she had always refused their offers to publish her work.

But Mr Anthony said he and her many friends couldn’t let “the first serious talent of the internet poetry age” go unrecorded.

“It would have been such a tragedy if her work was just lost,” he added.

“There was a real determination to preserve it for posterity more than anything.”