In a spell of good luck I had two poems in the running for the 2019 Teignmouth Poetry Competition, which is linked to the poetry festival. ‘Since Eels do not Keep Diaries…’ was selected for the final ten by John Greening. ‘Chiaroscuro’ was awarded first prize in the local section. Here’s the judge’s report from poet and novelist Julie-Ann Rowell:
The poem I chose for first prize is one of great lyrical delicacy and artistry. The city of New York, a place I know very well indeed, is captured superbly – ‘Manhattan … where history crawled out of its sleeping bag and stretched’. The connection between art and what it can and cannot do for us is expressed with tremendous expertise.… Continue reading...
Hello! Guess what? I was shortlisted for the Live Canon International Poetry Competition again. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to get over to Greenwich Theatre to hear the shortlisted poems performed but am chuffed to have my poem published in their new anthology. It’s a response to Robert Frost’s ‘Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening’.
Returning to Woods on a Snowy Evening
Developers have sought permission for
much-needed housing. Many trees are gone.
Although I’ve rarely walked in them before,
these woods belong to me, if anyone.
My new coat covers something old in me,
a looker-at-birches who journeyed on.
Ice storms silver everything here but time.
Diggers crouch: eager to do and be done.
Trees are like flagpoles beside the road,
marking the quiet border of a ceasefire.… Continue reading...
My latest poetry pamphlet is now available as a free PDF. In The Chalk Path, Joe, Hugh, and myself turn our attention landward from the coast. The poems are drawn from walks over chalk downs, train rides beside white horses etched into hillsides and, in contrast, the bright red sandstone of my Mercian homelands.
Read it online
You can read The Chalk Path here. Please share it with your friends if you enjoy it.
Here’s one of mine from the collection:
PILGRIMAGE OVER CLENT
Red soil. Brown grass. White sky.
A glimpse of Harry-Ca-Nab,
the devil’s hunting man. Keep running.
Through mudbeds of slipping-danger.
Through the place of martyrs, St. Kenelm’s.
Here’s one known to me. I bow my head before
climbing into the cradle of these hills.… Continue reading...