Wednesday, 16 September 2015

You have to be in it to win it...

...but mostly, you have to write a really good poem and Back Room Poets first international poetry competition's outright winner did just that.

Come and hear Michael Crowley read alongside the other winners on Saturday 26th September at Oxford's best bookstore. It's likely to be packed, so come early to get a good seat and browse the shelves and enjoy some of Denis's excellent coffee whilst you're at it.

Still on poetry, I have just been invited to join the poetry team for Herefordshire's Courtyard project 'Making of Me '. This is being rolled out across Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire now and I shall be working in care homes in my locale fairly soon. What a fantastic opportunity this is. I really look forward to sharing new poems and rediscovering old ones. Poetry has so much to teach us about ourselves.

Magma, one of my favourite magazines, often has a section called Presiding Spirits where they ask a poet to produce new work drawing on a poem from the past. I have been re-reading Matthew Arnold's 'Dover Beach'. It's a poem I feel I can have a strong conversation with. There are so many resonances and, of course, the current humanitarian crisis is increasingly urgent. I'm sure I'm not the first person to reply to Arnold's lyric, nevertheless, I feel the need to add my voice.

I'd be interested to know what poems are speaking to you at this moment. Do get in touch.


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