Quieted (a poem)

one day it will be too late and all those things I should have said or wanted to say will be lost because I will not be here to say them nor remember they needed to be said in the first place


From its earliest origins in aural tradition, poetry has inevitably tracked the metamorphosis of language through time. You only have to reflect on the differences between Chaucer, Shakespeare, Wordsworth and Larkin to see how poetry maps not only the journey of a civilisation but its language and mores too. Perhaps poetry takes a little while… Read More “Homie”

“Solar Cruise”

Not for me, I’m afraid. I managed about a third of Claire Crowther’s “Solar Cruise”. Perhaps the subject – being so scientific – doesn’t lend itself to poetry; but I’m sure it isn’t just words like ‘nucleus’ or ‘electron’ which put the breaks on the poetic. The layout of some of the pieces – you… Read More “Solar Cruise”

“Road Trip”

Sometimes volumes of poetry that focus on a single theme or issue seem to sacrifice the quality of the writing in favour of ‘the cause’. Marvin Thompson’s “Road Trip” is rooted in both place – Wales – and subject – being black in an essentially white environment – and succeeds by never making that sacrifice.… Read More “Road Trip”


In spite of myself I actually liked Will Harris’ “Rendang”. ‘In spite of myself’? Well, there’s a lot in this volume which I would challenge as being poetry; perhaps it’s prose poetry at best. Yet there is much that is poetic (if that’s not paradoxical), and the lyric quality of the pieces – thoughtful, reminiscence,… Read More “Rendang”


If you asked me to find a single phrase to describe Juana Adcock’s “Split” I confess I would struggle. ‘It depends’ seems such a lame response… But it does. It depends, for example, on whether I’ve just read “The Task of the Translator” or “The Overburden”: one I liked, the second I did not. And… Read More “Split”

Sidings – a poem

Sidings   they arc from sight with bizarre elegance an overgrown divergence designated to home the unwanted or the forgotten   weeds climb rusting axles clogging memories of motion and birds flit in the eerie silence to reserve a first-class nesting site

Forthcoming Public Event!

Really looking forward to appearing on the panel of writers at this free event in Ripon Library on 14th March, being grilled about being a writer – and only having a minute to answer each question!