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Trick or Treat? TREAT!

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Happy Halloween.
I created a Poetry Film from our submissions and have also let some Flash Fiction in…
head on over before it gets dark!

Poet Laureate

monster-2644324_1920Happy Halloween! 

Earlier this month I opened a call for submissions. I need to add a timed deadline, I am guilty myself of making last minute submissions, however this project inspired me to make a surprise poetry film which was a wrap by teatime.

The original deadline was extended to get work in – and then, well it flew down the chimney like a scene from Harry Potter! 

Halloween Prose PoetryWith this in mind and the fact that I did something crazy, as a poet laureate (enthused by a brilliant lively and brimming with story, 42) – I invited Flash Fiction to join the ranks. So those of you who love a spooky tale will love this.

It was never my intention to produce a film with the Flashes, so they are published here along with accepted poetry that I pipped to the post in cutting room! 

Huge thanks, as always for…

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INKSPILL Bookshop

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INKSPILL BOOKSHOP

The INKSPILL Bookshop is open ALL HOURS. 

Our Guest Writers give their time for free and in return we give them the Bookshop. Please order their books, you will not be disappointed. 

ANTONY OWEN

thenagasakielderversionfront £9.99 or £11.50 with P&P

http://vpresspoetry.blogspot.co.uk/p/the-nagasaki-elder.html

the dreaded boy £5.00

https://www.waterstones.com/book/the-year-i-loved-england/joseph-horgan/antony-owen/9781906309428 £10.99

Additional copies of some titles which have now SOLD OUT are available here https://antonyowenpoetry.wordpress.com/the-year-i-loved-england-news/

Costs including P&P (Signed copies)

My Father’s Eyes Were Blue £9.50

The Dreaded Boy £7.00

The I loved England £12.50

Margaret Thatcher’s Museum £7.00

 

STEPHEN DANIELS

tell mistakes £6.50 or £7.50 including P&P

http://vpresspoetry.blogspot.co.uk/p/tell-mistakes-i-love-them.html

World Mental Health Day in Poetry

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World Mental Health Day in Poetry.

With added artwork by Sow Ay.

My story is to follow…

Poet Laureate

wmhd17-landing-page-banner mind org

© mind.org.uk 2017

Back in late September I put an open call for poetry submissions out across social media. I am grateful to all the poets for submitting their work. 

Mental Health is an issue close to my heart, something I have battled myself. I know many creative people suffer mental health issues. The theme this year was Mental Health in the workplace and in my case this is where/how the slippery slope began. I have added a link to my own story as it involves POETRY in a major way. (Link to follow.)

There are an increasing number of poetry books available which deal with these issues and those you can read to help ease the strain of difficult times in your life. I have added links at the bottom of the post for websites of interest connected to these issues. 

I hope you share this post across social…

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Happy National Poetry Day!

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Happy National Poetry Day!

Poet Laureate

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Celebrate Poetry Today (and every day)!

The official Worcestershire NPD event this year, as I listed on the website is Voices of 1919 tickets are £8.00 and available from Malvern Theatres. 

Ten Cottages – Malvern Festival: Voices of 1919

front-cover-voices-of-1919As Worcestershire Poet Laureate I did not feel I could let this day pass without marking it in some way. Submissions opened for National Poetry Day poems on the theme of Freedom earlier this month. Huge gratitude for sending your poems this way. 

YOUR FREEDOM POEMS

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SABAH -EL KHEIR, SABAH EL-NOOR

A street in the oldest city,
spices, sellotape, shovel handles,
St Paul apparently, light streaming in;

a boy leans from a car,
English? he asks,
shakes my hand;

on an ancient terrace
a man serves tea
with razor-sharp humour;

a young lad recites in Aramaic,
– his tourist trick – but
two thousand years shrink;

a jeweller mentions Didsbury,
a church, Armenian restaurant,
I know them well;

a shopkeeper selling blankets,
prints and plates speaks
fluent Polish;

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World Mental Health Day

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Send your poems for World Mental Health Day.

Poet Laureate

world mental health

Opportunities for You

World Mental Health Day 10th October

Poems about or in support of Mental Health 

Stamp-out-stigma-time-to-change-bannerOpen submissions for poetry either about mental health issues or in support of those suffering from them. Max 40 lines, 1-3 poems, in the body of an email sent to worcspl@gmail.com

Entries are open to anyone, anywhere in the world. 

Deadline 8th October. 

Selected poems will appear on the website in support of World Mental Health Day on the 10th October. 

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Meet your Worcestershire Poet Laureate at Droitwich Library this week!

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Copy of The joy of reading (1)

This Friday – July 28th – as part of Droitwich Artsfest, our current Poet Laureate, Nina Lewis, will be the Artist in Residence at Droitwich Library.

In this role Nina will be appearing at Droitwich library from 10am – 12pm, where she will be writing poetry, chatting to the public, and offering a whole host of creative activities for you lovely folks to engage with, too!

If you’re a budding poet, or a parent looking for a fabulous morning activity for your little ones – or perhaps even a glorious mixture of all of the above – then Nina has just the thing for you.

 

Source: Meet your Worcestershire Poet Laureate at Droitwich Library this week!

POETRY KITS

Nine Arches Press Summer Party

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Nine Arches Press know how to throw a party! I missed it last year as I was performing elsewhere but – having kept a do it next year section of my 2016 diary, I knew it was coming up and booked my tickets as soon as it was announced back in June!

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I had a busy day and went for a power nap before catching my train into Birmingham. Mr. G. came home and found me still asleep. I haven’t moved so fast in a long time. I managed to catch the train and arrive at Waterstones just in time.

It was lovely (and not a surprise) to see so many poets there. They had a good crowd and there were lots of people I didn’t know too.

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Jane Commane (Nine Arches Press) introducing the poets and welcoming us to a party complete with Flamingo straws. Image  © 2017 Cynthia Miller

I was really excited when I saw who was on the list this year and there readings were all captivating.

Gregory Leadbetter has had all of his launches/readings whilst I have been elsewhere, so even though his book was released last year this was my first opportunity to hear him read it. He also hosted the event, using the book sleeves of the new publications to introduce each Guest Poet.

Greg Leadbetter 9 Arches

© 2017 Nine Arches

I thoroughly enjoyed his reading, I had heard several of the poems before at events but listening to a full set was a real treat. I will be putting ‘The Fetch’ on my birthday list. For a first collection it is extremely strong.

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Gregory Leadbetter’s first full collection of poems, The Fetch, brings together poems that reach through language to the mystery of our being, giving voice to silence and darkness, illuminating the unseen. With their own rich alchemy, these poems combine the sensuous and the numinous, the lyric and the mythic. 

Ranging from invocation to elegy, from ghost poems to science fiction, Leadbetter conjures and quickens the wild and the weird. His poems bring to life a theatre of awakenings and apprehensions, of births and becoming, of the natural and the transnatural, where life and death meet. Powerful, imaginative, and precisely realised, The Fetch is also poignant and humane – animated by love, alive with the forces of renewal.

‘The Fetch is a terrific, precise and dazzling collection. The whole book exemplifies a poetry of being that shows what is possible when we allow ourselves to be fully human in our perception and poetry.’ – David Morley
© 2017 Nine Arches Press
The Fetch Cover web

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© 2017 Stuart Bartholomew

I am a big fan of Angela France’s work and what is special about her latest collection ‘The Hill’ is I have been privy to the inside of the work for the past two years. I have done workshops using Archive materials with Angela, who has just spent the past two years deep in records of the past. I also know that the places she writes about are places she knows well. I missed her Launch in Ledbury and have resisted buying a copy of her book until I heard her read.

I particularly enjoyed the use of Anglo Language found in a short sequence of work in this book. I think place and people are two subjects that grip me,  for anyone who feels the same this collection is for you!

DFHkYknXsAkOYw2 © 2017 Nine Arches

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Here, we encounter ghosts, foxes and ancient kings. We meet the protestors who, years before the Kinder Scout Trespassers, were standing up for their rambling rights and took the law into their own hands in 1902 when a landowner tried to enclose the hill they had walked for generations. And though history is never far from the surface, The Hill raises questions that are just as important today; who has the right to roam, whose land is it, anyway?

“these are words that make you ache for the place.” – Phil Smith, author of Mythogeography and On Walking

 © 2017 Nine Arches Press

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Rishi Dastidar’ Ticker Tape was released earlier this year. I have known of Rishi for a while but only met him in Ledbury Poetry Festival this year.

His set was fresh and different. His poetry is distinctive and the themes cover a lot we can recognise, modern poetry for the 21st Century. I enjoyed the wit of his work and the pleasure he takes in performing it.

From politics to pop, from the UK to California, wherever digital heartbeats flutter and stutter, Ticker-tape is a maximalist take on 21st century living. Rishi Dastidar’s first full collection showcases one of contemporary poetry’s most distinctive voices, delivering effervescence with equal servings of panache and whiplash-quick wit.

Here is sheer madcap ingenuity and also impressive breadth; ranging from odes of love to deconstructed diversity campaigns and detonations of banter’s worst excesses, plus appearances from ex-SugaBabes, a shark who comes to tea, to the matters of matchstick empires and national identity. Ticker-tape is bold, adventuresome and wry – an unmissable and irrepressible debut.

 © 2017 Nine Arches Press

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And finally –DFa0G2FXkAA8038

 © 2017 Nine Arches

Tania Hershman who claimed not to be a poet when I met her a few years ago. She is/was a published author who had started to cross to the poetry genre. It is a good idea to expand your repertoire and flex your writing muscles this way.

What is unusual is to have a first collection published by a well established publisher within a couple of years of starting out.

A huge achievement. A pleasure to listen to.

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 © 2017 Nine Arches

Tania Hershman’s debut poetry collection, Terms and Conditions, urges us to consider all the possibilities, and read life’s small print before signing on the dotted line. These beautifully measured poems bring their stoical approach to the uncertain business of our daily lives – and ask us to consider what could happen if we were to bend or break the rules, step outside the boundaries and challenge the narrative.
In feats of imagination and leaps of probability, falling simply becomes flying, a baby collects the data and scrolls through everything it sees, and there are daring acts of vanishing and recreation. Be wary, for even the evidence here often leads us astray. And in between this, Hershman’s precise poetry elegantly balances the known, unknown and unknowable matter of existence, love and happiness, weighing the atoms of each, finding just the exact words that will draw up the perfect contract of ideas.
Praise for Terms and Conditions:
‘This is a sophisticated debut collection by a writer already well known for her inventive short stories.’ – Kathryn Maris

‘There is a plenitude and a loss to Tania Hershman’s Terms & Conditions. A plenitude of tones and forms and linguistic playfulness, and a fine sense of loss that spins and passes through the poems.’ – Simon Barraclough 

‘In her debut collection of poetry, acclaimed writer Tania Hershman reveals the strange intricacies of science and our daily lives. Here, we find a cabinet of curiosities: Elvis and Marilyn, fire ants, cake and wind turbines. Hershman gifts the reader with collisions of grief and laughter, joy and curiosity. A wonder.’- Doireann Ní Ghríofa
‘Tania Hershman’s work is full of brilliant and passionate observations on dreams, falling, names and dancing, they are moving, loving meditations on how we move and love, what it feels like to be alive.’ – W.N. Herbert

It was a superb night and we all had time for mingling and chatting too. A delightful summer’s evening and the kind of party I really like nowadays… relaxed, with books and booze!

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 © 2017 Nine Arches

Artist in Residence

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Artist in Residence at the Library in Droitwich.
28th July 10 a.m -12 p.m
Part of Artsfest.

Poet Laureate

Copy of The joy of reading (1)

I will be at Droitwich Library this Friday 28th July from 10 a.m as an Artist in Residence for the Artsfest.

Droitwich library© 2017 Droitwich Library 

It is an opportunity for you to come and chat to me about all things poetry and have a go at some workshop activities (optional). 

From 11 a.m I will be providing an activity suitable for children (4+) and one for those of us beyond our teen years.artsfest droitwich standardCome and find out about future Laureate plans including information on my Sculpture Writing Workshop at the Jinney Ring – 18th September, browse poetry books, relax and discover what the rest of the Artsfest has in store. 

droitwich artsfest

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