Friday Poem – ‘Severn Bore’ by Catherine Fisher

This week’s Friday Poem is ‘Severn Bore’ by Catherine Fisher which first appeared in her 1988 collection Immrama, and later in our regional pamphlet Poems from The Borders.

Poems from The Borders is part of Seren’s pamphlet series celebrating the spirit of place. Featured poems range from “the spine of the A470”, through Monmouthshire, over the dramatic Brecon Beacons, and also through the Black Mountains towards Hay-on-Wye, towns in Herefordshire and Radnorshire and along rivers, the Wye and Severn.​

 

 

 

 

 

A prolific, popular and prize-winning author of fantasy fiction, Catherine began her career as a poet, and returned to poetry earlier this year with her collection The Bramble King. Her first collection since 1999, it is full of darkly resonant tales ingenious parables, curiously haunted rooms and palaces, and beautifully observed images of the natural world.

The Bramble King is available on the Seren website: £9.99

 

Poems from The Borders is available on the Seren website: £5

Immrama is available on the Seren website: £3.95

Next Wednesday (28 August), Catherine will be at The Poetry Bookshop in Hay-on-Wye alongside our poetry editor Amy Wack to read from Poems from The Borders. They will be joined by Christopher Meredith, Maggie Harris, Rhiannon Hooson, Emma van Woerkom, Charlie Wilkinson, Nicholas Murray, Nicholas Whitehead and Bob Walton. Find out more here.

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Friday Poem – ‘Taken for Pearls’ by Tony Curtis

This week’s Friday Poem is ‘Taken for Pearls’ by Tony Curtis which appears in our regional pamphlet Poems from Pembrokeshire.

Last week Tony read poems from the pamphlet alongside Amy Wack at the Llangwm Literature Festival as part of the Poems from Pembrokeshire tour. The next stop is the Tenby Museum on Wednesday 21 August where Tony and Amy will be joined by several other poets for another afternoon of readings.

Poems from Pembrokeshire is part of Seren’s pamphlet series celebrating the spirit of place. An area of supreme but also disquieting beauty, Pembrokeshire has been the home to saints and pirates, the cradle of Tudor Kings and subject to oil spills and annual invasions of summer visitors. The undeniable loveliness of its off-shore islands: Ramsey, Grassholm, and Caldey, contrasts with the often harsh life of settlers, of monks and sea-fishing folk of the past, such as the stoic ‘Boatmen’ of Tenby.

 

 

Poems from Pembrokeshire is available on the Seren website: £5

Did you know? All of our regional pamphlets come with an envelope and a post card making them the perfect gift – keep them for yourself or send to a loved one. View the full range here

Can’t make the reading of Poems from Pembrokeshire at the Tenby Museum? Amy Wack will also be at the Poetry Bookshop in Hay-on-Wye on Wednesday 28 August reading from Poems from The Borders. Find out more here.

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Friday Poem – ‘Caldey Island’ by David Hodges

This week’s Friday Poem is ‘Caldey Island’ by David Hodges which appears in our regional pamphlet Poems from Pembrokeshire. We hope everyone stays safe as we brace ourselves for stormy weather.

This month, our poetry editor Amy Wack is taking Poems from Pembrokeshire on tour. You can catch readings from the pamphlet at several venues over the next few weeks. The next event is at 12:30pm today at Llangwm Literary Festival in the Big Marquee. We will also be at Tenby Museum on Wednesday 21st August.

Poems from Pembrokeshire is part of Seren’s pamphlet series celebrating the spirit of place. An area of supreme but also disquieting beauty, Pembrokeshire has been the home to saints and pirates, the cradle of Tudor Kings and subject to oil spills and annual invasions of summer visitors. The undeniable loveliness of its off-shore islands: Ramsey, Grassholm, and Caldey, contrasts with the often harsh life of settlers, of monks and sea-fishing folk of the past, such as the stoic ‘Boatmen’ of Tenby.

 

 

Poems from Pembrokeshire is available on the Seren website: £5

Did you know? All of our regional pamphlets come with an envelope and a post card making them the perfect gift – keep them for yourself or send to a loved one. View the full range here

Can’t make a reading from Poems from Pembrokeshire? Amy Wack will also be at the Poetry Bookshop in Hay-on-Wye on Wednesday 28 August for readings from Poems from The Borders. Find out more here.

Create your free Seren account and enjoy 20% off every book you buy from us.

Friday Poem – ‘Care’ by Claire Williamson

This week’s Friday Poem is ‘Care’ by Claire Williamson which recently received special mention in the  Sentinel Literary Quarterly Poetry Competition (May 2019), with the judges calling it ‘A beautiful image of fragility, of vulnerability.’

Visiting the Minotaur Claire Williamson

Claire’s collection Visiting the Minotaur was published by Seren in 2018. In this inventive and intensely felt collection, the poet enters a labyrinth of her own complicated family history, a history beset with secrets and lies, in order to come to terms with her own identity.  She borrows from myths, histories, careful observations of nature, and of city life, in order to fashion her artful meditations on experience and mortality.

 

Visiting the Minotaur is available on the Seren website: £9.99

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Friday Poem – ‘Stowaway I (He Dreamed of Byzantium)’ by Richard Gwyn

This week’s Friday Poem is ‘Stowaway I (He Dreamed of Byzantium)’ by Richard Gwyn which appears in his collection Stowaway: A Levantine Adventure. 

Richard Gwyn is the laureate of ‘Reckless Travel’, one of the poems in his richly imagined collection, Stowaway: A Levantine Adventure. The protagonist is a nameless anti-Ulysses figure who wanders through the eastern Mediterranean. Yet these journeys are composed of both memory and dream, they hold out alluring visions of the region: Venice, Istanbul, Greece, Egypt, Palestine but also recall bloody histories and the darker side of rootlessness, echoing the voices of both refugee and war victim.

 

 

 

Stowaway: A Levantine Adventure is available on the Seren website: £9.99

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Don’t forget this week is our half-price Summer Sale which means you can get 50% off all of our amazing titles until midnight on Sunday 28th July*! Get browsing before it’s too late! www.serenbooks.com

*Excludes forthcoming titles and new releases | subject to availability

 

Friday Poem – ‘A Watchful Astronomy’ by Paul Deaton

In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the moon landings, this week’s Friday Poem is ‘A Watchful Astronomy’ by Paul Deaton from his collection of the same name, which was a Poetry Book Society Recommendation.

A Watchful Astronomy by Paul Deaton is a thoughtful poetry collection by a well-regarded author who has published his work in national magazines like The Spectator, London Magazine and the PN Review. It has a distinctive flavour. The author is a realist and a formalist, preferring simple, accurate language and use of formal meter. This makes for unusually clear and accessible work. A powerful underlying current of emotion also drives these poems and is contained and restrained by the more austere formal qualities.

 

 

 

 

 A Watchful Astronomy is available on the Seren website: £9.99

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Friday Poem – ‘Buzz Pollination’ by Polly Atkin

This week’s Friday Poem is ‘Buzz Pollination’ by Polly Atkin which appears in her debut collection Basic Nest Architecture

Last week, it was announced that Basic Nest Architecture is on the 2019 longlist for the Michael Murphy Prize. (Read more here.)

Polly Atkin’s debut poetry collection, Basic Nest Architecture, is complex, vivid and moving. It opens with poems inspired by her home in the Lake District, and the landscape and famous Romantic poets such as Wordsworth and Keats, who have walked there and written about the fells and lakes. Nature is a guiding presence, but the author’s personal story, of enduring a little-known and sometimes debilitating illness, is also the backdrop to this striking poetry. Formally, this work is more akin to the metaphysical poets in its fervent use of metaphor, in its multiple layers of meaning and in its quest for answers to the most pressing questions of mortality.

 

 

Basic Nest Architecture is available on the Seren website: £9.99

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Friday Poem – ‘Afon Rhymni’ by Robert Walton

This week’s Friday Poem is ‘Afon Rhymni’ by Robert Walton which appears in his collection Sax Burglar Blues as well as our Poems from Cardiff pamphlet

The poems in Sax Burglar Blues range from vivid memories of childhood, such as ‘Twm Siôn Cati’ where a teacher ‘wiry-haired, fierce-eyed’ brings a fictional villain to life, banging out rhythms with her shoe on the floor of a Cardiff classroom, to memories of a rock-and-roll influenced youth on the back of the Dusty Springfield night bus, or an archetypal narrative of getting kicked out of a band just before they hit the big time. (‘Three Out of Four Original Members’).

 

 

Sax Burglar Blues is available on the Seren website: £9.99

Poems from Cardiff is available on the Seren website: £5

Did you know? All of our regional pamphlets come with an envelope and a post card making them the perfect gift – keep them for yourself or send to a loved one. View the full range here

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Friday Poem – ‘Limousin, Lascaux’ by Jane Lovell

Our Friday Poem this week is ‘Limousin, Lascaux’ by Jane Lovell, which appears in her pamphlet This Tilting Earth, winner of the 2018 Mslexia and Poetry Book Society Women’s Pamphlet Prize.

In This Tilting Earth, J​​ane Lovell’s poems are both beautiful and disturbing. A deep feeling for the natural world is aligned with an acute lyric sensibility, as well as a profound ethical awareness of our responsibility for the planet and the devastation of its landscapes and vulnerable species.

‘Jane Lovell’s poems are crafted with a jeweller’s precision. They make visceral connections with the wild in a language all of her own.’ –James Roberts​

This Tilting Earth is available from the Seren website: £5. 

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Friday Poem – ‘Boom!’ by Carolyn Jess-Cooke

This week’s Friday Poem is ‘Boom!’ by Carolyn Jess-Cooke, the title poem from her collection of the same name, and appears in the anthology Writing Motherhood.

A celebration of parenthood, the poems chronicle all the ups and downs of raising a family, from the rapturous moments, such as ‘Wakening’ where the baby is observed: ‘the seedling eyes stirred by sunlight’. To the tragi-comic ‘Nights’ full of ‘small elbows in the face’ and ‘assailed by colds and colic’ and the darker fears and depressions that can afflict parents.

As we comtemplate the feelings of wonder and love evoked by ‘Boom!’ We dedicate the weekly poem to Seren poets who have recently become new mothers: Kim Moore (May 24th) and Emily Blewitt (May 31st).

 

 

BOOM! is available from the Seren website: £9.99

Writing Motherhood is available on the Seren website: £12.99

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