Friday Poem – ‘Easter Sunday, Table Mountain’, Graham Mort

With today being celebrated as Good Friday, and the start of the long weekend, we felt our Friday Poem for this week ought to fit the Easter theme. Today we bring you ‘Easter Sunday, Table Mountain’ by Graham Mort, found in his collection Black Shiver Moss.  

Happy Easter!

Graham Mort writes beautifully about North Yorkshire, but the poems in his tenth collection, Black Shiver Moss, include pieces about landscapes and peoples as distant as South Africa and as close as Europe. New places are made intimate and familiar by Mort’s vivid descriptions and evocations. Here is a traveller who has taken his destinations to heart, reproducing their weathers and textures with a startling exactitude and intensity. A poet who loves nature, particularly in the liminal states of dawn and dusk, Mort move us beyond the visible, towards spiritual and philosophical concerns.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Black Shiver Moss is available from the Seren website: £9.99

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Friday Poem – ‘St. David’s Hall’, Peter Finch

This week’s poem is Peter Finch’s surreal night out at ‘St. David’s Hall’.

Poems from Cardiff is part of Seren’s pamphlet series celebrating the spirit of place. It opens with a view from the Bay where “the sea wrestles the Severn”. We also find ourselves in ‘Arcades’, mingling with the colourful crowds outside ‘St. David’s Hall’, and admiring the “fit” builders of the Millennium Stadium sunning themselves on Westgate Street. “The Muck and the Music” of Grangetown is here along with lyrical evocations of the Taff and Rhymni rivers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Poems from Cardiff is available from the Seren website: £5.00

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Friday Poem – ‘Spring Tide’, Paul Deaton

The clocks jump forward this weekend, signalling the start of British Summer Time – but before that, we have Paul Deaton’s ‘Spring Tide’ as our Friday Poem this week.

Paul Deaton A Watchful AstronomyPaul Deaton’s debut, A Watchful Astronomy, is a book of beautifully clear and powerful poems. A PBS Recommendation, the collection is haunted by the ghost of the author’s father, a figure that appears throughout the collection as an overbearing, even threatening presence, embodied in glowering mountain ranges, in icy blasts of weather, in bits of bleak, monosyllabic dialogue. Cutting through this harsh imagery are poems of reflection and contemplation that celebrate the weather and the seasons. ‘Spring Tide’ is one such poem.

 

Friday Poem Spring Tide Paul Deaton

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

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Friday Poem – ‘Armadillo’, Jane Lovell

Our Friday Poem this week is ‘Armadillo’ by Jane Lovell, from her Mslexia Prize-winning pamphlet, This Tilting Earth.

Jane Lovell This Tilting EarthJ​​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.
‘Armadillo’ considers the biology and expressiveness of this curious creature: a ‘dusty jungle relic’ that upon examination raises more questions than it answers.

 

 

Armadillo Friday Poem Jane Lovell

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This Tilting Earth is available from the Seren website: £5.00

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

 

 

Friday Poem – ‘Arcades’, Paul Henry

Our new quartet of regional poetry pamphlets have just arrived, with each celebrating a special place in Wales: its people, landscape, wildlife, and vibrant goings-on. This week our Friday Poem comes from Poems from Cardiff, our tribute to the Capital.

Paul Henry’s ‘Arcades’ inhabits the busy and eclectic Victorian arcades that wind around the city centre, telling a private tale of sadness, love, and hope. The poem was first published in The Brittle Sea, Henry’s bestselling New and Selected Poems.

 

Friday Poem Arcades Paul Henry

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All four regional pamphlets, including Poems from Cardiff, are available on the Seren website: £5.00 (each)

 

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Friday Poem(s) – 3 Poems for International Women’s Day

International Women's Day poems

For our celebration of International Women’s Day, we’ve selected not one Friday Poem but three – each offering a different perspective, and each representing a different stage in a woman’s life.

 

‘Home Birth’ by Carolyn Jess-Cooke, from Boom!
Through vivid, painful and powerful imagery, Jess-Cooke relives the intensely physical and emotional act of labour.

Carolyn Jess-Cooke Home Birth

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Boom! Carolyn Jess-Cooke

Boom!
Carolyn Jess-Cooke
£9.99
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‘The Girls on the Train’ by Katherine Stansfield, from Playing House
The joy of youth is a catalyst for the speaker mourning the loss of her ‘early velour glory’ in this short, powerful poem, which causes us to question our aversion to ageing.

Katherine Stansfield Girls on the Train

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

playing house katherine stansfield

Playing House
Katherine Stansfield
£9.99
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‘I start to understand yellow’ by Rosie Shepperd, from
The Man at the Corner Table

Violence and isolation are overcome as the quiet power of female unity gathers strength in the textures, flavours and colours of nineteenth century Mauritius.

Rosie Shepperd I start to understand yellow

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

the man at the corner table rosie shepperd

The Man at the Corner Table
Rosie Shepperd
£9.99
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Happy International Women’s Day. We hope these poems nourish and delight, and if you’d like to discover more of our women writers, have a browse on our website.

 

 

 

Friday Poem – ‘Perspective’, Damian Walford Davies

It’s 1st March – Dydd Gŵyl Dewi Sant Hapus (or Happy St David’s Day) to you! This Welsh holiday has been celebrated since the 12th Century, and honours Wales’ patron saint.

On such a historic holiday it seems fitting to consider Wales’ history, and our Friday Poem does just that – ‘Perspective’, the opening poem from Docklands by Damian Walford Davies, introduces Victorian Cardiff: the chilling and visceral setting of this intriguing ghost-story-in-verse.

Damian Walford Davies Docklands Ghost Story

‘When much new poetry looks no further than the poet’s navel, this kind of imaginative leap is a tonic.’ – The Telegraph

Damian Walford Davies’s compellingly eerie new poetry collection, Docklands: A Ghost Story, introduces us to a Cardiff architect – a man supremely sure of himself – as he is commissioned to transform an area in the busy docks. Docklands explores grey worlds at the edges of the eye, conjuring late-Victorian Cardiff’s hustling, booming, sullied docks – and the horrors they conceal.

 

 

Friday Poem Perspective Damian Walford Davies

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Docklands: A Ghost Story is available from the Seren website: £9.99

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Friday Poem – ‘The World at One’, Kate Bingham

Friday Poem Kate Bingham The World at One

Today in the TLS you’ll find a new poem by Kate Bingham – ‘The Sound I have’. For our Friday Poem we also have one of Kate’s poems, though for us its one taken from Infragreen: ‘The World at One’.

infragreenInfragreen is full of poems that are perceptive, persuasive and intricately made. They take the reader on a startling and unfamiliar journey through everyday experiences and phenomena. Bingham’s keen eye, reflectiveness and quiet wit endow each subject with a shimmering freshness. Those who know her earlier work will recognise in this collection a playful, often darkly comic, appreciation of the surreal, which features hearts and hands, feet, and even a pair of shoes with minds and agenda of their own.

 

Friday Poem The World at One Kate Bingham

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Infragreen is available from the Seren website: £9.99

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Friday Poem – ‘Angry Birds’, Eoghan Walls

Friday Poem Angry Birds

This week our Friday Poem is the opening number from Eoghan Walls’ forthcoming second collection, Pigeon Songs – ‘Angry Birds’.

Pigeon Songs Eoghan WallsPigeon Songs follows on from Walls’ much-praised debut, The Salt Harvest. From the first poem, we have a sense of the poet’s themes and preoccupations: we have a richly metaphorical and densely allusive style, a pull towards formal metre and structures. There is also the occasional vigorous vulgarity, adding a touch of blue humour to the canvas, breaking up the formal rigour. Family is a potent presence in poems inspired by parents, grandparents, partners, children. They often emit a sort of energy, a fierce gravitational pull of emotion around the burning heart of a poem ultimately about love, or the sorrow of losing a loved-one.

 

Friday Poem Angry Birds Eoghan Walls

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pigeon Songs is due for publication on 28 February. Pre-order your copy now from the Seren website: £9.99

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Friday Poem – ‘Upright’, Mara Bergman

Friday Poem Mara Bergman Upright

Our Friday Poem this week is ‘Upright’ by Mara Bergman, from her Mslexia Prize-winning pamphlet, The Tailor’s Three Sons.

Tailor's Three Sons Mara BergmanThe Tailor’s Three Sons is the fruit of Bergman’s rich memories of her childhood on Long Island and Manhattan. Now living in the UK, she looks back and assembles vivid scenes and an appealing cast of characters for us. The title poem is inspired by the author’s visit to the Tenement Museum in New York’s Lower East Side, where she vividly imagines the lives of immigrants when many thousands docked in ships at Ellis Island and the Lower East Side was ‘the most crowded place on the planet’.

Attend the Mslexia Pamphlet Prizewinners event at the Seren Cornerstone Poetry Festival –  Mara Bergman will be reading alongside Polly Atkin, Cath Drake, Mara Bergman, Ilse Pedlar, Yvonne Reddick and Bryony Littlefair. There will be music from poet/singer-songwriter Rhian Edwards, and tickets include a lavish 3-course Sunday Lunch (vegetarian options available). Book now.

 

Friday Poem Upright Mara Bergman

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Tailor’s Three Sons is available from the Seren website: £5.00

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