“When asked what I write about, I like to reply that ‘about’ is the wrong word, it suggests the wrong relationship.
I prefer to say from or toward, or occasionally through …”
– Kathleen Jamie
This year I was asked to be one of the judges for the Teignmouth Poetry Festival, 31st March – 2nd April, alongside the wonderful Fiona Benson. Fiona judged all the entries to the competition (over 1,000) and I was the judge for the Graham Burchell Prize for all entries from Devon, of which there were over 390 submissions.
Graham was a dear friend of mine, and it was a privilege to award prizes to 3 excellent poets in his name, as well as choose 3 Highly Commended poets. I found the process of reading and selecting poems from all the entries much more difficult than I had imagined it would be; the quality of writing was high and so many people took risks with both their language and their subject-matter – what I read touched my heart.
On Saturday 15th April I’ll be alongside Rosie Jackson at the Alice Cross Centre, Teignmouth (7pm) for the launch of her new poetry collection ‘Love Leans Over The Table’ (Two Rivers Press). There will be guest poets and music from cellist Eliza Jacobs. As well as being one of her guest readers, I’ll also be facilitating the event, which will celebrate Rosie’s beautiful poetry. Please come along.
On 29th April I’ll be at the Rainham Poetry Festival reading a poem that won 1st Prize last year in the Rosemary McLeish Poetry Prize competition. ‘Owl Pellet at Grey Wethers’ is a poem I wrote quite a few years ago, and I’m glad that it caught the attention of Jane Burn, the judge for that competition and an exquisite poet. It’s an honour to receive a prize in the name of Rosemary McLeish, whose art and poetry is both thought-provoking and beautiful.
This is the year when I hope to be publishing a third collection of poems … I’ll keep you posted!
It’s my intention to create poetry-cards; I love the idea of small excerpts of poems being set alongside images. Under the name seahorsedreaming.com, these greetings cards will feature some of my favourite photographs. Each picture will have its own story and that, too, will be part of each card. In this sister site, you’ll be able to purchase my books as well as poetry cards. Please check my News Page for updates on this idea.
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