Henry Raby's fast-forward to the future

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Bring cushions, mats, blankets, pillows and sleeping bags: that’s the message when punk poet Henry Raby invites you to write a letter to your future self. The journey to the future takes place on 1 and 2 February at Leeds University, when Raby performs his own take on the trip with poems ranging from comics, cartoons and crayons to teenage crushes, puberty and hangovers, plus the chance for the...

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Taking flight at Slimbridge

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Alison Brackenbury, Anne Cluysenarr, Ann Drysdale, Angela France, Alwyn Marriage, Hermiona Sandall and Christine Webb will be reading new poems about birds at Slimbridge Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust Reserve in Gloucestershire on Sunday 5 February at 12.30pm, as part of a weekend Festival of Birds....

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Rappers battle with performance poets at Brighton

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Poets v MCs at Komedia, Gardner Street, Brighton on Thursday 26 January brings together the area’s finest rappers and performance poets for a night of verbal sparring. There will be eight poets, ei...

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John Burnside wins TS Eliot prize

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John Burnside, winner of last year’s Forward prize, has now taken the TE Eliot prize as well, for his collection Black Cat Bone. The TS Eliot prize became controversial after the original 10-strong...

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Superhero of Slam champ Mark Mace Smith at WOL Sale

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Superhero of Slam champ and poet in residence at BBC MediaCityUK, Mark Mace Smith, WOL open mic regular Charlotte Henson, and Reece Williams from Manchester’s Young Identity group are the guest poe...

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Matt Merritt at Birmingham's Poetry Bites tonight

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Poet and wildlife journalist Matt Merritt will be reading from his latest Nine Arches Press collection when he guests at the Poetry Bites open mic event, at the Kitchen Garden Café, 17 York Road, K...

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Jeffarama! at Write Out Loud Middleton on Sunday

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Jeff Dawson, aka Jeffarama!, is guest poet at Write Out Loud Middleton on Sunday night, 22 January, at the Ring O’Bells, St Leonard’s Square, Middleton. The open mic night starts at 8pm. Entry: £2 ...

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Osborne, Wright, Naylor and Clare at John Peel arts centre

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John Osborne, Luke Wright, Molly Naylor and Tim Clare will be appearing at a poetry shindig on Saturday 21 January at the new John Peel Centre for Creative Arts at Stowmarket’s former Corn Exchange...

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Carol Ann Duffy under fire for courtroom poem

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Poet laureate Carol Ann Duffy, who only last week was basking in the glow of her latest collection The Bees winning the Costa poetry prize, has now come under fire from some quarters for her poem w...

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Diary of a Spoken Word Bird: boobs, rude words, and a gorilla

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The past month or so has been very quiet for me, in more ways than one, as I am currently suffering from the most damagingly distressing and displeasingly disruptive disease known to perf poets all...

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Carol Ann Duffy and Matthew Hollis win Costa prizes

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Poet laureate Carol Ann Duffy has won the Costa poetry prize for The Bees, her first collection since she became poet laureate in 2009, while poet Matthew Hollis has won the biography prize for his...

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Knighthood for Geoffrey Hill in New Year honours

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Oxford’s professor of poetry, Geoffrey Hill, has been given a knighthood in the New Year honours list. Hill, 79, who has sometimes been described as a “difficult” poet, partly because of his allusi...

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Adam Woolley at Write Out Loud Bolton tonight

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Adam Woolley, pictured, is guest poet at Write Out Loud Bolton, back tonight, Sunday 15 January, at the Wellington pub. Kicking off at 7.30, with your guest MC Andy N, it’s a game of two halves – f...

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Click on this? WOL's links compendium

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Liz Lochhead reads My Rival’s House, Imtiaz Dharker reads Honour Killing, Simon Armitage reads An Accommodation, Fleur Adcock reads Strangers On a Tram, Paul Farley reads Treacle, Robin Robertson r...

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Queen's Gold Medal for Jo Shapcott

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Jo Shapcott has won the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry. Her collection, Of Mutability, which traces her experience of breast cancer, has already won the Costa book of the year award.

Shapcott pr...

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Politics, protests and wheelbarrows: the WOL review of 2011

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2011 marked the jailing and eventual release of a Bahraini poet after months in detention; amazing scenes at the Poetry Society; principled protests by poets about arts sponsorship; lots of excitem...

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Poetry Book Society in hedge fund row

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The knock-on effects of this year’s Arts Council poetry funding cuts took an unexpected turn when two leading poets, Alice Oswald, and John Kinsella, withdrew from the TS Eliot prize shortlist draw...

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