Jeremy Paxman to chair Forward Prize judges

TV presenter and writer Jeremy Paxman is to chair this year’s panel of Forward Prize judges. Also are on the panel is singer-songwriter Cerys Matthews, as well as poets Dannie Abse, Vahni Capildeo and Helen Mort.

Susannah Herbert, director of the Forward Arts Foundation, said: "Jeremy Paxman's personal relish for memorable language and robust debate - not to mention his deep love of poetry - ma...

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If you have tears, prepare to shed them now: the poetry that makes chaps weep

Melvyn Bragg, Richard Dawkins, Ian McEwan, Mike Leigh, Ben Okri, Simon Russell Beale and Simon Schama will be among those reading at an anthology launch at the National Theatre next month. In Poems that make Grown Men Cry, edited by Anthony Holden and Ben Holden, 100 leading male figures in in liter...

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Royal Mail's stamp of approval for Dylan Thomas in centenary year

Dylan Thomas appears on a new Royal Mail first class stamp, issued on 25 March, to mark the centenary year of his birth. In other anniversary celebrations, a replica of the shed used by Dylan is touri...

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Now we are six: Manchester's experimental Other Room marks birthday

Manchester’s heart of experimental poetry, The Other Room, celebrates its sixth birthday on Wednesday 2 April at the Castle hotel at 7pm. Entry is free to hear Hannah Silva, pictured, Emma Bennett, an...

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Spokes cycling anthology to be launched at Otley Word Feast

An anthology of poetry about cycling will be launched on Sunday 30 March as the culmination of  Otley Word Feast, a three-day celebration of written and spoken word in the West Yorkshire town.  The la...

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Parking is such sweet sorrow: Sainsbury's row in Hebden Bridge inspires Winston Plowes

Hebden Bridge arts festival’s Pop Up Poet, Winston Plowes, has produced a light-hearted take on a row about Sainsbury’s in the town by trying to imagine how Shakespeare might have looked at it in his ...

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It's worth the risk: Write Out Loud at the Red and Green Club in Huddersfield tonight

Take a chance to read or sing at Write Out Loud’s Risk A Verse open mic night at the Red and Green Club, Milnsbridge, Huddersfield, on Thursday, 27 March at 7.30pm. Entry is £1 for non-members. Showca...

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Mimi Khalvati at Roehampton poetry centre reading in London

Mimi Khalvati, Stephen Romer, and Ahren Warner will be appearing at the second University of Roehampton poetry centre reading at the University of London’s Institute of English Studies, Senate House, ...

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Poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti, publisher of Howl, prepares new book at the age of 94

The US poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti, aged 94, who co-founded the City Lights bookstore in San Francisco, and was tried on obscenity charges after publishing Allen Ginsberg's Howl and Other Poems in 1956...

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William Blake and Christian socialism: the poetic side of Tony Benn

Tony Benn, one of the most famous British political figures of the late 20th century, has died at the age of 88. Like Margaret Thatcher, he was regarded at one time as bitterly divisive. But unlike hi...

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Write Out Loud at Middleton on Sunday

Pete Slater will be the guest poet at Write Out Loud Middleton on Sunday 23 March at the Ring O’ Bells, St Leonard’s Square, Middleton. Entry to this open mic event, hosted by Norman Warwick, is a £2 ...

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Remembering jailed Cameroon poet Enoh Meyomesse on World Poetry Day

It’s World Poetry Day on Friday 21 March – and English PEN is using it to highlight once more the plight of jailed Cameroon poet Enoh Meyomesse, who has been behind bars for more than two years on wha...

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Poetry on the move: events organiser Poejazzi launches free app

London spoken word events organiser Poejazzi is reaching out by launching a free poetry app available on iOS and Android. Charlotte Morgan-Nwokenna, Poejazzi’s creative director, said: “Poejazzi Seaso...

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Taking a world view at Write Out Loud Marsden tonight

Members of Write Out Marsden are being invited to go global at their meeting on Wednesday 19 March. Organiser and Write Out Loud founder Julian Jordon has asked them to consider bringing along a poem ...

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Write Out Loud at Sale tonight

Kate Bendelow and Christopher Coey will be guest poets at Write Out Loud Sale, at the Waterside arts centre, Sale, on Tuesday 18 March. Entry is £3/£2, and it starts at 7.30pm. Get there early if you ...

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Family of Hugo Williams appeals for kidney donor

The family of poet Hugo Williams – pictured with his granddaughter, Silver - has launched an appeal to find a kidney donor for him. Hugo Williams won the TS Eliot Prize in 1999, and the Queen’s Gold M...

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Poet and 'ex-scumbag' Byron Vincent defends underclass on sink estates

A poet who has described himself as an “ex-scumbag” and former drug addict has made a plea for understanding of those who live on sink estates. Byron Vincent, a slam poet and regular performer at fest...

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The cup overflows: Write Out Loud at Wigan tonight

Members of Write Out Loud Wigan, some maybe still basking in the glow of the Latics' second successive FA Cup triumph over Manchester City at the weekend, will meet on Thursday 13 March for another ru...

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Welcome sign of spring as poetry trekker Joe hits the road again

A footslogging open mic poet who makes long treks to poetry events turned up to check out a new Write Out Loud night. Joe Nodus, who sometimes styles himself Joe Yuno, arrived wearing waterproof trous...

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School reunion time at Troubadour for Faber Academy poets

There were poems about Stanley Spencer and Marc Chagall; poems about Hitler voiceovers, and hating Mozart; poems about primordial molluscs, Boris Johnson, mermaids, and a dodgy travelling fishmonger. ...

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Write Out Loud at Stockport art gallery tonight

Members of Write Out Loud Stockport meet on Monday 10 March at Stockport art gallery to share poems, and to help construct the group’s collage poem that is put together on the same night. Beginners ar...

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The jam is back: Write Out Loud's open mic at jazz festival on YouTube

A video that recaptures some of the warm, inclusive informality of Write Out Loud’s poetry jam at last year’s Marsden jazz festival has been uploaded on to YouTube. It forms part of Write Out Loud’s d...

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Five contenders listed for Ted Hughes award

A series of elegies and eulogies written in the voices of an unlikely band of northern subversives; a collaboration between a poet and a medical herbalist; a multimedia live literature production abou...

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Some of us want no part of a UK 'brand': Kathleen Jamie on independence

Leading poet Kathleen Jamie has spoken out on Scottish independence, in an article for the New York Times. Jamie, who won the Costa poetry award last year for her collection The Overhaul, said the iss...

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The art of choosing: magazine editors reveal how they sift and select

“I read the first line of every poem that comes in: if I read to the end it goes into a ‘maybe’ pile:” Ahren Warner, (pictured right), poetry editor of Poetry London magazine. “I make my mind up very ...

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