Magazine pours bucket of 'literary criticism' over award-winning Hollie McNish

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Performance poetry/spoken word versus page poetry? Isn’t it a debate that has been put to bed, particularly with performers Kate Tempest and Hollie McNish winning the Ted Hughes award for innovation in poetry in recent years? Not so, apparently.

In an article which she describes as an essay that is headed “The Cult of the Noble Amateur” in the current edition of the prestigious poetry magazine ...

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John Ashbery: an appreciation

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It’s been a hard couple of years for me. Many of my poetic signposts have died recently and sometimes it’s hard not to feel a little lost now. Lee Harwood, Tom Raworth, Roy Fisher – and now John Ashbery.

He was part of a remarkable generation of poets who gathered in New York, who knew each other...

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'My mother found herself as a working single parent in 1960s London'

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Jacqueline Saphra launched her new collection of poems, All My Mad Mothers - described as an “unreliable memoir” - on Wednesday night in London. In this blog for Write Out Loud, she talks about her mo...

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A county's poet laureate talks about the challenges and opportunites of the job

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Isabel Rogers was this week appointed Hampshire Poet for 2016. But what does it mean to be a local poetry figurehead? Here are the thoughts of Staffordshire’s current poet laureate, Bert Flitcroft:

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Scotland's 'makars' thrive among differing tongues

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Scotland’s poetry scene is thriving, in a country that is justifiably proud of its heritage and well-known for its achievements in the arts. It’s also a country of several historic and contemporary la...

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Poetry in a time of data: protecting acorns, adders, catkins and herons from language loss

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We have a sixth layer of consciousness to assimilate all the “data” we receive from the five senses. In order to differentiate a strawberry from the white, china bowl on which it sits, or the table th...

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'Poetry suddenly could be fun ... it was all very Liverpool'

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Brian Patten is returning to the north-west next month, with an appearance at Bolton’s Live from Worktown festival. Patten is one of the Liverpool Poets, who with Adrian Henri and Roger McGough made p...

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Shard, daffodil, palimpsest: should some words be banned in poetry?

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A list of words which should not be included in poems, or used only with caution, was apparently put together some years ago by a group of UK poets. (Acknowledgement for this list to The Far Near Blog...

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He wrote in the trenches, and died in 1918. But Isaac Rosenberg did not see himself as a war poet

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Frances Spurrier writes about Isaac Rosenberg, a poet who was killed in the first world war. Some of his best-known poems deserve their place alongside those of Owen and Sassoon. Rosenberg died on pat...

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Poetry magazines and the creative writing boom: are editors being swamped with poems?

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The other day I got a nicely worded rejection of some poems I'd submitted to a magazine. Nothing unusual in that.

The refusal said that “we have had hundreds of submissions and have had to leave ou...

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'Poetry can't exist without rhythm. Don't be academically bullied into dropping rhymes'

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Earlier this year Write Out Loud’s founder, Julian Jordon, saw a poetry performance by Cynthia Buell Thomas and was moved to write: “Everything about it was absolutely top quality … a lesson in how...

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From Chickentown to McCain chips: but does Cooper Clarke's new ad put you off your tea?

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So there I was, smiling and giggling though a collection of humorous verse while waiting for a TV programme when I heard the incomparable drawling drone of the Bard of Salford. I was not mistaken. ...

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'This is a time for poets to speak up for the powerless'

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In the wake of chancellor George Osborne's latest spending cuts, radical poet and editor Alan Morrison surveys the rising tide of protest poetry, and calls on all “politically-conscious” poets to c...

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