'The change she couldn't know that she had wrought merely by how her red hair caught the light'

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Lovers of poetry will be pleased to learn that Louisiana State University Press has just published Pulitzer Prize winner Henry Taylor’s new and selected poems, This Tilted World is Where I Live. Some of his finest poems are longer than the space this column permits, but here’s a shorter one that will give you a taste. Taylor lives in New Mexico.

 

ART AND LIFE

by Henry Taylor

 

In t...

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American Life in Poetry

'I dream of a time ...': Benjamin Zephaniah's vision for Britain reimagines Martin Luther King speech

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The poet Benjamin Zephaniah has reimagined Martin Luther King’s famous ‘I have a dream’ speech, in a poem broadcast on BBC Radio’s The World at One. As Americans assembled at Washington’s Lincoln Memorial to mark the anniversary of Dr King’s speech on 28 August 1963, and against the backdrop of the ...

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News

December deadline for Roger McGough prize on theme of 'identity'

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The £150 Arts Richmond Roger McGough poetry prize is open for entries on the theme of ‘identity’. The deadline is 18 December. More details

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Competitions

Passport to Here and There: Grace Nichols, Bloodaxe

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Grace Nichols was born in Guyana and has lived in Britain since 1977. Her first collection, I is a Long Memoried Woman (1983) won the Commonwealth Poetry Prize. Since then she has had four collections...

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Review

Poets celebrate return to the pub - but plan to continue on Zoom as well

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An open-mic poetry night in Leeds that has been going for more than five years has returned to its live venue after the easing of lockdown. Mark Connors, pictured, who is co-host with Gill Lambert of ...

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News

'Now, in what seems just a few yards down the block, I'm there'

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We’ve published more than 800 weekly columns to date, and soon I’m retiring as editor and part-time professor. This column will continue under my name until the end of the year, when my colleague Kwam...

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American Life in Poetry

Poetry goes big in Gloucester as installations spread across city

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Poetry installations featuring large-scale letters and art works stencilled in the landscape are appearing all over the city of Gloucester. The Of Earth and Sky project, curated by artist Luke Jerram ...

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News

Biden quotes Seamus Heaney - and Sophocles - in acceptance speech

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US presidential candidate Joe Biden quoted lines from Seamus Heaney’s translation of Sophocles’ Philoctetes, for his Democratic party nomination acceptance speech on Thursday, the Observer reports tod...

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News

'It’s good to be reminded every morning of the great mess, the brio of art-making'

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What do we select to keep with us when someone we love has died? Here’s Gail Mazur, who lives in Massachusetts, opening her closet door to show us. This poem originally appeared in the journal Ploughs...

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American Life in Poetry

Caroline Griffin and Lawrence Illsley are winners in our competition to aid NHS

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Caroline Griffin has won Write Out Loud’s Beyond the Storm poetry competition in aid of NHS Charities Together Covid-19 Urgent Appeal with her poem ‘Occupation (Lockdown April 2020)’. At the same time...

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Beyond the Storm competition

Tribute to Seamus Heaney, London, 2013

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The world of poetry paid tribute in words and music to Seamus Heaney on Wednesday night at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall, in a moving celebration of his work and life, with leading poets deli...

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We'll meet again

Return by Minor Road: Heidi Williamson, Bloodaxe

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In her mid-20s, Heidi Williamson was part of a Scottish community that suffered an inconceivable tragedy, the Dunblane primary school shooting. On 13 March 1996 a gunman entered the school and killed ...

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Review

Wordsworth's Dove Cottage reopens to public with new 'moss hut'

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William Wordsworth’s Dove Cottage at Grasmere reopened to the public on Saturday 15 August for the first time since lockdown, although you need to pre-book your visit. The Wordsworth Trust is also unv...

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News

Neil Astley, Jonathan Edwards, and Karen McCarthy Woolf to judge National Poetry Competition

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Neil Astley, Jonathan Edwards, and Karen McCarthy Woolf will be judging this year’s £5,000 National Poetry Competition. The deadline is 31 October. More details

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Competitions

Maxine Peake, Shelley's The Masque of Anarchy, Manchester, 2013

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As I started to write this I realised I had absent-mindedly typed The Masque of Energy - an apt Freudian slip after this fiery performance surged through the huge Manchester International Festival aud...

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We'll meet again

Catherine Graham reads poem about the Tyne on BBC radio's The World at One

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An award-winning poet from the north-east featured on the BBC Radio 4’s World at One lunchtime news programme this week, reading her poem about the river Tyne.

Catherine Graham read ‘Hyem (Home)’, ...

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News

'Sometimes you have to tell a story your entire life to get it right'

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I’ve read that every time we call up a memory we tweak it a little, so that in the end what we remember is mostly fabrication. Here Emily Ransdell, a poet from Washington state, touches upon this phen...

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American Life in Poetry

Simon Armitage and Jade Cuttle to judge £5,000 Gingko eco-poetry prize

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The £5,000 Gingko prize for eco-poetry, in association with the Poetry School, will be judged this year by the poet laureate Simon Armitage, and Jade Cuttle. This year there is also a separate £500 pr...

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Competitions

Fortnightly ezine wants poems and stories on the theme of 'Tear'

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The website worktownwords is asking for poetry and/or short story submissions to its fortnightly ezine. The latest edition is curated by Sarah Maclennan on the theme of 'Tear'. The closing date for su...

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Submissions

Don't make poetry an optional 'add-on' in schools, warns poet laureate

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The poet laureate Simon Armitage has added his voice to those criticising the decision by the exams body Ofqual to make poetry optional at GCSE. Armitage, whose work is part of the GCSE syllabus, said...

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News

'When relief blossoms so sweet, so unassuming'

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Twelve per cent of the population have migraines, and that’s about 500,000 of you, based upon our current readership in print and online. I hope none of you have one today, nor Barbara Schmitz, either...

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American Life in Poetry

Voting is over in Write Out Loud's Beyond the Storm poetry competition. The winners will be announced soon!

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Voting is over in the People’s Choice section of Write Out Loud’s Beyond the Storm poetry competition in aid of NHS Charities Together’s Covid-19 Urgent Appeal. In a few hours’ time the People’s Choic...

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Beyond the Storm competition

'Try to write every day, even for 10 minutes' - Finola Scott

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Glaswegian Finola Scott’s poems can be found on posters, postcards and tapestries. Her work has been anthologised in many publications including Gutter, New Writing Scotland, The Fenland Reed, Lightho...

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Spotlight on Scotland

People, it's time to vote! One day left to take part in the final stage of Write Out Loud's poetry competition to aid NHS

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This the last day of voting for the People’s Choice award in Write Out Loud’s Beyond the Storm poetry competition in aid of NHS Charities Together’s Covid-19 urgent appeal. Make sure you don't miss ou...

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Beyond the Storm competition

Award-winning performance poet changes name to Kae Tempest

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The award-winning performance poet Kate Tempest has announced a change of name and pronoun. The poet said on Instagram: “Hello old fans, new fans and passers by - I’m changing my name! And I’m changin...

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News

Poetry bike tour, South Downs, 2016

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Six poets and two musicians on Tuesday set off on the first leg of a four-day, 100-mile poetry bike tour of the South Downs as part of an inaugural poetry festival stretching from East and West Sussex...

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We'll meet again

Poetry deemed optional for next year's GCSE exam students 'to ease virus pressure'

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Poetry will be optional for GCSE English literature students next year, as part of changes for the 2021 paper brought in by the exams body Ofqual to “ease the pressure on many students and teachers” a...

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News

Fighting for breath, bats, and a tomato sandwich: poet's near-death experience on a Covid-19 ward

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The award-winning poet John Burnside has told about his time being close to death on a Covid-19 ward, having hallucinations about bats, and the joy of eating a tomato sandwich as he began to recover.

...

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News

National Poetry Library mothballed until 2021 as Southbank Centre staff protest at cuts

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The troubled National Poetry Library at London’s Southbank Centre is not due to reopen until at least April 2021, according to a protest letter from staff angered by cuts being imposed across the whol...

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News

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