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Fernando Smith

Updated: Mon, 13 Jan 2014 01:05 pm

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Some History: Fernando Smith was born 1965 in Bury, Manchester. Middle child, tethered to traditional northern alcoholic family. Raised in a corner shop, which he utilised to his benefit by bribing girls with stolen confectionary, in order to penetrate the old mysteries. Bought a guitar at age 10. Wrote a love song the same day. Left school tried out a factory that summer and not being to his liking he accepted some money from the British Mountaineering Council to climb abroad in return for a story. Developed a taste for writing while travelling and decided not to work in a factory again. Returned and studied art. Painted, sculpted and composed, with eyes scrubbed-up like new. Performed his songs to drunks, ladies and drunken ladies. (Some people see continents exploding - he saw punks and teds dancing while he sang). Advised: “There’s no money in poetry.” Believed it and began working in an assortment of jobs with people in various degrees of pain, but couldn’t stop from sharing his poems with non-drunks as well as a better class of drunk than previously. Now living in Cumbria. His first complete collection of work– “Welcome to the Golden Life” was published by Searle Publishing, 2010. The title poem was awarded 2nd place in the Big Issue UK poetry competition in 2009. Fernando has contributed to many magazines and journals over the years and continues to perform his poetry, songs and song-poems across the UK and Europe.


Dove Poem I coo you coo we all coo for haiku Maradona of the Rec When we were kids we played football and wished never to stop. The ball and us lost on the ground the volley the goal these were things caught in our dreams as we sketched passes combinations feints summoned by a lowered shoulder. Through the thick gloaming we would play, until our mothers called us in and the next day we would play a little better a little faster. Life is a miracle. The dying light where we felt most free. Not being able to see the entire goal or half the pitch. Having to sense the pass, leave a carelessly sliced cross stillborn by the touchline. It was like playing with forgotten eyes. There, on the uneven ground perhaps the spot of an old skirmish, focked with hoof prints the earth skid-scabbed we discovered the field its roll to the left trenched on the flank an uphill haunch towards the famished net. We learned our opponents that way. It was the best education, our imagination. The State of Things The little bird stood transfixed by the sun St. Francis bent over scooping the creature in his kind palms The wind was high urging the poplars to curve like reaching feathers Ten minutes later the bird, perched in a cage cursed the sun in a fishbone voice mistaken for delight Without Irony The little Bakelite speaker pounds European love from its heart here is the sky there is the sea everything is powder blue except for this page and these lines Suddenly moved by it all the German reaches over and kisses his wife she smiles and drops her head down and to one side this vacation will give them their first child. Tragedy Your mother died crushed by a fallen crate of Dutch flowers one Thursday in Hull. I’m told she made a sweet smelling corpse, splayed beneath the cranes by the waterfront. An unusual garland all packaged for the grave. You cried at her funeral and wished you had spent more time with her when she was alive. I couldn’t help but notice that you sent a wreath of tulips.

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