Writer/editor/poet. Lively readings. (see YouTube) Widely published and broadcast (inc. Poetry Please). Collections 2018: Sleepless www.valleypressuk.com 2012: Eleven Wonders www.graftpoetry.co.uk 2008: Without a Dog www.graftpoetry.co.uk 2007: The Half-Mile-High Club www.thepoetrybusiness.co.uk ‘Julia Deakin’s Eleven Wonders is powerful, assured, elegant,’ says Michael Symmons Roberts. ‘Her formal skill and inventiveness make this a rich and eclectic collection. Those who, like me, have admired her individual poems in the past, will be struck by their cumulative strength and range, and this book deserves to win her many new readers.’
Date Strange how we’ve both dressed up for this when we always used to dress down. You can’t fool me: that’s a flak jacket under your shirt, or a cushion – and some crafty make-up bod has roughed up your skin, added lines to your eyes, bad teeth – and you’re wearing one of those bald wigs. But then here’s me in this granny mask, wrinkly pink and purple gloves, crimped body suit, sprinkling of moles and talc all over my hair. And look – we’ve both brought glasses to read between the lines. Attitude Made in England, for my sins I bear this image of you: this marriage of words and geography which is more than green hills, greyness or London tat, more than the union flag, tea, or that outdated sense of some great place in the world; this print of you, England – which is not even you but you and your neighbours, limpers bound in a tetchy three-legged race – branded like MADE IN TAIWAN on the back of my mind, a bit of residual DNA I’m not sure how to use: this scar of you as a backward E or battered pound sign, which is an L and Latin so part of you as well, and therefore me; this body image which is, oddly, mine too, of a flailing, ectomorphic, many-limbed old goat: your back to Scandinavia, rump mooning at the Lowlands, sitting on France, Kent protruding like a cushion from one surprisingly fat flank as you drool over Ireland, crumbs tumbling from your beard, making a clumsy pass while looking incorrigibly past at what you hope’s your main chance. In geography, history; in history, your future as ageing hack, satyr at a typewriter, aiming some tired apologia at your tireder muse. Conceding what? Your neediness? How without Scotland you’d be headless, armless without Wales, spineless without the north? Or how in the right light you can look heraldic: caprine, sejant erect. Your heart a Mersey beat, your capital a pelvic ache, how well the map catches you. Catches us, in fact.
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