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karen izod

Updated: Mon, 12 Feb 2018 09:35 am


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I have been writing poems for many years but only recently started to take their writing more seriously. I love the process of transforming an idea or experience in the way that poetry allows. I am curious about our relatedness to the landscape, including that on our doorsteps, and how features of our attachment to places seep into our awareness and through generations. This is what I write about, as well as anything that takes my notice as I live through these extraordinary times. My poetry has been published by Agenda, Attachment, New Welsh Review and in the Windle/Dempsey anthologies for the 1000 Monkeys in Guildford, where I can regularly be found at their monthly events at The Keep, and at Write Out Loud, Woking. A few pieces are on-line and you can see those below. New poems in new anthologies for 2017/18 include Best of Britain, and The Pocket Poetry Book of Love by Paper Swans, the Stanley Spencer Anthology published by Two Rivers Press, Curlew Calling edited by Karen Lloyd, and Poems for Keeps published by Dempsey & Windle. A review of the poetry reading I gave with Joe Cullen at the Tavistock Institute Festival, is here: and I will be taking up the role of Poet-in-Residence in April 18 at You can find poems of mine here: Combustion Behind every fighting man are 15 more and A poem in which I learn what it is like to be my mother in the war


Send in the Clown (thank you Stephen Sondheim) or Why do their names all begin with B? I was never one for slap-stick. Brian Rix with his trousers down, rushing out one way just as the husband comes in another. Or Basil Fawlty, dishes in hand, making a quick U-turn 'twixt kitchen and table. Now we have Boris, caught in his revolving door, trying to make an entrance or could be an exit. Who knows? Though I know what it is I don’t like: the high speed trickery, apparent lack of foresight, and all with perfect timing. The pure farce of it all.

All poems are copyright of the originating author. Permission must be obtained before using or performing others' poems.

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Sat 3rd Feb 2018 22:13

Hi Karen. Thank you for the comment on Restless Souls; I try to practice intonation and inject gravitas on audio readings; I feel rather lightweight in the acting stakes, but there sometimes is a sweet spot , maybe this was it! I hope to see you Monday. I have a rough copy of my new pamphlet too.

Ray x

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karen izod

Mon 12th Dec 2016 18:59

hello Ray
yes, sorry not to come on Monday, I missed it, but have been unwell for nearly 2 weeks now, and finally on the mend.
Brilliant news about potw, but so sad that it is about an old friend, and the harsh ways we learn about death nowadays. rather bizarrely I often get suggestions from fb to make friends with people I know are dead!
thanks for the update re the school. Does look like it is really on the way out, what a pity.
have a few lines to kick off a poem, will send via email.
all very best
Karen x

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Sun 11th Dec 2016 17:10

Hi Karen, I gather you've had flu. So sorry, and to have missed you at the 1000 Monkeys. I checked out the planning permission online and note that some hoardings were applied for not sure if that was for protest station or demolition, but it was turned down , so it was probably the former I imagine. I'll keep you updated.
Life changing days - sadly a friend I made there just passed away - we did everything together in the sixties, photography, music cycling. My poem about him was poem of the week (last day). Called Schoolbuddy.
Funnily enough, I took photography City and Guilds at Twickenham Tec.

If you fancy the joint poem please kickstart it and i'll follow , a line or two each whatever.
No I didn't marry until I was 42. A lass from Kingston!

Ray x

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karen izod

Wed 30th Nov 2016 07:02

HI Ray

I feel so sad about this - my father went there, well for a couple of years before he went to Twickenham Tec - and I formed deep friendships there, some of which have lasted me all these years. It is a beautiful building, living in the actual and cultural memory of thousands - though not always with such fondness.

I am presuming the time for opposition and protest has gone - would you know that?

Your poem, by the way, brought back a lot of memories - I'm prompted to try and write something too, perhaps we could even construct a joint homage - I do a line, you do a line and so on....

anyway thanks for keeping me posted and if you do know of any political response, then happy to join in with that.

by the way - did you marry and Ashford girl?

Karen x

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Tue 29th Nov 2016 23:04

Hi Karen

Sadly my brother who lives in Ashford informs me that the beautiful and life changing grammar school with all its ghosts of cloaks and daggers and polish and invigorating showers and bike sheds and cultural nuggets is to be razed to the ground on the basis that is now structurally unsafe. This is basically a matter of the tenant college who ran it doing nothing to maintain the building and with no help from Spelthorne Council who have a reputation for historical blindeye, and i'm sure can't wait to sell to a developer for house building, no doubt together with the immense field to the rear. Can you beat that?

Ray x

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