Poetry Articles

Stanzas for Ukraine – 13

After the Amstor[1] by Alisa Havrylchenko, translated from the Ukrainian by Stephen Komarnyckyj. There will be no war, the two nuclear powers will only pressure each other. That’s what everyone I knew thought right Until February 24. I was preparing for the presentation of my new book, even though the news that airlines were stopping…

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Review – Wilder by Jemma Borg

Searching for Wild Connections ‘Poems are records of true risks […] taken by the soul of the speaker,’ writes Jorie Graham[1], but what if a poem speaks with a voice that is not always human, plant or animal, but something broader and wider in scope. How do we recognise that soul? What are the connections…

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Stanzas for Ukraine – 12

When Spring is Stolen by Varel Lozovyi, translated from the Ukrainian by Stephen Komarnyckyj When spring is stolen from you right on its threshold.When you are waiting for her[1], like a bride, like a long-awaited release from prison, like God’s salvation from the clutches of cold, dank grey winter.And they steal it from you suddenly,…

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Stanzas for Ukraine – 11

THE LONG DECOLONIZATION; how, despite the destruction, Ukraine is moving towards the future by Anatoliy Dnistrovyi, translated from the Ukrainian and annotated by Stephen Komarnyckyj THE LONG DECOLONIZATIONhow, despite the destruction, Ukraine is moving towards the future There are three eras in recent Ukrainian history when culture and society have flourished significantly: the twenties and…

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Stanzas for Ukraine – 10

The Language of Poetry and Losses by Oksana Kutsenko. Translated from the Ukrainian by Stephen Komarnyckyj During wartime the language that people use changes, you can’t argue with that, it’s self-evident. However, turning page after page of the Ukrainian calendar, beginning from February 24, 2022, many details are revealed that are important for the Word…

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Stanzas for Ukraine – 9

It Was As If There Was No Life And No Poetry Before 24 February 2022 by Andrii Kovalenko, Ukrainian poet, novelist, journalist (Kyiv). Translated from the Ukrainian by Stephen Komarnyckyj Six months since the beginning of Moscow’s aggression against Ukraine and our latest war of liberation, life is divided into what came before and after….

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Review – As She Appears by Shelley Wong, Garden Physic by Sylvia Legris 

Shelley Wong’s debut, As She Appears, is a deeply self-aware, courageous, and lyrical collection that weaves together history, humour, and ecological metaphor to explore Wong’s experiences as a queer fourth-generation Chinese American. The tone is conversational but not plain, and the collection’s strength lies not in any attempt on Wong’s part to deploy complex forms…

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Review – Manorism by Yomi Ṣode and Refractive Africa by Will Alexander

Dazzling Refractions of Light and Dark Art historian Andrew Graham-Dixon writes in his biography of Caravaggio: ‘He had always been an outsider, a troublemaker, a difficult and dangerous man. Yet his art was so compelling, so original, so unforgettable, that people were simply transfixed by it… The fact that he was obliged to invent himself…

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INSPIRATION TO INVOICING

A CPD series for professional & aspiring poets Becoming a freelance poet – whether full- or part-time, alongside employed work – requires a range of business and practical skills, not to mention the actual practice of writing and publishing. These sessions aim to creatively and reflectively unpack these skills, inviting participants to consider their own…

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Stanzas for Ukraine – 8

A World That Is Still Watching… by Anna Malihon. Translated from the Ukrainian by Stephen Komarnyckyj ‘Everything will start from a small country, from one that no one would have thought of’ she said ‘there will be great changes in the world, at a high price, along with blood and death. However, it will be…

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Poet as Archaeologist Studio Blog

This autumn, I’m thinking about what poets can learn from archaeologists and their discoveries. Poet as Archaeologist Studio will be a chance to generate new work, read and discuss poems and get feedback on your drafts. It will also be an opportunity to consider how a different discipline might inform our writing. I spent my…

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Taking the Piss Flower: on the pitfalls of writing poems inspired by art, and bringing something new to the party

Ekphrasis is one of those poemy words poets assume everyone knows, like villanelle, and pantoum; but my Mac doesn’t recognise it, flags it up, and takes me to Wiki – ‘an ekphrastic poem is a poem inspired or stimulated by a work of art’. I remember feeling so happy when I first discovered the word,…

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The Zen of Ecopoetics: the contribution of Zen to modernist American poetry

In Breathing: Chaos and Poetry, the Italian philosopher Franco Berardi suggests that poetry is the excess of semiotic exchange that goes beyond the limits of language and, by extension, transcends the limits of reality as we know it. In this sense, poetry offers us a way of rethinking our relationship with non-human beings and environments,…

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Review – Of Sea by Elizabeth-Jane Burnett, and Thinking With Trees by Jason Allen-Paisant 

What is the language of the invertebrate? What form might the invertebrate provide the poet? Elizabeth-Jane Burnett’s Of Sea traces the light shed by bodies alternatively-structured: A ‘Prickly Cockle’ ‘start[s] light’, the coat of an aphid ‘dusts light’ in ‘Lupin Aphid’, a ‘Murky-legged Legionnaire Fly’ provides a ‘blurt of sun’. A note at the start…

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Announcing the Poetry School MA in Writing Poetry Scholarship 2022

We’re delighted to announce the Poetry School MA in Writing Poetry Scholarship 2022 for an underrepresented poet. For a second year, Poetry School is offering a full fees scholarship award (£10,000) to the Poetry School / Newcastle University MA in Writing Poetry for an outstanding applicant who is currently underrepresented in the poetry world. By underrepresented poets, we…

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Sources of Poetic Language

Imagination, Wonder, and the Everyday The mourning doves are beginning to coo again and yesterday I saw the families of cardinals in the yew, all busy setting up. The past few days were very windy, and we found a fallen nest, the size of a basketball, along the street. It feels as if I am…

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Transreading Ethiopia with Chris Beckett

Selam hullu…..Hello everyone! I’ve already blogged about my boyhood in Addis Ababa as an intro for my autumn 2021 course on Childhood: A Source of Praise. So I don’t want to repeat too much of what I said then, but it feels like I’m travelling the same path again! It’s a really great feeling, because…

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Review – Like a Tree, Walking by Vahni Capildeo

Vahni Capildeo is an astonishingly prolific and inventive poet, and Like a Tree, Walking, showcases the full range of their imagination. The collection begins with a poem ‘In Praise of Birds’, which captures the spirit of the work as a whole: In praise of high-contrast birds, purple bougainvillea thicketing the golden oriole. In praise of…

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Writing After David Lynch – Students’ Poem

The Writing After David Lynch ten-week course took us all on a thrilling and mysterious journey across David Lynch’s films. As part of the penultimate session, on Mulholland Drive, I invited the students to respond to Naomi Watts’ staggering audition scene with a single four-line stanza, that I would then order and curate into a group poem.  I took inspiration…

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Review – Brilliant Corners by Nuzhat Bukhari, A Blood Condition by Kayo Chingonyi

How do we reconcile conflicting inheritances? Many poets of colour find themselves caught between two roads: the English lyric, whose focus on internal feeling can imply a disavowal of history, and the real histories from which today’s poets arise; histories bent by the home of the English lyric. The lyric and its most apparently ahistorical…

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Poetry Books of the Year 2021

We are delighted to share our favourite poetry books of the year! It has been another challenging year for obvious reasons, but, in spite of it all, poetry has not only persevered but thrived! 2021 has seen the publication of so many incredible titles, both from established names and emerging poets. So, without further ado,…

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Summer School 2021

We are delighted to welcome you to our 2021 Summer School! This programme of half-day workshops has been curated in collaboration with the exhibition A Fine Day for Seeing at Southwark Park Galleries. This show takes its title from the New York School poet Frank O’Hara, who bridged the literary and artistic worlds in the…

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Places to Submit your Poetry in 2021

You’ve just completed a Poetry School course and have written and edited a few new poems, so what now?  Submitting your poems to a magazine, journal, or press is the first step to sharing your work with an audience and building up a readership, which is crucial if you’re looking to publish your work in…

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Dark Canadee

We are pleased to share with you all the First Voyages of Dark Canadee. Dark Canadee, is a twisted poetry fantasy, set in an alternative Canada Water, and tailor-made by T.S. Eliot Prize-nominated Glyn Maxwell for the times in which we find ourselves. The project takes the form of a serial literary fiction where, each…

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The Online Museum Poet: A Job Description

The new Studio+ format is both intense and intensely wonderful: a Zoom sandwich, if you will. Or where Zoom is the bread, and Campus is the jam. It was lovely to virtually ‘meet’ the course members, before we set them tasks on our Campus group, and certainly added to the group’s dynamic. In response to…

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