Recent Poetry Books I've Enjoyed

16 Jul 2020 Category: book review

I’ve had lots of time to read poetry books, so here are a few I have enjoyed recently that I would recommend:

Thalassic - Malaika Kegode

These are poems that feel necessary for this current moment in time as so many of us rebuild our selves and our society. The sequence is a healing one, moving from grief and despair to hope as the narrator reconstructs herself. But it’s not an immediate, straightforward healing, it’s a gradual piecing together of a new self from disparate fragments:

every part of you that’s rotten
every part of you...



15 Jul 2020 Category: erasure poetry

Taken from listings for The Lanes in Bristol: In Stereo magazine, May 2020


Off the Grid

13 Jul 2020 Category: poetry

When the earth was correcting
our cabled bodies were sprawled
irreparable, most sensory inputs
disconnected, transmissions down,
smashed by careless hands wielding
boulders. When networks were down,
when communities were rewiring
like dust scattered in sunbeams,
We stayed immobile in deserts,
newly separate and confused
listening to automated number
stations, comfort in the night.

Looking through my drafts recently, I realised this one was never posted. Pascal Vine was asking for prompts a while back, so I gave them the prompt “All we listened to was...



09 Jul 2020 Category: poetry

CW: Body harm

Drowned in newspaper and glue,
I have forgotten my real face.

I have been here before, I know.
Not just this town square, but this
same moment, repeated endlessly.
Versions of myself concatenate.
Routes taken become smudges
around the square. Termina
is quiet today. Everyone bracing.

I’m too late, the sky too close.
I almost fall into the orbit
of that hideous moon. I can see
each tooth, each blood vessel
popping from yellow eyes. My time
is squandered again. I stand firm



08 Jul 2020 Category: poetry

Do you remember the first time
you saw those mountains? How they
towered above you? Do you remember
your unbounded freedom, how paths
lay before you, infinite in choice,
how the sun spun above you and grass
regrew at your feet? How you would play
your strange instrument to bring forth
new light upon the surface of Hyrule?

Now, you have become an adult, changing
within seconds, your childhood abandoned.
You do not remember when you grew so tall,
when the clouds gathered, the sky darkened,
when these...



06 Jul 2020 Category: poetry

Don’t climb up those ancient stone steps
carved into the slope of our tallest mountain
up to that egg that sits on the summit,
the size of a temple. You don’t need
to draw those eight strange instruments
or watch them hover in the air before you
to play a melody you always knew, no
hands strumming strings, no breath over
the reeds. You could simply stay here.

Isn’t it better to remain safe within
the dreaming, even if it is not your own?
Don’t you want to leave the...


Me Elsewhere

02 Jul 2020 Category: publications

Hello, here is where you can find me elsewhere on the internet:

  • Tonight I will be reading a poem at the excellent Bristol Tonic. Online of course. My prompt was “Better machine than human”, so the poem is very odd.

  • Tomorrow (Friday 3rd July) I will be virtually reading in the K town Iso fest. I pre-recorded a couple of poems in some trees and it will be livestreamed at 5pm.

  • I have two strange poems in Selcouth Station’s debut webzine. It’s only two pounds and is packed with great...


End of the Road

29 Jun 2020 Category: erasure poetry

Taken from listings for the End of the Road festival in Bristol In Stereo magazine, March 2020


Statues continued

25 Jun 2020 Category: politics

After yesterday’s post, I happened to be reading The People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn. He writes about the reaction to the protests about Columbus statues in the nineties:

This aroused anger among defenders of the old history, who derided what they called a movement for “political correctness” and “multiculturalism”. They resented the critical treatment of Western expansion and imperialism, which they considered an attack on Western civilisation.

The more things change, the more they stay the same.


Colston and the Myths of History

24 Jun 2020 Category: politics

Every country is deluded in how they narrate the past. No history is complete and each history is a story shaped to make the narrators feel better. But I think here in Britain, we are more deluded than most.



22 Jun 2020 Category: erasure poetry

Taken from Crack magazine, March 2020 s


The Sky is Damaged

20 Jun 2020 Category: this was meant to be the future

From her vantage point of the second highest branch, Cassie saw it first, growing over the horizon like a bruise. She often spent afternoons by herself in the garden, away from the noise of the house- The music pounding from her brother Jamie’s closed door, Sampson barking at nothing, the rumbling of the ancient boiler. Her parents constantly screaming at each other. Or worse, being polite through gritted teeth. Cassie preferred the relative silence of the garden. Birds might chirrup at each other, but it never sounded angry. For most of the Easter holidays, she had got into the habit...



17 Jun 2020 Category: erasure poetry

Trees 1

Taken from a review of Angel Olsen in Bristol In Stereo March edition


Summer is here

15 Jun 2020 Category: photos

Good morning to this Zinnia and this Zinnia only


All change

12 Jun 2020 Category: plague notes

You may notice my website looks a little different. I have moved it from Wordpress to Jekyll, teaching myself rudimentary HTML and CSS in the process. I changed a template by DpStrange, modifying it to fit my needs. I also transferred all 278 (!) blog posts over. I honestly hadn’t realised I’d done so many, but then I’ve been working at this blogging game for the last four years. I’m pleased with the results, but it you see a problem or coding issue please let me know.

If it hadn’t been for lockdown I probably wouldn’t have started such...