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Nigel King

The Poetry Village

THE BEAUTIFUL DOGS

The town has many fine historic buildings,
an elegant Victorian park
and plenty to entice the discerning shopper,
though surely its most striking feature
is the profusion of Beautiful Dogs.

Take a stroll along the Regency high street
or the quiet banks of the river
– you’ll see them everywhere:

the Black Labrador whose coat shines
like coal fresh-cut from the seam,
the Basset with just the right look
of droll melancholy.

Watch the Saluki sashay
past designer boutiques,
the immaculate Spaniel toss her head
like a supermodel,
the Greyhound cock a geometric leg
on the statue of the Queen-Empress.

The owners themselves are not beautiful.
Some have dressed hastily, in odd socks,
some have a small crust of dried egg
on the corner of the mouth.
Their faces tell of unpaid bills,
long waits for the morning bus,
a Ready-Meal for one.

But when they meet…

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Penny Sharman

Penny Sharman features on the Platform today.

The Poetry Village

tide line

I know it’s constant
the ins and outs of flotsam
driftwood, plastic bottles,
neon fishing lines,
all coming at you
day after day
gagging sea turtles and angel fish,
night after night
garbage for a mermaid’s ritual,
the concrete groynes
piling up on the sand
a beachcomber’s Mona Lisa.

I know it’s constant
wave after wave
all coming at you
beating thunder to shingle,
but everything shifts
with this constancy,
a paper origami boat
lost at sea
white cliffs beaten
cat fish and molluscs
every rock pool surrenders
to the mighty
that inevitable drag
that phrase
water will always find its way.

Penny has been writing poetry for over 15 years, she has just completed her MA in Creative Writing at Edge Hill University. Penny has had several poems published in magazines such as The Interpreters House, Obsessed with Pipework, Beautiful Dragons, Outburst, Picaroon, Poetry Quarterly and others…

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Michael Brown

The Poetry Village

Annunciation

Someone arrives uninvited to tell you
what you couldn’t begin to believe:

how an uneventful life might change
in an hour or with a phrase.

Receive this with grace.
Feel how the ordinary word

coils like song in the spiral of the ear;
dream’s pitch, yet half-heard,

how physical, near. You can’t place
that felt note, known all along,

come to earth.

 

Michael’s work has been published widely including The Rialto, Butchers Dog, Crannog, The Moth and The North. He was selected by Clare Pollard for a Northern Writers’ Award (New North Poets) last year. The pamphlet, Undersong (2014) is available from Eyewear. His most recent pamphlet, Locations for a Soul appeared in 2016 from Templar Publishing.

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The Huddersfield Punk – by David Coldwell

Algebra Of Owls

Catching the early morning train
you’ll see her waiting, whatever the weather,
with back to the crowd
and the tips of boots touching the yellow

metalled safety line where she stands
without flinching as the fast train passes
without slowing. Dressed from head to foot
in black with remnants of blue green hair

and self styled tattoos around her neck;
sometimes she’ll look this way and sometimes the other
with pink eyes that say more about us than the faded
LOVE and HATE hidden beneath costume jewellery.

But like us, she’s there every day for every early train
travelling to some other place, silently praying for rain.

David Coldwell is an artist and writer based in the village of Marsden in West Yorkshire. His poetry has been published in a number of print and on-line journals and also featured in various poetry anthologies. His debut pamphlet, Flowers by the Road

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Bright Thing – David Coldwell

Bright Thing

I’m drawing imaginary dragons or monsters
in the back room of the terraced house on Grange
when my father walks in and takes the pencil from my hand.

He sketches an aeroplane for no reason other than to show
me he can; his party trick. The rough of his skin with oil
and coolant ingrained scratches on the paper.

My mother steps in and outlines the shape of an elephant
floating in space, oblivious to all the things that surround it.
Later I throw paint at it all, bring the monster to life.

David Coldwell is an artist and writer based in the South Pennines. His debut pamphlet, Flowers by the Road (Templar Poetry) is available now.

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Featured Poet. James Giddings

Roy Marshall

I’ve recently had the pleasure of hearing and reading poems by James Giddings and I asked him to contribute some poems to showcase here. I don’t want to label James’ work as it is varied and obviously evolving, but many of his poems contain dry self-effacing humour and gentle melancholy. This element of wistful tragi-comedy is combined with high narrative energy and neatness and economy of style. I hope James won’t mind me saying that these two aspects make his work sometimes seem like a cross between Simon Armitage and John Hegley, although his own voice is very distinctive.

James is twenty three years old and is currently studying for his MA at Sheffield Hallam University, funded by the Arts Humanities and Research Council. His poems have appeared in magazines including Black & Blue, Antiphon and The Cadaverine. He once won a silver medal for swimming at Cubs.

Mean Time

‘But we will…

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CALLING ALL POETS, spoken word artists, raconteurs, stand-up poets and slam champs…

Poetry&Words at Glastonbury Festival

Once again, Poetry&Words are opening our floodgates to a delicious deluge of poets from far and wide.  Every year we take applications to perform on Glastonbury Festival’s poetry stage, and every year we are awestruck by the hundreds of amazing wordsmiths out there.  Last year we hosted an abundance of talent from international stars Buddy Wakefield and Tanya Evanson, to home grown greats John Hegley and Murray Lachlan Young.  If you’d like to walk in their footsteps, then this is your chance! We’re looking for applications from experienced writers and performers, with something quite excellent to offer the audience of the world’s biggest greenfield arts festival.

If you want to apply, please e-mail poetryandwords@hotmail.co.uk with a short bio and 1-3 video and/or audio files of you performing your work, preferably to a live audience. We’d prefer web links, but attachments (of manageable size!) will also be accepted. We will…

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Art, Countryside, Painting, Uncategorized

Two Houses by the Road and other Stories

A selection of new paintings will be released during October featuring scenes from both the Colne and Calder Valleys. More details very soon.

 

Two Houses (1 of 1).jpg
Two Houses by the Road
sparth-cottages-1-of-1
Sparth Cottages
the-last-house-1-of-1
The Last House