Thursday, May 20, 2010

Sheard long poem in LRB

This week's LRB contains 'The Strandperle Notebook', a long poem by James Sheard. Buy and read!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Sonnet Elbow

So there's a poet-in-residence at Wimbledon this year. Cripes.

On an unrelated note, have a look at this review for Matt Nunn's marvellous and eminently buyable Sounds in the Grass.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Poems to keep you chilled this summer

James Sheard has been posting some poems from his forthcoming collection Dammtor – sinister and wonderful. Read them, and then sellotape a reminder to your head to buy the book when it comes out later this year.

Monday, May 10, 2010

The Matter of the Universe

Have a look at Matter magazine, which is associated with the MA Writing at Sheffield Hallam and is also completely spiffing!

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Farmer Willum's Election Antidote

Misspelling William is all the rage; but I don't think Richard Jefferies' host in his piece on snipe shooting will lose any sleep, or votes, over it. Some good writing from 1879 to soothe your mind:
The low whitewashed walls of the house were of a dull yellowish hue from the beating of the weather. They supported a vast breadth of thatched roof drilled by sparrows and starlings. Under the eaves the swallows' nests adhered, and projecting shelves were fixed to prevent any inconvenience from them. Some of the narrow windows were still darkened with the black boarding put up in the days of the window tax.
In the courtyard a number of stout forked stakes were used for putting the dairy buckets on, after being cleaned, to dry. No attempt was made to separate the business from the inner life of the house. Here in front these oaken buckets, scoured till nearly white, their iron handles polished like silver, were close under the eyes of any one looking out. By the front door a besom leaned against the wall that every comer might clean the mud from his boots; and you stepped at once from the threshold into the sitting-room. A lane led past the garden, if that could be called a lane which widened into a field and after rain was flooded so deeply as to be impassable to foot passengers.

Friday, May 07, 2010

My vote goes to... reading books

And in the last few days I have been reading Bohumil Hrabal's wonderful Closely Observed Trains, The Hitch-hiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis and two poetry collections - Jon Stone's Scare-crows and John Stammers' Interior Night. So there.