Mary MacRae’s second collection
published Aug 10 by Second Light Publications. See order form (pdf file) for discount offers
Listen to Gill McEvoy’s poem Glass Bird in a Shop Window (read by Anne Stewart)
see Dilys’s Guest Blog on Ambitious Women Poets
Holland House FULLY BOOKED
Need help with travel to Second Light events? See Second Light Mary MacRae ‘Access to Poetry’ Fund
Forthcoming anthology from Second Light, due Autumn 2014. Deadline for submissions has passed. Selection is in progress – more about the anthology here
info on our 2006 major anthology of womens’s poetry: Images of Women
Round 7, Month 11… the last before selection of the overall winner for the year…
Our judge this month is Wendy French and her winner is ‘a short extract’ from Zones of Avoidance, by Maggie Sawkins – Zones of Avoidance was the winner of the Ted Hughes Award for New Work in Poetry. Tough competition, then, and our commended poets are: Caroline Carver, June Hall, Sue Rose and Merryn Williams.
(a short extract)
I’m reading ‘The Confessions of an English Opium Eater’ –
I want to understand what drove my daughter out in the snow
with no coat or socks, in search of a fix.
I want to understand what divinity led her
to set up camp in the derelict ‘pigeon house’
after running out of sofas to surf.
I was a Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds girl myself.
I liked the way it made inanimate objects move,
until that day in Balham when my guy sang Rock n Roll Suicide
from a third floor window, and an Alsatian leapt
from the wood grain of the station door, and policemen
were penguins in disguise.
Tough Love. The mantra of the support group for those
beaten by their loved one’s addiction.
When I was busted at nineteen and the bedsit landlord
tipped my belongings onto the street, the last person
I would’ve turned to was my mother.
You’ve made your bed. Lie on it. Lie on it. Lie on it.
Zones of Avoidance (multimedia live literature performance, directed by Mark C Hewitt), 2013;
This was particularly hard for me to judge (to remain neutral) as Maggie Sawkins, a friend whose work I admire (as indeed I do all of the commended poets) was awarded the Ted Hughes prize for her innovative work, the poem/film of Zones of Avoidance. However this short poem/extract here stands alone as a very fine piece of writing. It is controlled yet full of feeling of the need to try and understand another person, your child. The language is simple, straightforward, there is no pretence for the poem to be anything other than what it is, a search for understanding with the heart felt ending, ‘You’ve made your bed lie on it’.