About / Join SLN


Remote Workshops

Fanfare anthology

Her Wings of Glass anthology

Join Mailing List

Annual Renewal

Donations & Support

Mary MacRae ‘Access to Poetry’ Fund

Lest we forget…

Contact Us



Poets of the Month:
Aug 19

poetry Guidelines

2019 Competition NOW CLOSED

poetry Issue 21 extracts now online

poetry latest Issue, 22

2018 competition: winning poems

Competition prior year Results

Poem of the Month (to Oct17)

Latest recording:
Daphne Gloag

latest Remote Workshop Perceptions of Time


*** Poetry Competition now closed ***

*** Latest publication: The Last Parent, by Anne Stewart. Now out £9.95. ***
(and Book Club offer, 6 copies for £40 plus feedback) see books***

Need help with travel to Second Light events? See Second Light Mary MacRae ‘Access to Poetry’ Fund

Poets of the Month (& see sample poem below, by Elizabeth Soule)

Featured Poets, August 2019 straight to poems

Christine Vial, “A Flask of Wine, A Book of Verse and Thou… ”
Diana Pritchard, One Wrong Foot
Elizabeth Soule, December 2011, a Memory of August 1968
Jean Atkin, The Children of Lir
Joy Howard, Stranded
Kathryn Southworth, Uncle Joe’s Mintballs
Maria Jastrzębska, Old Knives
Mary Robinson, You asked for a poem about listening
Nicolette Golding, The Seal Wife
Simone Mansell Broome, Five Changes
Susan Jane Sims, Bearing Gifts


Sample poem (selected at random)

December 2011, a Memory of August 1968
   for Vaclav Havel

In a starless chill before dawn
we stood by the water’s edge,
tiny points of candle-light,
as a solitary flute sang out our misery
to the vastness of a dark sea.
Some had crouched over the radio all night
and guessing the worst,
had woken us
to stumble from tents to our hopeless vigil,
while hundreds of miles away
another kind of darkness rumbled over the frontier,
grinding the dreams of Spring
beneath remorseless tracks.
Then in bitter, barren silence
one by one each candle was extinguished,
our futile tribute
to those who dared to dream.
But hope and freedom are seeds that will not sleep
and the dust of dreams is fertile ground.
Small bright shoots split stone
Shatter concrete,
their progress more inexorable
than any trundling tank.
The brave gardener whose fearless tending
of improbable seedlings
gave us back belief,
now returns himself to the nurturing earth
and reminds us
that when the darkness seems most complete,
dawn is not so far away.

Elizabeth Soule

Poem published in PEN anthology Write to be Counted, 2017


Second Light Network – a network for women poets.