Here's to a kinder new year for us all. I was very happy to receive, just after Christmas, my contributors' copy of The Rialto, a magazine I'd pestered unsuccessfully with submissions for more years than I care to remember. And I have two poems in the latest issue of my favourite magazine, The North. But let's not gloss over the submissions which did not hit their mark in any magazines. I would highly recommend reading Emma Simon's excellent and lively article on the vicissitudes of submitting work, 'We have never seen worse' on The Friday Poem. to put things into perspective
To see the personally dreadful 2021 out on a brighter note I had a commendation in The Troubadour competition and a poem displayed in a shop window on Oxford Street courtesy of Live Canon. I've also had the thrill of sharing the cover of my collection, the small manoeuvres, due out from Verve Poetry Press in April 2022 and available now for pre-order. This features a striking illustration by artist and friend Sharon Smart. I'm delighted with it. And yes, those are my feet and, no, I can't tightrope walk.
Today, after months and months and months of nothing, I drafted two difficult proto poems, spurred on by not wanting to be a ligger on (or be excommunicated from) the beloved group of poets I zoom with on Saturdays - Ramona Herdman, Fokkina McDonnell, Sarah Mnatzaganian, Paul Stephenson and Pam Thompson. These pearls beyond price have kept me going through lockdowns and traumatic bereavement with their fabulous poems, generous feedback, trust and support and top notch gossip. I love them.
The North, Issue 67; Jane Burn's Be Feared (Nine Arches) and Louise Gluck's Poems 1962-2020 (Penguin)