Thursday, 17 October 2019

Island of Towers - my pamphlet publication day!

My poetry pamphlet has landed! Island of Towers is here, and I'm really delighted to have found a supportive publisher, Broken Sleep Books, who have produced it beautifully.

The title Island of Towers is taken from one of the poems in the pamphlet, but I suppose it seemed appropriate because there are a lot of poems about (or around) islands and the sea, and cities. There are also poems about Sherlock Holmes, spies, travel - the usual suspects. But when it comes to writing poems, I suppose my only strong philosophy is to write something that I would myself enjoy reading.

You can order direct from the publishers here:

I also have some copies to sell myself, which I can inscribe if desired, so please get in touch if you'd like to buy directly from me (click through to my profile to email me, comment here, Tweet me at @stoneandthestar - etc!)

Tuesday, 8 October 2019

New Poem Published for National Poetry Day, & Sherlock Holmes Essay

I never feel as though I end up fully participating in National Poetry Day, because if I'm in London I'm working (it's the first Thursday in October) and if I'm off work, it's typically because I am out of town. I am currently in Canada, which also meant an eight-hour time difference. However, "participating fully" isn't really the point: enjoying and promoting poetry is, and there's always a way to do that at least a little.

The theme of National Poetry Day this year was Truth. I was delighted that the wonderful Ink Sweat & Tears chose my poem 'Speaks true who speaks shadow' as one of fifteen poems in total that they published across five days, on and around National Poetry Day. You can read the poem here:

The title of the poem is taken from Paul Celan's poem 'Speak you too' (the translation by John Felstiner), and my poem is dedicated to Alexander Litvinenko, who was assassinated in London in 2006. I have always been fascinated and saddened by Litvinenko's story, and I recently saw the play A Very Expensive Poison at the Old Vic, which is about his life and death, so it has all been on my mind.

On another subject, and really not poetry but I'm going to mention it anyway, I've published another essay about Sherlock Holmes in the new collection Sherlock Holmes is Everywhere!, published by Belanger Books. The essay is essentially about how I find Sherlock Holmes in London, and it's just one of a huge variety of essays which locate Holmes anywhere and everywhere. The Belanger Books website is here, but you will find that it takes you to Amazon to purchase the book, so you can also search for it there.