Welcome to our Autumn/Winter Season supported by Literature Wales.
11th September Monday 7:30pm
John Sewell and Colin Sutherill
John Sewell was born in South Yorkshire but educated largely in Scotland, where he studied architecture and urban design. He has spent most of his working life as a conservation architect for the Peak District National Park in Derbyshire (think James Herriot, but with buildings).
John has received various writing awards and bursaries including Fellowships at Hawthornden and the Wurlitzer Foundation.He has been a prizewinner in various competitions including a finalist in the Arvon International Poetry Competition. His work is in various magazines and anthologies, including Poetry Book Society Anthologies, Cambridge Encyclopaedia of the English Language, and Oxford Poetry Books for Juniors. He has given readings at various festivals and venues including the South Bank Centre. For many years, John has been a member of the Council of Management for the Arvon Centre at Lumb Bank, as well as the Arvon’s National Council Of Management while The Hurst outside Clun, was being developed as a writing centre.
He has two published collections of poetry, The Imbolc Bride (Littlewood Arc) and Bursting The Clouds (Cape) as well as The Blue Bang Theory- New Nature Writing (Redbeck)with Colin Sutherill and two other poets.
Colin Sutherill was born in the fen country and spent some years as a journalist and lecturer in the Sheffield area before moving to his present home near Leominster. His latest collection of poems entitled Ogd, is published by Red Squirrel Press and is an atheist exploration of the Judaeo-Christian soundstage, ie. what is it that draws so many lapsed believers back — unwillingly — to dwell awhile on passion, prayer and primitive cosmology. Ogd laughs at itself sometimes and comes up with no grand theory. Even so, the author says, the poem chose its own twisted pathways and he reckons he feels a touch wiser for going along.
This is Colin Sutherill’s second published work, following on from Einstein’s Bumblebee (Blackwater, 1999) but he also contributed to The Blue Bang Theory (Redbeck, 1997) with John Sewell, Terry Gifford and Diana Syder, as well as contributing to Tears in the Fence, Poetry Salzburg, Envoi, Orbis, Under the Radar and other magazines.
Colin is a member of Border Poets and is a committee member for Poetry in Presteigne.
9th October Monday 7:30pm
Jan Fortune and Susan Richardson
Jan Fortune was born in Middlesbrough and read theology at Cambridge. She completed a doctorate in feminist theology and has worked as a teacher, priest and charity director. She is the founding editor of Cinnamon Press which celebrated its tenth birthday in 2015. Her publications include non-fiction titles in alternative education and parenting; four novels: The Standing Ground, Dear Ceridwen, Coming Home and This is the End of the Story; four poetry collections, including Slate Voices (a collaborative collection with Mavis Gulliver), Stale Bread & Miracles, Edge (a companion to Adam Craig’s Year W), and Turn/Return, a pamphlet inspired by Brian Eno’s Oblique Strategies cards. She lives in the foothills of the Moelwyns in North Wales, beneath the abandoned slate village of Cwmorthin. www.cinnamonpress.com
Susan Richardson is a poet, performer, educator and editor, whose three poetry collections, Creatures of the Intertidal Zone, Where the Air is Rarefied and skindancing are all published by Cinnamon Press. In addition to her recent residency with the Marine Conservation Society, she is currently poet-in-residence with both the global animal welfare initiative, World Animal Day, and the British Animal Studies Network. Susan has performed at festivals throughout the UK, on BBC 2, Radio 4 and at Universities both nationally and internationally. She co-edits Zoomorphic, the digital literary magazine that publishes work in celebration and defence of wild animals. Her fourth poetry collection, Words the Turtle Taught Me, will be published in 2018. www.susanrichardsonwriter.co.uk
13th November Monday 7:30pm
Nicholas Murray, Chris Kinsey, and William Palmer
Nicholas Murray was born in Liverpool and read English at Liverpool University. He is a biographer, poet, journalist and freelance writer based in the Welsh Marches and London. In 2014 his poetry pamphlet imprint ‘Rack Press’ won the Michael Marks award for best publisher of the year and in 2015 he won the Basil Bunting Award for Poetry as well as celebrating ten years of Rack Press publishing. His latest pamphlet collection of poems, ‘The Migrant Ship’ (Melos) is based on the topical theme of migration and loss. www.nicholasmurray.co.uk
Chris Kinsey is the author of four poetry collections: Kung Fu Lullabies and Cure for a Crooked Smile (Ragged Raven Press) and Swarf (Smokestack Books). Muddy Fox is her latest collection of poetry published by The Rack Press. She was BBC Wildlife Poet of the year and won Natur Cymru’s prose competition in 2012. Chris writes a regular Nature Diary for Cambria and has also written short dramas which were performed in Wales. She was Oriel Davies’ first Writer-in-Residence and has developed Creative Writing with people of all ages and abilities.
William Palmer went to school in Powys and now lives in south-west London. During the 60s and 70s he worked at a bewildering variety of jobs. He became a full-time writer in the mid-80s and has since written six novels (the latest is The Devil is White, published by Cape in 2013), a collection of short stories, and three pamphlets of poems. His first full length collection of poetry, The Water Steps is published this year by the Rack Press. William’s stories and poems have appeared in many journals including London Magazine, Poetry Review, Rialto and the Times Literary Supplement. His work has been broadcast on BBC Radio 3 and 4.and he also writes regularly for Literary Review. www.williampalmer.info
11th December Monday 7:30pm
Steve Griffiths and Robert Minhinnick
Steve Griffiths was born in Anglesey and now lives in the Welsh Marches. His seventh collection, ‘Late Love Poems’, appeared from Cinnamon Press in 2016. He was funded by Arts Council England to produce films of thirty performances of the poems, working with film-maker Eamon Bourke. They can be accessed on YouTube – see www.stevegriffithspoet.com for information.
Steve’s work has been broadcast at intervals on BBC Radio 3 since 1976. He has read in Wales, England, USA, Spain and France. In 2012 he gave a series of seven readings in New York. He has appeared in a number of anthologies, including The Library of Wales ’Poetry 1900-2000’ (2007, Parthian Books), featuring 100 twentieth century Welsh poets writing in English. His working life was devoted to health and social policy research and development, much of it focused on the consequences of inequality.
Douglas Houston in Poetry Wales wrote of his Selected Poems (Seren, 1993) that his ‘achievement lies in the emergence in his writing of a mode in which social, ethical and personal elements undergo a deep fusion’. A quarter of a century later, the search to explore, renew, and wherever possible celebrate that process continues.
Robert Minhinnick was born in Neath and now lives in Porthcawl. He is an active environmental campaigner, essayist and poet. He is co-founder of Friends of the Earth Cymru and the charity, ‘Sustainable Wales’. Robert has won the Forward Poetry Prize on three occasions, (1999, 2003, 2004.) and has been awarded the Wales Book of the Year for ‘Watching the Fire Eater’ 1993 and ‘To Babel and Back’ 2006. He has written seven poetry collections published by Seren and Carcanet, including ‘New Selected Poems’ (Carcanet 2012) and ‘Diary of the Last Man’ (Carcanet 2017) which also has a 25 minute film of the same name, made by Park6 Productions. Robert was editor of ‘Poetry Wales’ from 1997 – 2008.