Work in Progress
I've got three books of poems not too far from completion at present. One is Accompanying, and is about people alive or dead, known or unknown, who I feel go along with me through life, the main focus being on family, but also others. It contains a sonnet sequence in memory of my mother which won an Arvon Prize, and a companion sequence of differently shaped sonnets in memory of my father, making use of the theme of piano playing, his profession. I'm also working on ballades about my daughter and memories of Nigeria, and hope also to include some poems written to fit into the form of popular songs and be singable.
The second book is called, provisionally Tales, and is a collection of short stories in verse, some using the 'rondel' stanza. One is based on accounts of the death of Che Guevara, another about a school classmate exactly my age who was killed in Cyprus in 1956 by 'accidental' fire.
The third is call I Hate Your Bloody School, and deals with prep and public school life in two schools in England in the late forties and fifties. It is autobiographical, but I'm trying not to make it self indulgent. It is, beyond the 'me' bit, about education and learning
Quite a few extracts from these books have appeared in the magazines -
Ambit, Acumen, The Rialto, Poetry Wales, the Poetry Review, Stand, Ambit, Times Literary Supplement, Critical Survey, Wasafiri, Kunapipi, Magma, The Long Poem
Some recordings of in progress poems are linked on the right.