Rack Press ever impresses – Poetry Review
The consistently reliable Rack Press - Times Literary Supplement

Thursday, 18 June 2015

Rack Poets at Ledbury and an Interview

Damian Walford Davies, AC Bevan and
SamanthaWynne-Rhydderch at a Rack reading in
Presteigne, Powys earlier this year
Thank you to the Poetry School for publishing an interview with Rack Press where we tell it like it is, we hope!

And don't forget 4th July at the Ledbury Poetry Festival where poets Nicky Arscott and Anna Lewis were due to launch their new collections, respectively Soft Mutation and The Blue Cell.  Unfortunately Anna can't be there for family reasons so AC Bevan will be reading with Nicky at lunchtime on that Saturday.  Do come along and hear two original and lively poets and the two new titles can now be ordered here online.

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Talking about Edward Thomas 17 June

I will be talking to Jean Moorcroft Wilson, author of a new biography of Edward Thomas, at an event at the London Review Bookshop on 17th June.

I leave you with a quotation from his fragment of autobiography The Childhood of Edward Thomas (1938) where he describes himself as “a citizen’s son of London in the ‘eighties of the nineteenth century".  Reading that book and the biography one realises how much this great celebrant of the English and Welsh countryside was a child of the south London suburbs (and explicitly saw himself as such).

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

New Pamphlet from David Harsent and Fiona Sampson

Launched today at the Wandsworth Heritage Festival in London at 7pm in Southfields Library, a new pamphlet by David Harsent and Fiona Sampson, Address Book is the outcome of a creative encounter between two leading British poets and the rich archival resources of Wandsworth Heritage Service.

Here are residents Florence Turtle, a book-buyer for the leading West End stores; the poet Edward Thomas; a teenager, Shirley Hitchings, and her poltergeist; and the poets Algernon Swinburne and Theodore Watts-Dunton.  Their addresses are the starting point for a series of fascinating and original poems.

Address Book is a collaboration between the London Borough of Wandsworth Heritage Service and the Roehampton Poetry Centre and is sponsored by the University of Roehampton and the Heritage Service of the Borough in which the university stands. The pamphlet has been produced for the Wandsworth Heritage Festival just opened and its authors are the Chair and the Director, respectively, of the University of Roehampton Poetry Centre.

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Rack Poets in Powys

Four Rack poets will be reading next Monday 13th April at the sign of the Red Parrot, the reading series in Presteigne, Powys, home of Rack Press.

A.C.Bevan, Damian Walford Davies, Samantha Wynne-Rhydderch and Nicholas Murray will be reading at 7.30 at the No 46 Wine Bar in Presteigne High Street.

If you can't make the reading you can buy the pamphlets here using the Paypal button.

We look forward to seeing you on a lovely spring evening in the Welsh Marches on Monday.

Monday, 23 March 2015

Poem of the Week: Damian Walford Davies

Today's Poem of the Week taken from one of the pamphlet collections launched this year by Rack Press is Commission by Damian Walford Davies from his collection Alabaster Girls which you can order here using Paypal.


Commission
Damian Walford Davies reading at last month's
launch in London

Suffolk, 1650

I was in the graveyard, islanded
by creeks, parsing deep botched

cuts that pass for epitaphs. 
Horses drummed their piss 

on clumps of woundwort – 
so loud, the troopers laying

statues on the fire turned to look.
Stare long enough, the tower’s

flintwork will bewilder you. Gilt
paint burns especially. He called me

from the porch, framed by gargoyles
and the Lamb, bitter ramsons

mixed with sweetish smoke.
My sergeant rose among the reeds,

a tan bird mewing in his gloves.
The church was cool; their eyes

were hammering at three angels
on the roof. I wrapped the balls

inside a paper patch and shot,
walked out decked in golden dust.


Monday, 16 March 2015

Poem of the Week: Katrina Naomi

Each week in March we are featuring a poem from one of the new Rack pamphlets published in 2015 and this week the chosen poem is from Katrina Naomi's collection Hooligans. You can order it now from this site using the Paypal button (£5).  "Hooligans" was a term used against the suffragettes by their opponents.


Katrina Naomi (centre) with friends at the launch
last month in London of Hooligans

Special Delivery

23 February 1909 from West Strand Post Office to 10 Downing St, SW

What a shock for the postie,
one woman, then two
human letters – 

Elspeth McClelland and Daisy Soloman –
addressed to Mr Asquith,
a threepenny stamp like a small tattoo

on each hand, as they walked,
too large to be perched
on the delivery boy’s basket;

words indelibly printed in their mouths,
which just needed to be opened,
their contents clear 

from both women’s signatures –
the way each spoke when angry.