Sunday, 31 May 2009

Introducing the June 2009 Poets - 1. Andrew Philip

Andrew Philip was born in 1975. He has published two poetry pamphlets with HappenStance PressTonguefire (2005) and Andrew Philip – a Sampler (2008)—and was chosen as a Scottish Poetry Library “New Voice” in 2006. The Ambulance Box, his first book of poems, was published in March by Salt. Andrew’s work has also been included in the anthologies The Smoky Smirr o Rain, The Wallace Muse and, most recently, 5PX2: Five Italian Poets and Five Scottish Poets. He blogs at Tonguefire.

for Aidan Michael Philip

this is the arm that held you
this is the hand that cradled your cold feet

these are the ears that heard you
whimper and cough through your brush with light

this is the chest that warmed you
these are the eyes that caught your glimpse of life

this is the man you fathered —
his voided love, his writhen pride and grief

Saturday, 9 May 2009

Introducing the May 2009 Poets - 4. Robert Crawford

Poet and critic Robert Crawford was born in Belshill, Lanarkshire, Scotland, in 1959. He works as Professor of Modern Scottish Literature at the University of St Andrews. He won an Eric Gregory award in 1988 and was one of 20 poets selected for the Poetry Society's 'New Generation Poets' promotion in 1994. He has twice won a Scottish Arts Council Book Award, and four of his collections have been Poetry Book Society Recommendations. His latest collection is Full Volume (2008), which was shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize

I searched the Internet for Robert Crawford poems to link to from here and found only one (other than those published illegally, which I won’t draw attention to). But here’s Local from Poetry Daily, also found in Full Volume.

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Introducing the May 2009 Readers - 3. Julia Rampen

Julia Rampen comes from Edinburgh and is currently studying history at Cambridge University. However, she prefers writing poetry to writing essays. Julia was a Foyle Young Poet of the Year 2005 and 2006, a prizewinner in the Christopher Tower competition and currently is involved in the organization of a poetry event for Cambridge University's Festival of Ideas next autumn.

My Grandmother’s House

My grandmother’s house rises
with the dawn. The sun drips
cinnamon through elderly glass,
embracing flowers flung
up vases, like birds;
rouses a fire that burns junk
into jewels.

The kitchen carries passengers,
my grandmother at its helm:
iced luncheons, rumours of suburbs
advancing in immaculate platoons,
plates like fragile moons
throwing tantrums in the sink.
Upstairs, ancestors nap
between pages of imperial
scrapbooks, or in the parlour,
quiet as a brittle pool, a second
preserved for fifty years.

Its brick walls blush by sunset,
mask themselves in languid dusks
like a chrysalis. Through fly eyed
windows, I watch summer evenings
replay again and again, as heat
begins to thin. Knowing
I only have to creep downstairs
and open a door
to let the bulldozers in.

Saturday, 2 May 2009

Introducing the May 2009 Readers - 2. JL Williams

JL Williams was born in New Jersey and studied at Wellesley College with the poet Frank Bidart and on the MLitt in Creative Writing at the University of Glasgow. Her poetry has been published in journals including Aesthetica, The Red Wheelbarrow, Cutting Teeth, Poetry Salzburg Review, Poetry Wales and coming up in Fulcrum and Stand. She is one of the founding members of SHIFT and is on the editorial boards of VAIR Poetry magazine and of Brown Williams Journal.


His wet skin, his five dark horses, his antelope horns, his long thighs, his lips.

There is a bruise above his breast beneath which beats the bronze drum of Tantalus.

Married to the daughter of a river-god how
could he ever hold her, body rushing through fingers...
himself neither one thing nor... always just out of...

In Argos they stroke his bones, he whose soul is that of a man's, whose body
is that of a god's, resides where his mother made him deep
in the bowels of the earth where rubies and diamonds propagate.

Shaman, he fed his son to the earth and the earth
in her sorrow ate him and thus he must be buried and must
we all be buried, become like jewels, become bounty.

- (originally published in The Wolf, Issue 19, December 2008)