2014, in general not a year memorable for a host of good things, was in recompense the Year of 52. For all who involved themselves in Jo Bell’s brilliant, ambitious, inclusive and extraordinarily friendly project, this was a splendid 52 weeks of poetry, developing friendships, shared ideas and even a Picnic. Here’s Jo explaining what can happen next. I want those books!
Her wings of glass is a marvellous new anthology published by Second Light Network, containing ‘ambitious poems by contemporary women poets’. It features 237 ‘highly individual, complex, allusive poems by 134 women poets’. Reviewer John Killick describes it as ‘an absolutely outstanding collection making a powerful impact … I think it is the most important anthology for decades’.
I am so proud to have a poem included in this lovely book (What Happens At Night, from my collection Not Lost Since Last Time).
Her wings of glass commemorates the work of Sylvia Plath, half a century on from her death. The anthology includes marvellous poems by Gillian Allnutt, Fleur Adcock, Gillian Clarke, U A Fanthorpe, Imtiaz Dharker, Selima Hill, Jen Hadfield, Pauline Stainer, Mimi Khalvati and many more wonderful poets.
It’s available from Second Light Publications here. Thank you so much editors Myra Schneider, Penelope Shuttle and Dilys Wood.
LUCK’S WEIGHT, an exhibition of my poetry and the beautiful photographs of Andrew Fusek Peters, will open in January 2015. Its very first outing will be at the beautiful Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre in Craven Arms.
The poems are from from my residency earlier this year at Acton Scott Historic Working Farm. I wrote about the working horses, the ancient breed of Silver Dorking hens, the blue flax field, the tack room hung with horse collars, the cow shed, the mason bees that live in the old brick walls, the great richness of the farm’s field names and lost green lanes. Andrew Fusek Peters asked me if he could come and take photographs early one morning, and as a direct result, I wrote Goose Eye, and he came back again to take more photographs. Andrew is a hugely talented photographer already making a name for himself (as well as being a prolifically published poet and writer), and it’s been a real joy to work with him.
We’ll be hosting a Launch for ‘Luck’s Weight’ on Saturday 10 January 2015 from 12 noon to 1.30pm – there will be a short talk and a reading, a chance to chat with us and share a glass of wine or a soft drink, and time to look at the photographs and poems. The photographs will be for sale, and we’re just putting together a pamphlet which will be available to accompany the exhibition. Do come along.