GREY HEN’s 10th BIRTHDAY PARTY – Grey Hen Press Celebrates in Style!
In April, Grey Hen held a 10th anniversary* celebration, in its new home base of Cumbria, with a workshop, readings and a proper do!
* The press has actually been going 11 years now, but I couldn’t fit this do in last year! So that only leaves me 9 years to prepare for our 20th…but I will need a lot of luck and an almighty following wind to make it that far!
We started with a reading with Ann Drysdale, Kate Foley, R V Bailey and myself at The Tithe Barn in Grasmere on 20th (we were sorry to miss the company of Meg Peacocke, who had planned to be with us but wasn’t able to come) and followed up with a whole day of events at The Shakespeare Centre in Kendal. There was a morning discussion/workshop, an evening reading and a full-on tea party in the afternoon.
The morning session was enjoyed by all – a satisfying chance to delve into what makes a poem what it is and how it takes the shape it does, and to share our thoughts and our work with other Hens.
Centrepiece at the party was the most wonderful Grey Hen cake, made by local cake-maker Shirley, of J’aime Cakes – what an incredible creation! The hardest thing I had to do all weekend was cut into it.
My grandchildren Nell and Woody, with the help of parents Annie and Bill, made delicious matching Grey Hen gingerbread biscuits.
The rest of the food was catered by local Kendal baker Greenhalgh, just across the road from the venue. The prosecco clocked up more food-miles, as did the gathering of Hens, who had travelled from all corners of the UK to Kendal to join in the celebration.
In the evening, everyone returned for an informal read-around – relaxed, sociable and fun. Thanks to all who took part.
GREY HEN POETRY COMPETITION 2018
LATEST GREY HEN ANTHOLOGY
The latest Grey Hen anthology Songs for the Unsung is available to buy online at http://www.greyhenpress.com/books/ or direct from firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our postal address is: PO Box 269, Kendal LA9 9FE.
Hen Run is Grey Hen’s chapbook imprint.
‘Hen Run gives older women an opportunity to get their work published. The project is unfunded and not for profit, so the deal is that I select submissions, edit, and prepare manuscripts for publication. Authors are responsible for printing costs, and for subsequent publicity, readings, and the bulk of sales, though the chapbooks will be featured on the website. The usual high production quality that Grey Hen has maintained applies!
As with Grey Hen, I’m limited with how much work I can take on so there isn’t an open submissions policy. I will follow up any recommendations – but if you are recommending someone else, please contact me yourselves in the first instance for a discussion. For example, two excellent poets have been recommended to me who are well into their 70s and need to have a leg-up onto that first rung of the publication ladder. I am happy to consider proposals from Grey Hens who fit the criteria – also those who may have a particular sequence or group of poems that doesn’t fit easily into a collection.’ Joy Howard
Hen Run publications include Gill Nicholson’s The Buoyancy of Space, Joan Poulson’s Tequila & Shooting Stars, Shoal Moon by Anne Boileau and Water Colour by Hilary Elfick – many more to follow!
You can find all the Hen Run books, and how to order them, by following the ‘Hen Run‘ link on the Grey Hen homepage.
20th June. A Midlands launch of Songs for the Unsung at Kenilworth Books, Kenilworth, Warwicks. With Ann Alexander, Joy Howard, Merryn Williams and Pat Winslow. 6.30 – 8pm
26th May. A Scottish launch of Songs for the Unsung at Blackwell’s University Bookshop, Aberdeen. With A C Clarke, Joy Howard and Mandy Macdonald 3.30 – 4.30 pm. Followed up with a reading by Joy Howard from her most recent collections Refurbishment and Foraging 6-7pm.
15th February Grey Hen at Cork International Poetry Festival 2018 It was good to be invited to put on a Grey Hen reading at this event, and Julia Deakin, Angela Kirby, Char March and myself thoroughly enjoyed showcasing the press at the Festival. We read a selection of poems from all the anthologies: as usual, including our own work and that of others from the books. We all had a great time – making a holiday of it, listening to lots of poetry and exploring lovely Cork City. https://www.corkpoetryfest.net/
Grey Hens at Solstice 2018 Stevie Krayer’s Sleeping Out, Mandy Macdonald’s Gloaming and Joy Howard’s Factory were all among poems chosen for the Arachne Press DUSK event on the Winter Solstice, featuring 50 poems, songs and other short pieces being read in different locations across the country, following dusk from north to south. Stevie’s poem was performed in Nottingham and Holyhead, Mandy’s in Ellon and Joy’s in Carlisle, Lancaster and Ellon. See https://arachnepress.com/solstice-shorts/dusk-solstice-shorts-2017/
2017 was Grey Hen’s 10th anniversary year, with a series of celebration readings across the UK from all eleven anthologies:
7th November 10th anniversary celebration reading in Hebden Bridge with Doris Corti, Julia Deakin, Jo Haslam and Char March. Hebden Bridge Library.
19th November 10th Anniversary celebration reading in N London with Maggie Butt, Wendy French, Katherine Gallagher, Ruth Smith and Anne Stewart. Torriano Meeting House, London NW5.
28th September 10th Anniversary celebration reading at Woodbridge Library with Anne Boileau, Hilary Elfick, Sylvia Fairley, Kate Foley and Angela Kirby.
16th September 10th Anniversary celebration reading in Bristol at Bordeaux Quay with R V Bailey, Ann Drysdale, June Hall, Joy Howard, Ruth Sharman and Pat Simmons.
13th June 10th Anniversary Celebration reading at the Lit and Phil, Newcastle. With Joy Howard, Meg Peacocke, Katrina Porteous and Fiona Ritchie Walker. The Lit and Phil in Newcastle is a lovely place to hold poetry readings, and we had a really appreciative audience. It’s getting harder to find an opportunity to hear Meg Peacocke read, and we were so pleased she could make it. Such a pleasure too to have local poet Fiona Ritchie Walker, and that unrivalled celebrator of Northumberland life and language, Katrina Porteous. What a great line-up!
29th April 10th Anniversary Celebration reading in York with Carole Bromley, Joy Howard, Pauline Kirk, Thelma Laycock and Josie Walsh. A lot of poets and a lot of fine poems! Selections from all the eleven Grey Hen anthologies made for a lively and varied reading. A warm and appreciative (almost capacity) audience in a lovely room at York Explore (Central Library) helped make it a memorable afternoon. Special thanks to Thelma Laycock, standing in for Helen Burke, who was unfortunately unable to join us on the day.
11th March 10th Anniversary Celebration event at Reading Central Library. With Wendy Klein, Gill Learner, Susan Utting, Jean Watkins and Christine Webb. Reading Library is a welcoming venue, and we were delighted to return for this very special Grey Hen reading. Wendy Klein was the MC, and she was well supported by local poets Gill Learner and Jean Watkins. They were joined by Susan Utting and Christine Webb. Thanks to all for contributing to a memorable day.
Transitions, Outlook Variable and Shades of Meaning launch at Glasgow Women’s Library. Group photo, left to right: A C Clarke, Mandy Macdonald, Sheila Templeton, Eleanor Livingstone, Anne Murray and Joy Howard.
First Hen Run launch, Harris Library, Preston. Gill Nicholson and Joan Poulson read.
PLEASE SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL LIBRARY AND THESE INDEPENDENT BOOKSHOPS – they regularly stock our books, and hold Grey Hen readings.
Glasgow Women’s Library 19-23 Landressy Street, Glasgow G40 1BP 0141 550 226 www.womenslibrary.org.uk
Queens Park Books 87 Salusbury Rd, Queens Park, London NW6 6NH www.queensparkbooks.co.uk
The Limpsfield Bookshop, High Street, Limpsfield, Oxted RH8 0DS 01883 714 034
Wenlock Books 12 High Street, Much Wenlock, Shropshire, TF13 6AA 01952 727877 www.wenlockbooks.co.uk
Yellow-Lighted Bookshops 21 Church St, Tetbury, Gloucestershire GL8 8JG
01666-500221 and 17 Fountain Street, Nailsworth, Gloucestershire GL6 0BL
Brontë Parsonage Museum Shop Church Street, Haworth, West Yorkshire BD22 8DR 01535 642323 www.bronte.org.uk/bronte-shop
The Book Case 29 Market St, Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire HX7 6EU 01422 845353
The Edge of the World Bookshop 23 Market Jew Street, Penzance, Cornwall, TR18 2HR 01736 365607 www.edgeoftheworldbookshop.co.uk
GREY HENS AT LARGE
Ann Alexander’s new collection Old Things (Ward Wood) is now out. http://wardwoodpublishing.co.uk/titles-poetry-ann-alexander-old-things.htm
Jean Atkin published Luck’s Weight, a pamphlet of poems and photographs (by Andrew Fusek Peters) based on her 2014 residency at Acton Scott Farm in Shropshire. Luck’s Weigh was also an exhibition which featured at Wenlock Poetry Festival. She has been both Reader in Residence at Southwater Library in Telford, and Poet in Residence for Wenlock Poetry Festival 2015. Jean also organises The Poetry Lounge in Ludlow. https://jeanatkin.com/
R V Bailey and Stevie Krayer Now out: A speaking silence: Quaker poets of today, edited by R V Bailey and Stevie Krayer (Indigo Dreams Publishing, £9.95) Featuring numerous distinguished poets, including Grey Hen contributors Anne Cluysenaar, Ann Drysdale, Kate Foley, June Hall and Meg Peacocke. Stevie Davies: “These luminous fragments of truthful witness brought tears to my eyes as I read; they haunted, heartened and comforted me. They will do the same for you.” Carole Satyamurti: “This is an exceptionally enriching anthology; fine poems embodying a distinctively Quaker spirituality, grounded in direct experience.”
Denise Bennett’s second collection Parachutes Silk has been published by Oversteps Books, including her ‘Hovercraft’ poem published in Running Before The Wind.
Pat Borthwick has a new poetry book just out – The Road I Take (Pharos Press) £10.00 – including P&P. Contact Pat Borthwick at email@example.com
Pat was shortlisted for Strokestown this year and asked to read with Scots poet Walter Perrie at StAnza. She will be reading at Ledbury Festival next year and running some Saturday individual mentoring sessions in York on behalf of the Poetry Society. They’ll each be almost an hour long allowing close reading and constructive feedback. Anyone interested in booking a slot (you don’t have to live in Yorkshire) please contact Pat at the email address above.
Carole Bromley’s recent publication, A Guided Tour of the Ice House, is published by Smith/Doorstop Books, Sheffield.
Helen Burke recently judged Keats Shelley Prize in Rome. She performed at Keats Shelley House in Rome. New collection out with valley Press – called Here’s Looking At You Kid.
Marianne Burton’s collection She Inserts the Key (Seren) was shortlisted for the 2013 Forward Felix Dennis First Collection Prize.
Maggie Butt’s Sancti Clandestini – Undercover Saints, fully illustrated collection of poems about alternative, imaginary saints, was published by Ward Wood Publications in November 2012.
Caroline Carver’s Fish Eaters was published by University of Plymouth Press in October 2015, and her new pamphlet from Indigo Dreams, JU JU BABY, will be out in the Autumn, no date yet. As an outcome of Fish Eaters, Caroline has given some lectures to students at the University, and also travelled with a PowerPoint presentation The Building as a Book, which also looks at Marshal McLuhan’s philosophies. Caroline is poet-in-residence Marine Institute, Plymouth University www.poetrypf.co.uk/carolinecarverpage.shtml
Anne Clarke was a prizewinner in the 2013 Troubadour International Poetry Competition. She also won 1st prize in the Second Light competition (Long Poem category 2013).
Rose Cook’s new collection Notes from a Bright Field is now out from Cultured Llama £8.00. http://www.culturedllama.co.uk
Doris Corti was commended in the Elizabeth Longford poetry competition (run by Society of Women Writers & Journalists). Acumen used one of her poems called ‘Colours of the Wind’ on the internet as their ‘poem of the month’. She judged the NAWG Open poetry competition and the poetry competition for the Society of Women Writers & Journalists.
Julia Deakin is aiming to finish her 3rd collection by Christmas. She won 3rd Prize in the Bridport, was Highly Commended in The Troubadour and The Plough, and Commended in York Mix. www.juliadeakin.co.uk.
Ann Drysdale will have a new collection out later this year with Shoestring Press.
Hilary Elfick’s and David Head’s On the Edge was published by PPP. Her Australian Bush series with the photographer David Malikoff is nearing completion, and her poem Hulotte appeared in the (sadly) final edition of THE SHOp magazine of poetry.
Angela France’s new collection Hide (2013) details from http://www.ninearchespress.com/hide.html
Katherine Gallagher tutored a residential Workshop ‘The Faces of Memory’ at Le Moulin, Villebaudon, Normandy.
Geraldine Green co-tutored at Brantwood with Penelope Shuttle in June and Pippa Little, plus a residential at Jane’s farm in September. firstname.lastname@example.org
Geraldine read from her latest collections The Other Side of the Bridge and Salt Road on her poetry trip to N. America in August 2015. She’s currently working on a collection called Cinder Track.
Read an interview with her here:
Mavis Gulliver has had two poems published in the Romanian magazine Orizont Literar Contemporan Contemporary Literary Horizon in 2013, in English with Romanian translations.
Jo Haslam has had two poems published in PN Review and was joint winner of the Straid collection- published by Templar in 2013
Diana Hendry is currently co-editor (with Gerry Cambridge) of New Writing Scotland, an anthology now in its 33rd year and has just finished a children’s book (part one of a two book contract). She is also involved in a creative ageing project with the Scottish Poetry Library.
Bernie Kenny’s new book These Are My Days is coming out in March.
Angela Kirby’s latest collection, A Scent of Winter, Shoestring Press, 2013, has been reprinted and is still available online or from Central Books.
Pauline Kirk as Editor of Fighting Cock Press collaborated with Stairwell Books and Graft Poetry in two joint publications: A Prairie Journal’by Rita Jerramand Fifty:Fifty, an anthology of poems to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the Pennine Poets. Colin Speakman’s People in a Landscape is due out soon, and Pauline is working on another collection by Alan Gillott.
Pauline’s poems have appeared in Pennine Platform, The Poetry Church, Quantum Leap’ Fifty:Fifty’ (Graft/Fighting Cock), Extraordinary Forms (Grey Hen Press) and Half Moon: Poems about Pubs (OWF Press – due Oct 16). She is on the Editorial Board of ‘Dream Catcher’ magazine and a member of the Exhibitionists performance group (York).
Writing as PJ Quinn (with daughter Jo Summers) – all published by Stairwell Books: The ‘DI Ambrose Mysteries’: ‘Foul Play’, 2011 [available as e-book]; ‘Poison Pen’ 2012 [e-book], ‘Close Disharmony’ 2014 and soon a fourth, ‘Poetic Justice’. ‘Foul Play’ and ‘Poison Pen’ are now available as e-books. ‘Border 7′ was published under her own name by Stairwell Books in 2015. Later this year (2016) an edition of war-time letters by her uncle,a RAF ‘back-room boy’ in the Middle East and East Africa, is planned by Stairwell.
Pauline was interviewed by students from Leeds Trinity and York Universities – see https://www.youtube.com/watch?
Wendy Klein won 1st prize in the Buxton (Summer 2014); 1st Prize in the Havant (Autumn 2014); 1st Prize in the Cannon Poets’ Sonnet or Not (December 2014); 1st prize in the Cinnamon Press Single Poem Competition (January 2015) – this poem available on http://www.wendyklein.co.uk/Tracking_the_Wolf.html
Stevie Krayer’s third collection is now published: New Monkey (Indigo Dreams Publishing). Details and sample poems at http://www.
Gill Learner came second in the Torriano Poetry Compeition 2016 judged by Ann Drysdale. Her second collection Chill Factor has been published by Two Rivers Press.
Janet Loverseed has a poem in the anthology Best of Manchester Poets, Vol. 3, published by Puppywolf.
Gill McEvoy’s pamphlet The First Telling from Happenstance Press, which deals with the aftermath of rape, was published Dec 2014. She is featured in Caboodle a collection from Prole Books. In 2014 Gill had poems published in The Rialto, Acumen, Envoi, The Interpreter’s House, The Journal, The Frogmore Papers, and on ink sweat and tears.
Rosemary McLeish had several poems displayed in the ‘Dare to Wear’ exhibition at the Crypt Gallery in Euston Road, London during October. ‘They were sewn onto clothing – a nightdress, a bra, t-shirts and an apron. The apron and one of the t-shirts sold and I had commissions to make four more aprons and one of the t-shirts.’
Alison Mace has won the 2016 Second Light Long Poem prize with her 5 linked sonnets.
Char March’s has been placed second in the non-fiction category for the Watermarks competition, and first place this month in the ‘Remember Oluwale’ poetry competition (judged by Ian Duhig). She will have poems published in the next two issues of Lallans and Zoomorphic magazines.
Gerda Mayer A small collection of poems translated by Odveig Klyve, Alle blad har mist sitt tre (All the leaves have lost their trees), was published in Norway by the Nordsjoforlage in 2013.
Paula Meehan,contributor to Running Before the Wind, is currently Ireland Professor of Poetry. This honour was established when Seamus Heaney won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1998, and is based in University College Dublin, Queen’s University Belfast and Trinity College Dublin.
Jenny Morris’ poem ‘Harsh Coast’ was published in Poetry News. She also had two poems in the 2012 Templar anthology Octopus and two in the Norwich poetry anthology.
Katriona Naomi’s pamphlet ‘Hooligans’ (inspired by the Suffragettes) is from Rack Press 2015.
Ruth O’Callaghan’s fourth collection The Silence Unheard (Shoestring) was published in 2013.
Meg Peacocke is preparing a ‘New and Selected’ for the Shoestring Press and a recording for the National Poetry Archive.
Jo Peters won third prize in the Ilkley Literary Festival Open Mic. She has a poem in The Garden (Otley Word Feast Press) and also in The Book of Love and Loss ed. R V Bailey and June Hall (Belgrave Press).
Katrina Porteous’ new poetry collection from Bloodaxe, Two Countries, is now available as a book, and also as an ebook with audio: http://www.amazon.com/Two-Countries-ebook-Katrina-Porteous-ebook/dp/B00PF1L2TM A new numbered limited-edition of Horse, Katrina’s sound-poem with music by Peter Zinovieff, illustrated by Olivia Lomenech Gill, is available here:http://www.beadnell.demon.co.uk/publications/horse.html. In 2014 Katrina reported on, and took part in, the Fisher Poets’ Gathering, Astoria, Oregon, USA. You can still hear her BBC Radio 4 programme about it, produced by Julian May: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b042d57r You can hear Katrina Porteous read her work on the Poetry Archive site: http://www.poetryarchive.org/poet/katrina-porteous
Joan Poulson’s page, and recordings of 58 poems (available on CD), is now up on The Children’s Poetry Archive – another of her children’s poems is being set to music.
Penelope Shuttle and Geraldine Green ran a residential poetry course ‘MIDSUMMER POETRY’ at Brantwood, Coniston, the home of John Ruskin, June 2015 . Penelope’s Unsent: New and Selected Poems 1980 – 2012 was published by Bloodaxe Books.
Pat Simmons’ poem ‘At Home’ (first published by Grey Hen in Cracking On 2009) has been accepted for the anthology Heart Shoots from Indigo Dreams.
Deborah Sloan has won 2nd prize in the SaveAs Writers’ International ‘Bigger Picture’ Competition 2014
Anne Stewart co-judged the Grey Hen Poetry Competition 2016 with Maggie Butt, and also judged the Formal Category of the Poetry on the Lake competition (Italy), 2016. Her English/Romanian collection, Only Here till Friday (Bibliotecha Universalis, Bucharest, 2015), is also now out in an English/Spanish version from the same publisher (2016).
Diane Tang’s first collection, Sideways from the Shore, was published in 2012 by Oversteps .
Sheila Templeton won the James McCash Scots Language Poetry Competition 2014, with ‘Mixin Mustard’ a memoir of her grandfather who fought in World War 1. It featured in The Herald December 2014. It is the second time Sheila has won this prestigious competition, run jointly by Glasgow University and The Herald newspaper.
Fiona Ritchie Walker won the Felix Dennis Creative Writing Competition run by Stratford Litfest with her short story. http://www.stratfordliteraryfe
Christine Webb has a poem in Otley Word Feast’s little anthology The Garden.
Susan Wood won 2nd prize in the Basil Bunting Poetry Competion 2013.