12. Jan, 2022

Poetry Roots

Well, my writing journey all started off with poetry, the first poem, being published in an anthology when I was just 17-years-old. In the 1970s & 80s I had three small chapbooks published, ‘Calculated Suicides,’ ‘Last of the Rampant Heroes,’ and ‘Maelstrom’. A couple of collections of my work (now out of print) followed in the early 2000s, ‘Reinvented’, and ‘Travelling with Strangers.’
My work also appeared in several small press magazines, including, Iota, Spokes, and Weyfarers. Some poems were also published in the Surrey Advertiser, culminating in three Young Poet Awards in the 1980s. Other poems were later published in The Big Issue.
In 1998, my poem, ‘Death of a Football Club,’ appeared in the ‘Verses United’ anthology, edited by Ian Horn which also included poems by the renowned poets, Tony Harrison, Wes Magee, Tom Pickard, Attila the Stockbroker, and the great Liverpool poet, Adrian Henri. The book included an introduction by Melvyn Bragg and a foreword by the late England football manager, Bobby Robson. 
My standout poem must be ‘The Wedding,’ written after my first marriage came off the rails in 1979. I wrote this a year or two later. The poem has since been published in the ‘Poetry Unlocked’ anthology as part of a secondary school exam curriculum, recorded by a “rock” band and has been viewed literally hundreds of thousands of times across various internet websites and other outlets… and yes, I am rather proud.
Other poems, such as ‘Platform 8, Victoria’, ‘Preconception’, ‘The Anniversary,’ and ‘Internal Traveller’ have also achieved incredible success. However, writing poetry DOES NOT make any money!
I am planning to write more stuff in the future, perhaps publishing a definitive collection with some new poems.
Considering I’ve never really read any books of magnitude from cover to cover myself, the novel-writing has come as a bit of a surprise. When I write, I feel like a man possessed, and I wouldn’t change that for anything! But yes, it all started with writing poems...
If you are a bit of a poetry geek, you can view a small collection of my work HERE 
I hope you enjoy!
Pic: Mal, Woking, 2001