Category Archives: poetry

Writing for a New Audience

It has been a very thoughtful experience preparing two prose poems for an exhibition at St Helen’s World of Glass this week. Instead of looking at proofs and trying to write a short biography, I  have had a fruitful discussion about fonts with a graphic designer; framed and mounted two pieces of work and got to grips with attaching mirror plates to the frames.

Alice and the Wall
Alice and the Wall

A different lens was required on the work and I began to see a prose poem as a visual artifact instead of a piece of writing.  The work was accepted for an exhibition called ‘Reality Removed’ and will be on display until 28th April 2017.  The curator of the exhibition also told me that they had never accepted a piece of text for an exhibition before which made me reflect on the qualities of a prose poem and how it might lend itself to a visual audience. I have been writing about the importance of the frame when writing in this genre, and how all the margins acts as a way of containing the words. In some ways, this can mirror a painting or photograph, and the viewer/reader can experience the whole work at once, as a fragment of an imagined world, created by the poet/artist.

Floating glass
Floating glass

Reality Removed – Gallery One

‘Contemporary art collective exploring how we view the world when what we know has been removed and we are left with someone else’s version of their own reality’

Entrance to St Helen's World of Glass - bottle kiln
Entrance to St Helen’s World of Glass – bottle kiln






Hebden Bridge Annual

I am delighted to have a poem featured in this fantastic annual for adults:


The Hebden Bridge Annual has arrived for Christmas 2016!
A contemporary take on the traditional annual, it’s a book full of facts and fun about Hebden Bridge and its people. A kitchen table book, rather than a coffee table book.
It’s got 150+ quality pages of stories and pictures; past, present and future, with puzzles, quizzes and indoor and outdoor activities – something for everyone.
The Annual is published by The Egg Factory as our contribution to keeping the community’s chin up after the big flood on Boxing Day last year. You can buy a copy from

Two Lovely Anthologies

The Poetry of Art
The Poetry of Art

This anthology from Avalanche Press features poems that link images and words. I am pleased to be included alongside David Constantine, Moniza Alvi, Pascale Petit and many more excellent poets. Email me if you would like a copy.

The same publisher has featured me in a new collection – just out. I am delighted to have a selection of poetry in this new book with Katrina Porteous , Roselle Angwin, Kaye Lee, Katherine Gallagyer and Wendy French. The book’s themes link landscape and the body and the work is described as ‘a tapestry of sensual, intoxicating verse’.

New Poetry Collection
Woven Landscapes

Quiet, quiet, Loud – Guest Poet

venue for poetry
The Lloyds Pub, Chorlton

Quiet, Quiet, Loud 

This was a fantastic night of poetry –  organised by Sarah L Dixon on the 13th Sept at Lloyds Pub tel 0161 241 8570 M21 9AN in South Manchester if you are free. I was a featured poet reading alongside Ciaran Hodgers

Ciarán is described as “Thoughtful and punchy” and “One of the most exciting faces to appear in the North West circuit in a long time”

Ciarán Hodgers is an award-winning poet, performer and creative mentor. Performed and published around the UK and Ireland he was part of the inaugural Team Manchester at the National UK Poetry Slam, finalist of the Poetry Rival Slam with Burning Eye books and three time finalist of Manchester’s own Word War slams.

Is this just not such an extraordinary image?

gravitational waves Joe mcNally - Getty Images

A time-exposure representation of gravitational waves from the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory. Credit: Joe McNally/Getty Images

I have just ordered a copy of Black Hole Blues by Janna Levin.

I have always been a fan of books that bridge the gap between science and art ever since reading The Double Helix as a young adult. I also loved the poetry book by Heidi Williamson: Her first collection ‘Electric Shadow’ (Bloodaxe, 2011) was a Poetry Book Society Recommendation and shortlisted for the Seamus Heaney Centre Prize for Poetry, and she trained with me as a writing coach when I worked for NAWE.  ‘The Print Museum’, her next collection, is due out now with Bloodaxe in 2016.

Black Hole Blues and Other Songs from Outer Space
Black Hole Blues and Other Songs from Outer Space By Janna Levin

241 pp. Alfred A. Knopf

In 1977, the Voyager 1 spacecraft carried the Golden Record into space — a disc containing a representative selection of Earth’s sounds, ranging from an erupting volcano to a kiss to some of humanity’s greatest music. It was an endeavor more poetic than scientific, which Carl Sagan saw as sonic proof of our being “a species endowed with hope and perseverance, at least a little intelligence, substantial generosity and a palpable zest to make contact with the cosmos.”

Not my usual reading but let me know what you think.


Settle – Poetry Reading and Launch Friday 22nd April

I am very lucky to be the guest of Jean Harrison tomorrow and looking forward to doing a book launch in Settle. One of the most beautiful places to visit.

If you are free and can come along to The Folly

We’re starting a 7.30 – so arrive soon after 7.00 for comfort to get used to room and display books , get used to acoustics etc   The Folly is at the foot of Albert Hill.  Parking hopeless just there but possible in the market-place, or behind the town-hall.


Victoria Street

Postcode: BD24 9HS
Telephone: 01729 822361

A Sneak Preview

Cover of new book

Here is a sneak preview of the cover of my new poetry collection which is out this spring with Cinnamon Press.

I’m very excited about a box of books arriving at my door anytime soon.

‘In her second full-length collection, Anne Caldwell marries the knack for surprise and inventive imagery with precise observation and lucid turns of phrase. Beginning from quotidian moments: a hospital ward, a glass heart Christmas decoration, a writing retreat, Caldwell moves the reader into new landscapes, exterior and interior, with an assured grace that can nonetheless be unsettling. From short lyrical pieces to sequences, the human condition in all its delight and grief is revealed.’

I have a number of events coming up to launch the book.

You can order a copy at

Join me in launching ‘Painting the Spiral Staircase’: with poet ALISON DOWN
Tuesday, 12 April, 7 p.m. @ The Octagon Theatre (Hospitality Suite), Howell Croft South, Bolton, BL1 1SB.
Open mic night in the second half.

Other events:
Thursday, 28 April, 7.30 p.m. @ Kava Café, 31 Rochdale Road, Todmorden, OL14 7LA. (I am doing a lecture here, not a reading)

Friday, 29 April, 7.00 p.m. @ The Book Case, 29 Market Street, Hebden Bridge, HX7 6EU,
with poet, MARIO PETRUCCI.

Friday, 22 April in Settle — (venue and time tbc) with author and poet, JEAN HARRISON.