Tag 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’

 

http://www.worldofglass.com/index.php?part=visitor_information

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

 

 

 

 

 

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

Sophy Dale interview

sophydale-1

I recently did a blog posting about my writing process for the wonderful Sophy Dale’s blog. You can read it by following this link

Interview Series #11: Anne Caldwell

There are some great interviews on her blog including Andrew Forster and other writers.

Sophy says about her company Spark:

I am a writer, editor, coach and mentor, based in a small Scottish seaside town just outside Edinburgh. I’ve worked with a huge range of writers, including Margaret Atwood, Ian Rankin, Janice Galloway, Ali Smith, John Burnside, Jackie Kay and Naomi Alderman. I’ve worked for publishers including Canongate Books and Frances Lincoln, for the Scottish Book Trust and Scottish Poetry Library and run the BBC Short Story Award. Along with the novelist Alan Warner, I set up Long Lunch Press, which published Irvine Welsh, James Meek, Elizabeth Reeder and Jen Hadfield. Three years ago, I set up the Spark Writing Development Agency, with a team including literary agents Judy Moir, Fraser Ross Associates and writers Susie Maguire and Linda Cracknell. Most recently, I’ve also been running a children’s Book Festival in Edinburgh and a year round programme of storytelling and author events.

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.

http://www.visitsettle.co.uk/folly.html

Address:

Victoria Street

Settle
Postcode: BD24 9HS
Telephone: 01729 822361
Email:
Website: www.ncbpt.org.uk/folly

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 http://inpressbooks.co.uk/products/painting-the-spiral-staircase

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.

 

Quite a week… but what the hell!

Image of escher staircase

Well. I am looking forward to meeting Patrick Ness in Bolton this week. My son thinks he’s wonderful and my students are also really excited about his visit to Bolton. Tuesday, Bolton Central Library, 7pm.

I am leaving NAWE and will be working for The University of Bolton, The Open University and doing my PhD. I am going to research the idea of the North and what it means to women poets in particular. I will write a collection of prose poems on this theme and started this week with a NAWE conference paper that explored poetry, photography and surrealism. I loved the Angels of Anarchy exhibition in Manchester a few years ago.

I have also read a brilliant selection of books by men on this theme. Don’t get me wrong. There is such a wealth of material out there. I am just narrowing things down and working out what might be the missing gaps… so far I have read Stuart Maconie, Simon Armitage, Sara Maitland and Rebecca Solnit. A long way to go but surely that is the joy of such a major project? Any reading suggestions welcome.

Prose Poetry – UK

Hebden Bridge

‘To ponder the fate of place at this moment assumes a new urgency and points to a new promise.’

Edward S. Casey, The Fate of Place, A Philosophical History

Thank you to my good friend and colleague, Karen Smith for introducing me to this book. It is fascinating.

I am going to be presenting on a panel this year at the NAWE conference and then in the states next year at the AWP conference, alongside Carrie Etter and other panel members.  I am looking at the use of sense of place in UK prose poems. I am at an early stage in my thinking about this subject.

Can anyone recommend some good anthologies of UK prose poetry to me? If you have written in this form, it would be good to hear any comments from you about the use of place. I would like to talk about contemporary poets’ work within my paper, and feature some work.

I look forward to hearing from you, please email if you can:

(a.caldwell@virgin.net)

Anne

Longlist in the National Poetry Competition

I was delighted to make the longlist in the National Poetry Competition this year. The competition received over 13,000 entries, and after months of reading, judges Roddy Lumsden, Glyn Maxwell and Zoë Skoulding selected a longlist of 140 poems, including this one below.  The top winners will be announced on 2nd April at an awards ceremony and online, and published in the Spring issue of The Poetry Review.

Onwards and upwards! I hope you enjoy the poem. Churn Milk Joan is also featured in the work of Ted Hughes. It is very difficult not to be inspired by his words living in this landscape. I have always loved his writing, even before I moved to this area. I worry whether there is a new way of approaching writing about the land, but hopefully my own voice can come through in the work.

Waymarker

Alice needs a stone dress with a granite skirt and flint buttons,

wants to be rooted on the moors like Churn Milk Joan

pointing to higher ground―above the bogs, water-logged fields,

paths choked with knotweed and balsam.

She needs shoes speckled with mica that catch the light

and warm her feet with the memory of summer

when the hills were hoverfly-drowsy; cattle lounged

on heather roots and chewed the cud, udders rosy with milk.

The days grow short and wet.  Her front door begins to stick

and swell. Her lover has deserted her for the open road.

Her heart is strung out like a line of telegraph poles.

Find her a sharp chisel, a mallet, a large boulder.  There’s no time to lose.

Anne Caldwell