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Quote of the Month



February 2024 

"Dick's duck dived as deep as Dick's dog dug"  

From Read Me and Laugh  

Poems chosen by Gaby Morgan, 

Macmillan Children's Books , London, 2005 

January 2024

"Schnee ist gefallen, lichtlos. (Translation: Snow fell, lightless.)

From the poem 'Schwarze Flocken (Black Flakes)'

by Paaul Celan. See Black Flakes / Schwarze Flocken:” Celan & Ukraine – Nomadics (




December 2023 


"We can all be refugees 

  Nobody is safe"  

From 'We Refugees' by Benjamin Zephaniah RIP 7 December 2023. 

See Three poems by Benjamin Zephaniah | Books | The Guardian 

November 2023 


"Terror is incredibly pedantic." 

From 'Utterance Shared Only with the Dishwasher She Sinks Her Hands Into' by Momtaza Mehri 

in The Poetry Review  Volume 113:2, Summer 2023

October 2023 

"(I)t is 

forbidden to love where we are not loved." 

From 'Material Ode' by Sharon Olds 

in Stag's Leap. Jonathan Cape, London, 2012 

September 2023 

" i could call a cat a meowopotamus, 

who would care?"

From 'Day 71: Honiton' by Stephen Lightbown 

in The Last Custodian Burning Eye Books, Portishead, 2021 

August 2023 

"(T)he minutes crawl the way dust gathers  on its victims."  

From Pepper Sed by Malika Booker 

Peepal Tree, 2013 

 July  2023


 "It's easier with instructions; 

 Moses would tell you. 


 But he wasn't the poet."  



 From 'If asked to write an elegy - ' 

 Shannon Smith-Meekings  

 in The Poetry Review  

 Vol. 113:1, Spring 2023 

June 2023 

 'It's not true that our shadows disappear at  

 at night. They're released  

                                                         like a breath.'  

 From 'A Shadow on the House' 

 by Philip Gross  

 in The Thirteenth Angel  

 Bloodaxe Books, Hexham, 2022 

Quote of the Week Archive

 Week Commencing 24th April 2022. 

 'not one of my friends was allowed to live in her body unaccompanied' 


 by Joelle Taylor  

 in C+nto & Othered Poems 

 The Westbourne Press, London, 2021 

 Week Commencing 17th April 2022. 

 'They're looking people 

 at the factory,' you tell me, 'to put the crying 

 in the crying dolls' 


 by Scott McKendry 

 in The Poetry Review:  Volume 112:1 Spring 2022 

 Week Commencing 10th April 2022. 

 'I often regret the time that I've devoted 

to regret: thereby sustainably re-wasting wasted time time and again

'My Plans for the Past' 

 by Sam Willetts 

 in The Poetry Review:  Volume 112:1 Spring 2022 

 Week Commencing 3rd April 2022. 

 'One fine thought makes more light than bare fire' 


 Ramayana A Retelling 

 by Daljit Nagra 

 Faber and Faber, London, 2013 

 Week Commencing 27th March 2022. 

 'All my favourite flowers are weeds spreading from stone slab crack to tumbling wall to road edge to 

 bed, a long string of common names, and when they are torn at their stalks they spring back green 

 with more cunning and wit.  


'All my favourite  flowers' 

 by Mish Green  

 in Magma Poetry 81 Winter 2021 

 Week Commencing 20th March 2022. 

 'But who would stand in hempen band 

        Upon a scaffold high, 

 And through a murderer's collar take 

        His last look at the sky? 


 It is sweet to dance to violins 

        When Love and Life are fair: 

 To dance to flutes, to dance to lutes 

         Is delicate and rare: 

 But it is not sweet with nimble feet 

        To dance upon the air!' 

'From The Ballad Of Reading Gaol' 

 by Oscar Wilde 

 see Poetry Foundation  



Week Commencing 13th March 2022.

 'now literate with demolition. 

 how sinister and reverent, the touch 

 that builds a new bohemian amenity. 

 raised, from the silence of your 

 seizures. everybody singing: 

 attrition, contrition, mass- 

 market ambition.' 


 by Fran Lock  in 




 Pamenar Press, 2021 



 Week Commencing 6th March 2022.

                                                                                    'Alone with 

 their songs and calls, birds could hear one another 

 at greater  distances.   They  began  to  chirp  more 

 softly, astonished by how loud they had become.'   


 by Laboni Islam 

 in Magma Poetry  

 81, Winter 2021 




 Week Commencing 27th February 2022.

 'Hold your ear 


 to the ground: you can hear 

 the voices caught in the earth, chattering, 


 and the rain typing on puddles 

 and the wind wiping them clean.'   

 'I Sit and Eavesdrop the Trees' 

 by Seán Hewitt 

 in The Poetry Review  

 Vol. 104: 2 Summer 2014 




 Week Commencing 20th February 2022.

 'I never liked Mr Carmichael, 

 who seemed to be made from 

 pale grey plasticine and stretched too much. 

 His fingers fluttered. He oozed words 

 and always stayed too long.' 

 'Through the Letterbox' 

 by Chrissy Banks 

 in The Rialto  

 no.97 Winter 2021 





 Week Commencing 13th February 2022.

 'Randy Rhoads and Kurt Cobain, 

 Patsy Cline and Ronnie Laine. 

 Poly Styrene, Teena Marie. 

 Timor mortis conturbat me.' 

(Translation: fear of death disturbs me)  

 'Not Fade Away' 

 by Michael Robbins 

 in The Poetry Review  

 Vol. 104:1 Spring 2014 

 Week Commencing 6th February 2022.

 'The months and the seasons just slip by. 

 My diary's blank on every page. 

 We follow rules; try to comply. 

 Now Rishi pays most of each wage.'  

 'Pandemic Poem' 

 by John Miles  

 in acumen Literary Journal  

 No. 100 May 2021 

 Week Commencing 30 January 2022

       'And Johnson says 

it hasn't happened, so 

it hasn't. Hospitals are as safe as houses 

and our graves are rose gardens.'  


 by Owen Lowery  

The Crash Wake  Carcanet 2021


Poem featured in Poetry Book Society

Winter Bulletin 2021, issue 271  

 Week Commencing 23 January 2022

'This flat, 

Too small to hold both you and your anxiety. 

One must go.' 


 by Hibaq Osman 

Poetry London Autumn 2021. No.100 

 Week Commencing 16 January 2022

'I can't help but learn again, the dirty truth,

hatred brings pleasure to multitudes.' 

 'Alas, My Compass' 

 by Stanley Moss 

The Poetry Review Vol. 111:4, Winter 2021 




Week Commencing 9 January 2022

'With tomahawk and knife we hacked 

the flyblown tatters of old meat, 

gagged at their carcass-smell, and threw

the scraps and watched the hungry eat.' 

 'To Another Housewife' 

 by Judith Wright 

101 Poems by 101 Women 

edited by Germaine Greer 

Faber and Faber 2001  edition 

 Week Commencing 2 January 2022

'I know not what to do: 

will the sound break,

rending the night 

with rift on rift of rose 

and scattered light? 

will the sound break at last 

as the wave hesitant, 

or will the whole night pass 

and I lie listening awake?' 

Fragment Thirty-Six 

 by H.D. 



Week Commencing 26 December, 2021

'The Greeks 

 thought of language as a veil 

 which protects us from the brightness of things. 

 I think poetry is a tear in that veil.'

 Alice Oswald in an interview 

 in Poetry Review Vol 103: 4 Winter 2013 

Week Commencing 19 December, 2021

'So tired, so tired, my heart and I ! 

  Though now none takes me on his arm 

  To fold me close and kiss me warm 

Till each quick breath end in a sigh 

  Of happy languor. Now, alone, 

  We lean upon this graveyard stone, 

Uncheered, unkissed, my heart and I.'

 See:  'My Heart and I' by Elizabeth Barrett Browning | Poetry Foundation


Week Commencing 12 December, 2021

'as now, we lie together,
after making love, quiet, touching along the length of our bodies,
familiar touch of the long-married,
and he appears—in his baseball pyjamas.'

'After Making Love We Hear Footsteps’ by Galway Kinnell

See: Poems |

Week Commencing 5 December, 2021

'And anyone who begins a sentence, "As a poet I...",

can't possibly be one. That's like calling yourself a saint.'

Michael Longley in interview.

Poetry Review Volume 103:3, Autumn 2013.

Week Commencing 28 November, 2021

'Love is the boy I broke up with years ago.

He lived on a grey estate in Upton Heights.

He bought me tins of cider and Marlboro Lights...' 


'Love' Hannah Lowe

The Kids Bloodaxe Books, 2021

Week Commencing 21 November, 2021

'I want to be friends with

everyone, and yet know I must have enemies too, if only in order to

maintain my friendships.'.' 


'Cities and Memories' Richard Gwyn

in Poetry Review 103:2 Summer 2013.

Week Commencing 14 November, 2021

'The clock's reached six and you know what that means

it means the end of the working day.

Not for us.

I place my hand on the radiator - and nothing:

nothing has changed.'.' 


'In Memory of My Lack of Feelings' Tara Bergin

in Poetry Review 103:2 Summer 2013.




Week Commencing 07 November, 2021

'Let the sky rain potatoes!' 


Falstaff in The Merry Wives of Windsor,

Act 5, Scene 5. William Shakespeare.

Week Commencing 31 October, 2021

'Absorbed was righteousness

As of the raging flood;

Satan in his excess

Sucked up the guiltless blood


'The Ballad which Anne Askew made and sang when she was in Newgate'

Anne Askew (1546) in

101 Poems by 101 Women Edited by Germaine Greer

Faber and Faber, 2001.

Week Commencing 24 October, 2021

'In this pain I was a charred donkey in the office chair - stupid and unusual'

'from God Complex' Rachael Allen in

The Poetry Review, Volume111:3 Autumn 2021

Week Commencing 17 October, 2021

'To walk away from poetry

Is poetry, too


'Różewicz: A Farewell' in

Invisible (Bilingual Edition) Jacek Gutorow, translated by Piotr Florczyk.

Week Commencing 10 October, 2021

'When the weather comes on, we'll feel the sweet relief and sorrow

at seeing all the days of snow that lie ahead.' 


' Ganfer', Roseanne Watt

in Poetry London, Summer 2021, Issue 99.

Ganfer: the apparition of a living person thought to be a portent of

that person's death...


Week Commencing 3 October 2021


'but i feel i will never be fluent in bureaucracy

so all i have is a tesco tortilla, spotify playlists


and my name in an english accent'


'My Name In An English Accent',  by Carmina Masoliver

in The Rialto, no 96.

Week Commencing 26 September 2021


'and the devil said no god isn't

the ice he's under the ice

but you have to be very very very hot to burn your way

through to him''


'Witch and the Devil',  in Witch by Rebecca Tamás

Penned in the Margins, 2019.

Week Commencing 19 September 2021


'I grab the fellow by his tail,

but he still escapes through the gap in my throat.''


'A Lizard by my Hospital Bed', Mir Mahfuz Ali in

Poetry Review Vol 102:4 Winter 2012. 


Week Commencing 12 September 2021


'And then it was all over,

the rain stopped,

the earth drank,

and the lawn steamed in the sun:

all of it tut-tutting.'


'The Storm (Coleshill 2013)', Neil Rollinson in Talking Dead 

Cape Poetry, 2015. 

Week Commencing 5 September 2021


'Better than Batman's robin

Rougher than Robin's bat

Faster than Spiderman's spider

Cooler than Catwoman's cat'


'Superman's Dog', Paul Cookson in Read Me (Collection of poems chosen by Gaby Morgan)

MacMillan Children's Books, 1998. 

Week Commencing 29 August 2021

'The Swan hisses, hisses. Even her neck is a twisted S.

She's resident, common, depressed. She was once a princess.'


'Guide to the Birds of  Britain and Europe', Clare Pollard in Changeling

Bloodaxe Books, 2011. 

Week Commencing 22 August 2021


'Ponder mulled it over

Wonder merely thought

Whilst Maybe didn't commit

And Stubborn wouldn't try.' 


'One Morning', by John Linney in Huddle of Poems

Amazon, 2013. 

Week Commencing 15 August 2021


'In my fantasy I am badly hurt but not so bad that I cannot text her, from the ambulance, "I've just been hit by a car." ' 


'Filter', by Luke Kennard in Truffle Hound

Verve Poetry Press, 2018. 

Week Commencing 8 August 2021


'and so we mark up bench or skin or book

with blade or blood or ink, for good; come look.' 


'Dymock vi', by Antony Dunn in Take This One To Bed

Valley Press, 2016. 

Week Commencing 1 August 2021


' so she brings down birds and tears from the sky

mourns them, transforms them, relearns how to fly.' 


'Sonnet for a twelve year old', by Sonya Smith in  every robin i never quite saw

tall-lighthouse, 2021. 

Week Commencing 25 July 2021


                                                   ' I just stopped running and

my soul grew calmer as the air grew cleaner.' 


'Brigaki Djilia: Sorrow Songs', by Karen Downs-Barton in  the North Issue 65 January 2021. 

Week Commencing 18 July 2021


'Given a month of outrageous privacy

what a mouthy collection of cells I am.' 


'Phallus Impudicus', Tiffany Atkinson in Poetry Review Volume 102:3, Autumn 2012. 

Week Commencing 11 July 2021

'I am lucky not to be absent from my mind like a baldhead.'


'King David Cooks Ital in Port Antonio',

by Fred D'Aguiar, in Letters to America , Carcanet, Manchester 2020 .

Week Commencing 4 July 2021

'It's coming home
It's coming home
It's coming
Football's coming home. '

'Three Lions' ​

Song composed by Ian Broudie; lyrics by David Baddiel and Frank Skinner.

(Indulge me, poetry and football are my two passions.)


Week Commencing 27 June 2021

'It's my turn Tagay!

When I get home my bag will burst

with Toblerone and Cadbury'

 'Tagay!  [Drinking Lambanog with my Filipino Colleagues]'

by Romalyn Ante, in Antiemetic for Homesickness,

Chatto & Windus, London, 2020.


Week Commencing 20 June 2021


the flamingos have returned to Bombay.

Look how this carpet of pink brightens

the day.'

 'Hope is the Thing' Tishani Doshi in Magma Poetry 79.

Week Commencing 13 June 2021

'Maybe your too-hasty breath

flustered the tea leaves'

 'Everything you told me came untrue' Geraldine Clarkson  in The Poetry Review  Vol 111: 1 Spring 2021.)

Week Commencing 6 June 2021

'They bleat and bleat and bleat

as if they were men. They blather nonsense,

and we believe them.'

 'This is an age of goats' Barbara Cumbers in Acumen: A Literary Journal January 2021.

Thank you to Barbara Cumbers for allowing the use of the whole final verse on request.

Week Commencing 30 May 2021

'i love it when cows eat the floor'

 'Hello' Crispin Best (the opening line) in Hello  Partus Press, Oxford, 2020. 




 Week Commencing 23 May 2021

 'and weed and warm and 

 warm and


 weed - ' 

 'Nudibranch'  by Jen Hadfield in The Stone Age  Picador Poetry, London, 2021. 

 Week Commencing 16 May 2021 

 'One day. One Day. One Day. One Day.' 

 'The One Day Plan' by Ramona Herdman 

 in The Rialto 95 

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