Spring 2017: Issue 86


The Spring 2017 issue of Poetry London brings together significant selections of new work from Roddy Lumsden, Rebecca Perry, Sean O’Brien, Rachael Allen and A K Blakemore. There is an emphasis on translation, including the Austrian poet Ann Cotten, Jacques Tornay translated by Annie Freud, and Ye Lijun translated by Fiona Sze-Lorrain. The issue also offers new poems from established names such as Penelope Shuttle and Matthew Sweeney, alongside Hugh Foley, Lucy Mercer and Ian Cartland

In the Reviews and Features section, Martyn Crucefix explores the idea of presence and its opposite in the work of Yves Bonnefoy, Li Po, Shakespeare and Daoist philosophy. Peter Robinson welcomes Don Share’s monumental edition of Basil Bunting’s poems while Chris McCabe interviews Tom Pickard the Newcastle poet who contributed so much to the revival of Bunting’s work fifty years ago. Luke Kennard writes on Anne Carson, Claire Trévien on Sharon Olds and others, and a range of reviewers respond to the work of poets as critics and theorists of the art.

This issue also announces Poetry London’s 2017 competition.

You can read a selection of poems and features from the issue here.

SKU: N/A Category:


Editorial by Tim Dooley, Reviews Editor
Free running 


Roddy Lumsden
‘I Wanna Testify’ / Michael Donaghy
Kissing Edwin Morgan
Ghost Giraffes / Nico
Bella #19
Against Fucking
Ann Cotten
True sentences are no help.
Girls’ souls, immortal, as ties
Open the door
A K Blakemore
the book of the dead
Jacques Tornay
Whatever Defeats Us Least
Essential Incognito
Sean O’Brien
Hammersmith: Canto VI
Valerie Josephs
The Dog Owners of Hampstead
Right of Way
Rebecca Perry
beaches (2)
beaches (9)
beaches (11)
beaches (12)
Rachael Allen
Many Bird Roast
Beef Cubes
Holly Pester
Read this nice
Garbage Ring
Ye Lijun
In Pingyuan Village
Personal Life
Hugh Foley
Lucy Mercer
Single Mothers Study Metaphysics
Penelope Shuttle
Kew Gardens, 1913
Ian Cartland
My Etiquette
Tim Liardet
To a Sliver of Sicilian- American Sky
‘A Suitcase with A. Einstein Written Inside’
The Woman Among the Nerudas
The Apparel Addresses the Spirit
John Challis
North Cascades
in my heart
Matthew Sweeney
The Hidden Oasis

Reviews & Features

Essay: A Straining Eye Catches No Glimps
Martyn Crucefix makes something of nothing

Interview: No Need For Permission
Tom Pickard talks to Chris McCabe about poetry and political activism

We’ll Enamel him!
Peter Robinson on a canonical Bunting

The Carson Shuffle
Luke Kennard finds Anne Carson shaking things up

Things Fall Apart
Abigail Parry on Selima Hill, Mark Waldron and Julian Stannard observing incipient collapse

And in the Mirror I Saw
Claire Trévien on Sharon Olds, Melissa Lee-Houghton and Amos Weisz opening difficult territory

Attention to Truth
Clare Pollard on first collections by Jos Smith, Caroline Smith and Charlotte Newman

Multi-User Dimensions
WN Herbert on the function of place in the work of John Redmond, Isobel Dixon and Bernard O’Donoghue by Jen Calleja, William Wooten, Erica McAlpine and Amali Rodrigo

Was There an Explosion at the Cherub Factory?
Alison Brackenbury on a weighty exploration of faith

High-handed Guidance
Michael Hulse finds poetic handbooks by Craig Raine and Glyn Maxwell disappointing

What’s Your Theory?
Todd Swift on the seminal polemics of Veronica Forrest-Thomson

Plural Readings
Tim Dooley finds Stephen Burt’s new work a box of delights

The Hatred of Lerner
Caleb Klaces on his struggle with Ben Lerner’s poetics