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.

Discover more from this issue…



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

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