Welcome to my website, where you can read about my publications to date, my interests and experiences, my hopes for the future and my ideas. I use the blog to post poetry reviews and short essays on individual poems and  collections. There is also a contacts page where you can email me. I’ve spent most of my working life as an English teacher at the Manchester Grammar School. Teaching has been a wonderfully stimulating and rewarding way of life, despite the inhibiting pressure of exams. Now I organise poetry discussion groups, tutor for the Poetry School, work on the committee of Poets & Players to promote performances of poetry and music in Manchester, write reviews, read more widely and write more of my own poetry. You can link to the Poets & Players website here to see photographs and videos of our events over the last few years and details of future performances. .


Free Saturday Poetry Discussions in the Manchester Buddhist Centre:
We have been very fortunate to be offered accomodation in the library at the Manchester Buddhist Centre at 16–20 Turner Street, Manchester M4 1DZ. These are free events and open to anyone who wants to come, but people attending will need to bring their own copies of the poems we discuss. Poets we’ve read and talked about include Alice Oswald, Andrew Marvell, Anne Stevenson, Basil Bunting, David Constantine, Derek Mahon, Edward Thomas, Edwin Morgan, Elizabeth Bishop, Ezra Pound, Fiona Sampson, Geoffrey Hill, George Seferis, Jane Draycott, Jo Shapcott, John Donne, Karen McCarthy Woolf, Linda France, Michael Longley, Philip Larkin, Rebecca Perry, Rilke, Robin Robertson, Ruth Padel, Seamus Heaney, Sylvia Plath, Ted Hughes, Tishani Doshi, Tomas Tranströmer, T S Eliot, W B Yeats, W S Merwin and Wallace Stevens.

Entry is free and open to all, and there’s no need to book, but if you feel able to make a donation of any size to the Buddhist Centre itself it will be much appreciated.

Saturday 14th September CANCELLED – discussion of Helen Dunmore deferred to Oct.


Saturday 12th October poems by Helen Dunmore, 10.30 am – 12.30 pm, Manchester Buddhist Centre library:

Helen Dunmore’s last individual collection collection was Inside the Wave (Bloodaxe Books, 2017) but I’d particularly recommend her posthumous Counting Backwards: Poems 1975 – 2017 (Bloodaxe Books, 2019) which does include Inside the Wave. Here are links to poems I’d particularly like to look at.
They’re all in Counting Backwards but only about half are in Inside the Wave. Could you all bring copies of these. If some of you have one or other of the books I’ve mentioned we can also read more widely.

Poems in Inside the Wave: “Counting Backwards”, “Hold Out Your Arms”, “A Bit of Love”, My Life’s Stem Was Cut.
Poems not in Inside the Wave: “Glad of These Times”, “Russian Doll”, “Wild Strawberries”, “City Lilacs”

Poems I couldn’t find online that I’d particularly like to look at include “Inside the Wave”, “Odysseus to Elpenor”, “Five Versions from Catullus” 1 and 3, “September Rain” and “The Malarkey”. Other people can make other suggestions!


Saturday 9th November