The Spring cards set off from our house today and hopefully you’ll find some in a waiting room or rest home near you very soon.
I collect poems over a long period of time so when I requested permission from a publisher for the loan of their poet’s cat poem for the spring edition I’d forgotten I’d made the same request to another poet a couple of months before! So two cat poems in the same edition this time folks.
Introducing our Spring 2015 poets
Kathleen Aguero is a winner of the 2012 Firman Houghton Award from the New England Poetry Club and a recipient of grants from the Massachusetts Cultural Council and the Elgin-Cox Foundation. She teaches the low-residency M.F.A. program in Creative Writing at Pine Manor College and in Changing Lives through Literature, an alternative sentencing program. In addition to After That (Tiger Bark Press), Kathleen Aguero’s poetry collections include Investigations: The Mystery of the Girl Sleuth(Cervena Barva Press), Daughter Of(Cedar Hill Books), The Real Weather (Hanging Loose), and Thirsty Day (Alice James Books). She has also co-edited three volumes of multi-cultural literature for the University of Georgia Press (A Gift of Tongues, An Ear to the Ground, and Daily Fare) and is consulting poetry editor of Solstice Literary Magazine.
Anne Curran lives in Hamilton, New Zealand. The diverse fabric of Hamilton provides abundant stimulus for writing poetry. She has been practising Japanese verse forms mostly haiku and tanka for about four years now. She has some personal favourites, verses that really form a special moment in time and place. She is looking forward to learning more about writing short verse forms as time allows.
Graham Denton is a writer and anthologist of poetry for children, based in East Yorkshire, England. His poems feature in numerous publications both in the UK and abroad, from Read Me and Laugh (Macmillan) and Let’s Recycle Grandad (A & C Black) to Dinosaur Poems (Scholastic) and Michael Rosen’s A to Z (Puffin). As an anthologist, Graham’s compilations include Orange Silver Sausage: A Collection of Poems Without Rhymes (Walker Books), My Cat is in Love with The Goldfish (A & C Black) and When Granny Won Olympic Gold (A & C Black). In 2013, with James Carter, he co-wrote Grrr!: Dinos, Dragons and Other Beastie Poems (Macmillan). Most recently, Graham celebrated the release of the first full collection of his own funny verses, My Rhino Plays The Xylophone, published by A & C Black, of which Kenn Nesbitt, the United States Children’s Poet Laureate, said: “I haven’t had this much fun with a poetry collection since… well, maybe ever!” Graham has also twice been short listed for the UK’s CLPE Poetry Award.
Ursula Kroeber Le Guin was born in 1929 in Berkeley, and lives in Portland, Oregon. As of 2013, she has published twenty-one novels, eleven volumes of short stories, four collections of essays, twelve books for children, six volumes of poetry and four of translation, and has received many honours and awards including Hugo, Nebula, National Book Award, PEN-Malamud.
Annie Lighthart started writing after her first visit to an Oregon old-growth forest. Since those first strange days, she earned an MFA in Poetry and published her poetry collection, Iron String. Her poetry has been read by Garrison Keillor on The Writer’s Almanac and chosen by Naomi Shihab Nye to be placed in Ireland’s Galway University Hospitals as part of their Poems for Patience project. Annie loves being a traveling teacher and has taught writing workshops at Boston College, as a poet in the schools, and with many community groups, working with writers from ages 6 to 89. She lives in a small green corner of Portland, Oregon.
Bill Sewell was born in Athens and spent much of his early life in Southern Europe. He finished his education in New Zealand, studying German at the University of Auckland and later obtaining a law degree. Bill was Burns Fellow at Otago University in 1981 and 1982.
Bill Siddells – “Raised in Dunedin, gaining post-graduate Library and Business qualifications, and working in Information/Library Operations/Management, Project Management, General Management and Animal Care in Dunedin, London and Wellington 1970’s-2010’s, Bill relocated to Alexandra, Central Otago two years ago.
An animal lover, keen amateur photographer,and frequent hill walker, he has been an ‘occasional poet’ over the last decade when matters of the heart and/or nature/land/light come together in ways which simultaneously move him both emotionally and in language.
Usually he writes a first draft ‘in the field’ as the mood and words present themselves in his mind, for he knows how elusive and passing both can be! He finds such immediate drafting (as with capturing a photographic image) is a sure sign of great in-the-moment happiness, when nothing else matters; when there’s an eye-to-heart connection that bypasses the intellect and ego (to paraphrase G K Chesterton)”
André Surridge is a poet and playwright who lives in Hamilton. His work has been published and/or performed in Britain, the US, Canada, Croatia, Australia and NZ. His writing awards include the Shell Playwrights Award NZ 1984 and the Janice M. Bostok International Haiku Award 2012.