New Poetry from the North: Autumn 2021

It’s a vibrant time for pamphlets with several innovative, creative and bold presses showcasing work by exciting poets in our region.

A recent highlight from Blueprint Books is Weighing of the Heart by Degna Stone – an honest, intimate and dextrous body of poems about the life-threatening illness of a loved one that is full of memorable and affecting detail.

In From a Borrowed Land (Poetry Business), Shash Trevett explores the legacy of loss and trauma of Tamil people during the Sri Lankan Civil War. She combines compassion and a fluid command of language to navigate personal and historical narratives.

Also from The Poetry Business are two pamphlets by exceptionally talented poets with experience of New Writing North’s Young Writers’ programme. The poems in Lauren Hollingsworth-Smith’s Ugly Bird are full of tenderness, humour and precise observation. Takeaway by Georgie Woodhead is made up of vivid and original poems that are frequently centred on mealtimes when both presences and absences can be intensified.

Vicky Morris’ debut pamphlet, If All This Never Happened, is available from Southword Editions and was a winner in the Fool For Poetry Chapbook competition. Her warm and humane poems are a joy to read.

I warmly recommend Rachel Bower’s new collection, These Mothers of Gods, which is recently published by Manchester-based Fly on the Wall Press. These powerful and adept poems recover the lived experiences of women previously marginalised through official histories.

On the Way to Jerusalem Farm (Carcanet) is the latest collection by Yorkshire-based Carola Luther and explores the intricate complexities of living in a damaged world.

Lastly, I’d like to highlight the relaunched debut collection of York-based Peter Burgham, Bird’s Eye View – these frequently humorous poems delve into social commentary and regional identity with a light and skilled touch.


If you’re a poet based in the north or a publisher with a new collection or pamphlet by a northern poet and would like to be considered for future versions of this round-up, please get in touch with [email protected].

You can view the featured books on our Bookshop affiliate list. All Bookshop links above are affiliate links.