For National Poetry Day 2021 – a poem & 2 books

It’s National Poetry Day here in the UK so here’s All, the opening poem in my collection The Things We Thought Were Beautiful, and a couple of poetry book recommendations.


And here’s the two fantastic independently published poetry books that I want to flag up, which both mean a great deal to me. With excerpts from my 5⭐ reviews of each, they are:

US poet Sherry Lazarus Ross’s Seeds of the Pomegranate:

“I loved ‘Touch Me’, in which the poet asks ‘How many times can the earth / withstand this ritual. The pain of being frozen / then thawed out.’ But as ever throughout this collection of dark and light, spring is the wake-up call coming ‘soft as the turn of earthworms.’ Just one more of the many stunning images in this wonderful book, already a favourite on my shelf.”


Scottish poet Barbara Lennox’s The Ghost in the Machine:

“It deals with themes of the natural world, myths, science and the human condition. There is a sense of living at a mid-point, a delicate balance of ‘trying to return, but never quite arriving.’ The poet has a beautiful turn of phrase, using alliterative language that reminds me of Seamus Heaney: ‘From every slope there rings/ a rush and purl of streams/ pocked by peat-dark tarns’.”

The best poetry has an almost magical power to transform our relationship with ourselves and the natural world. Please check out these collections by clicking the links below, where you can also read my full reviews. And just… read as many poems as you can today!

Let me know in the comments your favourite poems…

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