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WHAT MAKES POETS TICK?


Anne Stevenson

Anne Stevenson

Anne Stevenson was born in England of American parents in 1933. She was brought up in New England and in Ann Arbor, Michigan, graduating in 1954 with a Major Hopwood Award for poetry from the University of Michigan. Her many books of poems include Reversals (Wesleyan, 1970), Correspondences (Wesleyan, 1974) The Fiction-Makers (Oxford University Press, 1985) and Granny Scarecrow (Bloodaxe Books, 2000). Poems 1955–2005, published by Bloodaxe Books, collects fifty years of her poetry written during a full and much travelled life in America, England, Scotland and Wales. She is also the author of Bitter Fame, A Life of Syliva Plath (Penguin, 1990) and recently of Five Looks at Elizabeth Bishop, (Bloodaxe, 2006). In 2002 she was the inaugural recipient of the Northern Rock Writers Award (£60,000). In 2003, John Lucas edited a 70th birthday Festschrift in her honour, The Way You Say The World. Her latest collection of poems, Stone Milk, will appear from Bloodaxe Books in the autumn of 2007.

Ruth Fainlight

Ruth Fainlight

Ruth Fainlight was born in New York City in 1931, but has lived in England since the age of fifteen. She is married to the writer Alan Sillitoe and their son is the photographer David Sillitoe. She has published thirteen collections of poems in England and the USA, as well as two volumes of short stories, translations from Portuguese and Spanish, and has written libretti for the Royal Opera House and Channel 4 TV . Books of her poems have appeared in Portuguese, French, Spanish, Italian and Romanian translation. She received the Hawthornden and Cholmondeley Awards in 1994. Her 1997 collection, Sugar-Paper Blue, was shortlisted for the 1998 Whitbread Award. Her latest collection of poems is Moon Wheels, 2006, and her translation of Sophocles` Theban Plays, done in collaboration with Robert Littman, will be published in 2008.

Edward Lucie-Smith

Edward Lucie-Smith

Edward Lucie-Smith was born in 1933 at Kingston, Jamaica. He moved to Britain in 1946, and was educated at King's School, Canterbury and Merton College, Oxford, where he read History. He is an internationally known art critic and historian, who is also a published poet (member of the Académie de Poésie Européenne, winner of the John Llewellyn Rhys Memorial Prize), an anthologist and a practicing photographer, who has exhibited his work in Britain, Belgium, Spain, Italy, Finland, Estonia, Sweden, Russia, Greece, Macedonia, Slovenia, Israel, Malaysia, Brazil, Canada and the United States. He has published more than a hundred books in all, chiefly but not exclusively about contemporary art. He is generally regarded as the most prolific and the most widely published writer on art. A number of his art books, among them Movements in Art since 1945 , Visual Arts of the 20th Century, A Dictionary of Art Terms and Art Today are used as standard texts throughout the world.

Lyn Lifshin

Lyn Lifshin

Lyn Lifshin’s Another Woman Who Looks Like Me was just published by Black Sparrow at David Godine, October 2006. It has been selected for the 2007 Paterson Award for Literary Excellence for previous finalists of the Paterson Poetry Prize. Also out in 2006 is her prize winning book about the famous, short lived beautiful race horse, Ruffian: The Licorice Daughter: My Year With Ruffian from Texas Review Press. Other of Lifshin’s recent prizewinning books include Before It’s Light published winter 1999-2000 by Black Sparrow press, following their publication of Cold Comfort in 1997. Other recently published books and chap books include : In Mirrors from Presa Press and Upstate: An Unfinished Story from Foot Hills and The Daughter I Don’t Have from Plan B Press. Other new books include When A Cat Dies, Another Woman=S Story, Barbie Poems, She Was Last Seen Treading Water and Mad Girl Poems, A New Film About A Woman In Love With The Dead, came from March Street Press in 2003.

A.D. Winans

A.D. Winans

A. D. Winans is a native San Francisco poet, writer and photographer. He is a graduate of San Francisco State University. He returned home from Panama in February 1958 to become part of the Beat and post-Beat era. He is the author of over 45 books and chapbooks of poetry and prose. Major books include The Holy Grail: The Charles Bukowski Second Coming Revolution, North Beach Revisited, and This Land Is Not My Land. Most recent books include The Wrong Side Of Town and The World's Last Rodeo. In 2007 Presa Press will be publishing a book of his Selected Poems. Watch for coming details.


 Vicki Feaver

Vicki Feaver

Vicki Feaver (b. 1943) grew up in Nottingham "in a house of quarrelling women", an emotional inheritance which finds later expression in her poetry. She studied Music at Durham University and English University College, London and worked as a lecturer in English and Creative Writing at University College, Chichester, becoming Emeritus Professor. Her collections have been highly praised, the second, The Handless Maiden, including both the Arvon International Poetry Competition finalist 'Lily Pond', and 'Judith', winner of the Forward Poetry Prize for Best Single Poem. The same collection was also given a Heinemann Prize and shortlisted for the Forward Prize and she has received a Hawthornden Fellowship and a Cholmondeley Award. She currently lives in South Lanarkshire.

Michael Rosen

Michael Rosen

Michael Rosen was born in Harrow, Middlesex in 1946 and was brought up in north-west London. His life has been taken up with a mixture of broadcasting, TV work, writing, lecturing, teaching, running workshops and performing his one-man show (a hilarious mix of stand-up comedy, story-telling and poetry) in schools, libraries and theatres all over the country. Some of his best known books are 'We're Going On A Bear Hunt' with Helen Oxenbury (an adaptation of an American Summer Camp song); 'Don't Put Mustard in the Custard' with Quentin Blake (poetry); 'Quick Let's Get Out of Here' with Quentin Blake (poetry); 'Sad Book' with Quentin Blake (a picture book); 'Carrying the Elephant' (prose poems). He is the regular presenter of BBC Radio 4's 'Word of Mouth' and appears regularly on arts programmes on television. including presenting 'Michael Rosen's Treasury of Children's Literature' for Channel Five.

Maxine Chernoff

Maxine Chernoff

Maxine Chernoff is a professor and Chair of the Creative Writing program at San Francisco State University. With Paul Hoover, she edits the long-running literary journal New American Writing. She is the author of six books of fiction and eight books of poetry, most recently Among the Names (Apogee Press, 2005). Her collection of stories, Signs of Devotion, was a NYT Notable Book of 1993. Both her novel American Heaven and her book of short stories, Some of Her Friends That Year, were finalists for the Bay Area Book Reviewers Award. Her novel A Boy in Winter is currently in production in Canada by an independent film company. With Paul Hoover, she has translated The Selected Poems of Friedrich Hölderlin, which will be published by Omnidawn Press in 2008.

Matthew Sweeney

Matthew Sweeney

Most recent collection of poems Black Moon (Cape, 2007), and prior to that, Sanctuary (Cape, 2004), Selected Poems (Cape, 2002) and several earlier books of poetry. His work for children includes Up on the Roof: New and Selected Poems (Faber & Faber, 2001) and a novel, Fox (Bloomsbury, 2002). He is co-author, with John Hartley Williams of a chapbook, Writing Poetry (Hodder & Stoughton, 1997 - updated in 2002 and 2008) and has edited or co-edited a number of poetry anthologies including, The New Faber Book of Children’s Verse (Faber & Faber, 2001) and, with Jo Shapcott, Emergency Kit (Faber & Faber, 1996). He is currently working on a book of short stories. Bilingual poetry selections are coming out in Holland - Het Ijshotel (Atlas, Amsterdam) - and Germany - Rosa Milch, (Berlin Verlag) - in Spring 2008. Born in Donegal in 1952, he has recently been resident in Berlin, Graz and Timisoara.

Dorianne Laux

Dorianne Laux

A finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, Dorianne Laux’s fourth book of poems, Facts about the Moon (W.W. Norton), is the recipient of the Oregon Book Award. Laux is author of three collections of poetry from BOA Editions, Awake (1990) introduced by Philip Levine, reprinted this year by Eastern Washington University Press, What We Carry (1994) and Smoke (2000). Red Dragonfly Press will release Superman: The Chapbook, later this year. Co-author of The Poet's Companion, she’s the recipient of two Best American Poetry Prizes, a Best American Erotic Poems Prize, a Pushcart Prize, two fellowships from The National Endowment for the Arts and a Guggenheim Fellowship. Her work has appeared in the Best of the American Poetry Review, The Norton Anthology of Contemporary Poetry, and she’s a frequent contributor to Orion and Ms. Magazine as well as numberous on-line publcations. In 1994 she moved to Eugene where she’s now a Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Oregon.

 Des Dillon

Des Dillon

Internationally acclaimed award winning writer. Poet, short story writer, novelist, dramatist. TV scriptwriter and screen writer for stage and radio. Published in USA, Russia, Sweden, in Catalan, French and Spanish. His novel Me and Ma Gal was included on the list of The 100 Greatest Ever Scottish Books. His most recent publication is the short story collection They Scream When You Kill Them. (Luath Press)




 Ellen Bass

Ellen Bass

Ellen Bass's fourth book of poems, The Human Line, was be published by Copper Canyon Press in June 2007. She co-edited (with Florence Howe) the groundbreaking No More Masks! An Anthology of Poems by Women (Doubleday, 1973), has published several volumes of poetry, including Mules of Love (BOA, 2002) which won the Lambda Literary Award. She was awarded the Elliston Book Award for Poetry from the University of Cincinnati, Nimrod/Hardman's Pablo Neruda Prize, The Missouri Review's Larry Levis Award, the Greensboro Poetry Prize, the New Letters Poetry Prize, the Chautauqua Poetry Prize, a Pushcart Prize, and a Fellowship from the California Arts Council. Her non-fiction books include Free Your Mind: The Book for Gay, Lesbian and Bisexual Youth (HarperCollins 1996), I Never Told Anyone: Writings by Women Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse (HarperCollins, 1983) and The Courage to Heal: A Guide for Women Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse (Harper Collins 1988), which has sold over a million copies and has been translated into ten languages.

 Rody Gorman

Rody Gorman

Rody Gorman was born in Dublin, Ireland in 1960 and now lives in the Isle of Skye, Scotland. He has published the poetry collections Fax and Other Poems (Polygon, Edinburgh, 1996); Cùis-Ghaoil (diehard, Edinburgh, 1999); Bealach Garbh (Coiscéim, Dublin, 1999); Air a' Charbad fo Thalamh/On the Underground (Polygon, 2000); Naomhóga na Laoi (Coiscéim, 2003); Tóithín ag Tláithínteacht (Lapwing, 2004); An Duilleog agus an Crotal (Coiscéim, 2004); Flora from Lusitania (Lapwing, 2005) Zonda? Khamsin? Sharaav? Camanchaca? (Leabhraichean Beaga, Inverness, 2006) and; Eadar Fiaradh is Balbh na h-Oidhche (diehard, Callander, 2007) in English, Irish and Scottish Gaelic. His selected poems in Irish and Scottish Gaelic, Chernilo, were published by Coiscéim in 2006.

 Annie Finch

Annie Finch

Annie Finch's books of poetry are Calendars (Tupelo, 2003); The Encyclopedia of Scotland (Salt, 2004); and Eve (Story Line, 1997). She is the translator of the poems of Louise Labé (University of Chicago Press, 2006) and has also published several books on poetics, including The Body of Poetry: (University Of Michigan Press, 2005); An Exaltation Of Forms: Contemporary Poets Celebrate The Diversity OfTheir Art (University Of Michigan Press, 2004); and After New Formalism (Story Line, 1999). She has also collaborated on dance, opera, song, and visual art projects. She is Professor of English and Director of the Stonecoast Brief-Residency MFA in Creative Writing at the University of Southern Maine. Her website and blog are at www.anniefinch.com.

 Robert Sheppard

Robert Sheppard

Robert Sheppard was born in 1955 and educated at the University of East Anglia. Between 1989 and 2000 he worked on the network of texts called Twentieth Century Blues. Previous excerpts from the project include Empty Diaries (1998) and The Lores (2003) and a ‘Complete’ edition is published by Salt (2007). A recent volume includes Hymns to the God in which my Typewriter Believes (2006), and a long sequence September 12 is in preparation. His work is anthologised in Other and the Oxford Anthology of British and Irish Poetry, in which he is described as ‘at the forefront of (the) movement sometimes called linguistically innovative poetry’. He is Professor of Poetry and Poetics at Edge Hill University in Lancashire in the UK, and has also published criticism and poetics, including The Poetry of Saying (2005) and Iain Sinclair (2007). He edits Pages as a blogzine and lives in Liverpool.

 Sheila E Murphy

Sheila E Murphy

Sheila E. Murphy has been actively writing, publishing, and performing poetry since her move to Arizona in the mid-1970s. Trained in flute performance, she has devoted all of her adult life to writing. She combines a career in the business/organizational world with dedicated and full attention to poetry and word art/visual poetry. She has published numerous collections and chapbooks, including 'Sad Isn't The Color Of The Dream', 'Green Tea With Ginger' and 'The Indelible Occasion'.



 Martin Stannard

Martin Stannard

Martin Stannard was born in Reading, and now lives in Nottingham. His poems and reviews have been published in numerous magazines and journals. He has been married twice, and divorced twice, and is evidently not very good at the marriage business; he has two sons from his first marriage. He was founding editor of the poetry magazine joe soap’s canoe, and now runs the website Exultations & Difficulties. In the summer of 2005 he went to China to teach English to Chinese university students because he wanted an adventure, and he had one; after two years there, he is now back in the UK, and is to be the Royal Literary Fund Fellow at Nottingham Trent University from October 2007.


 K.V. Skene

K.V. Skene

K.V. Skene (Kathleen Vera) is a long-term expat Canadian. She was born in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, grew up and attended school in Lachine, Quebec. After graduation she obtained employment (clerical) simultaneously attending Sir George Williams (nights) and then The Canadian School of Commercial Art (nights) with a career in commercial art in mind, but real life intervened. While moving from suburban Beaconsfield, Quebec to a Toronto high rise to a small farm in Colborne, Ontario to a houseboat Victoria BC she studied (and taught) Hatha Yoga, explored meditation techniques, researched ancient philosophies and modern religions. Later she began taking her (occasional) poetry seriously . In 1993 she left Canada. for a ‘temporary’ move to England where, except for a year’s ‘extended vacation’ in Ireland she still resides. She is married, has two children and one grandchild.

 Lawrence Sail

Lawrence Sail

Lawrence Sail was born in London in 1942 and brought up in Exeter. He studied French and German at Oxford University, then taught for some years in Kenya, before returning to teach in the UK. He is now a freelance writer. He has published nine poetry collections, the most recent being Eye Baby (2006); The World Returning (2002), Building into Air (1995), and Out of Land: New and Selected Poems (1992), and has edited a number of anthologies, including The New Exeter Book of Riddles (1999) with Kevin Crossley-Holland, and First and Always: Poems for Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital (1988). He also edited South-West Review from 1980 to 1985.


 Donald Gardner

Donald Gardner

Donald Gardner was born in London in 1938. His first collection of poetry, ‘Peace Feelers’, was published in 1969 and it was followed by ‘For the Flames’ (Fulcrum, 1973). In the 1970s he was a member of a street theatre collective, the London Living Theatre, and in the 1980s, after moving to Holland, he made some one-person staged productions of his poetry. He has spent long periods abroad, in Italy (1960-1963), New York (1964-1967) and Holland since 1979. He has always been interested in the public presentation of poetry, since the 1960s when he read in New York with Ginsberg, Corso and others, and he continues to read his poetry widely, in Amsterdam, New York and the UK. Recent collections include ‘How to Get the Most out of Your Jet Lag’ (Ye Olde Font Shoppe, 2001) and the Glittering Sea (Hearing Eye, 2006). He has translated the work of poets such as Pavese, Pasolini, Ernesto Cardenal and Octavio Paz. His book of translations of Remco Campert’s poetry appeared this year (Arc, 2007).

 Mindy Kronenberg

Mindy Kronenberg

Mindy Kronenberg is an award-winning writer with over 350 poems, essays, and reviews published in the U.S. and abroad. Her work has recently appeared in The Southampton Review, Primal Sanities!, a Celebration of Walt Whitman in Poems and Essays, and The Light of City and Sea, an anthology of Long Island poetry. Ms. Kronenberg is the author of Dismantling the Playground, a chapbook of poetry, and editor of Book/Mark Quarterly Review, a journal of reviews of small, independent, and university press books. She teaches writing and literature at SUNY Empire State College, and conducts community programs in libraries and schools through Poets & Writers and BOCES.


 Tom Leonard

Tom Leonard

Tom Leonard was born in 1944 in Glasgow. Besides his collections of poetry for the page he has performed sound poetry in festivals in Britain and abroad. He has also written critical essays, political satire, a biography of James Thomson (1834-82), and compiled the anthology of forgotten West of Scotland nineteenth century poetry Radical Renfrew. One of Leonard’s abiding concerns has been the political, hierarchical nature of language in Britain and his poetry is famous for its representation of Glaswegian working-class speech. He has been writer-in-residence at Glasgow and Strathclyde universities and Bell College of Technology. His collection Intimate Voices: Writing 1965-1983 shared the Scottish Book of the Year Award in 1984, but was at the same time banned from Scottish Central Region school libraries. It has recently been reprinted by Etruscan. In 1991 he published an analysis of the Gulf War along with a series of satirical monologues, On the Mass Bombing of Iraq and Kuwait.

 Geoffrey Godbert

Geoffrey Godbert

Geoffrey Godbert was born in Manchester in 1937. He started writing poetry when he was 14 and since then has published 14 collections of poetry. His Collected Poems was published in 2007 by Poetry Monthly Press. In addition, Geoffrey has co-edited two Faber poetry anthologies and has edited an anthology of modern prose poems. His memoirs have also been published along with several editions of essays. Geoffrey's poems have been published in anthologies and he has read his poems all over the UK. His poems have been translated into Albanian and Russian. Harold Pinter says of his work: "Geoffrey will certainly end up with the poets in heaven."


 Joy Leftow

Joy Leftow

Born in and still living in Washington Heights, Joy Leftow is a double alumna from Columbia University and has her 2nd Masters from CCNY in Creative Writing. Joy’s style is – in- your- face- reality. A review of Spot of Bleach in the East Coast Aquarian Rocker says Joy “reflects on relationships with more sarcasm than you can find in a whole season of Seinfeld.” Joy writes and gets published when she is not busy doing cat rescues and meeting her muse. Leftow’s short story, False Pride, was published in the anthology, Lipstick Diaries, by Augustus Publishing, released this spring, 2007 and is available at B&N. For more info: http://joyleftow.googlepages.com.


 Doug Draime

Doug Draime

Doug Draime has been a presence in the 'underground' and small press since the late 1960's, becoming part of the notorious Los Angeles poetry scene of the latter 20th century. Most recent books are "Eyestone" and "Next Exit: One" (w/ Bill Shute) from Kendra Steiner Editions, "Spiders And Madmen" (Scintillating Publications, 2006), and "Unoccupied Zone" (Pitchfork Press, 2004). Forthcoming from Kendra Steiner Editions "Next:Exit: Three" (w/ Misti Rainwater-Lites) and "Dancing On The Skids" coming out from Tainted Coffee Press in late 2007. His poems, short stories and plays continue to appear in a wide range of magazines, newspapers, broadsides, and online journals. Awarded PEN grants in 1987 and 1991. He started writing as a teenager in Vincennes, Indiana and moved to Chicago where he worked at numerous things, including warehouse laborer and hotel room clerk, while he attended Chicago University (philosophy and creative writing) and the Fine Arts Academy (drama and theatre).

 R.D. Armstrong

R.D. Armstrong

Raindog aka R.D. Armstrong began his most recent incarnation as a poet in the early 90s. He has a number of chapbooks and has been published in over 100 poetry magazines and anthologies, including most recently, the Louisiana Review; Flash!Point #5; The Bukowski Review #1 & 2; and Unwound Magazine; and anthologies including, An Eye For An Eye And The World Goes Blind – Poets on 9-11; Drinking With Bukowski; Incidental Buildings & Accidental Beauty; and Raising the Roof. His work has appeared online at Poetic Diversity; Poetz; Poetry Super Highway; SPAM and NYCityLit, to name but a few. His last book was RoadKill, a 15,000 + word long poem published by 12 Gauge Press, detailing a road trip to Washington State, undertaken just prior to 9-11-01. It is in its second printing.

 Jan Oskar Hansen

Jan Oskar Hansen

Jan Oskar Hansen did not provide a biography, as such, but he did say this about himself: "There isn’t anything remotely interesting about me. I have few friends and drink wine at home. I knew an actor once, Elphick; he played a fireman with damaged lungs, nice man, died from drink I think. I seem to remember I sent you some stuff, where I was born and so on. I’m old enough to vaguely remember the war of 1940-45, sitting in a basement while bombers flew overhead (British) and sensing the adults fear. The rest has been plain sailing, from orphanage to the merchant navy. Now I live in the upper Algarve (Portugal) and am grumpily happy".


 Carolyn Finlay

Carolyn Finlay

Carolyn Finlay grew up in New Guinea and Australia, moving to England in 1969 for what was meant to be one year, but became 35; shifting gradually westwards from London and doing bits of this and that, mostly starting things and not quite finishing them. Late in life she decided to knuckle down and get some qualifications, initially training as a therapist in 2000. When her son started university, it sparked off her desire to get some more education of her own. By 2005 she felt quite pleased to have completed her BA in French and Linguistics, and have just started an MA in Medieval Studies. She has published two collections of poetry, "Giveaway" (Stride, 1997) and "Foreigner" (Wandering Dog, 2001).


 Catherine Chandler

Catherine Chandler

Catherine Chandler was born in New York City and raised in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. Educated at Wilkes and McGill Universities, she currently lectures in Spanish at the Department of Translation Studies, McGill University. A Pushcart Prize nominee, Catherine’s poems and translations have been published or are forthcoming in numerous journals, magazines, anthologies and websites in the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia,, such as The Barefoot Muse, The Book of Hopes and Dreams, Loch Raven Review, The HyperTexts, Blue Unicorn, Candelabrum, Umbrella, Möbius, The Lyric, Modern Haiku, First Things, Iambs and Trochees, Texas Poetry Journal, Harp-Strings Poetry Journal, Raintown Review, Mezzo Cammin, Lives, Lucid Rhythms, and others.

 Norman Jope

Norman Jope

Norman Jope was born in Plymouth, where he lives again after lengthy spells in other locations (most recently Swindon, Bristol and Budapest). His collection For The Wedding-Guest was published by (Stride, 1996) and his poetry has appeared in over fifty magazines, webzines and anthologies, including: "The Stumbling Dance" (Stride, 1994), "Sentence" (Firewheel Editions, 2005), "In The Presence Of Sharks" (Phlebas, 2006) and "Into The Further Reaches" (PS Avalon, 2007). A book-length sequence, "The Book of Bells and Candles", is due out shortly from Waterloo Press, and he is currently editing a Critical Companion to the work of Richard Burns for Salt.


 Hilary Mellon

Hilary Mellon

Hilary Mellon was born in Norwich in 1949 and spent 21 years working in science labs. Since then, after studying for an OU degree, she has worked in adult education, a bookshop, a library, behind a bar, and on the streets (as a Market Researcher). For many years she has taught 20th Century Poetry, Creative Writing and Life Skills to a range of adults, including the residents of Norwich Prison. More recently she has been working with teenagers on Entry 2 Employment programmes at a local Training Centre. She has been involved in the poetry scene (both locally and nationally) for a great many years, has given readings at a variety of venues all over the country and has judged several poetry competitions. She is one of the organisers of the Norwich Poetry Group. Her work has been published in over 70 different magazines and anthologies as well as in 4 pamphlet books: Spaces Inbetween, Fire Raiser, Disturbing the Night and Alarmed by Dawn. Her first full-length collection, Night with an Old Raincoat, was published by Headlock. She is currently putting together a new collection.







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