Creative Waste my latest book is launched and ready to buy.


After a fantastic launch at Southcart Books last Saturday I’m pleased to say my fourth book of poetry “Creative Waste,” is now released into the wild and available to buy. Southcart Books have some physical copies on their shelves or you can buy the book from Lulu publishing by clicking this link.

Here I am reading from my new book, picture by Paul Morris

I’d like to say a big thanks to fellow poets Paul Morris and Matt Humphries for their support and launching their excellent books alongside my own, also a massive debt of thanks is owed to Southcart Books for hosting the event.

You can buy Paul’s book by clicking here
and Matt’s book can be found by clicking here.

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A Poem for Breakfast at the Verve Poetry Ferstival


This year I had the pleasure of hosting a performance of poetry from the Birmingham Stanza Poetry group at the Verve Poetry Festival held at Waterstones. It was a great morning with a  lot of talented poets performing, here’s one of my contributions that I wrote specially for the event, Poetry Breakfast.

We’ve got for your pleasure…

Poetry hot from the grill
sizzling, steaming, spitting, sensations.
As you partake
fatty odes and greasy sonnets will
smear your lips, dribble
down your chin forming
a glorious mess, that you will
want to devour again
and again and again.

Poetry smoothies,
stories and dreams, whirling,
dancing and blending together.
Then served with love and
garnished with inspiration.

Poems as sharp and bitter as
the first cup of coffee of the day.
Refrains that cut through your senses
jolting you out of your seat
with their raw power.

Or poems as cool as milk straight
from the fridge. Pure, organic,
fresh words, that you gulp
down with relish,
smacking your lips.

I have heard that some people skip breakfast,
they don’t know what they are missing

After Poetry there should always come Beer


After poetry
there should always come beer.
Bitter hops match
the poet’s temperament,
slowly sipping dark beer
trying to quell darker thoughts.

Glasses are clunked down
contemplation commences.
Staring into froth,
wondering what will appear.

This poem is the spiritual successor to this little poem that at the time of writing I was unaware would grow into my first book of poetry.

My Bloody Valentine


There’s unanswered texts on a phone
A discarded present under the TV
A drained bottle of vodka
Bruises inflicted where the family can’t see.

There’s an engagement ring dropped on the carpet
Torn up wedding invites on the floor.
Spilled tablets around the sink
No answer to urgent knocks at the door.

There’s an unopened Valentine’s card on the doormat
Tear stains on Sunday best clothes.
A body sprawled on the floor
A pale lifeless hand on a red rose.

Diversifly


I’m pleased to announce I’ve got a poem in the new anthology from Nadia Kinglsey and Fair Acre Press entitled, “Diversifly” Here’s a taster for you…

It’s great to be featured with some great poets including Brian Bilston, Carrie Etter, Andrew McMillan, Sabrina Mahfouz, Kaite O’Reilly, Emma Purshouse, Amaal Said, James Sheard, and Dorothea Smartt and more. Alongside the poem are also some marvellous pictures and photos of birds that really bring the book to life.

To buy a copy click this link.

Ordered to the Front


Last year I was lucky enough to be involved in a project at the New Art Gallery in Walsall where a group of us wrote poems based on some of the pictures in their permanent collection. Here’s one of the poems I wrote based on the above painting by Frank Holl entitled “Ordered to the Front.”

The morning dispatch shook the soldiers like cannon fire
The regiment is ordered to the front it calmly said.
So despite the earliness of the hour
Sleep was quickly swept aside
As the well-oiled military machine slowly came to life.

Uniforms were quickly pulled from chests
Bearskins removed from cupboard tops.
Wives hush crying babies while quickly dressing them
Daughters wrap whatever food is in the pantry.
Before all join the slow column to the station.

As young soldiers trade quips
Where the clock slowly counts down to departure
Casual bravado hiding nerves.
A shaking hand adjusts a hastily dressed uniform
Or tightens a rifle strap.
Unsure what is worse, the order to the front
Or a surprise inspection from a grizzled sergeant.

The older Men clasp a hand with their silent wife
While holding their rifle tight
Unwilling to let go of either.
Children instinctively know to be quiet.
Remembering their friends, who also saw their fathers off
But never saw them return.

Creative Waste – an interview with Richard Archer


I’ve had a very interesting chat with Paul Morris about my forthcoming book “Creative Waste,” and more. Read all about it at the link below.

https://wp.me/p77qIV-bD

Hopeful Dreams and Damaged Nightmares – a chat with Paul Morris


The cover to Paul’s new book

Walsall poet and storyteller Paul Morris is set to release his new collection of poetry and stories “Hopeful Dreams and Damaged Nightmares” on Saturday 24th February at Southcart books. The event is part of a triple book launch including my own book and one from Matt Humphries, with that in mind I thought it might be fun to sit down with Paul and get some more details about what we can expect from his new book and more.

Q. Hi Paul, tell me about your new book, how did you come up with the title and concept?

A. Hopeful Dreams and Damaged Nightmares, is my debut book. It’s a collection of the poetry and the very short stories I’ve written between late 2016 and mid 2017. It’s quite emotionally charged, dealing with feelings and mental health issues, but, I hope that’s a good thing.
The title relates to the fact that releasing a book was a ‘hopeful dream’ whilst representing the ‘damaged nightmares’ that I experience. I also felt the title sounded like a name for an album chosen by a rock band. I think it’s cool.

Q. What can readers expect to find inside your collection?

A. Emotive poetry, focussing on the negativity of life and mental health issues, interspersed with words of love and passion. The short stories are in the same vein. I write emotionally, about my feelings and am not afraid to convey them. I hope the emotional imagery transmits through.

Q. If you had to pick a favourite piece from the book, what would you choose and why?

A. The piece, ‘In My Arms’. It’s a poem written about and to my Wife. Contextually, it focusses on the pain I once felt and the love I now cherish.

“I am whole when I am with you,
for your light drowns out the darkness,
forcing my static heart to beat loudly,
I evolve in a love so true.”

Q. Can you give readers a glimpse inside your head of your writing process, how do you put your poems together, what inspires you to write and how long does it take you to put a typical poem together?

A. My mind is quite a complex matrix of emotional wiring, I’m not sure readers would welcome a journey there lol. I write my poetry from the heart. It’s either fuelled by dark emotions, relating to my negative proclivities or, words of love. I’m not afraid to speak out about my mental health, so, will share the landscape of my world in verse. It’s a great form of therapy and the key source of my inspiration. Depending on my mood, I can create a piece within minutes, or, it takes days to complete. Sometimes, my poetry ideas, present themselves as inspiration for stories.

Q. After the launch what are your next creative plans?

A. 2018 is going to be a busy year for me, which I’m delighted about.
Currently, I’m compiling and publishing the charity poetry anthology ‘Within Darkness & Light – Volume 2’. I’m also editing and publishing the book entitled ‘Us Too’, which is a collection of real life / horror stories, dealing with experiences of abuse. This is quite a challenge but, it’s worth it, because it’s to raise awareness of abuse and the impact it has on both women, men and children. Proceeds from the sale of both books will be donated to charity.
I’m also currently writing two dark fiction / horror novellas. I might finish one of them this year, maybe.
Poetry is constant for me and I’m always writing. I’ll never stop.

Q6. Where can folks find you online?
Pretty much everywhere lol. Start at https://paulbmorrismedia.wordpress.com and work onwards from there, if interested.

Thank you

Editors note – the great cover for Paul’s book was done by Andy lee from Darkslide Photography.