28th March 2019

Philip Gross
Lesley Saunders

25th April 2019

Rachael Clyne
Janet Sutherland

30th May 2019

James Davey
Jinny Fisher

27th June 2019

Martina Evans
Aoife Mannix
Richard Douglas Pennant
Stuart Silver
Helen Moore

25th July 2019

Alison Brackenbury
Shirley Wright

29th August 2019

Michelle Diaz
Jonathan Edwards

26th September 2019

Sue Boyle
Maggie Harris

31st October 2019

Martin Figura
Helen Ivory

28th November 2019

Claire Crowther
Carrie Etter

Philip Gross

Guest Poet: Philip Gross

Philip Gross has published some twenty collections of poetry, most recently A Bright Acoustic (Bloodaxe, 2017). He received a Cholmondeley Award in 2017. The Water Table won the T.S.Eliot Prize 2009, and Love Songs of Carbon the Roland Mathias Award (Wales Book of The Year) 2016. He is a keen collaborator across artforms, eg with artist Valerie Coffin Price on A Fold In The River (Seren, 2015). A new science-based collection for young people, Dark Sky Park came from Otter-Barry Books in July 2018. www.philipgross.co.uk

Lesley Saunders

Guest Poet: Lesley Saunders

Lesley Saunders is a poet whose work has won several awards, including the inaugural Manchester Poetry Prize. Her recent book Angels on Horseback, was one of the winners of the Poetry Business Pamphlet awards in 2017. Her latest book is Nominy-Dominy from Two Rivers Press. She too enjoys collaborations with other poets, artists and dancers. lesley574@btinternet.com

28th March 2019, The Swan Hotel, Bradford on Avon, Wiltshire BA15 1LN

7:30pm - 10:00pm.

Come and join us at Bradford on Avon's popular reading series, Words & Ears. All performers and listeners welcome: open mic slots always available. £4 on the door.
At this event, we welcome Philip Gross and Lesley Saunders, with their collaborative work A Part of the Main. The book is the outcome of what began as an initial email conversation between them during the political upheavals that characterized 2016-2017. The subsequent dialogue was conducted over three or four months in seriously playful verses passed backwards and forwards between the two poets, more and more rapidly as they entrusted themselves to the improvisatory process. The sequence moves, in swerves and echoes, beyond the immediate occasion into themes of migration, exile, loss of love or home or language, even life itself. It translates personal feelings into a more communal language and, in a time of simplistic soundbites, gives the pressing questions about individual and national identity more breathing-space, more head-room.
A cast of traditional characters appear, disappear, re-appear - Miranda, Caliban, Odysseus, Dido, Beowulf and Grendel, a Celtic saint or two, King Lud and Gogmagog - who are enlisted to help make some sense of who and where we are now as a nation, a people whose roots are everywhere in the world, certainly not just in 'this skew-whiff island'. And then there are also 'the eyeless, / limbless, sunk, without rank, /names or papers', the ones who - whether now or in the historic past - have risked everything to find a place of safety, and who deserve to be a central part of this island's story: a story in which the sea is a constant and overwhelming presence. In the words of a reviewer, 'this poetic voyage feels irresistible, urgent and unrelenting in the best sense.'
**For the open mic, you are invited to bring a poem (of your own or by someone else) on the theme of belonging, exile, etc, to echo and explore Lesley and Philip's voyage...