1. The latest edition of Magma is very Street.

    Written by admin — May 18, 2015 13:56

    Thanks to everyone who came along and supported the launch of Magma 61 at the London Review Bookshop on Friday (15th May). We heard from a great mix of poets including Simon Kew, Geraldine Clarkson, John Wheway and Miranda Peake and our first guest reader, Christine Webb.

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    Christine Webb reading ‘Wasting Time by Looking’

    We also had an impromptu turn by Gram Joel Davies who read his poem ‘World Away’ on the vagaries of gap years. And to round off the evening Simon Barraclough, read from his latest collection ‘Sunspots’, including his wonderful poem ‘Brightness’, a dark and troubled response to Byron’s ‘Darkness’.

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    Simon Barraclough dazzled us with poems from ‘Sunspots’

    The theme for this edition, ‘The Street’, was a strong creative springboard and generated over two thousand submissions.  We hope you enjoy the fifty or so poems we finally chose in addition to the five poems by our selected poet, Amali Rodrigo.

    Thanks again to London Review Bookshop for providing their beautiful venue and to everyone who took part.

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    Geraldine Clarkson performs ‘On the Street’

  2. Join us for a street party and the launch of Magma 61

    Written by admin at May 12, 2015 15:24

    We’re launching the latest Magma magazine, M61, this Friday (15th May) at the London Review Bookshop (14, Bury Place, WC1A 2JL). The theme of Magma 61 is ‘The Street’.

    There will be readings from our guest poets Simon Barraclough and Christine Webb as well as a selection of other poets featured in the edition. Doors open at 6.30pm, readings begin at 7pm.

  3. Blog Review 42: Lisa Kelly Reviews ‘Imagined Sons’ by Carrie Etter

    Written by Lisa Kelly at March 30, 2015 16:28

    Carrie Etter’s Imagined Sons doesn’t have a jacket that would make me buy the book. It quotes Bernard O’Donoghue: “These are poems of the utmost importance,” while artist Paula Rego’s cover image of St Christina with a swaddled baby on her back is admittedly beautiful, but miserable. Feeling like a recalcitrant pupil having to engage with ‘heavy’ poems I probably won’t enjoy is not an ideal starting point. Flipping to the back cover, however, I am reassured by the smiling face of Etter, a widely-published American expatriate lecturing in creative writing at Bath Spa University.

    Coupling with my mixed emotions on what to expect, the collection itself deals with mixed emotions, as a birthmother meets up with the son she gave away as a teenager in a series of imagined scenarios. It includes anticipated heart-breaking moments, which never become syrupy and – surprisingly – deadpan humour.

  4. Magma Competition celebratory evening at Keats House

    Written by Wes Brown at March 16, 2015 12:46

    Why not join us for a celebratory evening with Magma Competition judge and special guest Jo Shapcott at Keats House on Friday March 27th, 7-8.30pm, when the winners of the 2014/15 Magma Competition will read their prizewinning poems.

    Venue: Nightingale Room, 10 Keats Grove, Hampstead, London NW3 2RR (nearest station: Hampstead Heath Overground / ten minutes walk from Hampstead tube station)

  5. Blog Review 41: Katherine Stansfield Reviews ‘The Midlands’ by Tony Williams

    Written by Katherine Stansfield at March 6, 2015 10:13

    Tony Williams’ second collection, The Midlands, begins on a rather gloomy note, with the first line proclaiming, ‘The Midlands are crying’. But the detail of what provokes the despair makes it convincing, heartfelt and all the more pervasive:

    They cry in the carparks of aerodromes, deep in the cellars         of buildings that used to be bookshops. They cry over fences, at steam-engine rallies.         They cry over dogs and bags of granulated sugar.

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