Poetry @ the Print Room
Readings from Mona Arshi, Luke Kennard and Helen Mort.
Mona Arshi began writing poetry in 2008, after working as a human rights lawyer for Liberty, on high profile judicial review cases. She has spoken of how poetry for her is ‘the polar opposite of writing in a rule-bound legal discourse. Writing poetry involves forging space for creative accidents to emerge. Small Hands, her debut collection from Liverpool University Press, presents a world slung between open-ended imaginative possibility and the glorious, sensual, vulnerable detail of the body. The poems explore romantic relationships, family relationships, the domestic space, and Arshi’s Punjabi Sikh heritage. At the collection’s heart is a series of deeply affecting poems about the death of her brother, Deepak, to whom the book is dedicated. Small Hands won the Forward Prize for Best First Collection in 2015. Arshi grew up and lives in West London.
‘Redolent with the peculiar intimacies of family, and brimming with carefully-controlled and surprising imagery, Arshi gives us a book to return to—not to revise our intellectual understanding, but to slip into her skin.’ Huffington Post
Luke Kennard has published five collections of poetry. He won an Eric Gregory Award in 2005 for his first collection, The Solex Brothers, and The Harbour Beyond the Movie was shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best Collection in 2007. His first novel The Transition will be published by Fourth Estate in 2017.
In 2014 Luke was selected by the Poetry Book Society as one of the Next Generation Poets, and is 2016 Canal Laureate for the Canal & River Trust and Poetry Society. He will read from his latest poetry collection, Cain, which was published by Penned in the Margins in June 2016.
‘A truly 21st century writer, unafraid of barriers and conventions’ Ian McMillan, The Times
Helen Mort will read from her second collection No Map Could Show Them which is inspired by her two greatest passions: mountaineering and running and it is women climbers that she celebrates in this collection, with odes to those who tramped the peaks in skirts and petticoats in the 19th Century and tributes to the mountains that inspired them.
The collection also contains the haunting and unforgettable sequence ‘Black Rocks’, dedicated to Alison Hargreaves the British climber who died on K2 in 1995.
Helen won the Foyle Young Poets Award five times, won an Eric Gregory Award in 2007 and in 2008 The Manchester Young Writer Prize. Division Street (2013) was shortlisted for the TS Eliot Prize and the Costa Poetry Award and won the Fenton Aldeburgh First Collection Prize. In 2014 she was named as a ‘Next Generation Poet’ by the Poetry Book Society .
‘Helen Mort is among the brightest stars in the sparkling new constellation of young British poets’ Carol Ann Duffy