Menna Elfyn is an award-winning poet and playwright who has published 14 collections of poetry, children’s novels, libretti for UK and US composers, plays for radio and television in Welsh and English. Her bilingual volume Murmur, Bloodaxe Books (2012) was a Poetry Book Society Recommended Translation. Her work has been translated into twenty languages. Her latest bilingual collection Bondo, Bloodaxe Books appeared in 2017 and a literary memoir Cennad (Emissary) in 2018. Cwsg, a part-fiction, part-memoir book on sleep appeared in 2019 for which she was awarded a Creative Wales Award. Her poetry collection, Tosturi (Mercy) will be published in 2022 by Gwasg Barddas. She is Professor Emeritus of Poetry at University of Wales, Trinity Saint David and President of Wales PEN Cymru.
The Poetry of Place
This course welcomes new and experienced poets keen to explore how our sense of place, perhaps never so acute at this time of climate crisis, inspires and informs our writing – its diction, imagery, rhythms, and shape on the page. Drawing on the natural environment surrounding Tŷ Newydd – garden and woodland, river, and coastline… we’ll look at how poetry can address global concerns through personal experience and through close observation of the natural world – a leaf’s arid delta, a branch’s love song to the planet…
We’ll also look at how memory can reinvent a place when we write about it, how the past haunts its presence. Through shared reading of work by other poets, daily writing workshops and individual tutorials, we’ll consider the craft and mystery of poetry alongside the creative choices we make between formal and free verse (including the prose poem), full- and half-rhyme, traditional metre, and intuitive rhythm.
Warmly open to English and Welsh speakers alike, this course will help you to move forward in your poetry within a friendly, supportive atmosphere.
Paul Henry is a poet and songwriter. Since receiving an Eric Gregory Award he’s published seven collections of poetry, all with Seren. The Brittle Sea: New & Selected Poems appeared in India as The Black Guitar. His work has been widely anthologised and translated. A popular writing tutor, Paul has worked with many poets who’ve progressed to publication. Described by U.A. Fanthorpe as “a poet’s poet”, he’s read and performed his work at festivals in Europe, the USA and Asia. He’s also presented programmes for BBC Radio Wales, Radio 3 and Radio 4. His recent collections include Boy Running, Ingrid’s Husband and The Glass Aisle. Paul has guest-edited Poetry Wales and been a featured poet on BBC Radio 4’s Poetry Please. His new collection, As If To Sing, is published by Seren in 2022.
Tiffany Atkinson is a poet and literary critic. Her poems are published widely in journals and anthologies, and her first collection, Kink and Particle (Seren, 2006) was a Poetry Book Society Recommendation, and winner of the Jerwood Aldeburgh First Collection Prize. Her second, Catulla et al (Bloodaxe, 2011) was shortlisted for Wales Book of the Year, and her third collection, So Many Moving Parts (Bloodaxe 2014) was a Poetry Book Society Recommendation and winner of the Roland Mathias Poetry Prize. Her most recent, Lumen (Bloodaxe, 2021) was a Poetry Book Society recommendation and winner of the Medicine Unboxed Creative Prize. In 2022 she received the Cholmondeley Award for Poetry. Tiffany is a Professor of Poetry at the University of East Anglia, where she is currently working on a collection of essays about poetry and embarrassment.