Peterloo Poets

Poetry Publishers 1972 - 2009

We are sorry to announce the death of John Whitworth 11.12.1945 to 20.04.19
Many of you will know John was a well loved and respected member of the Peterloo Poets “family” in its day and was a staunch Peterloo Poets supporter over the years.

The funeral will take place at Barham Crematorium Chapel at 12:40pm on Wednesday 22nd May
Barham Crematorium (CT4 6QU) is 9.6 miles (a 20 minute drive) from Canterbury, using the A2 to Dover.
No flowers, please, but any donations would be appreciated, in John’s name, to: Pilgrim’s Hospice, 56 London Road, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 8JA or online at www.pilgrimshospices.org

 Following his editorship of the poetry magazine Phoenix (1958 - 1975), Harry Chambers founded Peterloo Poets in Manchester in 1972.
Peterloo’s first two full collections published in 1976 were Elma Mitchell’s The Poor Man in the Flesh and Edmond Leo Wright’s The Horwich Hennets. Peterloo Poets went on to publish 240 volumes of poetry.

To view the full Peterloo Poets Catalogue
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MOLE, John

This is the Blackbird



Original Cover Price:



Poems by John Mole


This is the Blackbird
is John Mole’s choice of poems for children taken from several of the collections he has published since the Signal Award winning Boo to a Goose and The Mad Parrot’s Countdown, both still available from Peterloo.

A review of one of those later volumes said: ‘Here now is another set of luminous and well-judged poems, never a phrase too many, never one short, demonstrating that there is infinitely more to the good poem than the number of words lying on the page. John Mole loves language, uses it with subtlety and skill, and is quite unafraid of making demands on his young audience. The effect, quietly engineered, is always arresting, often suprising. The pictures they paint, the sentiments they express, seem to dissolve and reassemble before one’s eyes as if by some process of magic. There is hope and fun, as well as sadness, in this most civilized collection: the work of a true poet.’
Charles Causley, The Times Educational Supplement

This is the Blackbird contains a number of new poems, and ends with a sequence written to celebrate the recent opening of the Evelina Children’s Hospital on London’s South Bank.

A review of Boo to a Goose said: ‘Here we have real people in real relationships, doing ordinary things, but seen by a poet in a way that leaves room for your own imagination. The poems go on living after you’ve closed the book . . .  the book I’d most like if I was trapped on a desert island.’
Brian Morse, co-judge, Signal Award


First Love

Everyone says that my girlfriend Gemma
Is big for her age
And that what we apparently feel for each other
Is only a stage.

But what, when they grumble, I have to agree
Is as plain as day
Is that Gemma tends to throw her big weight about
Every which way.

Once when I showed her a shed in our garden
She climbed on the roof
And then when I wasn’t expecting leapt down
                                   like an Amazon

All of my breath was completely knocked out of me,
All of my puff,
But just to have Gemma landing on top of me
Was enough.


Price 7.95 per copy post free
Cover illustration: Mary Norman
Publication: October 2007 (99 pages laminated paperback)