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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Original Cover Price:



Poems by William Scammell


From review notices of A Second Life (Peterloo Poets 1982):

‘William Scammell writes an urbane, witty, extremely self-aware poetry in which the pressures and delights of the everyday are ironized in forms which sometimes have an almost lapidary polish.’
Neil Corcoran / Times Literary Supplement

‘Verbal energy and a strong sense of form make A Second Life a collection that inspires confidence.’
Brian Jones / London Magazine

‘A Sense of provincial loyalties pervades William Scammell’s very rewarding second book; his poems belong to their subjects which are lovingly and carefully rendered. He is at his best when writing in couplets.’
Dick Davis / The Listener

‘. . . in Scammell we have a potential and deadly satirist . . .’
Anne Stevenson / Arts North

‘. . . there is a reason to assume that if Scammell continues to extend his range he will become a very good poet indeed.’
John Lucas / New Statesman


Talking Emily Blues

Don’t want coffee, don’t want tea
Don’t want the nineteenth century

Don’t want Father, don’t want snow
Don’t want Blackwood’s, don’t want Crow

Don’t want breasts, don’t want hair
red tongue, carpet on the stair

Don’t want pupils, worsteds, keys
doctors. Don’t want night and days

Don’t want postcards, don’t want moors
Don’t want your excuse for tears

Don’t want curates dressed in graves
Don’t want space in Jesus Saves

Don’t want clouds on my breastbone
Here’s my needle. Dog, sit down


Price 4.50 per copy post free
Cover illustration: ‘Bacchus and Ariadne’, marble relief by Tullio Lombardo (c. 1455-1532), courtesy of Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna. (Photograph by Photo Meyer, Vienna).
Publication: JANUARY 1985 (83 pages laminated paperback)