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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Between Dryden and Duffy: Another Collection



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Poems by Ann Drysdale


Ann Drysdale was born near Manchester, brought up in London, ran a small farm on the North York Moors and now lives in the South Wales Valleys. She has been a popular columnist for Yorkshire Post Newspapers and has written four volumes of memoirs. Her first poetry collection was shortlisted at Aldeburgh in 1995. She has won prizes in many major competitions, including the National and she holds the Dylan Thomas Prize for poetry in performance. This is her fourth collection from Peterloo. Here are more of the occasional pieces at which she excels, alongside suprising sequences on the reclamation of industrial wasteland and the disposal of the mortal remains of a beloved partner. Her poetry is both honest and accessible, though not always comfortable. Hers is the voice from the back of the lecture hall that always begins "Yes, but . . ."

"In The Turn of the Cucumber Peterloo has introduced us to someone who writes with skill and assurance, so that her poems immediately communicate and amuse, delight, move or appeal to deep emotion . . . she can also be truly and unboastfully funny." Brian Merrikin Hill, Outposts

"Ann Drysdale's poetry is a field in which wit, literacy, intelligence and humanity play a straight bat against the bodyline bowling of a well-observed mortality. In Gay Science she realigns her skittish humour in the function of defence and guns down bureaucracy, the trivial cruelties of petty tyrants and the senseless obscenities of sickness and death … Besides this, she is a stunning technician." Jeff Nuttall

"Ann Drysdale has a way of adding wit to form that turns the poem on the page from a squib to an arc-welder. This is the work of a real upsetter." Peter Finch

"(In Backwork) the stories are told with wit, protective irony, a lightness of touch and literacy: it's a wry, skilful and often tender record of a difficult life lived with courage and humour." Herbert Lomas, Ambit

"Ann Drysdale's third collection is a consummate piece of writing. This is a sensitive and intelligent book, which treats the everyday aches and surprises as importantly as they deserve to be, without ever seeking to transpose them into a universalizing metaphor for the times." Dr. J.D. Ballam, New British Poetry

"Ann Drysdale is one of the poets whose work has become part of my life." U.A. Fanthorpe, Acumen


Between Dryden and Duffy

That's where I look in every one of them –
Ottakar's, Hammick's, Hatchard's, Waterstone's.
Finding my books displayed in none of them
Do I descend to star-defeated moans?
Not I! With an assumed shortsighted stoop on,
I check the coast is clear to right and left.
Then, with a Waitrose bag held slightly open
As if in readiness for petty theft,
I make my hand into living axe
Which parts the volumes at a single stroke.
Then, with my fingers, I enlarge the cracks
And slip one in, like an unscripted joke.
Booksellers do not view this with delight;
It wrecks their paperwork. And serves them right.


Price 7.95 per copy (5.35 to Associate Members) post free
Front cover illustration: Beryl Cook. Dustbinmen, from Private View (John Murray Ltd., 1980) © Beryl Cook 1980 (reproduced by arrangement with the artist c/o Rogers, Coleridge & White Ltd.)
Publication: AUGUST 2005 – (96 pages) paperback edition