Last night I went to a fabulous poetry journal launch for South Bank Poetry issue 13 at the Poetry Cafe in Covent Garden. South Bank Poetry is a gem of a literary journal, based in South London and edited by Peter Ebsworth and Katherine Lockton. With every issue, they organise a poetry reading launch night, with the featured poets sharing their poems. Each issue is devoted to the concept of the ‘urban’ or ‘city’, and I was quite inspired to see the variety of approaches to this concept in the pages of the journal.
I have a new poem in the pages of the current issue of South Bank Poetry (issue 13) – ‘Hock’ – based on lists of fruit, which had to be disposed of during the plagues in Samuel Pepy’s London (the lists are real! I spent quite a wonderful afternoon researching them in the Senate House library).
So I received my copy in the post on Tuesday morning and could indulge in some morning tea reading of my fellow poets’ work before the launch evening. I love getting contributor copies in the post – there’s nothing quite the same as receiving post, especially post that comes in the form of a poetry journal with your own poem in it. It always seems so shiny and new, even when the poem was written months ago (as is usually the case).
In terms of availability, many of the independent bookstores in London stock South Bank Poetry; most importantly, my sweet wee local – Herne Hill Books – is a regular stockist. They sit on the top of the counter by the cash register, and I have long admired them.
All in all, it was a lovely, summery, stimulating evening filled with poetry and a beautiful little journal that has been produced. I feel very honoured to have ‘Hock’ within its pages.