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Posted by Nigel Humphreys on January 8, 2012 at 10:50 AM Comments comments (820)


Kick it into touch since punctuation does little else but litter a poem with its pig tails...

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Posted by Nigel Humphreys on October 12, 2011 at 7:30 AM Comments comments (152)

CLARE COTTAGE (See photo album)

The reason I haven’t blogged for a number of weeks is simply that throughout this summer my writing has been focused solely on the new book. Its poetry is now in its 3rd incarnation and cooking nicely in my &#...

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Posted by Nigel Humphreys on May 31, 2011 at 12:04 PM Comments comments (135)

I have been asked to take part in an Anglo-Russian poetry event on the 15th June at The Poetry Place in London. I only know one Russian poet – Valentine Hripko, who writes mainly romantic poetry and once impressed me with a love poem dedicated to a certain (or uncertain) lady friend which involved vampires. I have never thought to ask him how well the poem was received or indeed whether the lady in question is still speaking to him. The only other Russian poet which comes readily to min...

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Posted by Nigel Humphreys on April 30, 2011 at 3:17 PM Comments comments (193)


As Stephen Fry once remarked: the definition of ‘countryside’ is the throttling of Piers Morgan. Well I live in the countryside but it’s the gauntlet London hurls down which wires my sensibilities. From time to time I need to be where it’s at. This month I will be in London Town again, a place I love in measured doses, reading my latest botch of something loosely called poetry in The Poetry Place, Covent Garden. The poster reads: ‘An Evening with the...

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Posted by Nigel Humphreys on March 22, 2011 at 1:46 PM Comments comments (472)


The final date for entries to a prestigious National Poetry Competition is poaching on my time. It’s nagging me because I can’t decide whether or no to have a go. I haven’t entered a poetry competition for some considerable time, though I have had some modest success in the past. I suspect I should start testing my luck again but is there enough point ? Do I have anything which may catch the judges’ eyes ? How can I judge, not being a judge? Is it worth a ...

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The Mystic Poet. Where does he go to?

Posted by Nigel Humphreys on January 21, 2011 at 9:33 AM Comments comments (70)


The Mystic Poet. What does he hope for? And what does he hope for us: to go

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Poetry Workshops: Do they work ? Who needs them ?

Posted by Nigel Humphreys on January 3, 2011 at 7:54 AM Comments comments (133)

Poetry Workshops: Do they work ? Who needs them ? Well . . . there are Workshops and there are Workshops, and then there are online Workshops which I will tread on later. In my local Workshop in Aberystwyth University Arts Centre up to ten of us meet every month on a Saturday afternoon for three hours which pass like one, perhaps not even one. We, that is The Word Distillery Poets, hold our Workshop in the Recording Studio not for any reason related to the room’s purpose but because it&...

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The Shortcomings of Free Verse

Posted by Nigel Humphreys on December 20, 2010 at 5:07 AM Comments comments (123)

Writing poetry the modern way, the free verse way, the no-pain-no-gainless way is not difficult. Writing poetry which merits its reading is. Because English is largely spoken in a natural iambic metre (allowing for regional accents) one could in practice jot down one’s thoughts on any given subject, apply line breaks where speech would naturally pause and voilà, a poem is written. Put another way:


one could in practice

jot down one’s thoughts


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Spending Christmas in the Cave

Posted by Nigel Humphreys on December 10, 2010 at 9:46 AM Comments comments (278)

Most of us will spend this Christmas Day in a cave staring at wall paintings with on eye on a turning spit or soup cauldron, rising from our reed beds from time to never-ending time to throw another piece of forest on the fire. We will watch our children skin bones and hurl them at the dogs or each other, honing their impatience to grow up. And our elders will chew over their lives on toothless gums and growl and return the fire’s spit. They w...

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The poetry of Dafydd ap Gwilym and Imaddadin Nesimi

Posted by Nigel Humphreys on November 28, 2010 at 6:14 AM Comments comments (292)

I was very privileged to be invited by the Gruntlers International Arts Group in conjunction with Azerbaijan House to compliment an evening’s tribute to the poet Imaddadin Nesimi by introducing the poetry of Dafydd ap Gwilym, a 14th century Welsh poet. The event took place in November 2010 at Pushkin House, Bloomsbury Square, which is the centre of Russian cultural activities in London before a large cosmopolitan audience graced by the Ambassador of Azerbaijan. Dafydd ap Gwilym was for ...

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