John Greening - Tuesday 12th October

To supplement our regular fourth-Tuesday readings we will be holding a number of special events in 2010 and 2011, the first of which is on Tuesday 12th October with a reading from the wonderful John Greening.

'a significant presence in contemporary English poetry' (Acumen)


Author of eleven collections, John Greening has won numerous awards for his poetry, including the Bridport and TLS Centenary Prizes and the Cholmondeley Award. He has written poetry inspired by experiences including VSO work in Aswan, Upper Egypt, teaching Vietnamese Boat People in Scotland and pursuing a Society of Authors award to research his father's wartime years in Iceland. His writing extends to plays, short stories, criticism and even song cycles: 'Falls' premiered by the Dunedin Consort at the Wigmore Hall and has since been on tour in Scotland and Canada. He will be reading from his new selected 'Hunts: Poems 1979-2009'.

'Hunts is not about reverential approaches but passionate assays, broad and deep searches, in which the elusive quarry is less important than the chase. And there is patience at work here too, an often meticulous craft worthy of painstaking archaeology.' (Horizon Review)


He has recently produced studies of Yeats, the War Poets, Ted Hughes, Thomas Hardy and Edward Thomas, and is editing an anthology of poems about classical composers. He is a regular reviewer for the TLS and London Magazine and has written for other journals such as PN Review, Poetry Wales, and The Hudson Review (USA). His poems have appeared in the TLS, The Independent, The Observer, The Spectator and his work has featured several times on Radio Three; he appeared on a BBC Wales television documentary about Dylan Thomas’s friendship with Vernon Watkins.

John Greening's Website

Tuesday 12th October, The Punter, John Greening, Open Mic floor spots. Doors 7.30pm Readings 8pm.

A HUNTINGDONSHIRE ELEGY

Caught in the space between Christmas and New Year, idly
wondering about Huntingdonshire churches: who uses them now?
Are we even closer to the fulfilling of Larkin’s prophecy?

When the man in the four-by-four attempted to winch off
the lightning conductor from Little Staughton spire for the copper,
was that the beginning of the final act? Iconoclasts move

beyond stained glass and altar screens: they strike
at Michelangelo’s very finger and bring down the roof. We snub
the churches around us and they ignore us back; though, on my bike

before Christmas, I reached Little Gidding and found the chapel
unlocked: not a soul, the community gone, a page
of signatures and Eliot on the wall; a bell, no steeple –

nothing for thieves or lightning. But something as shocking
struck me as I put on my cycle clips again and rode
home to wrap up your present – that book by Richard Dawkins.

John Greening