We’re thrilled two emerging young poets from the Hive network – Lauren Hollingsworth-Smith, 18 and Georgie Woodhead, 17 – will be giving support readings of work from their forthcoming debut pamphlets alongside the mighty Roger Robinson at Off the Shelf Festival of Words on 27th Oct.
Chosen by Decibel as one of 50 writers who have influenced the black-British writing canon over the past 50 years, Roger Robinson’s latest collection A Portable Paradise is the winner of the TS Elliot Poetry Prize 2019 and the RSL Ondaatje Prize 2020. These powerful poems express a fierce anger against injustice, but also convey the irrepressible sense that Robinson cannot help but love people for their humour, oddity and generosity of spirit.
His poems are deep, mature, moving and inventive – Bernadine Evaristo for New Statesman
Both Lauren and Georgie are New Poets Prize 2020 winners, whose debut pamphlets will be published by the Poetry Business in 2021. Among many other accolades, they are also both previous recipients of Foyle Year Poet of the Year and the Young Northern Writers Award. Georgie won the BBC Young Writer of the Year 2019 and Lauren will be Young Poet in Residence at Sheaf Poetry Festival later this year. Praise for their work:
“Hollingsworth–Smith’s poems are immediately and joyfully readable even at their darkest, and Ugly Bird is full of masterful juxtapositions, emotional swerves and perfect details. It’s such a skill to navigate these waters with such attentiveness; defiant, ecstatic powers of observation transfiguring the ordinary with wit and self-awareness.” Luke Kennard on Lauren’s collection, Ugly Bird
“Takeaway is a vivid and powerful collection. Expansive but precise lines and stanzas give Woodhead the space to explore the lives and scenes she depicts. So many of the images here are breathtaking and will really stay with me. Uncompromising in its depiction of brutalities without ever sacrificing the humanity and compassion of the poet’s vision.” – Luke Kennard on Georgie’s collection, Takeaway