Remember, Poetry24 welcomes submissions for both its main page and the In Brief... section. Poems inspired by news stories from the past will also be considered for publication in the occasional 'That Was the MUSE That Was' series.

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Sunday Editorial

A curious aspect of Poetry24 is how quiet our readers on. We know you're out there - we check our stats! - but you rarely leave comments on the poems. Maybe the poems speak for themselves? But we'd love to know what you think of the poems, a favourite line or your views on the issues they cover. Please tell us why you don't comment in the comments box below!

Meanwhile, it's difficult to generalise about a week that has covered everything from mass murder to Martin Hodges' pleasingly-alliterative Chasing Cheese.

But the main theme was a sense of loss:- Patricia McMahon's harrowing Violation listed Ratko Mladic's appalling legacy in Srebrenica before felling the reader with its devasting closing line: '...we still live with, our hearts shaved raw'; and Rachel North's powerful sonnet His Father's Died voiced Tom Daley's rage against his own loss. If only, as Geoffrey Datson puts it in his thought-provoking 'Pet Rock's Lament': 'none of it is true.'

It was almost a relief to have an attack of killer vegetables (not a line I'd expected to write in a poetry editorial) in Juliet Wilson's Death and the Cucumber. But the week finished with a lingering sadness, in Stephen Smith's evocative An Irish Emigrant Returned, which tells the story of a generation and doesn't seem topical until a long-suppressed anger surfaces in its closing lines.

Finally, thanks to for this but don't be shy to comment here too!



  1. I suggest you conjure up a discussion topic in the form of a question at the end of each poem so that readers have something to answer. Poetry is very difficult to comment on for non-poetry writers. Hell, it's even difficult for poets sometimes, because poems are so personal, and a reader might see something in a poem that is totally contrary to the writer's intentions. It's also quite difficult for some to grasp the deeper symbolisms and/or imagery. I advise you offer prompts :o)

  2. It's the same with Bolts of Silk, lots of readers (I've got the stats to prove it!) but very few comments. i agree with Jessica's comments, though having said that, a poem on Crafty Green poet can get a lot of comments...

  3. Thanks to you both for your comments! I know what you mean about commenting on poems. Personally I like it when people see things in my poems that I haven't seen myself - part of what I like about poetry is what the reader finds between the lines! But I'm still reluctant to comment on other people's.

    I like the idea of a question or prompt... will see what Martin thinks.

  4. Maybe it is shyness - or lack of confidence in opinion. Perhaps the editors should start the discussion with a comment after the poems, for example why you chose it?

  5. Personally, Blogger has disimproved greatly since they had that trouble about a month ago. Its now quite time-consuming to comment (he said, desperately trying to come up with an excuse for his own laziness)

  6. Isabel - It is certainly something we're considering! The original plan was to maintain editorial impartiality by not commenting ourselves, but maybe that needs reviewing.

    Peter - Great word 'disimproved!' (although I didn't even notice it changing!)

  7. I’ve only just discovered Poetry 24 through following Martin on Square Sunshine, and enjoying his witty and erudite comments on Age of Uncertainty. Now I know you are here I will do my best to read and comment....if I ever have anything worthwhile to say that is.