poetry

The Cotton Grass Appreciation Society

The Cotton Grass Appreciation Society is now available to pre-order from our newly stocked shop. The collection is officially released on the 1 August 2019 and all July orders will be despatched to ensure that your receive your copy of the day of release.

To celebrate the news we have also created some very special offers for our Maytree Folk. Take a look in side our shop for more details.

News has been released today about tour project so look out for items in the media and help spread the word by liking and sharing our socials.

Thank you for your support.

 

The Cotton Grass Appreciation Society – Press Release

Poets from across the country, including the Marsden born Poet Laureate, Simon Armitage, have joined together in a new society created by Marsden based publisher, Maytree Press. The Cotton Grass Appreciation Society is the title of a new poetry anthology featuring a wonderful collection of poems inspired by the South Pennine landscape, it’s towns and communities.

In his forward to the collection, poet and editor, David Coldwell poses the question as to whether The Cotton Grass Appreciation Society really does exist, which gives a hint to the playfulness of the title but also serves as an entertaining insight into the creative process and how the collection came together.

Maytree Press was formed by husband and wife team, David and Amanda Coldwell earlier this year and is already gaining a national reputation for producing beautiful poetry pamphlets featuring unique art covers.

The Cotton Grass Appreciation Society will be the publisher’s first anthology and profits from the sale of the book will go towards helping the work of Marsden Walkers are Welcome – a voluntary organisation that helps to look after and promote the sixty miles of footpaths around the village of Marsden as well as organising an annual walking festival each September.

Edited by David Coldwell and Mark Kelly and featuring poets from across the country including Simon Armitage, Sarah Watkinson, Alison Lock, Gaia Holmes, the collection serves as both a celebration of this unique area and a lament to the embattled countryside as the climate crisis continues.

Amanda says, ‘Whether you’re a poetry reader, a keen hill walker or simply looking for a unique gift as a reminder of this beautiful area, we believe there’s something for everyone in this truly wonderful collection. We’re very proud, not only to be able to bring so many amazing poets together but hopefully to be able to raise some vital funds for a local charity. Enabling people to access the countryside offers so many health and wellbeing benefits and in turn brings people to the village allowing businesses to thrive. We’re delighted as a local company to play our part.’

The Cotton Grass Appreciation Society will be available from the 1 August 2019 to order direct from the publisher’s website or from all good bookshops. The collection will be officially launched with readings from several of the featured poets during the Marsden Walking Festival in September.

 

The Hill Village

How long I’ve stood here looking
at this hillside, how it’s carved into blocks,
split for weavers’ cottages and pubs,
lintels and mullions, sawn into slabs,
remnant rocks made good for walls,
crushed into cobble to lay down rough tracks

Seeing how life takes on the colour of stone,
cheeks rose-ruddy, eyes soft in brown and blue,
the hard and dusty work that builds homes,
doorways rusted by nail, hammer-marked in white,
clarty with boot-muck and time’s graft,
braced for storms that lash yon windows still

How in finger-deep cracks of crumbling mortar
a shadow history is mapped in millimetres,
the etched cradles of damp yards hold stories
of all who’ve passed, a mill’s closure below,
a wildflower meadow, a birth, a rush of waters
rounding out the contours, a hill becoming a hill

 

M W Bewick

9781916038141

 

poetry

A Wish for Summer

We are thrilled to announce the safe arrival of Katerina Neocleous’ debut pamphlet, Wish. This spellbinding collection will officially be released on Friday 28 June 2019 but if you can’t wait that long, then you can head over to our Village Shop now where the book is available for worldwide distribution. You’ll also get a free art card featuring the cover image with every order. Village Shop

wish book
Wish by Katerina Neocleous

Here at Maytree we are delighted to be supporting such a wonderful new voice. Katerina, a former graduate of Norwich School of Arts, has been published widely in magazines and anthologies. She is currently assistant editor of the well established poetry journal, Obsessed With Pipework. Katerina will be launching the book in her home town of Preston later in the summer – we’ll announce details as soon as we have them. For now enjoy this wonderful review of the collection from Charles Johnson.

‘A glance at the contents list – a Neocleous poem in itself – puts you immediately in Katerina’s ambiguous world: is this everyday reality? Yes – but a real world on which this poet’s magic touch confers so many extra dimensions: bluebell woodscherry blossom and crows are here immediately as themselves, yet sit alongside and bleed into alchemynecromancy and a grimoireOnce read, these poems of desire and regret, like Katerina’sburr itself, will be snagged fast for weeks in your mind. What glorious words! What tear-washed colour! What a compelling music!’

 

Katerina
Katerina Neocleous
poetry

Wish – Katerina Neocleous

We are very excited to share with you our latest cover – get ready to dip into Katerina Neocleous’ sumptuous debut poetry pamphlet due out later this summer. The cover features the original painting, After the Fret by David Coldwell with design by Anita Kelly.

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more news about this and future releases including our very special anthology.

 

KN Wish

 

 

 

poetry

Sea Without A Shore

We are thrilled to announce the safe arrival of Maytree 003. Sea Without A Shore by Holmfirth based writer, Tim Taylor is now available on-line from the Village Shop.

Sea Without A Shore

In his debut collection, Tim explores the transformative effect of the wild Yorkshire landscape he now calls home. He expertly immerses the reader in the landscapes and history of the South Pennines before challenging our senses with brave new perceptions from house plants to outer space. Set in two distinct parts, this is a debut pamphlet that takes the reader from the dark peaks of Bleaklow and Black Hill (Ungrimming) to the far reaches of our solar system (Pioneer) and back to the living room (The House Plant). Poetry at its very best, highly-innovative and effortless; a feast of words to transform your day.

 

Uncategorized

Katerina Neocleous

We are absolutely delighted to welcome our fourth poet to Maytree Press. Katerina joins the growing band of Maytree Folk and will be releasing her pamphlet (Maytree 004) later in the summer.

Katerina

As well as being assistant editor at Obsessed With Pipework, Katerina’s own work has featured in a number journals and webzines including our very own, The Poetry Village.

We look forward to sharing more news about Katerina’s forthcoming pamphlet in the coming weeks but for now, here’s a little taster:

Icarus

Where did you go
when you’d engraved
these words into the spring’s
herb covered rock;
drink and forget yourself.

Did you slake your thirst;
your journey ebbing
in content oblivion:
did you start again
or waste your days

trying to assuage
survivor’s guilt;
selling yourself to
shoot up in a squat,
in Bodrum or Kos

another Icarus
who lost his way
over the sea, bereft
of everything except
the will to be free.

poetry

A Cover Conundrum

One of the many ambitions of Maytree Press, as well as publishing some of the finest contemporary poetry, is to collaborate with emerging artists for our cover designs. We want people to recognise a Maytree Book, not only for the quality of poetry, print and paper, but for the unique cover art.

A great concept, you might agree, however when a wonderful poet presents you with a manuscript that focuses on ideas around extending the boundaries of ekphrasis then this does present a new publisher with such ambitions with some difficulties.

Maria Isakova Bennett’s …an ache in each welcoming kiss was such a manuscript that at first reading we knew we had to publish but the question loomed – what to use for the cover art? The team explored various ideas but in the end we decided to focus on one of the artworks that had inspired the sequence.

Maria’s title led us almost instantly to Hope by George Watts which had inspired the poem, Broken Lyre. The image seemed perfect and the poem that it had inspired was key to the sequence; so much so that an extract was chosen for the back cover.

Personally, as an old Art History student, I’ve loved the image for many years and seeing an opportunity to now be linked with it, albeit in a small way, felt very special.

There are obvious pitfalls  with using such a well known, and loved, image and none more so that it has probably been used many times before and associated with other people’s work.

To start, we began the unenviable task of due process, where, using a variety of internet search terms, we started the task of checking whether Hope had any hope.

 

 

 

From our research we found classical music covers, magazines and even backpacks (pictured) but no recent poetry or novels that would conflict so after careful consideration, Maria and the team decided to go ahead with Hope as the cover image. Matched with Anita Kelly’s wonderful design we were overjoyed with the final results when presented with the proof and decided to save the reveal for World Poetry Day as many readers will recall.

The cover and concept received a wonderful response across the internet but later that same night both Maria and the Maytree team received an unsolicited email suggesting that we might be in for a poetry spat. Maytree and Maria don’t do spats so we looked in to the matter and to our dismay, found that Hope had in fact been used recently for the cover of a recently published Valley Press poetry collection.

Valley Press have been a publishing company who we’ve admired for a long time, a company that has published and worked with our in-house editor previously, so the last thing we wanted to do was upset anybody. We contacted Jamie at VP to alert him of the issue and discuss our marketing plans. Jamie was, as always, the perfect gent and extremely understanding. We also contacted the author of the earlier collection to offer our apologies.

The difficulty, however, was that Maria had already received dozens and dozens of pre-orders based on our original advertisement and we really didn’t want to let the people who had showed such wonderful support down with an alternative cover.

After much deliberation, and soul searching, the decision was taken to continue with our original plans but limit the first edition to three hundred copies.

An alternative image exists for the re-print but you’ll have to wait to see this Maytree original. Maria’s book is now available either personally from Maria or on-line via our shop or major retailers – but be quick, especially if you want a first edition with Hope.

SHOP