art, poetry

A Kind of Silence – cover reveal

We are delighted to reveal the cover of Barbara Hickson’s forthcoming Maytree collection, A Kind of Silence.

The pamphlet, which will be available from the 01/10/21, features the wonderfully evocative painting, Silver Lines, Iona by Cumbrian based artist, Tracy Levine.

A Kind of Silence reflects on our intimate relationship with nature and place. Whether exploring the site of a Dark Age settlement, or encountering deer in a forest, these poems meditate on our need to belong. There are poems of empathy, loss and regret. There are poems of celebration which examine the seemingly ordinary in closely observed detail. Above all, these poems acknowledge the many kinds of silence and how we, as humans, respond.

About the Author

Barbara Hickson lives in Lancaster and has an MA (Distinction) in Poetry from Manchester Metropolitan University.
 
Her poems focus primarily on our relationship with nature and place and have appeared widely in magazines, anthologies and on-line journals. Her work has been placed and commended in several competitions including Magma Editors’ Choice and The Plough Prize. In 2019 she had twelve poems published in a shared collection entitled Rugged Rocks Running Rascals – poems for complicated times, published by DragonSpawn Press.


When she’s not reading, writing or attending poetry events, Barbara can usually be found in her garden, where she completely loses track of time. And if she’s not there, she’s probably out fell walking or cycling around the countryside with her husband.

About the Artist

Award winning artist Tracy Levine is a painter and printmaker who works from her purpose built studio with gallery space in the South Lakes area of Cumbria.

Her studio is located in the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) of Arnside and Silverdale, with stunning views over the Kent Estuary to the hills of the Lake District, a perfect peaceful and inspirational place for an artist.

Tracy has a long list of successful solo exhibitions and has won several awards. Tracy is an elected member of the prestigious Lake Artists Society.

http://www.tracylevine.co.uk

poetry

Three Trees Portfolio Award – The Winner

We are delighted to announce the winner if the inaugural Three Trees Portfolio Award 2021.

Congratulations to Susan Jordan whose collection, Last of the Line will be published as a special Three Trees Edition in October 2021.

We would also like to congratulate the following poets whose work was shortlisted:

Susanna Harding
Charles Eager
Sue Wallace-Shaddad
Isabel Bermudez
Janet Hatherley
Nigel King
Votey Cheav
Abigail Wyatt
Caroline Maldonado

Heartfelt thanks to everyone who submitted – we were overwhelmed with the numbers, variety of subject and the quality of writing.

Our submissions window will open again in the autumn and the second Three Trees Award will be announced in the new year.

Thank you.

art, poetry

Jonathan Humble – Cover Reveal

It’s always an exciting time here at Maytree HQ when we release a new cover out into the world but even more so when it features artwork by one of our favourite artists that we’ve been keeping under wraps for the last eight months.

For Jonathan’s cover there was certainly a case of a wind change after a butterfly had flapped its wings somewhere. We had known from an early stage, possibly as soon as we had received Jonathan’s manuscript, that we wanted to use Suzi Thompson’s artwork on the cover. Both David and Amanda are huge fans of Suzi’s work and have had the privilege of visiting her at her South Yorkshire studio as well as indulging in some prints which are strongly represented at galleries local to Maytree’s home.

The decision to use Suzi’s work was way back in those heady free days of summer 2019 so in many ways the idea was firmly put to the back of our minds whilst other work took priority. That was until the Marsden Jazz Festival in October when Jonathan made the journey across the Pennines and also stumbled into those same galleries and was introduced to Suzi’s work. We’d already had the go ahead from Suzi so imagine our delight when Jonathan began mentioning how much he enjoyed her work – we’re rubbish at keeping secrets so had to let him know that his new found favourite artist was also going to be his cover artist. I think we made a poet very happy that day. Fledge features the artwork, Edgelands. We had to crop the original version a tiny bit so that it would fit so here’s the original version:

edgelands

Fledge will be released on the 31 July 2020. It’s a wonderful evocative collection with it’s heart set firmly in the natural world. A delightful read for summer 2020.

Many of our regular readers will be familiar with Jonathan’s work, particularly as a reviewer but for those who have missed out you can find out more from his entertaining blog northern jim

Suzi is represented by galleries across the UK and also has a wonderful website and online gallery which you can find here

fledge cover

poetry

Green Fields: sorted for songs

The time has come – check whether your favourite made it onto the festival mix-tape.

Play loud at 17.45 and together, in our minds, let’s meet on the ledge. Enjoy!

Here’s the list:

Intro: Pink Floyd v David Bowie
I Wanna Be Adored – Stone Roses
Starman – David Bowie
Can’t Stop – Red Hot Chilli Peppers
Touch the Sky – Kanye West
All You Good Good People – Embrace
Sorted For Es and Whizz – Pulp
Hey Joe – Jimi Hendrix
Jolene – Dolly Parton
No Surprises – Radiohead
Meet Me On the Ledge – Fairport Convention
Any Colour You Like – Pink Floyd

Mixed by DeC – from the kitchen 2020.

 

We hope you’ve enjoyed our virtual launch of Green Fields over on the Poetry Village during week – here’s a fitting end from one of our editors with a few memories of better times.

In the End (festival party)

The garden is tiered
and falls away from the house
towards the one road
that leads both in and out.
As bright as any ocean
against the sky blue,
the trees that we planted
are now shaped by
storms, their shadows
part of the land.

Together we paint signs:
Green Fields, Shangri-La,
and Cirque du Soleil,
that point our guests
past lavender, rosemary
and thyme and on towards
the shelter of leaf-light
and the Maytree hedge
that offers shelter
from so much unknown.

Then the fire is lit:
Ian downs a Pot Noodle cup
full of local ale;
Wendy paints the moon
and stars above a child’s eyes
as Michael recites poetry
to a small but appreciative crowd.

Later we find Zak,
half asleep and seeking something
he’ll never find at the bottom
of Gardenia’s best Tupperware.
Three months from now
the good souls will stand shoulders
with him at the crematorium.
They’ll wear black.

And all this is pretend.
Hushed voices circle past trees
towards stars eclipsed
by distant city lights.
The dawn will soon cast a mix
of pinks, blues and a new green
over the tiered garden washed
clean with summer dew.
Then the birdsong: first a solo,
tentative, before a chorus
of call and response.
The sky still holds a moon.
Only sometimes can we feel
the Earth’s dizzying spin.

David Coldwell

 

 

greenfinalcover

 

 

art, poetry

First Kiss – cover reveal

Whilst we may dream of those darling buds of May, rough winds have indeed shaken Maytree HQ over the past month but, undeterred, we’ve continued our plans for the year ahead and those endless summer days.

First Kiss is a remarkable debut collection from Yorkshire born writer Cara L Mckee due for release in May 2020. The cover features the painting Ophelia by renowned British artist Annie Ovenden. We can’t begin to tell you how thrilled we are that Annie allowed the use of the image and offered such kind words about Maytree. You can find out more about Annie from her Wikipedia page here

Ophelia
Oil on prepared board Original size 910mm x 760mm

Cara, who now lives on the west coast of Scotland, initially came to our attention after submitting a selection of wonderful poems to The Poetry Village. Her poetry has also been widely published in other places such as Anima Magazine, The Bitchin’ Kitsch, The Interpreter’s House, Ink Sweat & Tears, and 404 Ink. We can’t wait to share more of her work with you in the near future.

Don’t forget, The Poetry Village is now back open for submission for our new environmental project, Earth Shadow. Find out more here

first kiss