Other Cities/Other Lives Eleanor Rees, Zoë Scolding and Helen Tookey at the Bluecoat

Sarah-Clare Conlon, Literature Editor
Poet Eleanor Rees. Photo by Elly Lucas
Poet Eleanor Rees. Photo by Elly Lucas.

Other Cities/ Other Lives at Bluecoat, City Centre 20 February 2020 Tickets from £4 — Book now

Three leading contemporary poets Eleanor Rees, Zoë Skoulding and Helen Tookey read from their new collections, each exploring more-than-human perspectives on place and landscape. Cities, rivers, parklands and docks all come to life as these innovative poets re-imagine, for these complex times, what it is to be human.

A senior lecturer in Creative Writing at Liverpool Hope University, Eleanor Rees’s poetry is described as “visionary”. Her latest collection of poetry, The Well at Winter Solstice (Salt, 2019), is her fourth. It received a Northern Writers’ Award in 2018.Her debut pamphlet Feeding Fire (Spout, 2001) received an Eric Gregory Award in 2002 and her first full-length collection, Andraste’s Hair (Salt, 2007), was shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best First Collection and the Irish Glen Dimplex New Writers’ Award. Her second collection is Eliza and the Bear (Salt, 2009) and third collections  Blood Child (Pavilion, 2015), published the same year as her long pamphlet Riverine (Gatehouse, 2015).

Cities, rivers, parklands and docks all come to life as these innovative poets re-imagine, for these complex times, what it is to be human

Anglesey-based poet, critic and translator Zoë Skoulding lectures in Creative Writing at Bangor University. Her collections of poetry, published by Seren, include The Mirror Trade (2004), Remains of a Future City (2008), longlisted for Wales Book of the Year, and The Museum of Disappearing Sounds (2013), shortlisted for the Ted Hughes Award for New Work in Poetry. Her new collection, also from Seren, Footnotes to Water, follows two rivers, one in Bangor and the other in Paris, via a detour through the wandering paths of sheep in the Welsh uplands. She received the Cholmondeley Award from the Society of Authors in 2018 for her body of work.

Helen Tookey is a poet and academic based in Liverpool, where she teaches creative writing at John Moores University. Her debut collection Missel-Child (Carcanet, 2014) was shortlisted for the Seamus Heaney Prize, and her second collection, City of Departures, also on Manchester-based Carcanet, was shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best Collection 2019. She has collaborated with musicians Sharron Kraus and Martin Heslop; in September 2019, Helen and Martin spent two weeks in the Elizabeth Bishop House in Nova Scotia, having been awarded a residency to make new work there responding to the location. Helen has also published critical work on modernist writers including Anaïs Nin and Malcolm Lowry; Remaking the Voyage: New Essays on Malcolm Lowry and In Ballast to the White Sea, co-edited by Helen with Bryan Biggs, is due out this year from Liverpool University Press.

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