A Tribute to Anne Stevenson

Angela Topping

Although I did not know Anne Stevenson well, I feel I must pay tribute to her, one small voice among the many tributes which will be written to say farewell to this fine poet and generous encourager of other poets.

I met her, as I met the late-lamented U. A . Fanthorpe, through my beloved friend Matt Simpson (1936-2009). He and Anne were of an age, and she was saddened by his death, like all his friends. For her 70th birthday, Matt Simpson and his friend John Lucas (Shoestring Press and also a fine poet, Jazz player and lecturer) created a marvellous festschrift, The Way You Say the World, with a large number of well-known poets as contributors. I was delighted to be asked to send a poem, and even more so to be asked to read it on the night of her party. Matt and I trundled up…

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