It was twenty years ago today

Matthew Paul

The Saturday before last, I went along to the launch of the Selected Poems of Harold Massingham, edited by Ian Parks and published by Bob Horne’s admirable Calder Valley Poetry. Despite torrential cold rain, there was a very good turnout. It was held at the former boys’ grammar school in Mexborough that Massingham and his slightly older contemporary, a lad called E.J. Hughes, attended (as did Parks, many years later). The excellent readings of Massingham’s poems were undertaken by different members of the Read to Write group, and even included a couple of musical settings for guitar and voice, plus some full-throttle Anglo-Saxon. It was a moving and memorable event, in part due to two of Massingham’s children being there. The book, with fabulous drawings by Pete Olding, is rather beautiful, inside and out, and I’ve been enjoying dipping into it.

Not much doing on my poetry front of late –…

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