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Clint Wastling – Layers

Today we celebrate the ninth release from Maytree Press.

Clint Wastling’s Layers takes the reader on a journey of discovery. From the far flung corners of the Mediterranean to the North East coast of England, Clint’s poems seek to uncover not just the hidden secrets of our landscape but also scratch beneath the layers of emotions formed by the author’s own relationships with both family and place.

A wonderfully assured debut that brings a raft of images coupled with that faint smell of sea air.

Featuring wonderful cover art by Ian Burdall, Layers is now available direct from the author or on-line from out shop here

We’ll have news of the official launch event in the new year.

You can find out more about Clint by visiting his website here

 

Fossil

There is something military about the waves today,
Uniformly attacking, grinding the applauding pebbles.
My eyes pick out a fossil preserved in fallen rock,
A spiral of immortality, decay in andante.

I wish I were a Mesozoic ammonite charting vast
Tropical oceans in search of food, a mate and meaning.

Waves whisper to the wind which caresses my skin.
Shore and sea with my thoughts lying on wave crests
Drawn then dashed, drawn, diminished again.

Saint Hild froze heathen snakes in your form.
Darwin saw your evolution from great sea-worms.
Children sell you to shop weary tourists,
But I imagine you alive in Jurassic oceans
Knowing nothing of extinction, men or gods.

 

Bricklayer

English, header, stretcher, Flemish bond,
he taught me the basic stack before a brew
of builder’s tea and a fag break drew all to
the Portacabin.
If he could lay five hundred bricks
he’d get a full day’s pay.
Through all but the worst of weather
he’d work long hours, fingers taped,
shammy gloves kept out the lime,
bed of mortar, brick, tap, level.
He could halve a brick with one rap of the trowel.
Before he died,
dad listed houses, bungalows, schools,
a cold war bunker
but his first, he spoke of fondly,
flats on Bricknall Avenue whilst
apprenticed to old Jack Mather.
Perhaps he thought we’d photograph them all.
Make the mortar
mix sand and lime: 3:1 – blend in the water.
I see him now, his thin frame,
a shock of auburn hair
and fingers which
built brick on brick to house his every dream.

 

Kayleigh Campbell

Today we celebrate the launch of the Maytree pamphlet Keepsake from Leeds based writer Kayleigh Campbell. Described as a haunting debut, the poems in Keepsake vividly illustrate the journey of a young women into parenthood. Themes of loss, love, anxiety and transition are underscored by the brutality of post-natal depression and family break-up. Written with heartbreaking honesty, this is a collection that will stay with you long after the last page.

You can purchase a copy of Keepsake from the Maytree shop here

There will be a special launch event in Leeds on the 12 September – details here

Kayleigh will also be at Waterstones in Huddersfield to celebrate National Poetry Day on October 3 2019 where she will be reading and signing copies of Keepsake and discussing some of the themes and issues raised in the book.

 

Baptism

People asked if we were going to Christen you.
Though my father believes in redemption to get to heaven

and that temptation keeps the path straight to hell
and though I can see the appeal of bodies

huddled together in pews each longing
for the same kind of belonging

and in turn belonging together,
I sin and I’m peaceful for that.

There is no man in my sky, only clouds
that darken then scatter like clockwork.

But here in this bath, as your dad
holds you to my breast

I almost go to sprinkle water
upon your newborn head.