The Journal of British and Irish Innovative Poetry centres on poetic writings appearing in Britain and Ireland since the late 1950s. These varied poetic practices have been described as avant-garde, underground, linguistically innovative, second-wave Modernist, neo-modernist, non-mainstream, the British Poetry Revival, the parallel tradition, formally innovative, or experimental and which have been produced in geographic clusters, such as the Cambridge School or the London School or Morden Tower. However, we are also seeking to represent uncategorised and independent voices that might fall through the cracks between different schools or clusters.
These posited movements were networked with a variety of formal and conceptual poetics, including: concrete poetry; performance writing; hybrid writing; writing that explores the interplay between orality and literacy; Black studies; diasporic approaches; translational and translingual experiments; macaronic writing and hybridisations of the English language.
The Journal recognises that these terms, and the communities of writers and readers they refer to, are always shifting, contested and sometimes controversial. As such, we are interested in a critical and expansive understanding of ‘innovative’ poetic writing, both within and extending beyond the bounds of the particular traditions outlined here.
The Journal is saddened to hear of the loss of poet Gavin Selerie, following cancer. Gavin has been described by Robert Hampson as 'one of the most obviously scholarly of contemporary British poets'. He was born in Hampstead in 1949 and educated at Haileybury, Lincoln College, Oxford, Sussex and York. His first poems were published in 1972 and some of his important volumes of poetry [...]
Today, we publish Callie Gardner's beautiful essay on Anna Mendelssohn and Veronica Forrest-Thomson. This article is published posthumously, following the tragic loss of Callie in July 2021. Earlier that year, Callie had signed off the final version of their article, and was looking forward to the work being published in its present form. In their essay, Callie generously models ways of reading [...]