Coming Clean is the latest poetry anthology from Gay Authors Workshop, and the most ambitious so far. Celebrating our 35th (Coral) anniversary, there is no theme, though the title, ‘Coming Clean’, could apply in one way or another – owning up or writing honestly – to most of the poems included.
The 90 poems by fourteen poets recall childhood innocence, adolescent yearning, sexual encounters, troubled relationships, demons, dominance, deprivation, ageing, loss, doubt and faith.
Haikus, prose poems, song lyrics, Spencerian Stanza, performance pieces: the variety of forms is as diverse as the themes and subjects. Abstract or concrete, the verses conceal and reveal, whether hidden objects or identity lost in time.
Serious, amusing, light, dense, naughty or downright raunchy – there’s something for everyone.
Includes a short selection of poems by the late Ivor Treby, an early gay literary activist and member of GAW.
‘An accessible and engaging anthology containing an impressive variety of poems, both in form and content. The standard was impressively high and I discovered some absolute gems’
– V. G. Lee, author of several novels and volumes of short stories, including Diary of a Provincial Lesbian and most recently Always you, Edina.
ISBN: 978 1 904585 69 5
Paperback, 128 pages
Published: February, 2014
Ivor Treby, Poems 2007–2012
Ivor Treby was an early gay literary activist who first published his poems in the late 1970s and early 1980s in small gay magazines in the UK, USA and Australia, where he also gave readings at gay venues. He wrote four volumes of poetry, but gave up to concentrate on research into Michael Field, the pseudonym of the lesbian poets, Edith Cooper and Katherine Bradley. Ivor resumed writing in 2007 and at his death in 2012 left 68 poems, published here for the first time, with an introduction by John Dixon.
‘Ivor Treby was a pioneering gay activist and an early advocate of the importance of “gay literature”, that is to say, fiction and poetry written by openly gay writers for a gay audience. This was one of the ways in which we created a sense both of a community and of a culture. His was a distinctive voice, and we feel its loss.’ – Peter Scott-Presland, author of the forthcoming Amicable Warriors, the official history of the CHE.
Risking It is Jeremy Kingston’s third poetry collection. Using a variety of verse forms, rhymed and unrhymed, they express feelings to do with erotic encounters at home and abroad before moving into darker areas of betrayal, revenge and the power and dangers of myth. The tone now ranges between sorrow, mirth and resignation, at times managing to combine all three while also exploring the delights of metaphor, in language and among orchids.
ISBN: 978 1 904585 87-9, Paperback, 64 pages, £6.75, Published: August, 2016
Seeking, Finding, Losing
A sequence of short poems by John Dixon, charting a brief affair – outside – casual to a comeback-overnight, a return visit to live-in, more detailed exploration, uncertainty, rejection of proffered verse, uncertainly confirmed and back to casual. Fifteen other poems on a wide range of topics complete the collection.
ISBN: 978 1 904585 18 3, Paperback, 65 pages, £3.99, Published: November, 2011