The Friday Poem 06/10/2003
Welcome to online monthly poetry magazine The Friday Poem. We shine a spotlight on one poet per month, and publish features of interest to poets and readers of poetry plus reviews of recently published poetry collections and pamphlets. On the first Friday of the month we email subscribers with one poem and details of what’s new on the site – you can subscribe here. If you like what you see, bung us a few quid via Ko-fi by pressing the ‘Support Us’ button on the bottom left of your screen, or if you prefer PayPay you can use the ‘Donate’ button on the bottom right (thank you).
We’ve tried The Friday Poem as a monthly for six months and the overwhelming response from our subscribers is that weekly is better. You have spoken, we have listened. So from 1st March 2024 we are reverting to weekly. Yay! we hear you cry. A Friday poem back where it should be – on every Friday morning! But we can’t do it without you, so brush up your bestest poem and send it to us, here.
Our featured poet for February – Dane Holt
There’s something distinctive about a Dane Holt poem. It’s as if he’s groping his way towards some kind of truth, and showing us how he gets there at the same time. We can almost see him frown and struggle to articulate his process. His poems are engaging monologues, full of hair-pin bends, reversals, questions that seem to come out of nowhere. He’s big on uncertainty; he uses phrases like “I don’t know”, “I can’t explain”, “to my ears”, phrases which seem to suggest that he isn’t in control of the sense of the poem. But he ends with a line that pulls everything together and makes you see the poem in a different light. One to watch, we think.
We reviewed Dane Holt’s pamphlet Many Professional Wrestlers Never Retire (The Lifeboat, 2023) in January.
See Dane Holt’s poem page for more comment
The only records found in my grandmother’s attic
were by scorned women for scorned women
written by men. ‘Stand By Your Man’
is, to my ears, the best vocal performance
of the worst lyric, which goes to show
something. I don’t know. Something
about how saying one thing so
exactly to someone intent on hearing
the opposite is art. Once and only once
my grandmother told my father
‘you don’t know what I go through
having to live with your father.’
A storm of bad men could not dampen
Tammy Wynette’s spirit. I mean
her hair. I refuse to listen
to that song without crying, or at least
without the taste of hairspray in my mouth.
I had two grandmothers but only
one grandfather. The record I have of the other
is the day he died and the day
of his funeral. My mother missed it.
She looked like Tammy Wynette
when she told me this.
Except for her hair. I mean her spirit.