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Wordlife : Creative Writing & Spoken Word

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Nikesh Shukla

A big thanks to everyone who came down to our show with Roger McGough, Buddy Wakefield and Stan Skinny last month at the Abbeydale Picture House. It was great to be part of Sheaf Poetry Festival.

We had the chance to interview Benjamin Zephaniah this month ahead of his performance in Sheffield as part of Migration Matters Festival and we just couldn't pass up the opportunity to speak to one of Britain's best-known poets.

We've also got one poem for you this month from one of our regular contributors, local writer Jonathan Butcher.

Gorilla Poetry

Mon 17 June | 7:30pm | Gardeners Rest | Free

Sheffield's friendliest open mic returns for another instalment at The Gardeners Rest. If you'd like a slot, just turn up and put your name down.

Nikesh Shukla

Tue 18 June | 7:30pm | Crucible | £13/£0 concs

Join bestselling author and editor Nikesh Shukla (The Good Immigrant) in conversation with former Lord Mayor Magid Magid as they talk about their experiences with the 'hostile environment', Brexit Britain and the route into an immigrant planet.


That slow sky staggers down.

Over the soot-stained slates

and mile-wide pot holes, over

the smashed shop fronts and

unmanned privet hedges.

That sky drifts over feet, that

slowly ware down grass verges

with constant half miles. Past

the day walkers that nod politely,

but without recognition.

That same sliver of despondence,

that flows from food banks to up-turned

parks. The same eyes that look with

nothing but contempt, like cracked marbles,

that reflect anything but light.

The brick houses still remain the same,

any attempt at white-wash has now faded.

This road still twists like mattered hair,

dragged back from its scalp. Just to continue

seems enough to keep the wolves at bay.

Jonathan Butcher

Next article in issue 135

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