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Fiona Sinclair lives in a village in Kent with her husband Kim and an imaginary dog. She is the editor of the on-line poetry magazine Message in Bottle. Fiona‘s work has been published in numerous magazines. Fiona reviews poetry and also art exhibitions, specifically at Turner Contemporary, Margate.
Her writing has been published in numerous magazines, including:
Snakeskin Poetry Webzine; Obsessed with Pipework; London Grip: Prole Magazine; The Lake; The Journal Literary Magazine:The Peeking Cat: Ascent Aspirations; and Pulsar.
A Talent for Hats is her sixth collection, published in 2017.
The Time Travellers' Picnic was published in 2019
THE TIME TRAVELLERS' PICNIC
by Fiona Sinclair
Published April 2019
Perfect bound paperback
21cm wide x 15cm tall
David Mark Williams writes: 'There is an echo of Ginsberg in the ethos of Sinclair’s work. His A Strange New Cottage in Berkeleysprings to mind. There is something too in her work of the freshness of Frank O'Hara’s Lunch Poems....much to admire in terms of virtuosity in Sinclair’s work and for this reason the collection is a delight from beginning to end. The poems possess an energy that seems to be extemporised but actually is adeptly controlled, despite syntax that strains under the speed of execution. For instance, a line like “Parallel world becoming a bolt hole when father cancer consumed”, is thrown at the reader in a jazzy blast that subverts normal word order and produces unsettling effects. The father is consuming the cancer that is consuming him, a truly Metaphysical sleight of hand. ... Sinclair weaves wonder into the most everyday of occurrences. She achieves this through the exuberance of her writing and a wit that at times achieves Metaphysical invention.'
Read the whole of David Mark Williams's review of The Time Traveller's Picnic on The Lake online here
(The book has been re-edited since this review, to eliminate some errors.)
A TALENT FOR HATS
by Fiona Sinclair
Published February 2017
46 pages 15cm wide x 21cm tall
£5.00 + p&p
Fiona is attracted to the overlooked, even peculiar aspects of modern life. In this short collection she takes as her theme the “second skins” that we put on in order to cope or hide from issues of identity, Her knack for mixing slang and every-day language with a more conventional poetic turn of phrase, makes these poems sparkle with brilliant, unusual language and images.
Here, boldly and poignantly written, is the understanding that beneath a woman’s outward appearance and smart excuses, there lurks the fear that she is losing her power to attract, that the beauty of her youth inexorably, inevitably fades, taking her power with it. ....Sinclair has excellent observational powers... '
Agnes Meadows, poet, editor and reviewer
(From "A Talent for Hats")
Drowning in dress choice, she wants no
Marilyn Look at me entrance, rather
something to carry her through dry-mouthed solo arrival.
Pulls out sale dregs number that on her
lives up to its designer label promise,
but flashbacks; blown out by friend last minute,
folk night that anesthetised her rock and roll soul.
restraining yawns like Tourette’s outbursts at dull dinner.
Strokes with little-girl longing new strapless
but time saved up from work plus son sleepover windfall
cannot be gambled on untried garment.
Ponders impulse buy plain-Jane shift
then relives: shoes kicked off dancing until all hours;
gold strike of finding new friends at a 50th;
child’s fizzy laughter uncorked in a comedy club;
so slips on the dress that promises an evening well spent…
© Fiona Sinclair
Rosie Jackson writes about The Time Travellers' Picnic:
read her full review in The London Grip Reviews (July 2019)
'Sinclair’s complex weave of language and images feels like being wrapped in a brocaded patchwork quilt of silks and denim. Yet it is her unsparing honesty, often funny, that keeps us with her. “Not as Young as We Feel”,reprinted here in full, suggests that, for all the physical restrictions:
‘November marriage’ years can be the best of all:
After gourmet sex we entwine like twins in a womb.
Doze under exhaustion’s ether.
Twenty years ago, even, we would be free to slumber until morning.
But in middle age, sleep must be prepared for like a journey,
a check list of pills for pain, cholesterol, blood pressure
… nightclothes stripped off in present-tearing lust,
retrieved from floor and pulled back on,
sheets smoothed, pillows plumped, duvet adjusted, the final pee.
A Night Night kiss then easing onto back and side,'
the width of a double bed growing between us.' "
Rosie Johnston‘s four poetry books, published by Lapwing Publications in Belfast, are Sweet Seventeens (2010), Orion (2012), Bittersweet Seventeens (2014) and Six-Count Jive (2019). Her poems have appeared or featured in Hedgerow, London Grip, Culture NI, FourxFour, The Honest Ulsterman, Ink, Sweat & Tears, Mary Evans Picture Library’s Poems and Pictures blog, Words for the Wild, From The Edge magazine and in Live Canon’s anthologies ‘154: In Response to Shakespeare’s Sonnets’ (2016) & ‘New Poems for Christmas’ (2018). She has read her poetry widely, including Hungerford Literary Festival, Watford’s Big Word festival, Winchester’s Loose Muse, the Poetry Cafe in Covent Garden, the Troubadour, Torriano, Margate’s Pie Factory, In-Words in Greenwich and Whitstable’s Harbour Books. Rosie was poet in residence for the Cambridgeshire Wildlife Trust until she moved to live by the sea in Kent. www.rosiejohnstonwrites.com