Janet Hatherley has taught in both secondary and primary schools, most recently as a special needs teacher in Haringey. She attends various poetry groups and enjoys open mics. Her work has appeared in several magazines including The Interpreter’s House, Under the Radar, Stand, Coast to Coast to Coast, Brittle Star, The Poetry Village and Spelt, among others. In 2021, she was shortlisted for Nine Pens Pamphlet Series, Three Trees Portfolio Award and commended for the Roger McGough Poetry Prize. She won third prize in Second Light Poetry Competition, 2021.
Janet Hatherley’s debut pamphlet What Rita Tells Me is a sharp-eyed portrait of an English sixties’ childhood taking in London and the North, a narrative full of ironies: poignant, grainy and surprising, poems telling it like it was. These are thoughtful pieces about holding it together in difficult times. They are tributes, in particular, to Hatherley’s parents, to whom the book is dedicated.
-- Katherine Gallagher
Janet Hatherley's moving poems explore family life and struggles, with a father who has experienced two world wars and a mother who is resourceful in the face of poverty. Hatherley's poems are life-affirming and steeped in social history. [ ...]
Hatherley has a fantastic ear for speech, alive with humour and drama. In a second upheaval - this time as an eleven-year old moving to Sussex - Hatherley captures how poverty singles you out, as when queuing for free school dinners. While family life brings its challenges with illness and hardship, the strong current running through this pamphlet is a celebration of freedom, family and a spirit of adventure.
– Lisa Kelly
The collection explores the child’s struggle to imagine her father’s remote and alien past. The author has clearly done some research to fill in the gaps. This is worth a read for its social commentary as well as the personal stories.
— Susan Jane Sims (ARTEMISpoetry May 2023)
What Rita Tells Me — published on 1st May 2022
148 x 210cm, 46 pages
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