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Away with the Birds, a celebration of birds through poetry @ RSPB Sandwell Valley

Away with the birds is a family friendly afternoon of spoken poetry, a glorious celebration of the birds of the west midlands and beyond.

The event will be hosted by Offa’s press, four local poets will read their poems that feature some of our resident feathered friends, from birds in gardens and urban spaces to fields and woods.

Meet the poets:

Simon Fletcher is widely published and has performed across Britain and in Pakistan & Norway. He’s read his poetry on BBC Radio Shropshire & the BBC Asian Network. He runs poetry writing workshops in green spaces/ places and MCs monthly live literature events in Ironbridge and Wolverhampton. He has been a ‘Poet on Loan’ in West Midlands libraries. He’s had 7 collections published to date including Wild Orchids, 2023, that contains work ‘commended’ in the Michael Marks Environmental Poet of the Year Awards, 2022. Nominated for the Forward Prize, 2024.

Kuli Kohli is poet laureate of Wolverhampton and an enthusiastic member of the RSPB. She has battled with mild cerebral palsy and achieved a great deal in her life as council worker, mother and writer. Her appearances on BBC’s ‘Sunday Live’ and ‘Poetry, Please!’ drew national attention. Her Patchwork and A Wonder Woman are both published by Offa’s Press. She was awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of Wolverhampton in 2022 and this March a photograph of her was acquired by the National Portrait Gallery.  

Emma Purshouse was the Poet Laureate for the City of Wolverhampton, 2020-2022. She is an award winning writer who writes for both children and adults. Her most recent poetry collection is ‘It’s Honorary, Bab’ (Offa’s Press) which was short-listed for the Rubery International Book prize. Her first novel ‘Dogged’ (Ignite Books) was published early in 2021. Emma has performed her work at spoken word nights and festivals across the UK.

David Bingham writes in a variety of genres. His poetry collection,The Chatter of Crows, was published by Offa’s Press in 2014 and he co-edited the popular Ripening Cherries with Simon Fletcher in 2019. He won the British Haiku Society Haibun Award in  2020 and was President of the British Haiku Society from 2020-2022.

Liz Parkes is the chair of Coach House Writers, Stourbridge. She is a member of Bilston writers, Border poets and other poetry groups. She has work in anthologies published by Offa's Press, Grey Hen and Unite Union.

📷 Andy Purcell

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