steve mann - welcome to my poetry

welcome to my poetry ---

this is me

"It was after the breakdown of my health that I began to write. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, depression, and anxiety in May 2004 led to my early retirement on medical grounds in January 2005. Already in my fifties, with two adult children, my career to date was based almost entirely in England but also briefly in Kenya, Israel and Eire. From many years' work within prisons, hospices, schools, colleges, with the police and in the community, inspiration stirred, which led to poetry.

Shropshire Council Libraries Poetry Champion Sally Richards ( and challenged me to begin writing again - after some 29 years had passed since a little scribbling at University. Encouraged by the challenges, fuelled by all that was happening within me - and in my life - I tentatively allowed creativity to flow.

I was thrilled when my first ever piece to be published - Who growled up my nose? - appeared in Poetry Express 21 in 2005, and I feel privileged to have also appeared in a number of journals, magazines, anthologies and even to be placed in a number of National Competitions. It was also fantastic to be accepted for the Survivors' Poetry Mentoring Scheme 2006/07 which, with the encouragement of Alan Morrison, Simon Jenner, and Philip Ruthen as my mentor, lead to my first Solo Collection cui bono? being published by Survivors' Press, London November 2007 and launched at a public reading at The Poetry Café, Covent Garden, London November 2007.

Additionally to reading at The Poetry Café, Covent Garden, London it has been a privilege to read at Aberystwyth University, Keele University, Staffordshire University, Royal Shrewsbury Hospital, Shrewsbury Library, Shrewsbury Museum, and at various other venues throughout Shrewsbury and Shropshire.

My poetry continues to develop with the writing of it being a pleasurable pain and the publishing of it a painful pleasure. It is a particular priviledge to be included within the Recusant ejournal website.


Here is a piece taken from my first solo colllection   cui bono?


available to buy: Survivors' Press, London - contact


or for loan: The Poetry Library, Royal Festival Hall, London - contact



Avian Transients


making their subdued way along hedgeline subterfuge,

risking the watch of the ever vigilant feline.

cutting a swathe through November’s somnolent air,

alighting at patient Robinia’s feeding station,

seed-cramming on the menu,

indulging your seasonal facilitated abandon.

unanticipated redbreast,

effecting his determined territorial antics,

scattering all in annoyed confusion,

satisfying himself in enjoyment of the bounty.

higher branches, seating pairing doves,

not feasting, entirely content in togetherness,

and higher yet, woodpecker knocking her rhythmic message

“come out, be eaten, now”.

easterly flying, well above your highest reaches,

a singular heron, sweeping across the meadow towards the river,

her supper, swimming its wait for life’s cycle fully turning.

whilst purposely, classic formation geese passing,

directionally northwestwards,

and within seconds, as if to contrast,

ducks in their usual fashion winging the compass opposite.

rapidly descending dusk, heralding pipistrelle appearances,

and in the pleasant darkness, swooping, hovering, gliding

over your presence, the hunter,

with his owling call, stirring fear, completing the day.


© Steve Mann

reading from cui bono? ------- Shrewsbury Library ------- National Poetry Day -------


a performance poem taken from:

Waiting for Gulliver



Touching the Blue


hurt pain red raw

words stick closed craw

envy seethed opal green

eyes shocked vivid scene

spine yellow tinged

fear inward cringed

heart deepest black

walls pressure crack

reach out pursue

touching the blue



© Steve Mann




Waiting for Gulliver

Colourful and Dark

(Waterstones price £9.99)

but available here at the special price of £4.00

plus £1.50 p&p (please make cheques payable to S. Mann)


Steve Mann

42 The Crescent

Montford Bridge





 Zymotic Capitalism

bastardized syncopal miscarriages

governments and systems bejungled intertwining
supping in corruptions devil grail
chewing temptations roots
world not-without end

© Steve Mann