Joelle Taylor’s T S Eliot Prize nominated C+nto & Othered Poems is her third collection of poetry, following Songs my Enemy Taught Me (2017)… C+nto shares some similarities to Songs in its unflinching attention to the body and its enemies but this new collection returns to her roots both artistic (Taylor was a playwright before she found recognition as a poet) and personal. As in Songs, these are poems of resistance, this time set to the beat of the 90s gay bar jukebox. They remember these places as sanctuary and lament their passing in a time when queer community seems made and unmade on twitter threads rather than dancefloors.
It is not hard to spot Joelle Taylor across a busy theatre foyer. The tall blonde quiff gives her away, but as I approach, I notice an open confidence that suggests performance poet too. I meet her on the penultimate day of the StAnza poetry festival, less than a fortnight before such gatherings become a Read More
I carry the war in my womb. At night it kicks and sings stories of the first night that war came calling. In the first lines of Songs My Enemy Taught Me, Joelle Taylor sets the reader on a journey that begins with her own early experience of abuse, and travels across the globe into Read More