Stephanie Norgate is a poet and playwright. She runs the MA in Creative Writing at the University of Chichester. Her plays have been broadcast on Radio 4. Following her prize winning pamphlet, Fireclay (Smith Doorstop) and a selection of poems in Oxford Poets 2000, Stephanie’s first full length collection, Hidden River (Bloodaxe Books 2008) was shortlisted for the Forward First Collection Prize and the Jerwood Aldeburgh First Collection prize. Stephanie says, ‘It’s a great privilege to read for a Tongues and Grooves event at home in Southsea or on tour. Maggie Sawkins and the group provide a wonderful evening and atmosphere. I love the mixture of poetry and music. It’s great to be in the audience too. There’s a huge variety of work and a special, unique feeling.’
See also: Fishouse Poems
The Phone Tower Wood
Out from under the phone towers, on quiet hooves,
deer munch stems of Queen of the Night
before the tall, greening buds
can ever uncup
their veined dusty crimson light,
their pools of blood-black bruises.
It’s a strange consolation to say, over and over,
on the phone, or in pubs to city friends,
the deer have eaten the tulips again.
On a rare evening, I’ll see all three of them
cantering over the tussocky field,
back to the phone tower trees and their humming cover.