Jennie Farley’s Poetry Blog


  If I feel physically as if the top of my head were taken off, I know that is poetry

                                                                                                      Emily Dickinson




I am available for readings and workshops.
My email address is:

My latest poetry collection is ‘Hex’, Indigo Dreams, 2018.

‘Tales barbaric and bewitching in equal measure, constantly asking the reader to question our own identities and the masks we wear.’  Stephen Daniels

You can buy ‘Hex’ from my publisher, Indigo Dreams

or from Amazon

My previous collection is ‘My Grandmother Skating’, Indigo Dreams, 2016.

My poems have featured in many magazines including New Welsh Review, Oxford Poetry, Slow Dancer, Under the Radar, The Interpreter’s House, Prole and webzines including Ink Sweat &Tears, Amaryllis, Atrium. I have given readings at Cheltenham Literature and Poetry Festivals, Swindon Festival, Bristol Revue, Cheltenham Everyman Theatre and other venues.

In 2015 I founded NewBohemians@CharltonKings (NB@CK) described as ‘an iconic arts club’ to support deepspaceworks, a non-funded Community Art Centre on the edge of Cheltenham run by the dedicated Su Billington. This beautiful venue has great atmosphere and excellent acoustics. We provide a programme of poetry, music, performance and workshops at regular intervals throughout the year, booking professional poets and musicians. Our popular open mic sessions increasingly provide fresh talent.We have a long list of members, but always welcome new poetry lovers.

If you are interested in becoming a New Bohemian, please contact me via my email

MY WRITING CAREER began when as a young journalist I talked my way onto an eight-man expedition to the Jordanian desert as the only woman, exploring archaeological sites, camping alongside the Bedouin, meeting King Hussein, while making a TV film about the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, when I was nominated one of the Women of the Year 1964. This led to a freelance career writing features for quality newspapers and magazines including 70s ‘pop’ magazines interviewing celebrities such as Paul McCartney, Rod Stewart, The Three Degrees …

I have taught Creative Writing and Poetry courses/ workshops at Adult Education Colleges, Schools, University of Gloucestershire, Cheltenham Literature and Poetry Festivals, Cheltenham Museum & Art Gallery, Cheltenham Everyman Theatre and private tutoring. I specially enjoy working with children, I learn so much from them!

Since moving to Cheltenham from London I have been active on the poetry front and social media. It’s exciting meeting other poets, sharing poems, attending poetry Festivals and events, and learning from them.

In 2016 I was honoured to be commissioned along with 8 poets to write poems for a project Still Born initiated by artist Adinda van ’t Klooster raising awareness of stillbirth through art and poetry.

I live on the outskirts of Cheltenham (since moving from London) in an old cottage with sea urchin fossils and masons’ marks embedded in the Cotswold Stone walls. This was once coach house to a Victorian Gothic manse where the grandfather of Lewis Carroll’s Alice lived and Lewis Carrol himself visited. Although the large house has been restored to something more modern, the Looking Glass that inspired the book still resides in the upstairs gallery. 

Enough magic here to inspire a poet!

In the slant Sunday evening dusk
church bells peal, a scraping spade recalls
the glossy purple black of plumes and horses,
iron wheels on cobbles.
Here comes the Preacher,
black book tucked beneath his arm.
His sermons are enough to unsettle the sun.
Tweed-capped lads bowl hoops, small girls
with hands in muffs trail boughs of holly.
Christmas card effects, but the Soul knows darker.
The Irishman with the lame white dog
loiters at the gate. Soon Old Leary
will come and touch the street to light.
The past is now. It might be
the ghastly clanging of tin cans –
Or a sweet bird singing.

Hex 3 72