New from Iron Press

Odd Socks Putting the Boat to Bed Rainbird; a play by Peter Mortimer Tales from the Leaking Boot Three Blue Beans in a Blue Bladder The Leopard's Reward

New Poetry

Odd Socks by John Robert Brown

illustrated by Harry Venning

JOHN ROBERT BROWN joins the (sadly small) group of witty intelligent poets not overtly playing to the audience.

Enjoy a journey around Brown's special world as he considers the arrival of traffic roundabouts in Japan in 2013, contemplates the uniqueness of Nuneaton and in literate and carefully-crafted verses, muses on the correct spelling and pronunciation of 'aitch'.

Several of the poems are enhanced by the cartoons of Harry Venning, who created the famous Clare in the Community series in The Guardian and on BBC Radio Four.

Read more about Odd Socks.

Putting the Boat to Bed, by Deirdre Foster

New from IRON Press in July, Putting the Boat to Bed by Deirdre Foster:

These deceptively simple poems, behind a suburban normality often disguise dark and disturbing worlds - one house is a drugs den, another has housed a recent murder. Elsewhere, the poems evoke the recent West Country floods. In Somerset Winters:

Mallard ducks
Swimming in fields
Looking for their rivers.

Other poems evoke the experience of having a seizure or the tedium of commuting.

The work is illustrated by the striking black and white line drawings of the poet's daughter, Nikki.

A New Play

Rainbird, the text of a new Peter Mortimer play about the North Shields painter Victor Noble Rainbird is published by IRON Press to coincide with the production by Cloud Nine Theatre Company.

Rainbird led a tragic life. His highly promising career as an artist saw him accepted as the only northern painter in the Royal Academy 1911 influx where he won several awards. But Rainbird's experiences in the First World War (shell shock, gas poisoning) left their mark. He slid into alcoholism and poverty, reduced to selling his paintings for liquor in the Shields hostelries.

For 80 years he was buried in a pauper's grave in Preston Cemetery, North Shields, and only recently has his reputation been salvaged.

New Haiku

In Tales from the Leaking Boot, Matt Black, the 2013 Derbyshire Poet Laureate, escorts us through the lemon groves, fish markets and Vodaphone ringtones of Turkey, through the streets of Austin, Texas and finally to the amusement arcades and shell-strewn beach of Cleethorpes. These four travel journals of wide-eyed, sharp and humorous haiku lead the reader on a road trip.

Three Blue Beans is the latest in IRON Press's long running series of small haiku books, to accompany the reprint of the author's previous IRON Press haiku collection, Our Sweet Little Time, which also covered a year of the poet's life.

New Fiction

Why did Joe dodge his shift down the mine and what happened when his brother took his place? Can a computer get angry? Why did an encounter with an upturned glass so terrify a group of newsmen? Can new babies communicate without speaking?

These and other intriguing questions are posed in The Leopard's Reward, Gerard Loughran's short stories written after years of foreign reporting and set in venues as far apart as Africa today and yesterday, France during World War One, ancient Tarsus, everyday Britain and outer space.

The author has now returned to his native North East to write his fiction. In his early years of journalism, Gerard Loughran worked for both the Evening Chronicle and the Northern Echo.

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