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Smokestack Books are a Middlesbrough based publisher who seek to promote poets who don’t reside in ivory towers; poets who like to get out and about;
and poets who feel that poetry shouldn’t just reflect society, but also be very much part of it. One such poet is Tynemouth based (and regular columnist for The Journal) Kate Fox. This book draws from previous collections, and also features plenty of new stuff, in which Fox reflects on the various travails and quirks of modern life in her own inimitable style. In ‘Run’ she is assailed by young toughs shouting abuse out of a car window while she is out jogging (“Run, you fat cow!”). It’s a great example of her style as she goes on to reason, in the most liberal of manners, that their uncouthness is probably the result of a whole range of social conditioning, before reasoning: “perhaps it was because / they are knobs”. Self deprecating and wry throughout, this is poetry that is both accessible, true and wise.