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The Crack Magazine


This Cullercoats

Various authors, IRON Press

Launched at the recent IRON OR festival in Cullercoats, this excellent anthology contains poetry, prose and mythology from six writers who live in the seaside village. Novelist Carole Clewlow comes at climate change from an oblique angle while Kitty Fitzgerald gives us ‘The Tragedy of William Pearson’, a dark story set in the aftermath of World War Two. The magnificent St. George’s Church in Cullercoats gets a mention in that story and it also plays a starring role in Peter Mortimer’s glorious slice of mythmaking ‘The Tallest Person Ever in Cullercoats’, in which the IRON Press editor tackles multiple universes and a 40ft person. There are three local poets represented too including Harry Gallagher, Josephine Scott and Pauline Plummer who gives us the magnificent ‘A Symphony for Cullercoats’. This warts and all look at modern Cullercoats presents us with everyone from “The wizened fisherman” to people arriving at the station at noon: “the loud bare-chested men / their bare-chested dogs beside them / chains glinting in the sunlight / of an oven-baked summer.”