Neurosurgery in Iraq (2008)

Neurosurgery in Iraq was my first full collection.  Its poems were written over a fairly short period – probably 3 years or so – but range widely over events and landscapes, personal, political and historical.  Reading the collection now, it is clear that its dominant themes and subjects have endured in my work.  Issues of identity, family, personal and community histories (and silences), war and death, introduced here in the landscapes of Spain, England, Iraq and other places, are further explored in much of my work since.

‘a book that crosses borders… a work of nuance, with a subtle touch’ – Brian Turner, The Inky

The collection is available from Templar Poetry.


My Father at the May Day Marches

A million people flooding Madrid,
the flags like blossom.

It was a day of all days; you talked
of La Pasionaria, how she’d said

it was better to die on your feet
than live on your knees.

Then we walked on,
you silent amid the noise.


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