LATEST BOOK Sleeping With You and other night time adventures published by Indigo Dreams Publishing (December 2011) at £7.99 + p&p available to order from all good bookstores or via the publisher’s author page (Click here.)   Until solicitors, probate and the Inland Revenue have sorted themselves out, none of Geoff’s back issues of Purple Patch or other self-published magazines is available. As soon as that happens, this website and the Geoff Stevens Facebook Page will be updated. Please bear with us. Over the last 30 years, until his death in 2012, Geoff Stevens has been one of Britain's most published poets.  He has also read his work to audiences across the country, and was a founder member of the poetry performance team called Unleaded Petrels, along with Alex Barzdo, Brendan Hawthorne, and Keith Melbourne. While working as an industrial chemist, his initial writing consisted of historical articles for The Blackcountryman, the journal of The Black Country Society, for which he was the Director of their Industrial Archaeology group. He also wrote for regional magazines and many others. His first verse writings were in Black Country dialect, a genre still popular in his home area. In 2003, by popular demand, he produced a CD of such items with Brendan Hawthorne called “A Black Country Loff”. But dialect poetry has long been a minor part of his repetoire, though they composed at least 50% of his early public readings at The Stuffed Whippet Folk Club in Lower Gornal and the West Midlands Arts funded Dudley Poetry Centre at the New Inns in Coseley. At this mid 1970's period, poetry in standard English began to take over in his writings and when he met Olive Hyatt at a Writers' Club in Dudley Library, they decided in 1976 to start a magazine. It was duplicated in purple ink and was called Purple Patch. Soon it was being sold to friends, in clubs, and on subscription and enjoyed the highest circulation of its publication (see the Purple Patch  website). Geoff was also sending his poems to other magazines with moderate success. There was an attempt to boost public awareness of small press poetry magazines when he formed F.A.I.M.(The Federation for Advancement of Independent Magazines) with Dee Rimbaud's Dada Dance, Sepia, Vigil, Periaktos, Magpie's Nest, and a number of other publications). A magazine called Promotion was introduced to highlight individual poets and included Hilary Mellon, Michael Newman, Robert Cole, Andy Botterill and Geoff himself in the first edition. The instigation in 1980 of a series of Small Press Poetry Conventions by TOPS magazine, the first in Liverpool, was a major contact breakthrough for poets across the Country. After a break in the long run of annual events across England and Wales, Geoff revived it in the late 1990's at The Barlow Theatre, Langley near Birmingham. In the meantime, he had joined the steering committee of Spouting Forth, as a founding member, and they had introduced monthly poetry readings at the same theatre, and also issued a number of publications. Later, after leaving Spouting Forth, he won, along with Wayne Dean- Richards, their competition for a book consisting of the work of two writers. His poetry and Wayne's stories appeared in At The Edge/Central To Me. Geoff's poetry acceptances by magazines began to zoom and in the 1990's he was having over 200 poems published each year. A collection in co-operation with Paul Weinman, Skin Print, was published in the U.S.A., funded by their National Endowment for the Arts. He became the U.K. Editor of Slugfest Ltd. Literary Magazine, an American publication. Further diversification was to occur after his meeting with Brendan Hawthorne in 2001. There were radio appearances, his first since 1980, when he had broadcast from Edgbaston Test Cricket Ground to the hospital radio service, and local poetry readings were reestablished under the banner of Poetry Wednesbury. Audio recordings on CD followed and a film by Josia Mason's Media Studies Dept. His paintings and poetry were the subject of a CD. As well as Poetry Wednesbury, which is organised with Brendan Hawthorne, Geoff has taken over Spouting Forth's Barlow Theatre Readings and has joined with Alex Barzdo and Brendan to form Unleaded Petrels in order to expand their performance opportunities. In 2004 Geoff's most substantial book to date, The Phrenology of Anaglypta published by Bluechrome - see Publications page. His next book was A Keelhauling Through Ireland and his latest is Islands in the Blood (see above). the details of which are boring childhood in the industrial black country the details of which are boring school reached across the marl-holed fields the details of which are boring then on to a Tom Brown senior school the details of which are boring earning a living in a chemical laboratory the details of which are boring then marriage and trying to settle down the details of which are boring followed by divorce and living alone the details of which are boring a beginning to write poetry for publication the details of which are boring the reading of his work to an audience the details of which are boring until struck down by a series of illnesses the details of which are boring and finally death after much discomfort the details of which are boring and so to the obituaries in the newspapers and a life which was rich & exciting  THE ASYLUM YEARS I never believed them, those aficionados of music that bragged how they could pick out an individual note, from one obscure instrument, among the sounds of a full orchestra. But when we lay, the other evening, locked in each other's bedtime warmth, listening to the Asylum Years of Tom Waits, the diamond ice forming on the windshield of the night, and Blue Valentines, a thing of history for both of us, much like Tom Traubert's Blues are to you, and Ruby's Arms are now to me, and with the late revellers not yet carousing downKentucky Avenue under a Grapefruit Moon, I reckon I could hear, below the Burma Shave, the soft music of the Melatron, playing within the nippled softness of your body, next to mine. And for the first time, I believed them, those music men. But then, I thought, so sad knowing that such sounds exist, but having to listen for them on recordings, when they could have had the real thing, the warm, living, breathing, real thing, all the time.  A LOWRY-KAHLO COLLABORATION USING APPARATUS AUCTIONED BY SALFORD COLLEGE OF FURTHER EDUCATION, AND MULTI-MEDIA IMAGINATION Three unequal white walls darkness broken by a narrow strip where vertical green light cuts to a baseline prism and sends its minus green colours over a floor where a woman with one eyebrow wearing an iron corset and leg-irons sits, under a lemon tree, on a stuffed zebra a monkey riding a plastic duck on wheels on a lead held by her gloved hand while in an adjoining room the report of Trotsky's assassination is blaring in a commentary from Pathe News which has been attached to a film of ordinary life which is being played upside down. This is a place where the Southern Hemisphere and Manchester meet. City have not won the Premier League and Cotopaxi has not erupted for years. FIXED WHEEL You never forget the smell of suds oil or the noise of the machinery though you only had to walk through to get to Big George for a sample of his molten cyanide for laboratory testing and a few bottom-bracket axles for sectioning to check the depth of case hardening. They'd used the main Nottingham machine shop in the film Saturday Night and Sunday Morning but the one here at Smethwick was much the same full of the sickly stench with its acrid bite at the back of the throat and a bedlam that battered the eardrums. And it was filled with about the same proportions of old blokes, family wage earners, and young Arthur Seatons coming to work on their bikes along the cut eating their snap amongst the machines at lunchtime riding back home for a wash and after tea a night out at the pub or perhaps taking a girl to the pictures and seeing what they could get afterwards on the way home in the dark. And you never forget the quietness of the night the smell of her perfume the odour of the suds oil or the noise of machinery until the day that you die. SCUPPERED at the Mermaid, Hugh Town, St. Mary's, Isles of Scilly A pint of "Scuppered" anxiously awaits the taste of baconed bread with brie, the local, with the grey beard, taps his watch at me and volunteers that he has his eye on the time that orders take. "We're timin' 'em tonight", he says before asking where I've been today. Bryher, I tell him, and say St. Martins tomorrow, is that alright? What's it like? And someone says that its the centre of world culture and I say that where I come from the only culture we get comes floating on top of the gravy, and it gets a laugh and while I'm at the bar, I get another pint of scuppered, and a white wine spritzer for you. The room is full of conversation and all the paraphenalia of the sea is hanging on the ceiling and the walls. The Aussie barman disappears and returns with our order. Bacon and brie dissolves with beer and wine, and outside, the gulls are drowning the sound of the waves. What more could we want? T All writings and pictures on this website are copyright Geoff Stevens