Viking gardeners and Kylie Minogue…Poet’s Corner with Phil Poyser.
Friday 10th July 2015 @ 08:31 by Anna Fletcher
Poet's Corner

Ever heard of a gardener who is positive he has Viking ancestry? Well you can meet him and many more characters in Phil Poyser’s delightful debut Eric Bloodaxe and Other Verse.

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Phil visiting the Tameside Radio studio.

Phil has been writing all his life, however it was after fellow poet Brian Patton visited Macclesfield that he became really inspired and began to write on a more regular basis.

His verse is mostly slanted towards the comedic and Phil takes inspiration from other poets such as Pam Ayres, Wendy Cope and Les Barker.

He is also a member of the Macclesfield Creative Writer’s Group which he says is incredibly important in his writing.

He continued: “It is a very supportive group and the people there are quite experienced. It was started just over four years ago by poet Joy Winkler who was the Cheshire Poet Laureate in 2005.

“The great thing about a group like that is instead of just waiting for ideas to pop into your head the group will provide you with ideas in areas you may never have gone.”

Along with the writer’s group Phil also attends a number of writer’s events including an Open Mic event at the Snow Goose in the town.

His number one bit of advice for writers is getting out to these events and groups saying: “I would suggest write what you enjoy writing and join in with other people doing a similar thing. There are lots of writing groups around and that gives you the support, the stimulus and takes you to places you may not have thought of going yourself and gives you the opportunity to expand the kinds of fields that you write about.”

Before retirement, Phil was a chemist by training, but now spends his days writing, cycling and working in his allotment.

In fact last Summer he and a friend cycled from Land’s End to John ‘O’ Groats raising £4000 for Prostate Cancer UK.

The charity is close to Phil’s heart and all of the proceeds from Eric Bloodaxe are going to Prostate Cancer UK which is so far £750.

Phil chose to go down the self-publishing route for his first book and is happy to do it again for his second volume of poetry Second’s Out which is due out in August.

On self-publishing, Phil says: “I think it opens up the field to people who otherwise would find it very difficult to get that first effort off the ground and it’s accessible to anyone who is a bit computer savvy.”

“I’m a bit of a Luddite when it comes to computers so I had help,” Phil admits, “but I do love it. I love Google it is very useful as a writer to have all of these answers at your fingertips. I have an encyclopaedia sitting on a shelf that I never go to now, but it used to be the source of all knowledge.”

Phil agrees that poetry is having a bit of a welcome resurgence and says he could find an event to go every night of the week.

He said: “I wouldn’t say I am particularly happy on my feet but you find that the audience wants you to be good, they want you to do well so in fact it is very easy though I don’t think I would survive for long in a proper slam.”

Eric Bloodaxe and Other Verse is available from Amazon, Macclesfield Town Hall or from Phil himself on [email protected]