The Emma Press Anthology of the Sea


Anthology of the SeaEdited by Eve Lacey

Illustrated by Emma Wright

Paperback ISBN 978-1-910139-45-5
Publication date: 20th October 2016
80 pages / 33 poems / 10 illustrations

Price: £10 (paperback)/£5.50 (ebook)

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The poems in The Emma Press Anthology of the Sea ask how the human mind can fathom the ocean’s depths. Poets explore the environmental implications of our actions on the waters which nourish us, and embark on voyages of self-discovery.



‘The sea is powerful, raging, angry, delightful, destructive, calming… it is all these things at once and that is something which is explored in these poems. In a world where issues of climate change and ocean power are discussed as second nature, the skilful poets contained within this fascinating book give the sea its voice back. […] These poems explore the ways in which our relationship with the sea changes as we grow older and certainly provoke thought on the subject, long after the final poem has been read and the raging storm of the sea has calmed. Thoroughly recommended.’ – LiteratureWorks

‘Eve Lacey’s selection carries us through a multitude of emotional landscapes with confidence and ease, thanks to the distinct voices and compelling points of view of the chosen poets. […] The poems in this anthology stand alone, but also spark off each other in interesting ways; the whole satisfyingly adds up to more than the sum of it’s parts’ – James O’Leary, Sabotage Reviews

The Emma Press Anthology of the Sea is a captivating, diverse and perceptive collection that expertly plumbs the complex depths of our relationships with the sea. […] ‘ – Aoife Lyall

‘I landed belatedly on this collection and I’m kicking myself for not exploring it earlier. As a non-swimmer with a sensible wariness of water, I do enjoy the sea – from a distance. Some of these well-chosen poems plunge you right in and under the water and are gripping but somewhat scary. Others skirt the edges of the sea or bob about on its surface, leaving me feeling slightly safer if a bit queasy. But what a collection it is.’ – Judy Gordon, Write Out Loud

‘The Emma Press Anthology of the Sea is an amphibious little book as much concerned with internal states of mind as physical realities; a stance which frames this heavily anthologized topic in a fresh and modern way. From Coleridge’s Rime of the Ancient Mariner to The Seafarer, literature is awash with compelling stories and poems about the oceans but so much of our relationship with the sea has been concerned with conquest, of harnessing its power to our own ends, mastering territory, and of over-riding currents and (trade) winds. This little book is not concerned with such matters.’ – Sarah Westcott, Poetry School


About the editor

Eve LaceyEve Lacey is from Brighton and lives in Cambridge, where she works as a librarian. She is the editor of Furies, an anthology of contemporary women’s poetry published by For Books’ Sake in 2014.


About the poets

Natalya Anderson is a writer and former ballet dancer from Toronto, Canada. She won the Bridport Prize in 2014 for her poem ‘Clear Recent History.’ Her poems and feature writing have appeared in Poetry London, Prac Crit, The Moth and elsewhere.

Yvonne Baker has been published widely in magazines, including Artemis, Acumen and Orbis. She recently had a poem published in Second Light’s anthology Fanfare.

Kaddy Benyon is a Granta New Poet and has been highly commended in the Forward Prizes. Her first collection, Milk Fever, won the Crashaw Prize and was published by Salt in 2012. She is currently writing her second collection during a residency at the Scott Polar Research Institute in Cambridge.

Claire Booker works as a medical herbalist in London. Her poems have appeared in Ambit, Magma, The Morning Star, The North, Orbis, The Rialto and New Welsh Reader among others. Her stage plays have been performed in the UK, Europe, Australia and America. She is currently associate writer with Goblin Baby Theatre.

Nancy Campbell is a writer and visual artist whose work examines the polar regions and water conservation. Recent books include How To Say ‘I Love You’ In Greenlandic, which won the Birgit Skiöld Award in 2013, and her debut poetry collection Disko Bay (Enitharmon, 2015) which was shortlisted for the 2016 Forward Prize for Best First Collection.

Geraldine Clarkson has always wanted to live by the sea but is possibly living at the furthest point away from it in Warwickshire. She spent childhood summers on the wild Atlantic coast of Ireland. She is showcased in Primers Volume 1 from Nine Arches Press and ‘Dora…’ is the title poem of her new Laureate’s Choice pamphlet (smith|doorstop, October 2016).

Holly Corfield Carr received an Eric Gregory Award in 2012. She works on site-specific commissions, writing at sea, underground or in a car park. Her poem ‘Aft’ was installed on a ferry service in Bristol Harbour and performances for an 18th-century crystal grotto were published as a pamphlet in 2014.

Ellie Danak is an Edinburgh-based poet with a background in researching Swedish crime novels. Her poems have been published in a wide range of anthologies and magazines. She is on the Scottish Book Trust’s New Writers Awards 2016 shortlist.

Katherine Gallagher is a widely-published poet resident in North London. She has five full-length poetry collections, most recently Carnival Edge: New & Selected Poems (Arc, 2010) – ‘its natural territory the exotic and unknown, the fringe and carnivalesque’ (The Poetry Review). Her next collection, Acres of Light, is due in 2016.

Rebecca Goss’s second collection, Her Birth (Carcanet/Northern House, 2013), has been shortlisted for the 2013 Forward Prize for Best Collection, the Warwick Prize for Writing 2015 and the 2015 Portico Prize for Literature. In 2014 she was selected for The Poetry Book Society’s Next Generation Poets.

Brian Grant grew up in Ireland and now lives in Whitstable, Kent. This is his first published poem.

Jan Heritage has an MA in Creative Writing from Royal Holloway and has had poems published in several magazines and anthologies. Back in the day she was Faber’s Promotions Manager. Now she teaches yoga in Brighton.

Paul Howarth was born in Chester and now lives in Suffolk with his wife and two boys. He works promoting reading through libraries and beyond, contributing to various national and regional reader development projects. He has poems published by the Emma Press (Slow Things) and The Next Review.

Sarah Howe’s Loop of Jade (Chatto & Windus, 2015) won the T. S. Eliot prize and was shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best First Collection. Her debut pamphlet, A Certain Chinese Encyclopedia, won an Eric Gregory Award in 2010. She is a Fellow at the Radcliffe Institute, Harvard University.

Kavita A. Jindal is the author of the poetry collection Raincheck Renewed. Her short story, ‘A Flash of Pepper’, won the Vintage Books/Foyles Haruki Murakami prize. Her work has appeared in literary journals, anthologies and newspapers around the world and has been broadcast on BBC Radio 4.

Angela Kirby was born in Lancashire and now lives in London. She has been a chef, garden designer, journalist and written five non-fiction books. Her widely-published poems have won several prizes, including BBC Wildlife Poet of the Year, 1995 and 2001. Her fourth collection is The Days After Always (Shoestring Press, 2015).

Joan Lennon lives in Fife. She is by day a novelist and short story writer, but by night she’s all poet. Her first pamphlet, Her Lines, My Lines, was commissioned by the BOOKMARK Book Festival in 2014 and illustrated by the wildly talented Kyla Tomlinson.

Julie Maclean, based on the Surf Coast, Australia, is the author of Kiss of the Viking; To Have to Follow, a collaboration with Terry Quinn; and When I saw Jimi (Indigo Dreams, 2013), which won the Geoff Stevens Poetry Prize and was shortlisted for the Crashaw Prize. Her chapbook Lips That  Did is due out in 2017 with Dancing Girl Press.

Amy McCauley’s poetry has appeared widely in magazines and anthologies, including The Poetry of Sex (Viking), Hallelujah for 50ft Women (Bloodaxe) and Best British Poetry 2015 (Salt). Amy is a PhD candidate at Aberystwyth University and poetry editor for New Welsh Review.

Simon McCormack’s poems have appeared in a number of magazines including The Rialto, Interpreter’s House and The Poetry Review. His pamphlet, A History of Scraps, is published by Erbacce Press.

Joseph Minden’s poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Tears in the Fence, PN Review, The Literateur and elsewhere. He recently completed a residency at The Koppel Project, out of which came his first pamphlet, Soft Hans. He regularly collaborates with composer Laurence Osborn and artist Kat Addis.

Sara Nesbitt Gibbons’ poems have been published in journals and anthologies and performed as theatre, as well as commended
and listed in poetry competitions. Her mother smoked fish and dressed crabs. Sara’s archived blog on wearing everything she had is at

Genevieve Osborne lives in Sydney, Australia. She holds an MLitt in Creative Writing from the University of Sydney. Her poems have appeared in various journals including Southerly, Meanjin and Island. She was joint winner of the Henry Lawson Prize for Poetry 1999 and runner-up in the Gwen Harwood Poetry Prize 2007.

Megan Pattie lives on the North East coast, where she co-hosts popular poetry night The Stanza and is completing a Masters in Poetry at Durham University. She was a Foyle Young Poet of the Year in 2009 and her work has appeared in Paper and Ink, Parallel, and more.

Susan Richardson is a Wales-based poet, performer and educator. Her third poetry collection, skindancing, themed around human-animal metamorphosis and exploring our intimacy with, and alienation from, the wild and our animal selves, was published by Cinnamon Press in 2015. She is currently poet-in-residence with the Marine Conservation Society.

Jacqueline Saphra’s The Kitchen of Lovely Contraptions (flipped eye) was nominated for the Aldeburgh First Collection Prize. The Saboteur Award-winning If I Lay on my Back I Saw Nothing but Naked Women was published by the Emma Press in 2014 and All My Mad Mothers is due from Nine Arches Press in 2017.

Claire Trévien is the Anglo-Breton author of Low-Tide Lottery (Salt, 2011), The Shipwrecked House (Penned in the Margins, 2013), and Astéronymes (Penned in the Margins, 2016). She founded Sabotage Reviews.

Anna Vaught is a secondary English teacher, one-to-one tutor, freelance writer, copywriter and mental health campaigner and advocate. Her debut novel, Killing Hapless Ally, was published by Patrician Press in 2016 and she is currently working on a new novel, a YA text, some short stories and a book for younger readers about coping with difficult emotions.

Diana Whitney writes across the genres in Southern Vermont. Her first book, Wanting It, was an indie bestseller and won the Rubery International Book Award in poetry. She is the poetry columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle, and her essays, poems, and reviews have appeared in The Rumpus, Salon, The Washington Post, and many more.

Sophie S. Wright grew up in London and now earns a living making science documentaries. A prizewinner in the Foyle and Tower Young Poet Awards, her work has also been published in tube carriages across the London Underground, and in a Macmillan anthology of children’s poems.
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