Sunday, 23 October 2016

Summer will rise again

Two short poems from my recently released book 'the end of summer' (
Summer will come again
and the rain will stop spraying
the air like spilled pepper.
Leaves will stop crunching on the floor
and sleet will stop reducing
your shoes to tears.
The wind still stop slamming
shut your back door
and poppies will stop dancing
in the wind.
The mood will soften before
totally changing
and the blood in the sky
will change to a different texture,
Stripping away
the mistakes of the past.

There is no summer left
like a seaside shop on reduced hours
with one eye on the horizon.
No more summer
with the heavens thumping themselves
together trying to wake the sun up.
No more summer
and no more blue whispers in the sky
wanting to keep on dancing.
No more summer
pressed up to your nose
whispering I love you in your ears,
Or a gate which had been
swinging open
which now shatters like glass.  

Monday, 17 October 2016

The End of Summer is now available

As advertised previously, my second full length collection ‘The End of Summer’ has now been released by Goya Press.

Originally released in a hard to find limited print on demand run last year, this new version specially released by Goya Press contains new artwork, specially re-edited by the author and new additional material , the book was written over a five year period from 2011 to 2016.

Quoting what was wrote on Amazon the book was originally started as a creative way to show how the writer was dealing with a newly diagnosed major change in health, the book developed over time to talk about the change in season, in this case from the end of Summer into the beginning of Autumn, mirroring much more than just a change but an emotion that overcomes us all at major turning points in our lives.

Told often in taut, short little pieces, the book invites comparisons with the poet Hugo Williams but also shows a love of music through two of the author’s own favourite music groups with July Skies and Epic 45, which explores the Englishness of the countryside in sparse, echoing brush-strokes which often need more than one read to breath the images he portraits.

With an introduction by noted American writer, Amanda Silbernagel. ‘The End of Summer’ is a book that tunnels into memories, creating new emotions at the end of it.

(Press copies are available)

Some thoughts by fellow writers:

These are highly evocative poems, each one painting a distinctive picture in the mind. There are some beautiful images, loaded with melancholy and nostalgia, and some effective descriptions that come from left field.
Karen Little, Author of Filled with Ghosts, shortlisted for Saboteur Award, 2016.

A very special collection capturing the both the every-moment of perpetual seasons as well as the vital minutiae of daily life, all wrapped up a whirl of words like autumn leaves kicked up by the last of summer’s winds. Andy takes nature’s contradictions and her false promises and casts them over our human condition as hopeful and nostalgic disciples of the glorious sun and the beautiful snow. Nestled in the middle sits Andy’s powerful five-part reflection on the 2011 Manchester Riots which seem to burst from the pages like a thunderstorm, soaking us all to skin, only to be blown away again by the ebb of time and memory. This is how Andy’s poems work; brief illuminations as the sunlight breaks through the cloud, inviting contemplation and rewarding frequent repeated reads. Each piece is its own finely-cut gem awaiting your discovery, each as precious as the last. Set some time aside and dive in, before the light fades…"
Dave Hartley, Author of Spiderspeed

Andy N is a true innovator and emerging powerhouse in the poetry genre. He combines haunting and vivid imagery with historical anecdotes that create a unique experience for any reader.

Andy's style mimics some of the compositions we revere from yesteryear, shedding a shadowy light on personal experiences as well as the tales of many others 'in a candid way signature of his style and touch.
Keith Fuchs aka Myth the Poet

Brave, human and elegant. Touching the sensitive parts of the marvels of schools, parks, funerals, rain, cars, rock t-shirts and mercy. To connect the personal and universal my friend the poet has been busy, digging into the mystery of the ordinary life. 'Words soaked in the northern seasons. Imagery animating the deserted and people landscapes of woods, roads and bridges. Moments in the moonlight. Scenes fading into scent and tears 'runs hot and cold with the warmth of family and the icy nothing of the waiting grave. Pleased to be a fellow Mancunian and a fellow writer with a man who possesses such a voice.
Jude Cowan Montague, The News Agents

Andy writes the type of poetry that you feel as well as read. Every poem is beautifully crafted and perfectly emotive. I can’t recommend Andy’s poetry enough. There are readers out there who struggle with poetry but these words can speak to anyone and I can promise they will leave you craving more
Stephanie Williams

Andy has a way of turning the seasons into his canvas. He writes with such rawness about love and loss and connects grandiose images to delicate moments with skill and ease. The back and forth pattern between the natural and the intimate is melodic. His use of photographs interspersed between the poems provides a lovely picturesque context into the poet’s emotions. Andy balances the serious with the humourous throughout his work.

In his poem, “Out of Reach,” he begins the poem “Our hotel room felt like/ a battered birdcage,” but then juxtaposes those beautifully somber lines with ones that read, “like one of your/ constantly starving cats” written just two lines below.

To use his own words, Andy’s poetry is “buried in silent magic.” Reading The End of Summer is like looking in the mirror, and rediscovering yourself in “a wordless language.” There are poems in this book for all readers, all seasons, and all stages of love and loss."
Jocelyn Mosman, Author of Soul Meets Body.

A wistful collection, laced with melancholy and longing.
Emma Whitehall

What does autumn mean to you? This collection observes the changing seasons of life, and how even the distant prospect of change can shape your present. So, so, relevant to us all. Haunting.

Just finished reading your book, and wow, I expected to feel emotional after that but not so much!
I like the recurring theme of the end of summer throughout the poems, it somehow feels as if it is a summer difficult to let go.
I loved that piece from "Journey":
"And the air smelling pepper before chocking out soot like it was holding onto the sky,
Asking you to wait behind the line while dancing on diamonds as the journey home never felt more far away." I found it very evocative and I could perceive the painful and anxious waiting of the arrival.
I found the poem "Womb" very enigmatic, and I liked a lot the sharp contrast between the sunrise and the war, and not being able to forgive, it is a poem made of multiple flavours.
Among my favourites:
-"Almost from the beginning", I like a lot the imagery and the way it's written, as if the most important part is timidly left at the end.
-"The end of summer", I love the imagery, so evocative and intense, it feels as if it was an animated painting!
-"Migration", really resonates with me and reminded me of some old memories which are painful looking at, and that I somehow left there, in the places where I have been living.
-I particularly loved the second part of "Summer will rise again", the imagery is so intense and I was really able to picture the images and the feelings you were describing, I felt them on my skin and nearly shivered, as if I was feeling the cold after summer breeze on the seaside, and the sense of loneliness of desert streets, closed shops and ended love! I loved it!
-"End of the world", very evocative of smells, colours and imagery
-"Staircase in the Wind", it's just so beautiful and so unconventional!
-"Threads of a Jumper", moved me and resonated with me and my past memories... I sometimes too think about all the people in my past, and all the memories spent together, which some of them are gone, and I find myself somehow crossing them out my life with a sharp, painful final gesture.
-"Swallows and Amazons", I just love it!
-Nice turn in the end of "Next Summer", which caused a nod in my throat and nearly made me cry, so beautifully painful the end, so intense and melancholic... it felt nearly unfair to have it at the end of the book, and to be left with that bunch of unspeakable tears.
Thank you very much for sharing this with me, if felt as a nice present to enjoy in autumnal nights, just now that the summer ends.

Poets, and indeed a discerning public, know instinctively that poetry is much more than structured words.  Poetry is communication, it is compassion, and perhaps most of all community.  Over the last decade or so, Andy N has emerged as a poet with belief in the People`s voice.  His provision to young people in particular, (but not exclusively), of a platform for their work through his Spoken Label has the true respect of his peers.

Some poets write for specific, (often literary), audiences - many indeed never revealing anything of their inner selves in the process.  We never truly know what they`re thinking as they strive hard to impress with their knowledge.  These traits cannot be attributed to Andy N - his writing is reality itself, aimed at real people with real problems in an unforgiving World.  His observer`s pen reveals a tender and touching vista of freshly remembered past friendships, fading souvenir shops signalling The End of Summer and indeed the spontaneous fire-starting, (which was the Manchester riots 2011), graphically described in Edges of the Flames 1 to V - which surely must rank as a modern urban masterpiece.  (II. The looters who breathed white-hot flames with the rage of splattered hammers.  III.  Their cigarette lighter humming for a second before being thrown in cars.  IV.  Flames danced high a hip-hop re-imagining of The Wicker Man in the fire.)

We all seek clues in order to make some sense of our busy and sometimes muddled lives.  Andy`s clues are different, a treasure hunt rather than detective novel.  His great talent is to watch and walk away unseen.  Furthermore, he`s a poet unafraid to reach for and describe moments he can`t quite hold on to.  Happiness`s and intensities quietly slipping away, poignant memories in hotel rooms - all with the apparent absence of regret of the accurate observer.  Andy`s words are often adventure(s) best left unexplored - memories ...gathered in forgotten shadows.  In his own words he unpicks the lock (of his heart) and walks away without regret.

The End of Summer is a collection ranking Andy N with a new wave of People`s Poets freeing themselves from an overbearingly literary approach to the poetic art.  Our Summer`s are indeed ending - at least as we knew them.  No longer can July and August be regarded as prime English holiday months.  We should treasure the memories portrayed in this book - for all too soon global warming will disrupt them forever,  Indeed, we are left weeping daily for the return of Summer.

What better than to sum up Andy N`s talents than with a quote.

Imagination is more important than knowledge.  Albert Einstein 1929

Lead us with your imagination Andy N - the pleasure of the journey will be all ours.
Potting Shed Pete

Andy N delved deep into The End of Summer…, with Parts 1 and 2 of Summer will Rise Again.  Again, more wonderful lines of seasonal sorrow: ‘There was no more summer left, no more blue whispers in the sky’ really grabbed my ear. There was also a beautiful personification of Summer itself, speaking to us with enormous sadness as if regretful of its impending demise.
John Keane

Like the second album the second collection is probably the most difficult. With echoes of the first Andy smoothes this transition, blending light with dark. It may be 'The End of Summer ', But the collection doesn't herald a winter of discontent.
Gordon Zola

Andy's collection feels crisp like the fallen leaves, that have started to colour in the autumn sun. A perfect read for shorter days and for cosy nights infront of the fire.
Marie Lightman

A captivating mix of emotion and greatly entertaining.
Katie Haigh