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Philip Burton - a Palewell Press author

Philip Burton’s love of readings and performance developed through life as an English and Drama teacher, Lancashire head teacher, folksinger, amateur actor, and as a poetry practitioner who, as Pip The Poet, has provided hundreds of poetry days for schools and for adult learners. He was born in Dunfermline and raised in Ramsgate, Kent. Dyslexia was a problem for him as a child; he went on to study science at Edinburgh University. He received a commendation from Heidi Williamson in The Poetry Society Stanza poetry competition, 2020, for his poem on the theme of dyslexia.

Over three hundred and seventy of his poems have been published in literary magazines including Stand, P.N. Review, and Smiths Knoll. His poems have been widely anthologized appearing in anthologies such as Best of Manchester Poets, Puppywolf, and Peace Poems Anthology by Commonword / Crocus Books in March 2003. In 2019, Philip held four First prizes concurrently in national or international poetry competitions: the National Arts Centre Jack Clemo poetry competition, 2019, the Horwich Writers Hate Crime Awareness poetry competition 2018, the Sandwich (Kent) Poet of the Year award, 2018, and the BARN OWL TRUST poetry competition, 2017.

Winning poetry prizes meant that Philip has met, and had the experience of reading on the same platform as Adrian Mitchell, Gillian Clarke, Penelope Shuttle, Michael Schmidt and Kei Miller. He arrived at The Green Room as “a new voice come to Manchester”, and appeared in 2000 on the same bill as Adrian Mitchell at The Burnley Arts Festival. Philip attended a University of the Third Age poetry appreciation group in Todmorden for three years and is a member of Clitheroe Writers Group and the Ribble Valley Stanza of The Poetry Society. For six years he has judged the Burnley Writers’ Circle annual poetry competition, and was appointed as Honorary President of that organization in 2019. He has given a number of workshops at the NAWE yearly conference; and has also been a mentor with NAWE.

Previous poetry publications include The Raven’s Diary (joe publish 1998), Couples (Clitheroe Books Press 2008), and His Usual Theft (Indigo Dreams Press 2017).

Palewell Press published Philip's fourth collection, Gaia Warnings in April 2021.

Review in the Segora Spring Newsletter

Gaia Warnings by Philip Burton, Palewell Press, is an urgent rallying cry to the public to engage with the environment.

The New Forest Child asks:
Where is the forest where children play? Is it out back?

The reply is:
‘Oh no we are terribly modern.
Hardstanding and gravel . . . to ensure each child stays within vision,
is clean and learns not to care.’

Philip has supported Segora over many years and lives in Lancashire very close to where my parents were born and where Gordon worked for several years. We did not meet during that time – it took our joint love of poetry to bring us together. I’ll leave you with a thought expressed in Wheat Sheds a Tear:

‘envenomed rain, the ham-fisted doling of chemical fixes,
billions in each gram of soil – the knowing
next winter will widen the river
and rip-tides dissolve
all scent of life.’

An informative and necessary collection for all who care about the planet.