Gareth Writer-Davies is a gardener from Letchworth, Hertfordshire, UK


He was shortlisted for the Bridport Prize and the Erbacce Prize in 2014 and also Highly Commended in the Geoff Stevens Memorial Prize in 2012 and 2013.


Gareth has been widely published over the last few years, in magazines such as Poetry News, The Journal, Bare Fiction, Ink, Sweat and Tears, A New Ulster, Sarasvati, The Delinquent.


He is a member of Poetry ID, the North Herts Stanza of The Poetry Society, for whom he has organised community events and a collection of Orwell inspired poetry.


His poetry has also been included in arts festivals within the UK.




Gareth Writer-Davies




ISBN 978-1-909357-71-6


Indigo Dreams Publishing




138 x 216mm


36 pages


£6.00 + P&P UK


PUB: February 2015












I have grown to respect you

For years I took you for granted

And I was losing you


But now

Head to toe

I have grown into you


And as a token of my love

I forgive my nose

I forgive my gut

I forgive my lachrymose eyes


And lying in the bath

I like your imagination

My knee a turtle

My penis magnified


I like my hair greying

The moles on my skin

I like the still hard muscle of my thighs


I love you

And now

I don't want to lose you




The Slim Shape


my mother was 36 24 36


I did not know what this meant

when I pushed in

the pointy tip of her bra

and watched it pop out again


it made me laugh

it made her laugh too


I like the boyish figure

slim hipped

not much of an arse


but I can never share my heart with those

whose clothes

take a straight line and hold to it


mother was a flirt

who married young

then thought better of it


but her round laugh

her round singsong head

was my first and only love


when the slim shape came in

she gave up and faded away at the edges


my mother was 36 24 36


but she

was without measure















Song Of The Hips

after Lucille Clifton


my hips are ships


my hips are strong / my hips are wide

my hips follow the tide


my hips are mighty hips

I am captain of these hips


my hips have a jolly crew

my hips fly the red / white and blue


my hips hold precious cargo / my hips have tattoos


my hips are ropes / my hips are sails

my hips have a mermaid on their prow


when seas are rough / my hips come around


my hips weigh anchor / my hips bear true

my hips are meant for you


ahoy! / my hips! / they are ships!




Gut Flora


to breast milk and intestinal mucosa

we give thanks


for each baby blooming with bacteria

we give thanks


a florist would charge an arm and a leg

for such a bouquet


we give thanks for spores

for the way

that each part of the body tidies

up after itself


and working like a smooth semiotic machine

the great intestinal gardener

gathers muck into the magic chamber of the bowel


which we treasure

to bring forth night soil

and flowers

from the effort of our daily toil


without the flora of our guts

we would be


too fatigued to raise our finger for a cuppa

to eat our supper


we would slowly waste away


for each protozoa

we give thanks



between parasite and host

there is always

a symbiotic relationship


so we pray

that forever there shall be

digestive harmony


a signifier

between good health

and catastrophe


















for my grand-children


the skin that I'm in

is hard

hoary like a tortoise


a kagoul is my shell


working in all weathers

there is always more to do


stones that gather

like scathed children  


that nothing will kill


I slowly munch through the roots

dig through dirt

to the bone


the skin that I'm in

is a carapace of keratin

that I've grown into


my hooded head

perfectly self contained


in a hundred years

though giant

I may be forgotten


but scrape your knees

and you shall know me



Ode To The Spleen


my spleen has enlarged

taking over the function of the heart


my spleen thuds

with the blood of ill humour


like a wasps nest hanging by a petiole

my spleen chews

capriciousness into poison


a reservoir of melancholy

my spleen burns

to exudate the blood

flood each vascular organ


my spleen withers

like a grape on the vine

the cup of death is the sweetest wine








“The poems in Bodies are viscerally beautiful. They have the beauty of viscera: rich, vital, and gleaming. In this pamphlet the world of the flesh is elevated, granted the transcendence of art. It reminds us that the body is, in truth, the medium for all art; 'For breast milk and intestinal mucosa we give thanks'. Read it and rejoice in the blunt wonder of living.”

Bethany W Pope


“‘The body is the great poem’ says Wallace Stevens. Following Stevens’ advice, these poems truly inhabit the body, inspecting various elements of the human body with wit, insight, productive curiosity, and assurance.  It is often said that to de-familiarize familiar experience is a task for poetry – and here the poet shakes us out of our complaisance about the body which we take so much for granted. These poems do indeed ‘sing the body electric’ in poems that are fresh, exciting and immediate.”

Penelope Shuttle


“Gareth Writer-Davies has the ability to be playful, yet leave you feeling an underlying sense of hurt, of pathos. His poems are often witty, yet you feel here is a poet who can not only turn somersaults but can take the reader on the tumbling journey of words, images and language with him. This poet understands duende.”

Geraldine Green








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