WILD NATURE POETRY AWARD competition now open.

Daphne Milne trained as a painter but had to stop when BC treatment prevented her, physically, from painting. She returned to writing and has been published in magazines and anthologies both in print and on line. Her work is informed by her painting and by her time as artist in residence to the Northern Chamber Orchestra


She also writes short stories, flash fiction and prose poems which vary from the darkly humorous to the vaguely sinister.

Daphne moved to Australia from Cornwall in January this year. She has no intention of moving further south.


Daphne reads regularly at Perth Poetry club,  and was the ‘feature poet’ earlier in the year. She has also read at the Perth Festival fringe and has just recorded a podcast for ILAA radio magazine.


She also writes short stories, flash fiction and prose poems which vary from the darkly humorous to the vaguely sinister. She is currently working on a flash novella, a collection of short stories and a further collection of poetry.





138 x 216mm


34 pages


£6.00 + P&P UK


ISBN 978-1-912876-01-3


PUB: 07/01/2019









The Blue Boob Club


Daphne Milne



The Blue Boob Club gives us a brisk canter through the experience of breast cancer, the people involved in treatment, friends made, the effect on family.

There are references to painting, music, holidays, ornithology, and George Formby, amongst others.




"Anyone who can write about breast cancer and make me laugh has to be someone special. I love the way the poems are so distinctively Daphne’s. Look out for the Oncologist poem  if he calls me dear lady once more / I shall thump him, that’s not the half of her feelings for him. Nor half the joys in this book, either, as it looks at the difficulties of cancer with

such a wry eye."

Caroline Carver


"In spare, unsentimental language Daphne Milne charts her journey through diagnosis and treatment for breast cancer. With honesty and  humour she takes us on a roller-coaster ride, rich with suppressed emotion, the fear of dying hidden in a joke. This is an impressive debut pamphlet from a poet whose distinctive voice will stay with you long after you have finished reading."

Jenna Plewes


"Here’s a journey we all dread; one that Daphne Milne pulls you into, that you can’t/shouldn’t leave until you’ve reached the bittersweet end. These poems are clever, witty, sometimes sarcastic. Who else would have thought of comparing radiotherapy with Postman’s Knock? There are interjections of music, snippets of biting thought, a focus on the colour blue, pthalo blue – a school uniform sort of shade. I can’t remember being so moved by such an arc of an uncomfortable journey.

Graham Burchell



Last year’s paintings stay mute

in my studio


The stark white page waits

I make my marks


Writing’s easier to do in bed  

Pencil leaves no trace upon the sheets.




The Oncologist


uses the tone of voice reserved

for babies and small children


if he calls me dear lady once more

I shall thump him.


He has colleagues my age or older

bet he doesn’t speak to them like this

and he doesn’t to my partner.


But I’m a patient

and a woman  


I haven’t got a bus pass

a walking frame

a hearing aid


I do have all my own teeth

a full set of marbles

and a lump in my breast


which seems to give him the right

to tell me I’m good for my age.


Next time I see him I shall bring a pram

He’s so recently out of one it should still fit.




Now I’m 64


The Registrar asks Are you pregnant?

A startling thought at sixty four


I’m too busy living

to think of second childhoods

grabbing second chance before

my second childhood comes


If the youngster read the notes

he’d  assume I’m past all that

Wrong again – Yippee –

shenanigans without the consequences


also  the equipment was removed  

more than ten years back


It’s in the notes.






Pinpricks on the screen

miniscule exploding stars

travelling at light speed

or near enough to threaten.


Pinpricks on the skin

one  two  three in symmetry

registration marks clear

as any printed circuit.


It seems it is not too late

and I am not too old

to get a tattoo.

Daughter will be horrified.



The C Word and the F Word


Everybody tiptoes round it

whispering behind cold lips

looking askance  talking

hurriedly about the weather


The clinic’s a relief

No pussyfooting here

explanations measured

carefully as medicines


I am driven to the internet

vile computer that I hate

Another C word


full of complex information

if only I could get it out

I am as ignorant of computer speak

as I used to be of carcinoma.


Oh F…!

Don’t say it quietly

Say it fff.




Blue 2


Underneath the crisp white blouse

blue morphs into half a rainbow

mammaries become primaries

blue and yellow and shades between

traces of purple midnight lurk

in the wide yonder


Ruffle up that calm exterior

reach for the sherry

in the Bristol glass

sail from that west coast port

across uncharted waters

to the blue horizon




Small Thought in the Early Hours No. 2


The surgeon says no gardening this year

every neat-as-knitting stitch needs time to heal


The clematis at the end of the path

run rampant as metastases


They’re old varieties – Blue Tit and Pink Willy

unavailable now         I wonder why





skies clear and high over England

misleading as the threat of summer heat


the semi circle of the horizon

stained cobalt from sunup to evening


not clean ultramarine like southern France

snow capped Canegou retaining winter


here  all and anytime  cold winter

flesh dyed to guide the surgeon’s knife


pthalo blue on alabaster breast


Later a rough tattoo guidance for the killing rays

exorcising fragments  violating cells and self.                




Note: Blue dye is injected under the skin close to the tumour site to help identify the main lymph node for removal for diagnosis.

9781912876013 New ImagDaphne AMEND