Mervyn Linford - Poet   



Mervyn Linford has been writing poetry for more than four decades.

He has won, been runner-up and highly commended in a number of national and local poetry competitions including: The Hastings Open Poetry Competition, The John Clare Cup and The Douglas Gibson Memorial Poetry Competition.

His work has been published in numerous magazines and periodicals such as: Acumen, Outposts, Orbis, Staple, Weyfarers, Sol, Smiths Knoll, Seam, Romantic Renaissance, The Poet Tree, A Bard Hair Day, ImageNation, Earth Love, Peace and Freedom, Candelabrum, Iota, Rubies in the Darkness, The Essex Countryside Magazine, PN Review, The London Magazine, The Countryman, The Independent Newspaper, Curlew Magazine and The French Literary Review.

His work has also been broadcast on both local and national radio.
He has been a member of the Southend Poetry Group for nearly forty years and regularly gives public readings and talks about both his prose and his poetry.

He has judged a number of poetry competitions for both children and adults and was the editor of Littoral Magazine for two years. Of his eleven published collections of poetry two are now out of print: Two Essex Poets - with Frederic Vanson - and Talking to the Bees; both published by The Brentham Press of St Albans.
Of Two Essex Poets it was said: 'Linford is a man with a notebook out in the landscape of Essex……. I thoroughly enjoyed all his poems and look forward to his next collection. Two Essex Poets is definitely a book to treasure.' Angela Topping - ORE.

Michael Schmidt said of Talking to the Bees: 'I think it rather remarkable that, given the quality of the work, you have not yet found a publisher. I should imagine that one of the other smaller presses or indeed one of the larger commercial houses will, in the near future, succumb to your work. I certainly hope so.' Carcanet - 1992.
He has several collections of poetry available for purchase at the present time: see the Littoral Press catalogue page. Autumn Manuscript - a collection of 48 poems concerning themselves with the nature, people, landscapes and seascapes of Essex. Of this collection it was said: 'Linford is a craftsman of the finest sort. He carves meaning and metaphor, observation and emotion, into dynamic shapes - leaving no unpolished images.'
Hilary Mellon - SOL.

His collection The Beatitudes of Silence is a spiritual journey through the seasons, comprising 64 poems written entirely in a sonnet form he devised for himself. He uses pararhyme and enjambment so as to keep an underlying structure to the poems without the rhymes and the rhythms becoming too obvious and predictable.
Of this collection it was said: 'There are some lovely and fully achieved poems here.'
Harry Chambers - Peterloo Poets.

His latest poetry collection ‘Credo’ was published by the Mica Press of Wivenhoe, Essex in 2017. Of this collection it was said: ‘Mervyn Linford’s Credo....... his main focus is his relationship with nature, chiefly in the context of the Essex estuaries... questioning how his natural environment formed and continues to form him. Everything is immediate and first hand as, with echoes of Wordsworth and Joyce, he is smithied by nature.’
- Tim Cunningham

‘His atmosphere and tone are what makes his work so distinctive. These poems...convey a strong sense of affinity with the landscape.’ - Neil Leadbeater

His book length autobiographical poem ‘The Fobbing Horse’ - ‘From Suffolk Punch to Cyberspace’ is available from the website, along with poems and a prose essay in the book ‘Two Tree Island’ - an area that he has been obsessed with for decades and which has inspired much prose and poetry.

His ‘Collected Poems’ is due out in Late September but copies will be available prior to the publication date on the website.

Mervyn's books are