#TPQ5: NEIL SPARKES

Jayne Cortez

When I first began to read and perform poetry it was alongside Linton Kwesi Johnson, Sista Jean Breeze, John Agard, Jalal Nuriddin (Last Poets) and Jayne Cortez. Jayne Cortez words on the page were hypnotic with her embrace of surrealism and Jazz, Blues & Orisha Cubano Chant, in performance her words became a hand grenade.

Paul Bowles

The magnetism of the short story & then the web of his novels, the intimacy and darkness and also the travel and the invocation of place. I don’t have the exact quote to hand but to paraphrase it “I gave up Music to paint the negative side of myself in words”

Ray Bradbury

“Something Wicked This Way Comes, The Illustrated Man, The Carny, The Magick of childhood and bigger worlds imagined and real. I was always a fan of Nigel Kneales writing – The Quatermass Series but so much of that legacy comes from Bradbury who gives us an answer and solution to the worlds pain and with redemption keeping the authority and passion of the child’s eye vision.

Rob True

Rob’s first collection “The Gospel of Aberration” published by Burning House Press 2019 has echoes of Camus, taking a walk on the wild side and reminded me why I like Big Alberts work but Rob brings all his angels and demons to work & play. He’s also possibly one of my favourite people, but don’t tell him that as one wishes to maintain the balance of moral terror……

Yukio Mishima

“Body, Words, Art, Action to die of Love” carries hypnotic crystalline language that aches with every sentence in an almost spellbinding way and yet so contemporary to living in the moment hailing the past, the present and the future with complete, total and absolute commitment to the word and the muse and the magic of it all”


Neil Sparkes is a poet, musician and visual artist. His work includes several collections of poetry published by Billy Childish, as well as numerous magazines and anthologies. Sparkes visual work is exhibited in the UK and abroad, and his work as a musician has led him across the globe for over thirty years creating innovative combinations of poetry, world music, jazz and dub. Sparkes new collection of poetry “Xerox Sonnets & X-Ray Blues” is published in Autumn 2019 by Hesterglock Press.

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