Alan Dent was born in Preston in 1951. He has lived in Lancaster, Hull, Rouen, Kent, Wales, Blackburn and now is once more in Preston. He has published the following collections of poetry: Bedtime Story, Antidotes to Optimism, Corker, Who, Town and Schrodinger’s Women. He has also published two volumes of translations from French: When The Metro is Free and Common Cause, the latter by Francis Combes. His work has appeared in Ambit, The Echo Room, The Wide Skirt, New Statesman, Prop, Tears In The Fence, Fire, Still and many other magazines. His plays include The Joy of Banking, Lap Dancing In The Gulag and The Lift. He is famous for his excoriating editorials in his magazines The Penniless Press and Mistress Quickly’s Bed; the former is now a web mag which incorporates the Northern Review of Books, founded by Dent in 2010. He has also published many reviews, mainly of contemporary poetry, and has been described by a leading contemporary poet as “a brilliant critic.” Under various pen-names he has published almost a hundred short stories.
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à propos

Alan Dent est né à Preston en 1951. Il a vécu à Lancaster, Hull, Rouen, Kent, Wales, Blackburn et est maintenant de nouveau à Preston. Il a publié les recueils de poésie suivants : Bedtime Story, Antidotes to Optimism, Corker, Who, Town et Schrodinger’s Women. Il a également publié deux volumes de traductions du français : When The Metro is Free and Common Cause, ce dernier par Francis Combes. Son travail est apparu dans Ambit, The Echo Room, The Wide Skirt, New Statesman, Prop, Tears In The Fence, Fire, Still et de nombreux autres magazines. Ses pièces incluent The Joy of Banking, Lap Dancing In The Gulag et The Lift. Il est célèbre pour ses éditoriaux dans ses magazines The Penniless Press et Mistress Rapid’s Bed; le premier est maintenant un magazine web qui intègre la Northern Review of Books, fondée par Dent en 2010. Il a également publié de nombreuses critiques, principalement de poésie contemporaine, et a été décrit par un poète contemporain de premier plan comme “un brillant critique.” Sous divers pseudonymes, il a publié près d’une centaine de nouvelles.
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Around the pebble mosaic of fish, anchors, leaves, sheaves, flowers
a fair, robust boy of ten runs against himself returning
to his timing dad,
and tries again to break his record;
the black iron-framed benches,
spaced to encircle,
are occupied by Derby and Joan who’ve bought,
from the ice-cream man who serves out of a refrigerated box
fixed to a yellow bicycle,
cornets they lick in the gentle noon sunshine;
a middle-aged pair eating odorous fish and chips from polystyrene trays;
a nodding, grey-beard, his walking stick across his lap;
three teenagers whose devices are more interesting than each other;
a young woman apparently intent on a three-for-two, doorstep thriller;
and along the prom by the visiting sea
whose grey-blue bulk climbs the great white slabs of
the fingers-crossed defences
a girl on her first two-wheeler whizzes
by the side of her slow pedalling father;
a muscular jogger in tight orange polypropylene
puffs regularly and pounds the resin path;
a lass tugged by three spaniels yanks and cries
as they disobey to try the steps to the water;

a lone woman leans on the iron balustrade
to contemplate the width and span of the Ribble estuary
and miniature village of Southport
clear in the unimpeded light;
by the curve before Fairhaven
five female friends
their walking poles resting beside them
sit a atop the steps and chat;
in the distance a solitary jet-skier
the buzz of his machine like a hovering bee
zooms, bobs, turns and pauses
and along the upper edge
following its arc on his scooter
pushing with his right foot, steering perilously
pursued by his younger brother, running,
the wings of his jacket flapping,
the red lining of his hood bright beneath the sun’s zenith
a Muslim boy enjoys the day,
his freedom,
the autumnal warmth, the sea
oblivious to everything but his moment’s pleasure.
Alan Dent

Lytham, October 21th 2023

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