Mongrel: Donna Campbell debut poetry collection

mongrel donna campbell

‘Not only are these poems formally elegant, punchy, compassionate, witty and heart-breaking, but they have a self-honesty that is as hard to master in life as it is in poetry… Mongrel is a luminous addition to Scottish poetry.’  Tracey Patrick

Following a particularly difficult time in her life, Donna, who is from Clydebank, has created poems ‘to make sense of emotions, to tell stories, and experience the sheer pleasure of playing around with words and feeling the rhythms they create’. ‘Mongrel’ is her first collection.

Big Fat Moon

Donna Campbell

Sometimes it seems

the moon’s touch close.

feels like I could push out my hand,

pluck from the sky

it’s whole, silvered, white body.

But, you see,

the thing is,

I get frightened in case

I can’t put it back

just in the spot

I found it

so, I leave it alone

and content myself with watching it instead.

Donna Campbell (from Mongrel)

This poem evokes the idea of striving for something, desire to reach further. The poet also fears the loss of that perfect moment if, or when, it is achieved.

MONGREL is an outstanding collection of poetry which adds a woman’s perspective on a life lived near the edge. (Linda Jackson)

Mongrel is published by Linda Jackson of Seahorse Publications  

To buy this collection: Email: Seahorse Publications

What’s being said about Mongrel

Linda Jackson/Jaxson known also as a singer has found herself becoming more involved in the musicality of language during this lockdown period and has very much embraced the work of Donna Campbell.

She was ‘bowled over’ by the honesty of Donna’s poetry. ‘Amidst the sex, drugs and rock ‘n roll is the stark loneliness of the artist.’  ‘Her collection is long overdue.’ (Linda Jackson, author, publisher, singer.)

As a performance poet Donna Campbell delivers with power and integrity, and Mongrel demonstrates how beautifully her work translates to the page. This debut collection is intimate and personal, intelligent and spicy, subtly communicating the vicissitudes of childhood dreams, domestic abuse, self-harm, sex, love, addiction, motherhood and ultimately redemption. What makes Mongrel so unique is Campbell’s spirited voice; her arrow always hits the mark. Not only are these poems formally elegant, punchy, compassionate, witty and heart-breaking, but they have a self-honesty that is as hard to master in life as it is in poetry. And like all good poems, there is plenty of room for the reader to do their own thinking. This is a poet who is alive and kickin’ and Mongrel is a luminous addition to Scottish poetry.’
(Tracy Patrick, writer)

Donna Campbell’s first collection may be called ‘Mongrel’ but it is purebred poetry.  Reading some of the poems in this collection, felt like the emotional equivalent of holding your hand to a candle to feel the heat before it burns, and you have to draw it away.  Her use of words, especially in the Glaswegian vernacular, combine with images to form brutally beautiful poems about aspects of life that less fearless poets might shun.  In her deftly drawn worlds, she reveals mental ill health, drug & alcohol addiction, violence and sex with a visceral and emotional immediacy. There is also humour, irony and equally beautiful are her heart rendering poems about loss, love and motherhood.

(Lesley Benzie, poet)

Rymour Books: Cultivating the Literary Arts

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Avatar of PatByrne Publisher of Pat's Guide to Glasgow West End; the community guide to the West End of Glasgow. Fiction and non-fiction writer.

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