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Our final offer in our set of festive poetry features is for Seren's Twelve Poems for Christmas, the product of Seren's first Christmas poetry competition, featuring all twelve shortlisted poems. This special seasonal pamphlet contains absolute gems from the world of winter poetry.


Poetry Editor Amy Wack was looking for poems full of feeling that resist cliché, that touch on classic ‘Christmas’ themes, but bring them to life from fresh perspectives. The pamphlet opens with the winning poem, ‘St. Leonore and the Robin’ by Pippa Little. Featuring a fable from the life of a sixth-century Welsh Missionary, this piece is brief, lyrical and tender. 

Memory is a potent trigger for many of the poets: the family ‘motionless at the dinner table’ in ‘Noticing Cards While Eating Stuffing’ by Cathy Bryant are a sharp contrast to the jolly cards and the dream-filled eyes of a grandchild. Similarly, ‘Offering’ by Alexandra Davis gives us a child who ‘charges up fairylit stairs’ imagined with a mother’s love. Alternatively, Nancy Charley’s ‘On Losing My Voice at Christmas’ is a pointed salute to the busy mothers who run the show: ‘in my festive roles of chief present handler, sous-chef to a son, orchestrator, placator and general factotum’.

There are also poems inspired by nature, by quiet winter reverie, that instil a sense of the beauty of nature and the mystery of a night filled with a singular star. Philip Rush’s ‘Daylight is in Short Supply’ opens with the lovely: ‘We are connoisseurs of darkness’. Similarly, Nicola Healey’s ‘Two Pheasants’ march out of the snow in a ‘coppery light’. A poignant brevity is often apparent. Gina Wilson pens an acute tiny lyric in ‘A Child of Our World’. Will Johnson’s haunting ‘What Wish’, is a voice full of intensity against a backdrop of ‘terrible snow’ that rouses us from our dreams and demands we see a season for compassion.

Click here to order this excellent poetry pamphlet, and make sure to use the code SONNET14 in the promotion code box during check-out to receive it at 30% discount.


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