This month, Moniza Alvi brings us such a shattering reality and leaves us asking to redefine the use of the word animal.

A key to notice is her craft very precise and incisive with each word weighing in with its presence. Just look at the poem Candle. With candle, caves, stalagmites and stalactites, does it need to say more?

Sinéad Morrissey, is one of our most revered poets. There is a valid reason behind it. Even as I write this, she has been shortlisted for the 2021 Pigott Poetry Prize. You can see in her biog the list of many awards her work enjoys. Having taken a journey through various cultures, I suppose it comes naturally to her not only to capture a sweeping range of images, sculptures, monuments, and paintings, but to be touched by political, cultural and geographical aspects as well. -Yogesh Patel

Shortlisted for the 2019 Irish Times Poetry Now Award, the Pigott Poetry Prize and the Roehampton Poetry Prize, Now We Can Talk Openly About Men is Martina Evan’s latest collection of poems. Almost a hundred years later, in an exceptional flip side of the fight recounted, the poet makes us relive the period of the men stifled by the Irish Conflict around 1919. I am thrilled that through her other poems selected here we can celebrate Martina Evans as our Poet of Honour. -Yogesh Patel

Guyanese with Indian ancestry, and ever since winning Sandbach Parker Gold Medal in his twenties, in 1964, Cyril has won critical acclaims and awards, including becoming the Poet Laureate of Ottawa, between 1984 and 1987. Few poets succeed as novelists as well. Recognised with the country’s most coveted awards, the Guyana Prize for Fiction, Cyril has proven he is also a great novelist.

One of the most esteemed literary critics, but a poet at heart, Vidyan has reached one of the most coveted seats in literature as an Associate Professor of English Literature at Harvard. This achievement is more remarkable because Harvard had been notoriously accused of consistently rating Asian-American applicants lower.

Poet of Honour is a series of Ars Notoria and Word Masala Foundation’s celebration of some of the best contemporary poets who have become iconic and a major inspiration. l am profoundly grateful that Imtiaz not only agreed to be a special guest for us to celebrate Christmas but also share as a special treat for you her trademark artistic expression in sketches.

Merry Christmas!

Poet of Honour is a series of Ars Notoria and Word Masala Foundation’s celebration of some of the best contemporary poets who have become iconic and a major inspiration. This month we are thrilled to present Pascale Petit, who just won this year’s £5,000 inaugural Laurel Prize for ecopoetry with Mama Amazonica (Bloodaxe Books).

Publish and be damned, as the Duke of Wellington retorted! There is no one way to write poetry and there are many who would teach you poetry while they struggle themselves! There are no regulations regarding workshops. So please stumble and be bruised; choose workshops and mentors wisely. Success is not guaranteed. Do read poems, learn, read more, listen, read aloud, and follow your path. Even the likes of Walt Whitman and Lord Tennyson were condemned in their times! Many have explained poetry, only poetically, but no one can do so concretely. Here are other takes by various poets…