The Bell Jar: Jo Bell's blog

"She lives the poetry she cannot write" – Wilde

Category Archives: Readings and writings

The currency of kindness: working for Nationwide

Sometimes when you’re commissioned to write a poem,┬áit’s a mixed blessing. Poetry isn’t copywriting; if you can’t believe in the thing you’re writing about, it will sound fake. In poetry … Continue reading

January 28, 2017 · 10 Comments

The Slow Machine

‘Can you write a half-hour ‘docupoem’ about your life on the canals?’ said Mair Bosworth, the BBC producer. Yes, I thought. Of course I can. Piece of cake. Easy.

Reader, it wasn’t easy.

June 11, 2016 · 5 Comments

Pocket full of poems

As Socrates so nearly said, the unexamined handbag is not worth carrying.

May 12, 2016 · 8 Comments

Valentine’s Day Poesie

Happy Valentine’s Day. Or as we know it in our family, Simon’s birthday. Or as you may call it, the Festival of Unusually Expensive Flowers.

February 13, 2016

‘Tis the year’s midnight….

Light a candle, light a fire and read these two Nocturnes to brighten the evening.

December 21, 2015 · 3 Comments

Kith – reading dates

Dear, strangely attractive reader – I have a new book out.

March 4, 2015 · 3 Comments

Trying to master the thing

My new blog 52 and the Facebook group that sits alongside it are taking up a huge amount of my time, and I rejoice in it. The idea behind 52 … Continue reading

February 4, 2014 · 5 Comments