Mark Wardís debut collection Thunder Alley
is a semi-autobiographical account of the diversity and divisions
within his hometown of Blackburn.
Named after a former town-centre street, Thunder Alley is a
remarkable account of a contemporary Blackburn and its people. This
is a place where, in the authorís hands, even the mundane seems
extraordinary, from the disabled veteran Mr Brown who escapes into a
jigsaw: the Polish Barber, unable to forget; to the genial tramp who
simply vanished. The language is fresh and immediate; the poems are
lucid and by turns, harrowing, stark, playful and wise. It is
Blackburn, but you could be anywhere.
Buy Mark Wardís Thunder Alley and you wonít be disappointed.
These drawn from life poems are sharply written, deftly observed and
Shot with humour. What more could you possibly want?
John Hartley Williams
This is the world as we know it, or think we know it: the focus is
And compelling, but always eloquent and lyrical. The narratives are
Unsettling detail, edgy and profound, but compassion underpins
This is a moving collection, full of wisdom and insights,
It holds a mirror up to the world and says: look, this is who we
You could say Ward writes a Bach-like poem: it seeks for purity of
Its leathery language wants to force out the personal, the dramatic
A near purity of expression allows them their place outside of the
Paperback 6" x 9" 65 pages
ISBN 978-1-326-07316-9 Published November 2014