Guest Poet: 3rd May, 2018

Stephen Payne will be reading his work at this event.
Read interview with Stephen by FRP member Graeme Ryan.
Also, see full post to read short biography.

(As always, we meet at Creative Innovation Centre (CIC) starting at 8 pm.
Doors open from 7:30. Entrance Fee £5

For available Open Mic slots, please contact John Stuart)


Stephen is an academic cognitive scientist, currently Professor of Human-Centric Systems at the University of Bath. Stephen lives with his family in Penarth, on the Vale of Glamorgan. His poetry has been published in many of the main UK literary magazines, such as The Poetry Review, The Rialto, The North and The Dark Horse. His first pamphlet, The Probabilities of Balance, was chosen by Michael Laskey and Joanna Cutts for the 2010 Smiths Knoll mentorship. His first full collection of Poems, Pattern Beyond Chance (HappenStance Press, 2015) was shortlisted for Wales Book of the Year.

From Reviews of Pattern Beyond Chance: 

Katya Johnson, Poetry Wales: “Payne is a master at eliciting characters and the character of experiences…he writes with a poet’s ear as well as a scientist’s eye.  Pattern Beyond Chance is an intellectually curious and skilfully crafted collection that promises much for the future.” 

Ian Pople, The Manchester Review: “One of those very rare books of poetry which gives the definite sense of the warmth of personality of the writer”.  

Noel Williamson, Antiphon: “My own view is that this book is refreshingly different, entirely stimulating, and deserves a wide readership for its deeply perceptive slant on original but core subjects.” 

Therese Coe, New Walk Review: “If you learn more than you thought you wanted to know, it’s because Payne’s amiable juggernaut of curiosity seduces effortlessly….Pattern Beyond Chance required from the poet, and deserves, high honours.” 

Sally Festing, reviewing a reading at Salt Marsh Poets: ”Stephen’s language is playful in sound and pattern. From time to time the whole room was reduced to laughter.”