Like love

“The poems in Like love are uncluttered. They are simple, profound, and immensely touching. There is great empathy at work here, an empathy without which no real poems can exist. Read-Brown deserves a far wider readership than hitherto, and one hopes with this collection she will find it.” Brian Patten

“These approachable poems are full of humour and life experience. Like love faces up to ageing, loss and injustice with an eye for contradiction and detail. Poems about clearing out a child’s bedroom after they have left home, about angels, first love and sunbathing topless exude unquenchable enthusiasm for living! A collection to relish from a seasoned and generous poet.” Chloe Garner, Artistic Director, Ledbury Poetry Festival

“The most prolific slam winner the UK has ever had; a joy of a performer with a huge range of material that varies in style and content.” Steve Larkin

“These poems remind me of the tingles. I’m so happy to feel them. This collection makes me want to run outside, kiss, fall in leaves and then write.” Hollie McNish

Like love is very open and very unpredictable.

ISBN: 978-1-9998444-3-1
76 pages
R.R.P. £10.99

A sample poem from Like love can be enjoyed below.

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Like love (including P&P)
N.B. Any international customs/duty charges are the buyer's responsibility.

Poetry has no learning objective

Words are winds
that ruffle thoughts
and blow down structures
we thought solid.
The man with a cobra
tattooed across his forehead
might be a gentle vegan.
Some people spend their spare time
painting angels.
The kid “you’ll need to watch for”
will give me images
fresh as mermaids.
Rhyme can hurt,
and metaphor disturb.
Hugs and cake
are both important.
Words are winds on water,
and water is what we’re made of.


“Brenda Read-Brown’s poems are made to be spoken and heard. She’s won more poetry slams than most people but that’s not important here: how do the poems work when captured in her book, Like love? The answer is, rather well, perhaps even surprisingly well…

“She writes a poem that wants to be understood and that wants a punch-line, but within these two reasonable demands a lot of emotional ground is covered. She is devilishly self-deprecating and can lay out a line of thought with a deft dead-pan delivery…

“…this very enjoyable collection.”

Jonathan Davidson, Under the Radar 22

“In Like love by Brenda Read-Brown, there’s a powerful negotiation of feelings at play, as flesh and fantasy intertwine with spine-tingling and sinister results. These poems are refreshing in that they comment on romance with a cynical somewhat comical tone…

“Besides the romance, these poems are beautiful odes to family love too. ‘Empty rooms’ plunges into the pain of clearing up a child’s bedroom after they have left home, whilst others trace the decline of loved ones, then deal with the gaping hole that’s left once they’re gone. At the same time, the book proudly carries the stamp of superficiality that contemporary society has been conditioned to crave […] There’s a light-hearted glee and glamour to this writing.”

Jade Cuttle, Versopolis Poetry, full review here.

"Brenda Read-Brown’s poems are empathetic and welcoming...

"It reminds us all of the power that words have to connect and communicate. Their conversational tone makes these poems easy to read aloud and their layers of empathy reward re-reading."

Emma Lee, full review with analysis of some of the poems here

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