Songs of Love and Strength
Above: The Love and Strength Box, available for purchase here
Ever wondered why so little published poetry seems to capture experiences of motherhood? Katharine Perry certainly did. After the birth of her first baby, a newly discovered world of poetry opened up to her in the form of poets like Hollie McNish and Liz Berry, who do indeed talk about their bittersweet experiences of pregnancy, childbirth and parenting.
After her second baby’s birth, Katharine then began to write poetry herself, stealing moments during nightfeeds to fill the notes pages on her phone with poems. Poems of truth and beauty, poems about how it was for her to be a mother in that moment, in all its challenging intensity.
A whole community of mothers and parents can now be found in places such as Instagram, their words written with sometimes unflinching honesty, often filled with humour, but almost universally written in love. This is something Katharine discovered when she began to put her poems anonymously on social media. As Katharine beautifully puts it, these mothers are “distilling fragments of motherhood into little capsules of emotion, sending them out like messages in bottles, treasure maps secretly and carefully crafted and carried over the waves of the worldwide web to provide comfort to other mothers scrolling social media in the dark.”
Katharine went on to form the Mum Poet Club, which just published its first poetry anthology Songs of Love and Strength in May 2021. Filled with over 100 poems over 256 pages, the poems cover topics such as grief, loss and infertility, to the trials of childbirth, the pandemic, and social stigma and judgement. It is a remarkable anthology and we defy any mother or parent not to find something in it that really speaks to your own experience too.
Songs of Love and Strength is now included in two of our Mother’s Love new gift boxes, now available on our website. You can find out more about the Mum Poet Club, including how to join their writing group, by visiting their website here:
Their first ever in-person poetry gig is happening on 7th July at The Redcatch Community Garden, Bristol and guess what, it’s now sold out! Follow The Mum Poem Press on Instagram @themumpoempress.