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An American, I have lived in the UK since 1967, acquiring permanent residential status in 1976. I arrived first in Ipswich, Suffolk, and attended a secondary modern school there. After returning briefly to the USA with family, I came back on my own to attend the town’s civic college. Most of the before and after of this part of my life is presented in my memoir Holding On To Me In Lockdown (see details by scrolling further down).

I taught English for 30 years in an 11-18 comprehensive – more than half of those as Head of Department – retiring early in 2010, and was also a GCSE senior examiner of English Literature for 35 years.  I most enjoyed teaching creative writing across all years, and when retired, finally had the time to focus on this for myself as well as continuing to share ideas with others.

Other Blogs

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I have two further blogs: (1) Creative Writing for Copycatters with ideas and resources for writing, free to download. Go here.


(2) Some Diurnal Aural Awe with music reviews of new releases and not so new as well as live gigs. Go here.

Educational Publications


Poems In Your Pocket, Imaginative Approaches to GCSE Poetry: Routes Through English series, Longman – Student resource and photocopiable teachers’ handbook, 1999


Crafting Poetry: Original Writing for GCSE: Devon Curriculum Services – booklet in support of DVD

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Various poetry resources (especially for National Poetry Days)Teachit; further references/resources/details in this site. These are also collected and being added to at my creative writing resources site here.

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The AQA Anthology Poems: Poems from Different Cultures: Cluster One, Devon Curriculum Services – national video/dvd performance and discussion of two AQA GCSE examination poems (also shown on BBC Bitesize annually for duration of this exam)


Writing Workshops, co-authored with Martin Phillips – Cambridge University Press, 2015 Details here


Writing Workshops, Teacher’s Resource – Cambridge University Press, 2015 Details and free download here

Poetry Publications

Poems published in the following anthologies: The Bees Sneeze; The Stumbling Dance; Voices for Kosovo; Things We Said Today, Poems About The Beatles; my kind of angel, i.m. william burroughs; When Good Dogs Have Bad Dreams, Four American Poets – all Stride Books


Nearing The Border, poetry collection – Stride, 1996


Yesterday’s Music Today – (edited with Rupert Loydell) Knives, Forks and Spoons Press, November, 2015. Read a review here; further details here

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Precarious Real – (chapbook sonnet collection) Maquette Press, January, 2016

Professions – The Red Ceilings Press, November, 2018. Read a review here.

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The Lonesomest Sound – Knives Forks and Spoons Press, November 2019. Read a review here.


Aeons of Upheaval – Trainwreck Press


And I Used to Sail Barges http://www.theredceilingspress.co.uk/


Holding On To Me In Lockdown: my memoir, often intentionally poetic, can be got here. ‘…a collection of tender, moving, gently humorous, and sometimes rueful sketches looking back over a lifetime’ ~ Ian Seed


Drawing on Previous Learning – Wrecking Ball Press: Read a review here; further details here


Agri Culture – self-published by Gazebo Gravy Press. Read a review here


Read a review here; &there4 – Beir Bua Press here


Two poetry collections prompted by the life and work of Samuel Taylor Coleridge: Ottery’s Aeolian Harp focuses much on STC and links to the town of his birth Ottery St Mary; a poet animate in anima poetæ is a collection of found poetry based on the collected notebooks ‘Anima Poetæ’ ~ Gazebo Gravy Press


Found poems from the American novel canon – Gazebo Gravy Press. For more details, go here: https://gravyfromthegazebo.blog/2023/02/11/in-the-found-gazebo-gravy-press/

Where To Read Some of My Work (with thanks for supporting)

Poems at International Times here

Poems at new Stride here

Poems at X-Peri here


The George Crabbe Memorial Poetry Competition, 1979 Crabbe Memorial Competition – First Prize (read here); Sidmouth Arts Festival, Open Entry Poetry Competition 1994 – First Prize; Saveas Writers’ International Writing Competition 2020 – Third Prize


(© All original poems in this blog are the copyright of the author Mike Ferguson,  2015-2023)

2 thoughts on “About

  1. My history mirrors yours. I was a Head of Dept, did work for AQA and took early retirement ten years before you. I’m writing – have a look at ” Quantum Theory for Cats” published by Valley Press.

    Liked by 1 person

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