Bougainvillea by Harry Owen




Originally from Liverpool, Harry Owen moved to South Africa’s Eastern Cape from UK in 2008, where he had been appointed the inaugural Poet Laureate for Cheshire in 2003.


Outspoken in his commitment to the natural world and a passionate advocate of poetry, he is the author of eight collections, including The Cull: new and resurrected poems (Poets Printery, East London, 2017) and All Weathers (Ink Sword Press, Grahamstown, 2019), a collection of dog and cat poems in support of the local SPCA.


In addition, he has edited three anthologies – I Write Who I Am: an anthology of Upstart poetry (2011); For Rhino in a Shrinking World: an international anthology (2013); and Coming Home: poems of the Grahamstown diaspora (2019), all with Poets Printery.


Harry hosts the popular monthly open floor event called Reddits Poetry in Grahamstown, where he lives and writes.























Behold: blood of the dune forest

oozing its arterial fullness

from multi-needled succulence

into the warmth of a June day

filled with hornbills, vervets, a slick

of glossy starlings, palm fronds

sighing as the winter ocean

rolls its eternal honesty

landward. Sit here and wait. Behold:

all that’s lovely will come to you.



Harry Owen