The Girton Poetry Group meets occasionally in termtime, after dinner, over wine. A theme, quotation, and/or poetic form are are suggested a few days in advance of each meeting, and people are invited to submit anonymously one or more poems, inspired in some way by the suggestions.
At the meeting, copies of the poems are handed round and read aloud (since authorship is not known at this point, reader is not normally author). The poems are then discussed. At the end of the evening, those present may declare authorship, or may remain anonymous.
This site contains a selection of the poems presented to the group since 2005. Poems may have been modified after the meeting, and authors may again have chosen to remain anonymous.
Poems are accessible through the indexes listed at the top of the page: conventional author, title and first-line indexes, and an Index of Themes, which gives the theme/form as suggested, and the poems written in response to it. There is also a Concordance, which essentially indexes every significant word in every poem, showing a little of the context in each case. This can be used to find a half-remembered poem, or to see how words have been used by poets represented on this site. There is also a Random Poem link, which will give you a different poem each time you click it.
As well as the usual html format for browsers, poems are also provided in a PDF format, which may print better. Concrete poems are usually provided only in PDF format.
Girton College promotes and organises the Jane Martin Poetry Prize, a national prize for young poets.
Over the years, a number of poets have been associated with Girton in one way or another. This is a list of some of them. A few are represented on this website — their names are marked with an *asterisk, and some of their poems may be found through the author index linked above.
Any queries about the site should be directed to Stephen Robertson. I can be emailed — my userid is ser45, with the usual U of Cambridge mailing address. I also maintain two other poetry websites, one of my father's poetry, and one of my own.