Lizzi Hawkins

Lizzi Hawkins

Chosen by Andrew McMillan as a winner of The New Poets Prize 2016/17.


Lizzi Hawkins was born in West Yorkshire in 1995. Her poems have been published in magazines including Ambit, The Rialto, The North, The Compass Magazine, and The Cadaverine, and she is a winner of The Ted Hughes Young Poets Award. In 2013 she was commended as a Foyle Young Poet. She currently shares her time between her hometown of Leeds, and the University of Cambridge, where she is reading for an undergraduate degree in Engineering at Corpus Christi College. 

These are incredibly well-constructed, tight poems which are infused with a tender sense of longing; "this is the brittle language that we speak in" declares one poem, there is a fragility here, but a real strength as well. — Andrew McMillan


These are quick-witted poems that refuse to stay put. Under Lizzi Hawkins' restless, intelligent gaze, Bradford is 'a steely husband', a storm grabs a window and almost shakes it off its hinges. Hawkins constructs a wholly convincing world, from the 'slow language of granite' to the shifting, mobile vocabulary of love. – Helen Mort

Osteology is a candid examination that reveals the workings and hairline fractures of every day life. From haemoglobin to the Yorkshire hills, this collection celebrates the magic of reality, revealing how intricately we are linked to the places we inhabit: the lines that separate our bodies from landscape, memory, and each other are nothing more than a shadow on the sand left by the changing tide. Bringing us back again and again to places and moments that demand to be remembered, and that we might call home, Osteology speaks to an ancient pastoral tradition without nostalgia, pretension or illusion. 

Winter Poem

The fens were frozen clean over this morning,

from the millpond out to the causeway,

where cars flow past in a way that is not unlike sleep.


I woke up at 4am, went outside and touched the frost

 – you’d left the window open and I couldn’t help but leave,

scrunch my toes down into the grass, observe


the gradient of the fog on the lawn, how it was almost blue.

I should have woken you, told you how close we were to snow,

that it should’ve rained in the night, that we could have


had that white blessing roll itself across the fields,

tug its pale hem over the city, blunting the spires,

allowing us a brief peace.


Snow is a gift – a cold measure to be held

between the tongue and the roof of your mouth

when breathing, or rolled up into ice


on the palm. We could do with a gift

right now, could do with being bundled up and held

by the whiteness, could do with our voices


being taken away, so that we cannot say these

hurtful things any longer.

Titles by this author


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