The Cry of the Poor: An Anthology of Radical Writing About Poverty, is selected and edited by Fran Lock, and features poetry, short stories, life-writing, essays and art by over one hundred contributors from around the world.
This ambitious anthology asks urgent and compelling questions about what poverty is, who it affects, and what it feels like. In doing so it carves a little space for many voices and experiences not often heard within mainstream contemporary literature.
The Cry of the Poor approaches poverty from many different angles, exploring the fraught intersections of poverty with family, labour, gender, disability, race, ethnic and cultural heritage. Throughout each of the five sections of the book, poverty is presented in its various manifestations, be they material, emotional, political or spiritual. The reader is offered provocative and unsettling glimpses of poor and working-class life, but there are also moments of tenderness and joy, ribaldry and resistance, as in Zach Murphy's finely honed vision of escape, 'Rose Knows', or Jane Burn's ultimately triumphant hymn to jumble sale scavenging in 'Jumble Sale Rider of the 80’s Cheap Clothes Apocalypse'.
The work is rich and varied because the cry of the poor is rich and varied, never merely abject, begging or downtrodden. There are stories of hope and inspiration here. There are moments of quiet reflection and rigorous thought. There are flashes of humour and of anger. There is mourning, pain, protest, and love—a chorus of voices expressing and demanding the kind of love that could power the transformation of society.
The Cry of the Poor: An Anthology of Radical Writing About Poverty, selected and edited by Fran Lock, ISBN 978-1-912710-41-6. For addresses in the UK and Republic of Ireland, £12 inc. p. and p.....
Fran Lock Ph.D. is a writer, activist, and the author of seven poetry collections and numerous chapbooks. She is an Associate Editor of Culture Matters.