“The purpose of poetry is to remind us how difficult it is to remain just one person, for our house is open, there are no keys in the doors, and invisible guests come in and out at will.”
milosz 1968 from Ars Poetica
Jessica Mookherjee is a poet of Bengali heritage. She was brought up in Mumbles, Wales. She lived most of her adult life in London. She lives in Tunbridge Wells, Kent. Her second collection, Tigress is published by Nine Arches Press and has been shortlisted for the Ledbury Munthe Prize for best second collection. She has been published in many print and online journals including Agenda, Interpreter’s House, The North, Rialto, Under the Radar, Finished Creatures, Ink, Sweat and Tears, Magma and Poetry Wales.
Her first pamphlet “Swell” was published by TellTale Press in 2016, JoyRide was published by Black Light Engine Room Press in 2017. Her poems appear in various anthologies including Bloody Amazing: 123 taboo smashing poems (Dragon Yaffle) 2020, The Emma Press’s Everything that can Happen 2019 and Candlestick Press’s Spring an Christmas ‘instead of a card’ series in 2020. Her Forward Prize highly commended poem; Ursa Minor appears in the Bloodaxe Anthology ‘Staying Human’ (2020).
She has had two poems highly commended in the Forward Prize for best single poem , Ursa Minor in 2017/8 and Skylarker in 2020/1. Her first full collection, Flood, was published in 2018 by Cultured Llama. Her pamphlet Play Lists was published by Broken Sleep Books in 2021.
Her forthcoming work will be her third full collection (working title Windfall) and is scheduled to be published with Nine Arches Press in 2022/23. Her fourth pamphlet called Desire Lines will be published by Broken Sleep Books in 2022/23.
Jessica has read and spoken at a number of poetry and literature festivals, notably Birmingham Literature Festival, Aldeburgh Poetry Festival and Hastings Lit Fest.
Jessica has worked for over 20 years in public health and has an academic background in biological anthropology and psychology. Jessica is a board member of the Poetry Society, Co-Editor of Against the Grain Poetry Press alongside : Abegail Morley and Karen Dennison. She is Secretary of Kent and Sussex Poetry Society.
Jessica’s work concerns themes of migration, myth, motherhood, womanhood and desire, the impact of intergenerational trauma and fractured identities and self creation.
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