William Bibby


William Bibby wrote his first poems at the age of eight in the New Forest where he was born. By the age of 18 he was in London where he worked as a car cleaner, a plongeur, a night porter and eventually acquired a job through the intervention of a sympathetic friend as a messenger for J. Walter Thompson. He became a junior copywriter and began to have his poetry published in various magazines and broadsheets. Most of these publications subsequently failed. London became increasingly difficult to control so he became a student at Contemporary Film Makers Studios in Kilburn which, although very stimulating, made the situation even worse.

He fled to Eire and then exiled himself to Africa. He joined South African Railways and drove cranes on Durban docks and tried to find work on the diamond barges out of Luderitz in Namibia but ended up in a canning factory, all the while spilling verse over anyone that would receive it. Thrown out by the South African security service for the publication of anti-apartheid polemical poems, published in an Asian literary magazine that was promptly closed down and its editors arrested, William found himself in a brothel in Mozambique. He lingered awhile enjoying the pleasures of freedom from the oppresive regime next door before leaving for India.

After several years he arrived back in London. He found publication in Second Aeon but soon moved to Scotland to try and earn a living on the land. This too was doomed to failure but once more a friend took pity and directed him towards the oil field.

Five years later, exhausted but having survived the atrocious conditions of the North Sea oil rigs, the idle but spectacularly dangerous drilling methods of the Trucial Oman States and managing to avoid the worse depredations of the Iranian oil exploration companies, he once again was forced to flee in 1979 when Khomeni came to power in the chaos following the Islamic Revolution and the departure of the Shah.

Having fallen hopelessly in love some years before and now married with 3 small children he settled with his family in the south west of England where he proposed to set up a small poetry publishing company. This came to nothing but a seed from it found more fertile ground and he and his wife started a small business which still survives.

Poetry though has never been far from his thoughts and although published fairly frequently throughout the years in small press publications the enticements of reaching a larger audience and being able to discuss his particular foibles and beliefs about poetry has led him to this moment and the embrace of the Internet.

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