Polly Walshe

Poet and Painter


Thirteen and a Half

Days like Trees

Your Childhood


News, Autumn 2020

  • October 2020: some of my poems are featured in the international encaustic artists’ magazine, Wax Fusion, in an article by mixed media artist Melissa Rubin about our recent collaboration at the Atlantic Gallery in New York.
  • October 2020: exhibiting two paintings in Oxford Art Society’s open exhibition – online – from October 3rd.
  • June 2020: a poem selected for the forthcoming Ver Poets Prize anthology for 2020.
  • April 2020: a new poem, Organic Poet, in the Spectator magazine’s 10,000th issue.
  • March 2020: I’m delighted to have a poem longlisted out of 16,000 poems in the National Poetry Competition (UK).
  • Recently published poems: December 2019: Winter Trek, Spectator magazine. September 2019: Our District, The Frogmore Papers.
  • Autumn 2019: exhibition of Recent Portraits at Tess Harris’s gallery, High Street, Wheatley, Oxford, UK.
  • September 2019: several poems featured in a collaboration with American mixed media artist Melissa Rubin in her exhibition Night Visions at the Atlantic Gallery, 547 West 27th Street, New York (3rd -21st September 2019). Reviewed by Carol Taylor-Kearney: https://www.whatsartblog.com/single-post/2019/09/12/Glimpses-of-the-Night
  • August 2019: Frogmore Poetry Prize: First Prize awarded to my poem Our District. Adjudicator John O’Donoghue commented: ‘I have read the poem over and over and find new depths and meaning in it every time. There was no poem quite like ‘Our District’ in the great sheaf of poems I read.’
  • August 2019: an exhibition of smaller paintings at Stanton St John, Oxford, UK.


I was born in London and live with my family in Oxford. I’m a published poet and novelist and also a painter. I am a member of Oxford Art Society. I trained as a classicist at Trinity Hall, Cambridge, where I focused on Greek lyric poetry. My first novel, The Latecomer (Random House), won a Betty Trask Award. In 2014 I was a runner up in the Cardiff International Poetry Prize judged by Lemn Sissay; in 2019 I won the Frogmore poetry prize. I have been listed in several other poetry competitions.