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Welcome to Acacia Publications. I am a poet, blogger and qualified coach. I have three published poetry books. Here I share my own poems and discoveries, and showcase the work of other poets.

Why the acacia? For many, many years the giraffe has been my totem animal. The giraffe is the tallest mammal, a New Age symbol for intuition and flexibility. It is a sociable, peaceful animal, though a kick of its leg can shatter a lion’s skull. Giraffes have been roaming the savannahs of Africa for at least a million years. Their long tongues are specially adapted to coil around the thorns of the acacia tree.

Fokkina McDonnell - Poetry Reading

Poetry Reading with Fokkina McDonnell, The Village Hall, Manchester

My early writing success – for fiction and non-fiction – was in the late 80’s when a poem gained a Seal of Achievement in a competition and I was paid £250 for a winning essay. Then I didn’t write for a long period – I survived like that giraffe. In recent years my poems have been widely published – online, in magazines and anthologies. Over 20 were shortlisted, commended or placed in competitions. The poem Partial view of a loch was nominated for the best single poem, in the 2019 Forward Prize.

Oversteps Books Ltd  published my debut collection Another life in 2016. My second collection Nothing serious, nothing dangerous was published by Indigo Dreams Publishing Ltd in November 2019. Spring 2020 the pamphlet A Stolen Hour was published by Grey Hen Press.

I am one of five poets to receive a Northern Writers Award 2020 from New Writing North. The poetry entries were judged by Vahni Capildeo. The award money has allowed me to work with a mentor on the project which will become my third collection.

In previous lives I was a psychotherapist, business psychologist and Merchant Navy officer. As a qualified coach I provide coaching and mentoring to other writers.