Sheree Mack – The Dark Landscape Within

Since this poem was first posted, it has come to my attention that it bears a very striking resemblance to John Glenday’s poem ‘Undark’ (which you can read here), such that it cannot be considered Ms Mack’s original work. This is one of many examples currently coming to light of this poet’s wholesale plagiarism of other people’s poetry. Our submission conditions stipulate that all poems submitted to the Stare’s Nest must be original new works. Editors take it on trust that poets have some kind of integrity but sadly it’s not always the case, and simply running the text through Google generally does not pick up fraudulent submissions. I apologise to our readers and to Mr Glenday that this has happened. I’m leaving Ms Mack’s ‘version’ here as evidence of a creative crime, and as a warning to other poets that sooner or later, your sins will find you out.

The Dark Landscape Within

And they come back those women
who told the stories of the land and died.

They come back with a warm slither of earth
in their hearts and in their hands they carry

wild thyme, in their mouths songs of healing.
And they move in the footprints of those

who came before and those who
will come after.

They are familiar somehow, as if they
have broken free and burnt through

the dark forest within me. And all I want
to know is how did they learn the words.

As they open their mouths to answer
all I can hear is the light.

Sheree Mack is a poet from Newcastle who swims in the North Sea in the dead of winter and blogs at

13 thoughts on “Sheree Mack – The Dark Landscape Within

  1. Sheree Mack’s work at repays frequent visits. The combination of photo and verse is no new concept but it speaks with an intimacy and eloquence here that transform the media. As in this poem, plain language, lineation, the turn of language faithfully followed in the wilderness of the heart combine in an act of discovery to surprise and provoke and heal. I use the last word after trying to replace it without success. It’s the human touch that matters in Mack’s work. How wonderful it is.

  2. Yes, that’s true, all comments were received before the plagiarism became evident. John Glenday was happy for the poem to stay there so I have left it. It’s evidence of recent plagiarism by this serial offender.

  3. As another of the poets Sheree Mack has plagiarised I am heartened by the decision to leave this ‘version’ of John Glenday’s poem up. Reading it, and the original, just says it all really.

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