Tuesday, 20 November 2007

Snow, Suddenly

On Sunday evening Derbyshire was blanketed in the white stuff, and there's still some left on high ground. Snowballs and /or tricky driving conditions! It's a good subject for poems, here's a couple: Snow by Louis Macneice ('World is crazier and more of it than we think') and Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert Frost ('And miles to go before I sleep').

This photo was taken near Buxton by Chris Barrow.

Wednesday, 7 November 2007

4 Poets Kicking with Aplomb

Thanks to everyone who came to the gig on Sunday, in the bijou Lantern Theatre, a Victorian gem in the heart of Sheffield's leafy Nether Edge. Due to illness we were down to four, but Suzanne Batty, Anne Caldwell, Nell Farrell and myself were still kicking hard! Check out Suzanne's new collection The Barking Thing just published by Bloodaxe.

Autumn is waning but rural Derbyshire is stunning in its russets and yellows; if, like me, you've been trying to recall Keat's Ode to Autumn, here it is.

Thursday, 1 November 2007

The 'Main Man' ;-)

Andrew Motion read last night at Sheffield Hallam University. He was warm and inspiring and if I wasn't already converted to the idea of poet laureates, I would be now! His specially commissioned poem is highly visible on the side of the university as you walk from Sheffield station to the city centre, and passers-by can be seen gazing upwards at the shiny letters. One of the things he has done as national P L is to raise £2 million for the Poetry Archive, a treasure-trove of recordings of poets reading their own work. Poetry is meant to be heard aloud and this is a fantastic collection. Here's a much-loved poem by John Betjeman, and one of my favourites - Jackie Kay.

There's only a few days left of Off The Shelf, Sheffield Fest of Reading and Writing 2007. It's a wonderful mix of writers, workshops and book-related stuff. I will be reading as part of Six Women Poets with a Kick at the Lantern Theatre on Sunday 4th Nov. Tickets are sold out, but there may be returns on the door if you want to chance it.