Monday 31 October 2011

Creative Corner (1): Simply ... a Question Mark

Photo © David Gill 2011

There has been a buzz of activity on the Waterfront just outside UCS today. A giant question mark sculpture, constructed in two parts by Langlands and Bell, is causing a wave of excitement as it begins to take shape. It has already aroused a measure of curiosity: what does it mean? What does it 'say' in the context of its location by the university campus?

David prepares to take some 'arty' shots of the installation through the window ...

... while I enjoy the view outside on the Waterfront, Ipswich

I decided to mount this photo on its end to show off the complementary question mark, made by the crane ... The sculpture is now 'under wraps'. One could say that it has been mummified, but I prefer to think of it as a chrysalis, awaiting the moment when it unfurls itself to unveil its full glory. 

Question mark on its side, shielded by ticker tape.

Symbiosis: where does the crane end and the sculpture begin?

All under ticker-tape wraps ... as excitement mounts.

The scene on the Waterfront this evening. What will happen next?

Take a look here and here - and here for more views!

Friday 28 October 2011

Fiesta Time (8): Aldeburgh Poetry Festival

Sheep on the beautiful Hebridean island of Raasay, birthplace of poet, Somhairle MacGill-Eain/Sorely MacLean

We have just booked tickets for the Scottish Islands event at the Aldeburgh Poetry Festival, run by The Poetry Trust. Meg Bateman, Rody Gorman and Robert Alan Jamieson will be taking part.

A new Sorely MacLean volume, An Cuilithionn 1939: The Cuillin 1939 and Unpublished Poems came out in June this year. Thank you, Sally Evans of Poetry Scotland, for drawing attention to this on FB.

Wednesday 26 October 2011

Publication Pointer (2): Swansea International Poetry Festival Anthology

Swansea's First International Poetry Festival, Summer 2011

This highly engaging festival was organised by Peter Thabit Jones, editor of The Seventh Quarry (mid front row in blue jacket) in association with Stanley Barkan, editor of Cross-Cultural Communications, New York (front row, right).

I am pleased to have a poem in the festival anthology: the publication has just been awarded Second Place by Geoff Stevens in the 'Best Poetry Anthology of 2011' section of the Purple Patch Small Press 'Best of' Lists' for 2011.

Thursday 20 October 2011

Competition Corner (1): A Message from India

I heard this morning from Dr. H. Tulsi, the editor of Metverse Muse (Visakhapatnam, India) that I had obtained 'the FIRST rank' in the 2010 Metverse Muse Poetry Competition, 'having secured a total of 38 points for your two entries together, - 20 pts. for your poem “King of the ‘Kilt Rock’ Cloud” and 18 pts. for “Life’s Silken Thread”.'

A good way to start the day!

Kilt Rock, Isle of Skye

Monday 17 October 2011

Publication Pointer (1): The Book of Forms (4th edition) by Lewis Turco

Professor Lewis Turco has posted a list of contributors to his new volume here (including your truly) ...

by Lewis Putnam Turco
Paperback (November 2011) 
Buy new: $27.95 $18.45
COMING SOON! ~ Available for Pre-order
Eligible for FREE Super Saver Shipping.
Other Formats: Digital

Saturday 15 October 2011

Fiesta Time (8): Aldeburgh Poetry Festival

Above and below: views from Aldeburgh on the Suffolk coast.

The 23rd Aldeburgh Poetry Festival takes place here next month.  

I had almost forgotten how beautiful the East Anglian landscape looks, with its intermittent 'punctuations' of dazzling white sails.

Wednesday 12 October 2011

Calendar Corner (2): National Poetry Week 2011

We have enjoyed a variety of literary events this last fortnight. We celebrated National Poetry Day (or 'Week' in South Wales) at Number 5 Cwmdonkin Drive, birthplace of Dylan Thomas. Thanks are due to Annie and Geoff for laying on a number of events, and to Peter Thabit Jones of The Seventh Quarry for organising a programme of readings for last Saturday night.

It was good to meet Ian Griffiths of the Suffolk Poetry Society and Geraldine Green from Cumbria. Singer-songwriter, Maria Lindström from Sweden, was on tour, and read some of her work bilingually. We were sorry not to coincide with Susan Richardson, who was performing on a different evening. Peter Thabit Jones directed - and acted in - a performance of his verse drama, 'The Boy and the Lion's Head'. David and I read alongside fellow Quarry Poets, Jean Salkilld (Tuesday Poets) and Lynn Hopkins (author of 'Creatures of a Dead Community', Seventh Quarry Press). Jill Goodwin-Croke read poems by Dylan and Caitlin's daughter, Aeronwy Thomas, including one about walking in her father's shadow in a literary kind of way.   

'Games' was the assigned theme for this year's National Poetry Day, so I chose my poems with this in mind, reading 'The Ocean's Tears' (a Tercet Ghazal about a children's tide fight) and 'Lament of a Lewis Chessman' - about chess (just in case you were in any doubt!). 

Exchanging news and views at Number 5
A lot seems to have happened since then!

We spent this afternoon in UCS at a lecture by Faber novelist, Louise Doughty, sponsored by the Suffolk Book League. Louise's latest novel, 'Whatever You Love' was shortlisted for the Costa Novel Prize and longlisted for the Orange Prize for Fiction. Louise, however, is also well known for her how-to book, 'A Novel in a Year' - and I was pleased to buy a signed copy from her before she left Ipswich.

University Campus Suffolk, Waterfront, Ipswich - venue for Talk by Louise Doughty

Friday 7 October 2011

Calendar Corner (1): National Poetry Week

5 Cwmdonkin Drive, Swansea, Wales, UK

We are much looking forward to participating in ...

The International Dylan Thomas Birthplace Festival 

3 – 9 October 2011

David and I join Peter Thabit Jones (ed. The Seventh Quarry) and other poets on Saturday 8 October. Do take a look at the programme for Dylan's Birthplace and don't forget the National Poetry Day website.