What a weather week it’s been! To think that I’d been soaking up the sunlight from my garden chair only the week before. Despite the frustrations due to road conditions out of our village (missing Kei Miller’s Cultural Xchanges reading at De Montfort University on Wednesday, for one) I did get to try out my hitherto-unused snow tracks for the first time. And one or two surprise visitors came to the garden in search of food: a couple of fieldfares made short work of some wizened apples thrown on the ‘lawn’; a small hawk (a kestrel, maybe?) circling overhead as other birds attempted to warn it off.
Which reminds me (for this is a poetry blog, after all), I’ve been enjoying the DIVERSIFLY podcasts I mentioned here; yesterday I listened to Nadia Kingsley’s conversation with Gillian Clarke, the last in the series. You’ll find them all on SoundCloud, here.
The Insights tool on my blog informs me that Hygge Poems has received more hits than just about any of my blog posts to date. My poem, ‘Ritual’, inspired by my paternal grandmother’s very strong tea, is one of a series of poems exploring the ‘simple pleasures’ published on Angela Topping’s website (linked via the above).
I’m doubly pleased that ‘Ritual’ has been chosen as one of ten poems to be displayed on buildings at University of Leicester during International Women’s Week.. After a recent call-out, these poems were chosen as best reflecting the diversity, spirit and theme of International Women’s Day 2018: #PressForProgress. I’m looking forward to discovering its whereabouts on campus when I go along on Thursday. Hopefully I’ll get to snap it on my phone and share it on social media (you’ll find me on Twitter @stantonjayne) as well as in next Sunday’s blog post. Another poem, ‘My Grandmother’s Kitchen,’ is one of twenty-nine other poems also on display in the university’s new Digital Reading Room. I’m looking forward to reading the range of poems chosen as fitting the theme. Both of the above poems also feature in my pamphlet, Beyond the Tune (2014), still available from Soundswrite Press or (signed, if you like) via the PayPal button on this blog.
In other poetry news, I’m reading at Kenilworth library on the 27th of this month. Andrew Button, who will be reading poems from his recently-launched collection from Erbacce Press, very kindly invited me to read alongside him. It’s been ages since, so I’m really looking forward to it (I’ll share details nearer the time).
I’ve also been invited to take part in a Poet Interview series over on Bekah Steimel’s blog; Bekah connected with me via the Poetry Blog Revival tour. My interview will be published in April, which gives me plenty of time to mull over the questions I’ll be addressing (I’m a slow boiler, these days).
Last Sunday I submitted two poems for an anthology in aid of New Start Cat Rescue. Poems will be selected by Sharon Larkin, who published three of my pamphlet poems, about my father, on Good Dadhood. Both cat poems are previously published; I love it when poems get to lead other lives.