Places of Poetry- The Book

I’m really pleased to announce that my poem ‘An Ode to a Wall’ is featured in this brand new anthology. Places of Poetry was a project that ran last year and collected submissions from all over the country. It was inspired by a 17th century epic poem called the Poly-Olbion by Michael Drayon, which set out to describe the makeup of England and Wales via 15,000 lines of frilly Elizabethan verse.

On the Places of Poetry website, people were encouraged to ‘pin’ their poems onto a digital map to create a living, poetical account of 21st century Britain. As well as this, poets in residence were commissioned to visit 13 locations around the country, to run workshops with locals and write poems in response to the area. The chosen locations included Stonehenge, Ely Cathedral and a scenic little housing estate called the Byker Wall in Newcastle, where I was asked to take up a residency.

I felt in exceptionally good company here. Other poets in residence included Jo Bell, Daljit Nagra and Gillian Clarke. And it was a treat to be able to work in Byker again. The Wall will always hold a special place in my heart, it being the spot where my Door-to-Door Poetry project really took off.

The book itself is a collection of poems created by poets in residence and the general public, selected from 7,500 entries. It’s available from the 1st of October from all good book shops, including this one, and I’m really looking forward to having a read of it.

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