Happy Easter Weekend! I’ve been doing some gardening – potting courgette seedlings and sowing nasturtiums. The bluebells are out, and the first roses about to open. Gruff has been sitting on the lawn grazing on daisies. We’ve had a nice break – a couple of days by the seaside with buckets and spades, then a trip North to see my family – he enjoyed meat and potato pie with beetroot and mushy peas, and trying to snatch at wings in a butterfly house.
Poetry-wise, it’s been a good month. Last Thursday I went to the relaunch of The Poetry Review, to celebrate its new editorship and look, with readings from Martha Sprackland, Greta Stodart and Steve Ely. It was great to catch up with lots of friends I hadn’t seen for ages, not least Tim Wells, who has a new blog as part of a project called ‘Stand Up and Spit‘ about the history of Ranting Poetry – do have a look if you’re interested in spoken word at all, it’s full of brilliant old flyers, photos and footage..
There were also free cocktails – Hendricks gin were making them, and there was a superlative martini from the 1890s with orange bitters called a ‘Poet’s Dream’ that went down rather too well. This photo shows Tim and I at the after-party, which is useful because I don’t really remember being there.
I also got the great news that the Arts Council is going to support my one-woman show of Ovid’s Heroines next year – I’m working with the fabulous Jaybird, who will also be touring a show of Daljit Nagra’s Ramayana. There’ll be a director, lighting, a set… It’s very exciting (and a bit scary now it’s actually happening). Do check out the Jaybird website if you’re interested in bringing the show to your venue or festival.
That’s all for now – except next week I’m ‘Poetry Butcher‘ at the Southbank centre, and a reminder that the Vers Poetry Competition which I’m judging closes on April 30th. Off to microwave up some leftover lamb and roast potatoes for my lunch…