Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Poem a Day for a Year

Announcing a new blog, inspired by my grown-up son's request for suggestions of what poems to read, but also possibly of interest to others.

A day by day poem seemed a good way to introduce some favourites, both contemporary and past poets, also a sort of crash course in Eng. Lit.(poetry written in the English language, so not limited to the UK, and possibly a few translations into English from other languages) without the academic analyzing that can kill a love of poetry. (If you want more background, or want to read more poems by that poet, I hope it will encourage you to explore further by yourself.)

The selection varies between contemporary living poets, (or recently deceased) and a random jumping back and forth to poets in 'the canon' (a debatable term, I know), who seem to me, Must Know. No chronological ordering, and no logic, other than that the poem selected might be a complete contrast in style or sensibility to the one preceding it. The selection is random, as they occur to me.

Often my adult students confess to not having read poetry since they were at school since they were put off it by how it was taught, or they have been made to feel that poetry is a crossword puzzle that has to be solved. In particular 'Modern' poetry is loathed, even though unread and shunned, for fear they will not 'get' it, and a disgruntled belief that their love of rhyme and rhythm is somehow out of date and suspect.

What is clear, is that many people I talk to tell me they loved poetry... once upon a time ...and can quote by heart many poems they were forced to learn (and are now happy that they were), before the dreaded teaching for passing exams started, and they were turned off poetry.

So this blog is not about 'analyzing' poetry, but experiencing it. See

Friday, 18 November 2011

Fight for Libraries' Campaign

A Fight for London Libraries' campaign is planning a day of activity in February, probably on the 4th, National Library Day.

The events are still under discussion but plans mooted are a march, possibly to Downing Street, and a read-in outside the Department of Culture, Media and Sport.

Maybe you should get your camping gear ready. The anti-greedy bankers sit-in outside St Paul's has started a trend.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Libraries' closure ruled illegal

At last some good news. Library closures in Somerset and Gloucestershire have been ruled illegal, because of the counties' duty to comply with 'public sector equality duties' towards vulnerable social groups. A hopeful sign that more libraries will be saved across the country?

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