We all know poems about Scotland but can the shape and nature of Scotland be drawn entirely in poetry? In 2014 during Scotland’s Year of Homecoming, StAnza set itself the challenge to see if this was the case. We invited submissions of poems which have a specific Scottish location, whether named in the poem or not, and started to pin them to an online map Poetry Map of Scotland.
And for StAnza 2021, we're inviting submissions of poems located in the countries other than Scotland in which this year's festival poets are based, or from which they come. If your poem is not in English, please provide an English version as well, and we'll post a few of these over the weeks ahead. This call is open until 31 March, and we'll continue to post the poems currently in our waiting list at the same time.
The project continues. We hope eventually to have a map completely covered in pins from coast to coast, from north to south, east to west, highlands, borders, towns, cities, villages, mountains, lochs and rivers, beaches, firths and islands, rocks and reservoirs.
If you’d like to contribute to this project, please email us your proposed poem to email@example.com. Do tell us its location, with enough detail on that for us to pin it on the map. (Don’t send us the Ordinance Survey reference, as Google won't recognise it!) In your email you must confirm it is your own poem and that you grant us permission to post it on this blog. We accept one poem per poet/submission.
Once pinned, the opening words of the poem appear on the map at the pin. The poems pinned to the map are being published in full on the StAnza Blog main page, one at a time, more or less in the order in which they were received. We do have a queue of poems waiting to be pinned and posted, so if you have submitted, please be patient.
As part of our Archipelago of Poetry theme for StAnza 2015, some of the shorter island poems from the map featured in a free digital installation shown at that year’s festival. Here’s a second chance to see a selection of the poems and images featured in this pdf version of the installation. Just click on the link below.
Our thanks to the poets and others named who allowed us to use their poems and images in this installation.