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Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 374

Saturday 30 January 2021, 12:41

Shortlees

We arrived in Shortlees in two thousand and eight
It was easy to get there
Not long to wait.
We lived next to this old bloke,
He was quite a character.

Caprington Avenue is very straight.
The Ayr Road at one end
Central Avenue at the other.
If you don’t slow down for the roundabouts
You’ll land yourself in bother.

The local ‘Community Centre’
is attached to the primary school.
As far as the community’s concerned,
it’s breaking all the rules!

It’s a big enough place when school is out
Of that there is no doubt
With rooms galore, and chairs, and stairs
And great big windows to look out
To watch anyone daft enough to go outside
On the field, in the rain
And kick a ball about...

Elaine Shade  

View our full map of Scotland in Poems as it grows »

For instructions on how to submit your own poems, click here

All poems from our Poetry Map of Scotland  are subject to copyright and should not be reproduced otherwise without the poet's permission.

Categories: Poetry Map

Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 373

Friday 29 January 2021, 17:33

Anarchy in Arbroath

A commuter train pulls into Arbroath.
Doors open. Hordes spill onto the platform.
School uniforms are burnt or slit with Stanley
knives. Wallets, purses and laptops are fought
over. Hostages are strapped to refreshment
trolleys and raced around the waiting room.

Whoops and yelps echo through the concourse.
An acrid smell of Mace pervades the air.
Cells phone each other for status updates.

The Guard has been taken out and shot
with an Android for uploading to Facebook later.
The Ticket Inspector is chained to a toilet seat
and is refused a First Class upgrade.
Passengers in Coach C, the quiet carriage,
mime their distress at being robbed again.
The Buffet Car has been booby-trapped.
Small fires burn along the tracks. 

Train wheels turn one single revolution:
a straggler trundles slipshod through the station
and hoists his blood-red satchel like a flag.

A tannoy declares: The train now standing
at platform three is the 15.55 from Haymarket
Academy of Anarchy. Scotrail apologises for the lack
of Molotov Cocktails between Kirkaldy and Leuchars.
This was due to staff abductions. Before leaving
the train please make sure you have all your hand
grenades with you. Thank you.

Eddie Gibbons

View our full map of Scotland in Poems as it grows »

For instructions on how to submit your own poems, click here

All poems from our Poetry Map of Scotland  are subject to copyright and should not be reproduced otherwise without the poet's permission.

Categories: Poetry Map

The StAnza Renga

Friday 29 January 2021, 17:21

StAnza is thrilled to be pairing up with the Dundee Renga to create a collaborative poem in the run-up to StAnza 2021.

The StAnza Renga will be a chain poem compiled over the magic that is email from 8 – 28 February. There’s space for up to 30 writers to take part and places will be granted on a first come, first serve basis. We’ll be creating the poem according to the principles of the Japanese renga.

(We’re just using the wiki definition as our model. We’re not too strict about counting syllables, but if you want to go so then of course go ahead! We’ll be sharing information and resources about the form of the renga on StAnza’s social media throughout February.)

Wondering how it works? Bill Herbert, poet and the brains behind the Dundee Renga, will email an initial three-line poem (hokku) out to the group at the start of each month, and participants can respond over the course of the day with a two-line poem which bounces off this initial three lines in some way.

Bill will then pick a poem out of those he’s received and circulate that, asking for a three-liner by the following evening – and so on, alternating three lines with two throughout. This sort of renga (nijūin) is usually twenty verses long, and we’re aim to do one verse a day over the twenty-day period. Don’t worry, you don’t have to send something every day if nothing strikes you for that day.

We’ll be sharing the Renga online at intervals as it grows, and the final poem will be published on StAnza’s website for the duration of the festival as well as on the Dundee Renga website.

Interested in taking part? Get in touch at stanza@stanzapoetry.org!

Categories: News

Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 372

Thursday 28 January 2021, 15:14

Scotland’s Honours

In 1651 England’s favourite son
chapped at Dunnottar Castle
door, seeking the Honours and
so much more. 

September to June 1652, that
Castle held out till Cromwell was
blue. The Regalia he sought had
been ghosted away and England
still rues it to this very day.

By stealth and great bravery the
honours were saved and buried
under a slab at a pulpit’s face.
In Kinneff’s old Church there it
lay that day, until 1660 when a
new King once more held sway.

When Charles II took to the throne,
Minister James Grainger took the
honours home. 

To Edinburgh Castle they went that
day, there once more to be proudly
displayed. The oldest honours that stand in this land, saved for the
nation by Dunnottar’s hands.

Kit Duddy

View our full map of Scotland in Poems as it grows »

For instructions on how to submit your own poems, click here

All poems from our Poetry Map of Scotland  are subject to copyright and should not be reproduced otherwise without the poet's permission.

Categories: Poetry Map

Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 371

Tuesday 26 January 2021, 11:33

Magnus the Mighty

Magnus the mighty stands,
spear and shield in his hands,
surveying all of Largs.
Not since 1263
did mighty Vikings see
our chip shops and our bars.
But Magnus stays his lust.
Stand still and strong he must,
withstanding every gust,
lest he should turn to rust.
Magnus of Largs.

Cara L McKee

View our full map of Scotland in Poems as it grows »

For instructions on how to submit your own poems, click here

All poems from our Poetry Map of Scotland  are subject to copyright and should not be reproduced otherwise without the poet's permission.

Categories: Poetry Map

Time to be creative!

Sunday 24 January 2021, 19:18

Looking for some prompts for creativity?  Here you'll find not one, not two but three suggestions! Find out more about (1) Resolve to Make it New, (2) The Art of Energy and (3) Windows on poetry. 

Firstly, this year, Fife Contemporary’s collaboration with StAnza Poetry Festival 2021 is an online exhibition (Resolve to Make it New), and we’re looking for your participation! If you’ve spent some of the weeks and months of lockdown (any of them!) mending something that you thought was past saving, or writing down your thoughts about how you’ve come to realise the importance of ‘making new’, please email Fife Contemporary (mail@fcac.co.uk):

• a poem of up to 20 lines, OR

• up to 3 images of your renewed object with up to 100 words of description

Please put Make it New in the subject line of your email.

StAnza Poetry Festival 2021 runs from 6-14 March 2021, but Resolve to Make it New has just gone live now, and will remain on the website after the end of the festival. Please send in your poem or images/text as soon as you can! Fife Contemporary will continue to add them to the website until the festival begins.

https://www.fcac.co.uk/exhibitions/resolve-to-make-it-new/

Next, Energy Ethics are inviting submissions by 10 February for their event The Art of Energy | Energy Ethics on the following theme:

“How would you artistically conceptualise our current energy predicament where we need to balance energy demand with concern about human-driven climate change? How can we make sense of the entanglement of life with energy in the past, present and future?”

They are seeking art submissions of the following types/categories, and are offering cash awards for the top three finalists (£1,000, £250, £150) across categories:

  • Visual (photography, printmaking, drawing, painting, mixed media; maximum 5 images)
  • Short Film & Media (video, filmmaking, performance, maximum 5 minutes in length)
  • Sound Art (maximum 5 minutes in length)
  • Spoken word, poems, written submissions and short essays (Maximum 800 words)

You can find more information at Art of Energy | Energy Ethics and the deadline for submissions is 10 February 2021 at 23:59 (GMT), and good luck to all those who submit.

And if that’s not for you, how about writing a lockdown window view poem? For our WindowSwap project at StAnza we’ve commissioned 12 poets from around the world to swap views from their window and write about the view they’re sent. Our project was inspired by the wonderful online app, WindowSwap (window-swap.com). At a time when around the world so many of us are in lockdown, we’re mostly experiencing the non-virtual world through the views from our windows, and how wonderful that the Window Swap app allows us to enjoy the views from so many other windows.

If any of the views you see – from your own window, from one of the window views on the Window Swap app, or even perhaps from the window view sent to you by a friend – inspire you to write a poem, we’d love to see it. If you’d like to share it with us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, please use the hashtag #windowswap2021, and you can tag us at @StAnzaPoetry (Twitter), stanzapoetry (Instagram) or stanzapoetry (Facebook).

Happy writing!

Categories: News
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