Sunday, 1 August 2010

After Ledbury

I haven’t had time to update since coming back from Ledbury festival and don’t have much time now – but it was wonderful, as always. The high points for me (at least of the readings/events) were Philip Gross, Anne Berkeley, Penelope Shuttle, Mick Wood, Mary O’Donnell, and Martin Figura’s ‘Whistle’ which kept me spellbound for the whole hour.

Time at Ledbury is so much more than the readings though: the opportunity to mix with, and talk with, other poets without the distraction of the ‘day job’ is the main reason I keep going – and the company was fabulous this year (you all know who you are!).

I always take books with me, thinking that I’ll have time to read them when I’m on my own on the campsite but never do and I always buy lots of books while I’m there so I come back with an even higher pile of books waiting for me to have time to read them properly. Being at a festival seems to dampen my overdraft guilt so that I buy books more easily – and it has a knock-on effect in that being there reminds me of books I want to get which I order when I get back while I still have the immersed in poetry feeling.
So, the list of books bought, swapped, or otherwise acquired just in the last month:

Poetry collections and pamphlets

The Ark Builders – Mary O’Connell
Whistle – Martin Figura
The Breakfast Machine – Helen Ivory
Long-Distance Swimmer – Dorothy Molloy
From the Boat – Myra Connell
Mark Granier – Fade Street
The Men from Praga – Anne Berkeley
A Light Song of Light – Kei Miller
The Elephant in the Corner – Aoife Mannix

Other books

Fortinbras at the Fishhouses – George Szirtes
One Art: selected letters of Elizabeth Bishop – (ed) Robert Giroux