Saturday, 31 May 2014

Issue 8 coming soon

Issue 8 of - our online magazine - is out very soon.

Contributors are as follows:

Frank C. Praeger, Vivien Jones, Judith Taylor, Sam Kolinski, Mary McLuskey, Edward Belleville, John Quinn, Suchoon Mo, Jeff Bell, Godefroy Dronsart,  Paola Borella, Helen Burke, Charlie Atkinson, Aswin Vijayan

New names and old familiars we welcome you. There will be a couple of book reviews this time too. Sorry if you have missed out; we won't be able to contact you individually. But please try again for Issue 9 - there was a lot of good work this time round.

If you want to check out Issue 7 in the meantime you can find it here

Monday, 26 May 2014

Wigtown Poetry Competition 2014

Last call for entries as the deadline is on 30th May 2014. Luckily you can enter online. Main prize is a rather nice £2000. And you can enter in English, Scots or Gaelic.

Judges include W.N.Herbert, Anne Lorne Gillies, and John Manson.

Find out all the details here

Saturday, 24 May 2014

Call for poetry Southlight 16

Look out for the beautiful new edition of Southlight poetry magazine.

And you can be a part of the edition 16 by sending work to the editor poet Vivien Jones.

You can find out the whats and wheretos here

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

3D poems again

Been having an enjoyable half an hour messing around with the QR code generator: the trouble is that my small phone app cannot handle anything too complicated - William Shakespeare and John Donne were both out - or in colour.

Nice if it could.

Plus the qrcode generators themselves have a word limit too - so bye bye Elizabeth Bishop.

The final solution for your delectation is a riddle poem in QRcode. A riddle within a code. As 3D as I can get so far. Enjoy.

You can read the original 3D poetry post here - I think the trees have reminded me - top tens!

Yes - it is us that top tenned. Checking out the networked blogs charts after a long gap and pleased to see that we are #8 in the top 10 Environment blogs, right behind Treehugger Dan:

#18 in the Internet blogs (keyword internet that is - let's be realistic!).

And in the top 25 for poetry blogs (a tough one) at #22:

So big thanks to all our p&g readers from around the world! You have done us proud.

You can check out the charts yourself here

Monday, 19 May 2014

Lost in the wood

Working on a Scottish art-anthropology project submission for speculative land use proposals - rarely has anything been more up my street or in this case, up my forest ride. The deadline is quite close and what with meeting wild boar in Perthshire wood (yes, this did happen - not intentionally) - there has been a quietness over p&g. But plenty to tell you and silence is regenerative. In fact, one thing I learnt from my counsellor is if things drop in the pool you can always take them out.

In addition this project has introduced me to the work of Peter Liversidge - on typewriter  - of what I would term art poetry. More on that later.

You can find out more about Speculative Ground and Peter Liversidge here

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Tree graffiti

Can't stop thinking about how writing distorts as trees grow and pinning poems on trees and other John Clare-ish and Arcadian oaten lyrics....

...into a wonderful thinking period prior to a project proposal.

Back soon.

Friday, 9 May 2014

Open Mouse (Poetry Scotland)

Can I encourage you to take a look at Open Mouse over the weekend?

Scottish poet Colin Will edits this almost daily offering of a poem (the virtual form of Poetry Scotland) and you can submit your own work too. A win win situation.

You can read my poem Boundaries from May 8th here inspired by Zhang Zao’s In the forest (of which I have written often on p&g and find out how to submit your own work

Thursday, 8 May 2014

Dimcho Debelyanov house

The house of Bulgarian poet Dimcho Debelyanov (Димчо Дебелянов) (1887 - 1916) is now a museum in Koprivshtitsa. After early wealth, the family left this house on the death of Debelyanov's father and moved throughout Bulgaria.This loss of place had an influence on Debelyanov's work (he wrote of Plovdiv - now a centre for European haulage - with regret, calling it "the sorrowful city").

Dimcho Debelyanov House-Museum

The house is beautiful with a lovely cobbled yard but as the family left the house, the interior is mostly museum-like but visitors comment on the warm atmosphere that remains.

Debelyanov's brief career through a variety of jobs ended in death in World War 1 fighting intriguingly with an Irish division. His fame as a poet was posthumous when his work was collected by friends after his death and published in a two volume anthology with his letters and notes. Today Debelyanov Point in Robert Island, South Shetland Islands is named after him.

More on the Dimcho Debelyanov house here and here

Remember, remember the quiet space
quiet home in white blossom cherries?

Sunday, 4 May 2014

Purposeless walking

A very mainstream article on The slow death of purposeless walking surprised me.

First this was such an urban-fed and middle class idea. The very meat and drink of the colour supplement (in its online form in this case). Has the writer had to walk to dead-end work or rubbish school or anywhere? Day after day. Had nothing to come home to. Had no home? Lived in the country and had to walk everywhere. Walked to hitchhike? Has the writer had nothing else to do? If you cannot afford to pay for entertainment or shelter walking is an end itself keeping you warm and with at least the promise that something will turn up. And you can own the space you make if nothing else.

But second has the writer not investigated the artistic practice of any modern writers or artists - he quotes the usual suspects Emerson and Wordsworth but somehow that is where such articles always end their investigations. You don't however have to look further than Robert MacFarlane's equally mainstream (from a Borders' viewpoint) The old ways which contains a whole chapter on the purposeless walk - which has a name in Scotland - stravaiging. And some insight into artists and writers gleaning ideas - or any thinkers- using the structure and space of a walk; a mathematical shape to frame or reveal or draw up ideas.

One day this process might have a mechanical or digital embodiment but for now walks come cheap and plentiful. So this is why we see an attempt to market them; brand them with an identity that can then be sold back to us. I expect next the arrival of the purposeless walk shoe.

Until then, you can read the BBC article here or find out more about Robert MacFarlane's book here,

Launch of Richie McCaffery's Cairn

Very good Sunday morning news is that Scottish poet (and writer) Richie McCaffery's long awaited first collection Cairn is almost here. The Edinburgh launch is on 10th June 2014.

Special guests are promised in the form of Angela McSeveney, Niall Campbell and Janette Ayachi but looking forward to hearing Richie himself read.

Find the launch at Main Point Books on 77 Bread Street, West Port, EH3 9AH Edinburgh.

You can find out more about Cairn here and the event here