National Poetry Day-Change Poems

It will look like I’m everywhere today as I was one of twelve poets commissioned to write a poem about their local area. The theme? Change. Can’t think of any national situations in which that’s particularly relevant at that moment…

I haven’t got an actual gig though today, though I’ll be doing radio interviews. I’m off to Kent for the Deeds and Words Festival at Tonbridge School & was booked to be at Swindon Poetry Festival on Sunday but they cancelled the gig as they’d underbudgeted.

My National Poetry Day activities change every year. Depending on where I’ve been, who thinks of me, who’s got money & how around I’ve been (higher profile doesn’t necessarily lead to consistently more gigs for a jobbing poet like me though. I’m not a poetry superstar, but I’m probably perceived as too expensive to invite along to your local open mike). I therefore have to not take it as a litmus test of how “well” I’m doing as a poet. That lies somewhere else in how happy I am with my writing and performing. And I’m currently having a post-PhD second wind. I know what I want my next collection to be/do. I’m getting better at balancing what I want to write with what I think can get a platform or an audience (and currently knowing I need to say “sod it” to thinking about what the market might want which is a luxury I can only afford because of my work as a jobbing poet.

Anyway, poetry and people are always in flux.

Here’s a link to my NPD poem, some of the other videos from poets and my article.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/59G10GNqQmPtw3swTxN7bR9/national-poetry-day-bbclocalpoets-celebrates-12-exciting-new-poems-on-the-theme-of-change

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