The Poetry Exchange

The Poetry Exchange

By The Poetry Exchange

The Poetry Exchange talks to people about the poem that has been a friend to them. In each episode you will hear our guest talking about their chosen poem and the part it has played in their life, as well as a recording of the poem that we make as a gift for them. Our podcast features conversations with people from all walks of life, as well as a range of special guests. Join us to discover the power of poetry in people’s lives. Silver Award Winner for Most Original Podcast at the British Podcast Awards 2018.

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Episodes

92. Meeting Point by Louis MacNeice - A Friend to Imtiaz Dharker

READ TRANSCRIPT OF THIS EPISODE.In this episode, our hearts are full as we are joined by the glorious poet Imtiaz Dharker, talking about the poem that has been a friend to her: 'Meeting Point' by Louis MacNeice.We are also thrilled to say that this episode will be with you in the month that Poems as Friends - The Poetry Exchange 10th Anniversary Anthology is published - on 9th May 2024. We are hugely grateful to everyone who has contributed poems and stories to its pages, and to all of you for your support and love for The Poetry Exchange over the last 10 years.Imtiaz Dharker is one of the leading and most widely respected poets of our age. "Reading her, one feels that were there to be a World Laureate, Imtiaz Dharker would be the only candidate." - Carol Ann Duffy. Imtiaz Dharker grew up a 'Muslim Calvinist' in a Lahori household in Glasgow, was adopted by India and married into Wales. She was awarded the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry in 2014. Her main themes are drawn from a life of transitions: childhood, exile, journeying, home, displacement, religious strife and terror, and latterly, grief.On 23rd May 2024, Imtiaz's latest collection Shadow Reader is published by Bloodaxe Books. Shadow Reader is a radiant criss-cross of encounters, messages and Punjabi proverbs, shot through with the dark thread of an unwelcome prophecy. We are so delighted to share this conversation with you in the month that Shadow Reader - and our anthology of Poems as Friends - join us in the world.Imtiaz Dharker is in conversation with Fiona Bennett and Roy McFarlane.*********Meeting Pointby Louis MacNeiceTime was away and somewhere else,There were two glasses and two chairsAnd two people with the one pulse(Somebody stopped the moving stairs):Time was away and somewhere else.And they were neither up nor down;The stream’s music did not stopFlowing through heather, limpid brown,Although they sat in a coffee shopAnd they were neither up nor down.The bell was silent in the airHolding its inverted poise—Between the clang and clang a flower,A brazen calyx of no noise:The bell was silent in the air.The camels crossed the miles of sandThat stretched around the cups and plates;The desert was their own, they plannedTo portion out the stars and dates:The camels crossed the miles of sand.Time was away and somewhere else.The waiter did not come, the clockForgot them and the radio waltzCame out like water from a rock:Time was away and somewhere else.Her fingers flicked away the ashThat bloomed again in tropic trees:Not caring if the markets crashWhen they had forests such as these,Her fingers flicked away the ash.God or whatever means the GoodBe praised that time can stop like this,That what the heart has understoodCan verify in the body’s peaceGod or whatever means the Good.Time was away and she was hereAnd life no longer what it was,The bell was silent in the airAnd all the room one glow becauseTime was away and she was here.© 1967 by Louis MacNeice. Reproduced with permission of David Higham Associates, Ltd. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/04/2432m 12s

91. The Domestic Science of Sunday Dinner by Lorna Goodison - A Friend to Malika Booker

In this episode of The Poetry Exchange, we talk with one of poetry's greatest leading lights, Malika Booker, about the poem that has been a friend to her: ‘The Domestic Science of Sunday Dinner’ by Lorna Goodison.Malika Booker, currently based in Leeds, is a lecturer at Manchester Metropolitan University, a British poet of Guyanese and Grenadian Parentage, and co-founder of Malika’s Poetry Kitchen (A writer’s collective). Her pamphlet Breadfruit, (flippedeye, 2007) received a Poetry Society recommendation and her poetry collection Pepper Seed (Peepal Tree Press, 2013) was shortlisted for the OCM Bocas prize and the Seamus Heaney Centre 2014 prize for first full collection. She is published with the Poets Sharon Olds and Warsan Shire in The Penguin Modern Poet Series 3: Your Family: Your Body (2017). A Cave Canem Fellow, and inaugural Poet in Residence at The Royal Shakespeare Company, Malika was awarded the Cholmondeley Award (2019) for outstanding contribution to poetry and elected a Royal Society of Literature Fellow (2022).Malika has won the Forward Prize for Best Single Poem TWICE: in 2020 for 'The Little Miracles' (Magma, 2019), and most recently in 2023 for 'Libation', which you can hear her read in this episode.'Libation' was first published in The Poetry Review (112:4). ‘The Domestic Science of Sunday Dinner’ by Lorna Goodison is published in Turn Thanks by Lorna Goodison, University of Illinois Press, 1999.You can read the full text of ‘The Domestic Science of Sunday Dinner’ on our website.This episode closes with a reading of the poem 'Su Casa' by Andrea Witzke Slot, published in her collection 'The Ministry of Flowers' (Valley Press, 2020).P.S. don’t forget you can pre-order your copy of Poems as Friends – The Poetry Exchange 10th Anniversary Anthology – which is published by Quercus Editions on 9th May 2024. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/03/2427m 57s

90. Dis Poetry by Benjamin Zephaniah - A Friend to Roy McFarlane

READ A TRANSCRIPT OF THIS EPISODE.In this special episode, we honour the poetry legend that is Benjamin Zephaniah by sharing this conversation with poet Roy McFarlane, talking about 'Dis Poetry' and the hugely influential part Benjamin Zephaniah has played in Roy's life.Roy McFarlane is a poet born in Birmingham of Jamaican parentage. He has held the roles of Birmingham’s Poet Laureate, Starbucks’ Poet in Residence and Birmingham & Midland Institute’s Poet in Residence. He has three collections published by Nine Arches Press: Beginning With Your Last Breath (2016); The Healing Next Time (2018), which was shortlisted for the Ted Hughes Award, and Living By Troubled Waters (2022). In 2023, Roy McFarlane was appointed a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.Benjamin Obadiah Iqbal Zephaniah (15 April 1958 – 7 December 2023) was a British writer, dub poet, actor, musician and professor of poetry and creative writing. He was included in The Times’ list of Britain's top 50 post-war writers in 2008 and was probably the most televised poet of his generation in the UK. His down-to-earth mission to take poetry wherever he could – and especially to those who would not normally read it – led him to being known to millions as ‘The People’s Poet. Zephaniah was revolutionary in bringing his Jamaican voice, speech and heritage into poetry – both on the page and in performance – opening up doors for many poets to come. A lifelong activist, Zephaniah’s wrote about his lived experiences of incarceration and racism, and was a radical voice for freedom, equality and humanity around the world.  The recording of 'Dis Poetry', performed by Benjamin Zephaniah, is taken from To Do Wid Me - a 2013 film portrait of Benjamin Zephaniah by Pamela Robertson-Pearce drawing on both live performances and informal interviews. The film and accompanying Selected Poems are available from Bloodaxe Books: https://www.bloodaxebooks.com/ecs/product/to-do-wid-me-dvd-book--1038.Roy McFarlane's extraordinary poem 'In the city of a hundred tongues' is taken from his collection The Healing Next Time, published by Nine Arches Press in 2018.Roy McFarlane is in conversation with Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.*********Dis Poetryby Benjamin ZephaniahDis poetry is like a riddim dat dropsDe tongue fires a riddim dat shoots like shotsDis poetry is designed fe rantinDance hall style, big mouth chanting,Dis poetry nar put yu to sleepPreaching follow meLike yu is blind sheep,Dis poetry is not Party PoliticalNot designed fe dose who are critical.Dis poetry is wid me when I gu to me bedIt gets into me dreadlocksIt lingers around me headDis poetry goes wid me as I pedal me bikeI've tried Shakespeare, respect due dereBut did is de stuff I like.Read the full poem on our website. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
29/02/2433m 11s

89. The Thrush by Edward Thomas - A Friend to Simon Crompton

READ A TRANSCRIPT OF THIS EPISODE.In this very special episode of The Poetry Exchange podcast, journalist, writer and editor Simon Crompton talks about the poem that has been a friend to him: 'The Thrush' by Edward Thomas.This episode is dedicated to a dear friend of Simon and of The Poetry Exchange - the extraordinary Martin Heaney - who sadly died at the end of 2023. Martin has been a touchstone of The Poetry Exchange from the outset, bringing his deep passion for poetry and his belief in the central importance of friendship to our lives to our work over the years. We are eternally grateful to Martin for being such a beautiful, inspirational and joyful friend.Simon Crompton is a journalist, writer, editor and communications consultant specialising in health and social affairs. He wrote for The Times for over 20 years, also working as the health editor of the newspaper’s Body&Soul section. He has edited many publications in the fields of health and social work and contributes regularly to the international Cancer World magazine. Throughout his career he has provided consultancy to a wide range of voluntary and statutory organisations working for patient and public welfare. Having written three non-fiction books, he is now focusing on writing fiction.Martin Heaney's podcast is Chatty Guy Talks Cancer Care and Hope (you can hear Martin in conversation with Simon Crompton on one of the early episodes).You can listen to Martin talk about the poem that's been a friend to him - The Lake Isle of Innisfree by W. B. Yeats - in this episode of The Poetry Exchange.At the end of the episode, we share a recording of Martin reading 'Sometimes all it takes' by Gill McEvoy. We are very grateful to Gill for allowing us to share this beautiful poem. Gill McEvoy's Selected Poems is published by The Hedgehog Poetry Press in February 2024.Thank you to Simon for such a beautiful converastion, to Martin for all the inspiration, and to all of you for listening.*********The Thrushby Edward ThomasWhen Winter's ahead,What can you read in NovemberThat you read in AprilWhen Winter's dead? I hear the thrush, and I seeHim alone at the end of the laneNear the bare poplar's tip,Singing continuously. Is it more that you knowThan that, even as in April,So in November,Winter is gone that must go? Or is all your loreNot to call November November,And April April,And Winter Winter—no more? But I know the months all,And their sweet names, April,May and June and October,As you call and call I must rememberWhat died into AprilAnd consider what will be bornOf a fair November; And April I love for whatIt was born of, and NovemberFor what it will die in,What they are and what they are not, While you love what is kind,What you can sing inAnd love and forget inAll that's ahead and behind. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/01/2427m 30s

88. REVISITED: Love by George Herbert - A Friend to Andrew Scott

In this episode of The Poetry Exchange, we listen back to one of our previous conversations - with the extraordinary actor Andrew Scott, talking about the poem that's been a friend to him: 'Love (III)' by George Herbert.As 2023 draws to a close, this is the poem and conversation we want to lift up for you all...We are incredibly grateful to Andrew Scott for joining us back in 2018 to talk so openly and eloquently about this poem and the part it has played in his life.Thank you for all your support and for sharing a love of poetry with us during 2023.With love from Fiona, Michael and all of us at The Poetry Exchange*********Love (III)by George HerbertLove bade me welcome. Yet my soul drew back,Guilty of dust and sin.But quick-eyed Love, observing me grow slackFrom my first entrance in,Drew nearer to me, sweetly questioningIf I lacked anything.‘A guest,’ I answered, ‘worthy to be here.’Love said, ‘You shall be he.’‘I the unkind, ungrateful? Ah my dear,I cannot look on thee.’Love took my hand, and smiling did reply,‘Who made the eyes but I?’‘Truth Lord; but I have marred them; let my shameGo where it doth deserve.’‘And know you not,’ says Love, ‘who bore the blame?’‘My dear, then I will serve.’‘You must sit down,’ says Love, ‘and taste my meat:’So I did sit and eat. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/12/2330m 0s

87. Ceasefire by Michael Longley - A Friend to Jacqueline Saphra

READ TRANSCRIPTIn this episode, poet, playwright, teacher and activist Jacqueline Saphra talks to us about the poem that has been a friend to her: 'Ceasefire' by Michael Longley.We are so grateful to Jacqueline for joining us at this time, to talk about this beautiful poem and the part it has played in her life.Jacqueline Saphra is a poet, playwright, teacher and activist. She is the author of nine plays, five chapbooks and five poetry collections. The Kitchen of Lovely Contraptions (flipped eye) was shortlisted for the Aldeburgh First Collection Prize and If I Lay on my Back I Saw Nothing But Naked Women (The Emma Press) won Best Collaborative Work at The Sabotage Awards. Recent collections from Nine Arches Press are All My Mad Mothers (shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize), Dad, Remember You are Dead and One Hundred Lockdown Sonnets. Jacqueline is a founder member of Poets for the Planet and teaches at The Poetry School. Her latest collection, Velvel's Violin (Nine Arches Press, 2023) is a Poetry Book Society Recommendation.Jacqueline is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange hosts, Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.*********Ceasefireby Michael LongleyIPut in mind of his own father and moved to tearsAchilles took him by the hand and pushed the old kingGently away, but Priam curled up at his feet andWept with him until their sadness filled the building.IITaking Hector’s corpse into his own hands AchillesMade sure it was washed and, for the old king’s sake,Laid out in uniform, ready for Priam to carryWrapped like a present home to Troy at daybreak.IIIWhen they had eaten together, it pleased them bothTo stare at each other’s beauty as lovers might,Achilles built like a god, Priam good-looking stillAnd full of conversation, who earlier had sighed:IV‘I get down on my knees and do what must be doneAnd kiss Achilles’ hand, the killer of my son.’From 'Ghost Orchid' (Jonathan Cape, 1995), copyright © Michael Longley Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
30/11/2327m 49s

86. The Daughter by Carmen Giménez - A Friend to Gita Ralleigh

READ TRANSCRIPTIn this episode, poet, writer and doctor Gita Ralleigh talks to us about the poem that has been a friend to her: 'The Daughter' by Carmen Giménez.We're so grateful to Gita for sharing such an intimate, beautiful conversation with us, and to Carmen Giménez and The University of Arizona Press for allowing us to bring the poem to you in this way.Gita Ralleigh is a poet, writer and doctor born to Indian immigrant parents in London. She teaches creative writing to science undergraduates at Imperial College and has an MA in Creative Writing and an MSc in Medical Humanities. Her poetry books are A Terrible Thing (Bad Betty Press, 2020) and Siren (Broken Sleep Books, 2022). Her debut children’s novel The Destiny Of Minou Moonshine was published by Zephyr/Head of Zeus in July 2023. You can find her on Twitter as @storyvilled and on Instagram as @gita_ralleigh'The Daughter' can be found in Carmen Giménez' collection Milk and Filth, published by University of Arizona Press, 2013. You can find out more about Carmen Giménez and her work at www.carmengimenez.net.We are thrilled to announce our first anthology will be pubished by Quercus Editions on 9th May 2024! Poems as Friends: The Poetry Exchange 10th Anniversary Anthology will bring together a beautiful selection of poems that readers have shared with us at The Poetry Exchange over the last 10 years. The poems will be presented alongside readers' stories of connection, revealing how the poems have acted as friends to them and have played a part in their lives. You can find out more about our our anthology and pre-order your copy here.We are so grateful to all our listeners, followers and contributors for being part of The Poetry Exchange so far, and for celebrating and sharing poems as friends with us in so many beautiful ways.*********The Daughterby Carmen GiménezWe said she was a negative image of me because of her lightness.She's light and also passage, the glory in my cortex.Daughter, where did you get all that goddess?Her eyes are Neruda's two dark pools at twilight.Sometimes she's a stranger in my home because I hadn't imagined her.Who will her daughter be?She and I are the gradual ebb of my mother's darkness.I unfurl the ribbon of her life, and it's a smooth long hallway, doors flung open.Her surface is a deflection is why.Harm on her, harm on us all.Inside her, my grit and timbre, my reckless.'The Daughter' from Milk & Filth. Copyright © 2013 by Carmen Gimenez Smith. Reprinted by permission of University of Arizona Press. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/10/2328m 7s

85. Timothy Winters by Charles Causley - A Friend to Tim Kiely

In this episode, poet and criminal barrister Tim Kiely talks about the poem that has been a friend to him: 'Timothy Winters' by Charles Causley.READ A TRANSCRIPT OF THIS EPISODE.We are so grateful to Tim for joining us and sharing his story of connection with Causely's powerful poem.Tim Kiely is a criminal barrister and poet based in London. His work has appeared in 'South Bank Poetry', 'Under the Radar', 'Atrium', 'Ink, Sweat & Tears' and 'Magma'. He is the author of three poetry pamphlets, 'Hymn to the Smoke' (from Indigo Dreams), 'Plaque for the Unknown Socialist' (from Back Room Poetry) and 'No Other Life' (from Vole Books), all of which are available from timkielybooks.bigcartel.com. He can be followed @timkiely1 on Instagram and Twitter.You can find 'Timothy Winters' in Charles Causley's 'Collected Poems' 1951-2000 (Picador, 2000).Fiona and Michael mention this year's Forward Prizes for Poetry - find out more about all the shortlisted poets and the prize ceremony, taking place at Leeds Playhouse on 16th October 2023.Is there a poem that has been a friend to YOU? Tell us about it and read some of the extraordinary nominations of poems as friends we have received so far... www.thepoetryexchange.co.uk/nominate.Tim Kiely is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members Al Snell and Andrea Witzke Slot.*********Timothy Wintersby Charles CausleyTimothy Winters comes to schoolWith eyes as wide as a football-pool,Ears like bombs and teeth like splinters:A blitz of a boy is Timothy Winters.His belly is white, his neck is dark,And his hair is an exclamation-mark.His clothes are enough to scare a crowAnd through his britches the blue winds blow.When teacher talks he won't hear a wordAnd he shoots down dead the arithmetic-bird,He licks the pattern off his plateAnd he's not even heard of the Welfare State.Timothy Winters has bloody feetAnd he lives in a house on Suez Street,He sleeps in a sack on the kitchen floorAnd they say there aren't boys like him anymore.Old Man Winters likes his beerAnd his missus ran off with a bombardier,Grandma sits in the grate with a ginAnd Timothy's dosed with an aspirin.The welfare Worker lies awakeBut the law's as tricky as a ten-foot snake,So Timothy Winters drinks his cupAnd slowly goes on growing up.At Morning Prayers the Master helvesfor children less fortunate than ourselves,And the loudest response in the room is whenTimothy Winters roars "Amen!"So come one angel, come on tenTimothy Winters says "AmenAmen amen amen amen."Timothy Winters, Lord. AmenFrom 'Collected Poems 1951-2000' (Picador, 2000), © Charles Causley 2000, used by permission of the author’s Estate. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/09/2326m 5s

84. Little Champion by Tony Hoagland - A Friend to Michael Mark

FOR TRANSCRIPT CLICK HERE. In this episode, poet Michael Mark joins us to talk about the poem that has been a friend to him: 'Little Champion' by Tony Hoagland.Michael Mark is the author of Visiting Her in Queens is More Enlightening than a Month in a Monastery in Tibet, which won the 2022 Rattle Chapbook prize. His poems have appeared in Best American Poetry, Copper Nickel, The New York Times, Pleiades, Ploughshares, Southern Review, The Sun, 32 Poems, and The Poetry Foundation's American Life in Poetry. His two books of stories are Toba and At the Hands of a Thief (Atheneum). michaeljmark.com We are hugely grateful to Michael for visiting The Poetry Exchange and talking so openly and eloquently about his connection with 'Little Champion.'You can find 'Little Champion' in Tony Hogland's collection 'Application for Release from the Dream', published by Graywolf Press (2015). Many thanks to Grawywolf Press for their support.Michael Mark is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members Andrea Witzke Slot and John Prebble.The 'gift' reading of 'Little Champion' is by John Prebble.*********Little Championby Tony HoaglandWhen I get hopeless about human life,which quite frankly is far too difficult for me,I like to remember that in the desert there isa little butterfly that lives by drinking urine. And when I have to take the bus to work on Saturday,or spend an hour opening the mail,deciding what to keep and what to throw away,one piece at a time, I think of the butterfly following its animal aroundthrough the morning and the night,fluttering, weaving sideways throughthe cactus and the rocks. And when I have to meet all Tuesday afternoonwith the committee to discuss new bylaws,or listen to the dinner guest explain his recipe for German beer, or hear the scholar tell, again,about her campaign to destroy, once and for all,the cult of heteronormativity, I think of that tough little championwith orange and black markings on its wings,resting in the shade beneath a ledge of rockwhile its animal sleeps nearby; and I see how the droplets hang and gleam amongthe thorns and drab green leaves of desert plantsand how the butterfly alights and drinks from themdeeply, with a stillness of utter concentration. Published in The Sun Magazine, November 2014 and in the collection, 'Application for Release from the Dream' (Graywolf Press, 2015). Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
31/08/2325m 49s

83. You Don't Know What Love Is by Kim Addonizio - A Friend to Salena Godden

FOR TRANSCRIPT CLICK HERE.In this episode of The Poetry Exchange, we are thrilled to be joined by the poetry tour-de-force that is Salena Godden, to hear about the poem that has been a friend to her: 'You Don't Know What Love' Is by Kim Addonizio.Salena spoke with Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer about this elusive, gorgeous poem and the part it has played in her life.Salena Godden FRSL is an award-winning author, poet and broadcaster of Jamaican-mixed heritage. Her debut novel Mrs Death Misses Death won the Indie Book Award for Fiction and the People’s Book Prize, and was shortlisted for the British Book Awards and the Gordon Burn Prize. Film and TV rights for Mrs Death Misses Death have been optioned by Idris Elba’s production company Green Door Pictures.A hardback edition of Pessimism is for Lightweights - 30 Pieces of Courage and Resistance was published by Rough Trade Books in February 2023. She is currently working on a memoir and a poetry collection which are both due for publication in May 2024, plus an eagerly anticipated second novel set in the Mrs Death Misses Death universe due for publication in spring 2025.Salena's essay Shade was published in groundbreaking anthology The Good Immigrant (Unbound 2016). Godden has had several volumes of poetry published including Under The Pier (Nasty Little Press 2011) Fishing in the Aftermath: Poems 1994-2014 (Burning Eye Books 2014), plus also a childhood memoir, Springfield Road (Unbound 2014).After hearing this episode, you will also want to seek out and read as much as you can of Kim Addonizio's work.*********You Don't Know What Love Isby Kim AddonizioYou don't know what love isbut you know how to raise it in melike a dead girl winched up from a river. How towash off the sludge, the stench of our past.How to start clean. This love even sits upand blinks; amazed, she takes a few shaky steps.Any day now she'll try to eat solid food. She'll wantto get into a fast car, one low to the ground, and driveto some cinderblock shithole in the desertwhere she can drink and get sick and thendance in nothing but her underwear. You knowwhere she's headed, you know she'll wake upwith an ache she can't locate and no moneyand a terrible thirst. So to hellwith your warm hands sliding inside my shirtand your tongue down my throatlike an oxygen tube. Cover mein black plastic. Let the mourners through.From 'What Is This Thing Called Love' by Kim Addonizio (2005, W.W. Norton & Co.) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/07/2325m 50s

82. What Survives by Rainer Maria Rilke - A Friend to Lois P. Jones

In this episode, poet, radio host and editor Lois P. Jones talks about the poem that has been a friend to her: 'What Survives' by Rainer Maria Rilke, translated by A. Poulin Jr.Lois P. Jones is a luminous poet, radio host and editor, living in California. She won the 2023 Alpine Fellowship which this year takes place in Fjällnäs, Sweden. She was a finalist in the annual Mslexia Poetry Competition judged by Helen Mort and will be published in Spring 2023. In 2022 her work was a finalist for both the Best Spiritual Literature Award in Poetry from Orison Books and the Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest. Lois' first collection, 'Night Ladder' was published by Glass Lyre Press in 2017 and was a finalist for the Julie Suk Award and the Lascaux Poetry Prize for a poetry collection. Since 2007, has hosted KPFK’s Poets Café, co-produced the Moonday Poetry Series and acted as poetry editor for Pushcart and Utne prize-winning Kyoto Journal.'What Survives' was published in The Complete French Poems of Rainer Maria Rilke, translated by A. Poulin, Jr, by Graywolf Press in 2002.Lois P. Jones is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange hosts Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.The 'gift' reading of 'What Survives' is by Fiona and Michael.*********What Survivesby Rainer Maria Rilketranslated by A. Poulin, Jr.Who says that all must vanish?Who knows, perhaps the flightof the bird you wound remains,and perhaps flowers surviveour caresses, in their ground. It isn't the gesture that lasts,but it dresses you again in goldarmor--from breast to knees—and the battle was so puremay an Angel wear it after you.From The Complete French Poems of Rainer Maria Rilke, translated by A. Poulin, Jr. (Graywolf Press, 2002). Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
29/06/2329m 19s

81. My Dark Horses by Jodie Hollander - A Friend to Rosie Garland

In this latest episode, writer Rosie Garland talks to us about the poem that has been a friend to her: 'My Dark Horses' by Jodie Hollander.Writer and singer with post-punk band The March Violets, Rosie Garland has a passion for language nurtured by public libraries. Her poetry collection ‘What Girls do the Dark’ (Nine Arches Press) was shortlisted for the Polari Prize 2021, & her novel The Night Brother was described by The Times as “a delight...with shades of Angela Carter.” Val McDermid has named her one of the UK’s most compelling LGBT writers. http://www.rosiegarland.comJodie Hollander, originally from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, was raised in a family of classical musicians. She studied poetry in England, and her poems have appeared in journals such as The Poetry Review, The Yale Review and The Dark Horse. Her debut full-length collection, My Dark Horses, was published with Liverpool University Press (Pavilion Poetry) in 2017. Her second collection, Nocturne, was published with Liverpool & Oxford University Press in the spring of 2023. https://www.jodiehollander.comRosie Garland is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members Sally Anglesea and John Prebble.In the introduction, Fiona also mentions Glyn Maxwell's extraordinary new collection, 'The Big Calls', which was published by Live Canon in March 2023.We hope you enjoy being with all the poems featured in this episode!*********My Dark Horsesby Jodie HollanderIf only I were more like my dark horses,I wouldn’t have to worry all the timethat I was running too little and resting too much.I’d spend my hours grazing in the sunlight,taking long naps in the vast pastures.And when it was time to move along I’d know;I’d spend some time with all those that I’d loved,then disappear into a gathering of trees.If only I were more like my dark horses,I wouldn’t be so frightened of the storms;instead, when the clouds began to gather and fillI’d make my way calmly to the shed,and stand close to all the other horses.Together, we’d let the rain fall round us,knowing as darkness passes overheadthat above all, this is the time to be still.From 'My Dark Horses' by Jodie Hollander, Liverpool University Press, 2017. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/05/2324m 35s

80. REVISITED: Remember by Joy Harjo - A Friend to Rachel Eliza Griffiths

In this latest episode of The Poetry Exchange, we revisit our conversation with the extraordinary poet & artist Rachel Eliza Griffiths about the poem that has been a friend to her: 'Remember' by Joy Harjo.This beautiful and transformative conversation was originally released in 2020 and has been a friend to many of our listeners so far. We felt it was one to bring into the light all over again!We are hugely grateful to Rachel Eliza Griffiths for sharing her profound story of connection with Joy Harjo's life-filled poem, and to Joy Harjo and her publisher W.W. Norton & Co. for giving us their blessing to share it with you in this way.Rachel Eliza Griffiths is an American poet, novelist, photographer and visual artist, who is the author of five published collections of poems. In her recent book, Seeing the Body (2020), she "pairs poetry with photography, exploring memory, Black womanhood, the American landscape, and rebirth." (Sarah Herrington, Los Angeles Review of Books). Seeing the Body was the winner of the 2021 Hurston/Wright Foundation Legacy Award in Poetry, the winner of the 2021 Paterson Poetry Prize, and nominated for a 2020 NAACP Image award. Rachel Eliza's debut novel, Promise, was published by Penguin Random House in July 2023. Joy Harjo is an internationally renowned performer and writer of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation. She served three terms as the 23rd Poet Laureate of the United States from 2019-2022 and is the author of ten books of poetry, including the highly acclaimed, Weaving Sundown in a Scarlet Light: Fifty Poems for Fifty Years. Her many honors include the National Book Critics Circle Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award, the Academy of American Poets Wallace Stevens Award, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. You can find out more about Joy Harjo's work at: www.joyharjo.com.Two poems by John Clare also feature in this episode: 'All Nature has a Feeling' and 'A Spring Morning'.*********Rememberby Joy HarjoRemember the sky that you were born under,know each of the star's stories.Remember the moon, know who she is.Remember the sun's birth at dawn, that is thestrongest point of time. Remember sundownand the giving away to night.Remember your birth, how your mother struggledto give you form and breath. You are evidence ofher life, and her mother's, and hers.Remember your father. He is your life, also.Remember the earth whose skin you are:red earth, black earth, yellow earth, white earthbrown earth, we are earth.Remember the plants, trees, animal life who all have theirtribes, their families, their histories, too. Talk to them,listen to them. They are alive poems.Remember the wind. Remember her voice. She knows theorigin of this universe.Remember you are all people and all peopleare you.Remember you are this universe and thisuniverse is you.Remember all is in motion, is growing, is you.Remember language comes from this.Remember the dance language is, that life is.Remember.'Remember' reproduced from She Had Some Horses: Poems by Joy Harjo (c) 2008 by Joy Harjo. Used with permission of W. W. Norton & Company, Inc. All rights reserved. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/04/2329m 39s

79. REVISITED: Poem (Lana Turner Has Collapsed) by Frank O'Hara - A Friend to Harry

In this latest episode of The Poetry Exchange, we revisit our conversation about 'Poem (Lana Turner Has Collapsed)' by Frank O'Hara - A Friend to Harry Jelly.This gorgeous conversation was originally released in 2016 and has been a friend to many of our listeners so far. We felt it was one to lift up and enjoy all over again!We are hugely grateful to Harry for sharing his story of connection with Frank O'Hara's wonderful poem, and to the John Rylands Library for hosting this conversation back in 2016.This is the second of a trio of episodes revisiting previously released conversations - specially chosen and introduced by Fiona and Michael.*********Poem (Lana Turner Has Collapsed)by Frank O'HaraLana Turner has collapsed!I was trotting along and suddenlyit started raining and snowingand you said it was hailingbut hailing hits you on the headhard so it was really snowing andraining and I was in such a hurryto meet you but the trafficwas acting exactly like the skyand suddenly I see a headlineLANA TURNER HAS COLLAPSED!there is no snow in Hollywoodthere is no rain in CaliforniaI have been to lots of partiesand acted perfectly disgracefulbut I never actually collapsedoh Lana Turner we love you get up’Poem (Lana Turner Has Collapsed)' by Frank O'Hara from 'Lunch Poems: Pocket Poets Number 19'. (City Lights Publishers 2014). Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
30/03/2327m 36s

78. REVISITED: The force that through the green fuse drives the flower by Dylan Thomas - A Friend to Angela

In this latest episode of The Poetry Exchange, we revisit our conversation about 'The force that through the green fuse drives the flower' by Dylan Thomas - A Friend to Angela.This extraordinary and beautiful conversation was originally released in 2019 and has been a friend to many of our listeners so far. We felt it was one to lift up and revisit again in this moment.We are hugely grateful to Angela for sharing her story of connection with Dylan Thomas's poem, and to Manchester Central Library for hosting this conversation.This is the first of a trio of episodes revisiting previously released conversations - specially chosen and introduced by Fiona and Michael.You will also hear Fiona and Michael read from and discuss Kae Tempest's soul-reaching and truth-speaking book On Connection, as well as the poem 'Tall Nettles' by Edward Thomas.*********The force that through the green fuse drives the flowerby Dylan ThomasThe force that through the green fuse drives the flowerDrives my green age; that blasts the roots of treesIs my destroyer.And I am dumb to tell the crooked roseMy youth is bent by the same wintry fever.The force that drives the water through the rocksDrives my red blood; that dries the mouthing streamsTurns mine to wax.And I am dumb to mouth unto my veinsHow at the mountain spring the same mouth sucks.The hand that whirls the water in the poolStirs the quicksand; that ropes the blowing windHauls my shroud sail.And I am dumb to tell the hanging manHow of my clay is made the hangman’s lime.The lips of time leech to the fountain head;Love drips and gathers, but the fallen bloodShall calm her sores.And I am dumb to tell a weather’s windHow time has ticked a heaven round the stars.And I am dumb to tell the lover’s tombHow at my sheet goes the same crooked worm.Poem © Dylan Thomas. Used by permission of David Higham Associates. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/02/2333m 34s

77. Grief by Matthew Dickman - A Friend to Rowena Knight

In this episode of The Poetry Exchange, poet Rowena Knight talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to her: 'Grief' by Matthew Dickman.Rowena visited us in Durham and is in conversation with Andrea Witzke Slot and Michael Shaeffer. We are hugely grateful to her for sharing her story of connection with Matthew Dickman's poem.Rowena Knight’s poetry is influenced by her identity as a queer feminist and her childhood in New Zealand. Her poems have appeared in various publications, including Butcher’s Dog, Magma, The Rialto, and The Emma Press Anthology of Love. She was shortlisted for the 2018 Bridport Prize and commended in the 2019 Winchester Poetry Prize. Her first pamphlet, All the Footprints I Left Were Red, was published with Valley Press in 2016. You can find Rowena on Twitter @purple_feminist and Instagram @purple_feminist_You can discover more of Matthew Dickman's stunning, reverberating poetry at www.matthewdickmanpoetry.com. 'Grief' can be found in the collection 'Mayakovsky's Revolver' from W.W. Norton & Company, 2012.The reading of 'Grief' is by Andrea Witzke Slot.*********Griefby Matthew DickmanWhen grief comes to you as a purple gorillayou must count yourself lucky.You must offer her what’s leftof your dinner, the book you were trying to finishyou must put asideand make her a place to sit at the foot of your bed,her eyes moving from the clockto the television and back again.I am not afraid. She has been here beforeand now I can recognize her gaitas she approaches the house.Some nights, when I know she’s coming,I unlock the door, lie down on my back,and count her stepsfrom the street to the porch.Tonight she brings a pencil and a ream of paper,tells me to write downeveryone I have ever known,and we separate them between the living and the deadso she can pick each name at random.I play her favorite Willie Nelson albumbecause she misses Texasbut I don’t ask why.She hums a little,the way my brother does when he gardens.We sit for an hourwhile she tells me how unreasonable I’ve been,crying in the check-out line,refusing to eat, refusing to shower,all the smoking and all the drinking.Eventually she puts one of her heavypurple arms around me, leansher head against mine,and all of a sudden things are feeling romantic.So I tell her,things are feeling romantic.She pulls another name, this timefrom the dead,and turns to me in that way that parents doso you feel embarrassed or ashamed of something.Romantic? She says,reading the name out loud, slowlyso I am aware of each syllable, each vowelwrapping around the bones like new muscle,the sound of that person’s bodyand how reckless it is,how careless that his name is in one pile and not the other.Copyright: Matthew Dickman. 'Grief' by Matthew Dickman, from 'Mayakovsky's Revolver', W.W. Norton & Company, 2012. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/01/2328m 51s

76. The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock by T.S. Eliot - A Friend To Ella Frears

In this episode, poet Ella Frears talks about the poem that has been a friend to her: The The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock by T.S. Eliot. Ella Frears is a poet and artist based in London. Her debut collection, Shine, Darling, (Offord Road Books, 2020) was a Poetry Book Society Recommendation and was shortlisted for both the Forward Prize for Best First Collection, and the T. S. Eliot Prize for Poetry. Her latest pamphlet I AM THE MOTHER CAT written as part of her residency at John Hansard Gallery is out with Rough Trade Books (2021). Ella was recently named Poet in Residence for the Dartington Trust’s grade II listed Gardens, selected by Alice Oswald. She is a trustee and editor for Magma Poetry and has been Poet in Residence for the National Trust, Tate Britain, The John Hansard Gallery, K6 Gallery, SPUD (the Observatory), conservation organisation Back from the Brink, and was poet in residence at Royal Holloway University physics department, writing about the Cassini Space Mission. https://ellafrears.com Ella is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange hosts Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock is read by Michael Shaeffer. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/12/2238m 14s

75. Acquainted with the Night by Robert Frost - A Friend to Glyn Maxwell

In our latest episode, acclaimed poet, playwright and librettist Glyn Maxwell talks about the poem that has been a friend to him: 'Acquainted with the Night' by Robert Frost.Glyn is in conversation with Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.Glyn Maxwell's volumes of poetry include The Breakage, Hide Now, Pluto, and How The Hell Are You, all of which were shortlisted for either the Forward or T. S. Eliot Prizes, and The Nerve, which won the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize. His latest collection is The Big Calls, published in 2023 by Live Canon.On Poetry, a guidebook for the general reader, was published by Oberon in 2012. The Spectator called it ‘a modern classic’ and The Guardian’s Adam Newey described it as ‘the best book about poetry I’ve ever read.’ Drinks With Dead Poets, which is both an expansion of On Poetry and a novel in itself, was published by Oberon in September 2016.Many of Maxwell’s plays have been staged in London and New York, including Liberty at Shakespeare’s Globe, and at the Almeida, Arcola, RADA and Southwark Playhouse.*********Acquainted with the Night by Robert Frost  I have been one acquainted with the night.I have walked out in rain—and back in rain.I have outwalked the furthest city light. I have looked down the saddest city lane. I have passed by the watchman on his beat And dropped my eyes, unwilling to explain.  I have stood still and stopped the sound of feet When far away an interrupted cry Came over houses from another street, But not to call me back or say good-bye; And further still at an unearthly height, One luminary clock against the sky  Proclaimed the time was neither wrong nor right.I have been one acquainted with the night.Robert Frost, "Acquainted with the Night" from The Poetry of Robert Frost, edited by Edward Connery Lathem. Copyright © 1964, 1970 by Leslie Frost Ballantine. Copyright 1936, 1942 © 1956 by Robert Frost. Copyright 1923, 1928, © 1969 by Henry Holt and Co. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/11/2228m 8s

74. Poem in October by Dylan Thomas - A Friend to Alex

In this episode of our podcast, Alex Pritchard-Jones talks about the poem that has been a friend to him: Poem in October by Dylan Thomas.Alex spoke with us online during a day of Exchanges at the Birmingham and Midland Institute. He is in conversation with Fiona Bennett and Roy McFarlane.Poem in October is read by Roy McFarlane.*********Poem In Octoberby Dylan ThomasIt was my thirtieth year to heavenWoke to my hearing from harbour and neighbour wood And the mussel pooled and the heron Priested shore The morning beckonWith water praying and call of seagull and rookAnd the knock of sailing boats on the net webbed wall Myself to set foot That secondIn the still sleeping town and set forth.My birthday began with the water-Birds and the birds of the winged trees flying my name Above the farms and the white horses And I rose In rainy autumnAnd walked abroad in a shower of all my days.High tide and the heron dived when I took the road Over the border And the gatesOf the town closed as the town awoke.A springful of larks in a rollingCloud and the roadside bushes brimming with whistling Blackbirds and the sun of October Summery On the hill's shoulder,Here were fond climates and sweet singers suddenlyCome in the morning where I wandered and listened To the rain wringing Wind blow coldIn the wood faraway under me.Pale rain over the dwindling harbourAnd over the sea wet church the size of a snail With its horns through mist and the castle Brown as owls But all the gardensOf spring and summer were blooming in the tall talesBeyond the border and under the lark full cloud. There could I marvel My birthdayAway but the weather turned around.It turned away from the blithe countryAnd down the other air and the blue altered sky Streamed again a wonder of summer With apples Pears and red currantsAnd I saw in the turning so clearly a child'sForgotten mornings when he walked with his mother Through the parables Of sun lightAnd the legends of the green chapelsAnd the twice told fields of infancyThat his tears burned my cheeks and his heart moved in mine. These were the woods the river and sea Where a boy In the listeningSummertime of the dead whispered the truth of his joyTo the trees and the stones and the fish in the tide. And the mystery Sang aliveStill in the water and singingbirds.And there could I marvel my birthdayAway but the weather turned around. And the true Joy of the long dead child sang burning In the sun. It was my thirtiethYear to heaven stood there then in the summer noonThough the town below lay leaved with October blood. O may my heart's truth Still be sungOn this high hill in a year's turning. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/10/2230m 8s

73. SkyLines Festival featuring Roz Goddard & Rishi Dastidar

In this special, feature-length episode, we bring you our live event at SkyLines Festival of Poetry & Spoken Word in Coventry, which took place in July 2022.Renowned poets Roz Goddard and Rishi Dastidar are in converation with hosts Michael Shaeffer and Roy McFarlane about the poems that have been friends to them, alongside live readings from The Poetry Exchange archive.Roz talks about 'Pulmonary Tuberculosis' by Katherine Mansfield; Rishi talks about 'Lousy with unfuckedness, I dream' by Amy Key.We are hugely greatful to Roz and Rishi for joining us for this event and for sharing the poems that have been friends to them so openly and beautifully. Our thanks also to the Belgrade Theatre and SkyLines Festival team, especially Jane Commane for inviting us to be part of the programme and Jason Sylvester and Debbie Harlow for their support on the day. Thank you to Amy Key for allowing us to share her brilliant poem - you can find it in Amy's collection 'Isn't Forever' from Bloodaxe Books. Roy also reads 'A Short Story of Falling' by Alice Oswald. Many thanks to Alice Oswald and United Agents for granting us permission to share the poem in this capacity. 'A Short Story of Falling' can be found in the collection 'Falling Awake' (W. W. Norton & Company, Inc., 2016.*********Pulmonary Tuberculosisby Katherine MansfieldThe man in the room next to mine has the same complaint as I. When Iwake in the night I hear him turning. And then he coughs. And I cough. And after a silence I cough. And he coughs again. This goes on for a long time. Until I feel we are like two roosters calling to each other at false dawn. From far-away hidden farms.Lousy with unfuckedness, I dreamby Amy Keyeach night I count ghostlets of how my body waswanted / behind with deadheading / rose hips havecome / behind with actions that count only / whenthe timing is right / I took out a contract / it wasimprudent in value / behind with asepsis / hellomicrobes of my body / we sleep together / hellocats / I make my bed daily / of the three types ofhair on the sheets / only one is human / I count thebedrooms / I never had sex in / but there were cars/ wild woods / blackfly has got to all thenasturtiums / you cannot dig up a grapevine / andexpect shelter to come / I am touched by your letter/ writes a friend / you prevaricate desire / saysmessage / all this fucking / with no hands on meCopyright Amy Key. From 'Isn't Forever' by Amy Key (Bloodaxe Books, 2018).  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/09/2253m 46s

72. Truth by Jean Binta Breeze - A Friend to Sue Brown

In this episode, poet Sue Brown talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to her - 'Truth' by Jean 'Binta' Breeze.​Sue joined The Poetry Exchange at the Birmingham & Midland Institute and is in conversation with Fiona Bennett and Roy McFarlane.Sue Brown writes from the heart and the soul. Her words pull from the dialect of her local community, from the long toned melodic speech of preachers and Maya Angelou, from mantras and incantations, from jazz. In her poetry, a lifetime in the making, she is a fighter and a lover, by turns rising up against the oppression that has dominated her peoples’ history, and rising skywards on the warm air of her compassion and her capacity for love. These poems move with a beat that speaks to hearts everywhere. They pulse with life, feeling like they could either be spoken or sung. Feel their rhythm. Feel their profound sensibility. And as Roy McFarlane says in his exuberant introduction to this book – ‘Let Rhythm Chant take a hold of you.’'Truth' is taken from Jean Binta Breeze's 'Third World Girl - Selected Poems', published by Bloodaxe Books.*********Truthby Jean 'Binta' Breezesome years afterwhen the laughter came againshe grew her hair in locks around her headand livedsimply without even a bed but sheshe had stories that womanshe had stories to telland children who listened welland sheshe hid nothingmade no excuses for selfjust lettruth give her voice to the windand she would sing sometimes sing and ask a little more timefor memory to swell their headsthe children gathered around herthe more they askedthe more words she was sentwords that crossed all agesserved no lawswords that questioned all they had been taughtso they put her awayone dayshe must be madthe adults saycorrupting young mindsit's obvious depravedshe grew silent thenher laughter grew thinthen left with the windbut the children grew up and rememberedone woman who didn't lieone woman who didn't hidenow they count the hypocrites among themFrom 'Third World Girl, Selected Poems', 2011, Bloodaxe Books. Reproduced with kind permission of the publisher. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/07/2229m 2s

71. Love Song For Words by Nazik al-Mala'ika - A Friend to Maryam

In this episode, Maryam talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to her – 'Love Song for Words' by Nazik al-Mala'ika, translated from the Arabic by Rebecca Carol Johnson.Nazik al-Mala'ika was born in Baghdad, before moving to Kuwait in 1970. When Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait, they moved to Cairo, where she would live for the rest of her life. She was the author of several books of poetry, including The Nights Lover (1945), The Cholera (1947), Bottom of the Wave (1957) and The sea changes its color (1977). Al-Mala'ika is known as the first Arabic poet to use free verse. She died in 2007 at the age of 83.Rebecca C. Johnson is a scholar of comparative literature with a specialization in modern Arabic literature and literary culture. Her research focuses on literary exchanges between Arabic and European languages in the 19th & 20th centuries, the history and theory of the novel, and studies of transnational literary circulation and translation. Stranger Fictions: A History of the Novel in Arabic Translation, 1835-1913 was published by Cornell University Press in 2021.Many thanks to Words Without Borders, who originally published this translation of the Love Song For Words.Maryam is in conversation with Al Snell & Andrea Witzke-Slot.*********Love Song for WordsWhy do we fear wordswhen they have been rose-palmed hands,fragrant, passing gently over our cheeks,and glasses of heartening winesipped, one summer, by thirsty lips?Why do we fear wordswhen among them are words like unseen bells,whose echo announces in our troubled livesthe coming of a period of enchanted dawn,drenched in love, and life?So why do we fear words?We took pleasure in silence.We became still, fearing the secret might part our lips.We thought that in words laid an unseen ghoul,crouching, hidden by the letters from the ear of time.We shackled the thirsty letters,we forbade them to spread the night for usas a cushion, dripping with music, dreams,and warm cups.Why do we fear words?Among them are words of smooth sweetnesswhose letters have drawn the warmth of hope from two lips,and others that, rejoicing in pleasurehave waded through momentary joy with two drunk eyes.Words, poetry, tenderlyturned to caress our cheeks, soundsthat, asleep in their echo, lies a rich color, a rustling,a secret ardor, a hidden longing.Why do we fear words?If their thorns have once wounded us,then they have also wrapped their arms around our necksand shed their sweet scent upon our desires.If their letters have pierced usand their face turned callously from usThen they have also left us with an oud in our handsAnd tomorrow they will shower us with life.So pour us two full glasses of words!Tomorrow we will build ourselves a dream-nest of words,high, with ivy trailing from its letters.We will nourish its buds with poetryand water its flowers with words.We will build a balcony for the timid rosewith pillars made of words,and a cool hall flooded with deep shade,guarded by words.Our life we have dedicated as a prayerTo whom will we pray . . . but to words?© Nazik al-Mala’ika. Translation © 2003 by Rebecca C. Johnson. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/06/2229m 40s

70. On Marriage by Kahlil Gibran - A Friend to India & Samira

In this episode, India & Samira talk with us about the poem that has been a friend to them – 'On Marriage' from 'The Prophet' by Kahlil Gibran.India & Samira joined The Poetry Exchange online, via video call, for one of our Lockdown Exchanges.They are in conversation with Poetry Exchange hosts, Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.**********On MarriageBy Kahlil GibranThen Almitra spoke again and said, Andwhat of Marriage, master?    And he answered saying:    You were born together, and together youshall be forevermore.    You shall be together when the whitewings of death scatter your days.    Ay, you shall be together even in thesilent memory of God.    But let there be spaces in your togetherness,    And let the winds of the heavens dancebetween you.    Love one another, but make not a bondof love:    Let it rather be a moving sea betweenthe shores of your souls.    Fill each other’s cup but drink not fromone cup.    Give one another of your bread but eatnot from the same loaf.    Sing and dance together and be joyous,but let each one of you be alone,    Even as the strings of a lute are alonethough they quiver with the same music.    Give your hearts, but not into eachother’s keeping.    For only the hand of Life can containyour hearts.    And stand together yet not too neartogether:    For the pillars of the temple stand apart,    And the oak tree and the cypress grownot in each other’s shadow. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/05/2230m 2s

69. Fisherman by Dennis Scott - A Friend to Michael

In this episode, Michael Cooke talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to him – 'Fisherman' by Dennis Scott.​Michael joined The Poetry Exchange online for one of our Lockdown Exchanges. We are hugely grateful to Michael for spending this time with us and sharing such a beautiful poem and converastion.Michael Cooke is in conversation with Fiona Bennett and John Prebble.The 'gift' reading of 'Fisherman' is by John Prebble.*****Fisherman by Dennis ScottThe scales like metal flint his feet,their empty eyes like me.How gray their colours in the heat!Cool as the oily sea.With gentle hand he slits the heart,and the flesh as white as milkand the ribboned entrails fall apartlike the fall of coiling silk.Some day I too shall fish, and findon stranger shores than thesethe ribs and muscles of my blindself, rainbowed from the seas.From 'Uncle Time' by Dennis Scott, University of Pittsburgh Press, 1973. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/04/2231m 46s

68. The Lake Isle of Innisfree - A Friend to Sue

In our latest episode, Sue Lawther-Brown talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to her: The Lake Isle of Innisfree by William Butler Yeats.We are hugely grateful to Sue for bringing this beautiful poem to us and sharing such a rich and moving conversation.Sue joined us at the National Centre for Writing in Norwich and we are very grateful to the team there for hosting us so warmly.You can discover previous conversations about this poem with different guests on episodes 9 and 26 of our podcast.Michael's play is Tom Fool at Orange Tree Theatre, London.Paul Henry's forthcoming collection 'As If To Sing' is from Seren Books:The 'gift' reading of The Lake Isle of Innisfree is by Fiona Bennett.*********The Lake Isle Of InnisfreeI will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made;Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey-bee,And live alone in the bee-loud glade.And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket sings;There midnight’s all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,And evening full of the linnet’s wings.I will arise and go now, for always night and dayI hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,I hear it in the deep heart’s core. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/03/2228m 55s

67. The Way Home By Liz Berry - A Friend To Casey Bailey

In this episode, poet Casey Bailey talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to him – 'The Way Home' by Liz Berry.​Casey joined The Poetry Exchange at the Birmingham & Midland Institute and is in conversation with Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Bennett and Roy McFarlane.Casey Bailey is a writer, performer and educator, born and raised in Nechells, Birmingham, UK. Casey is the Birmingham Poet Laureate 2020 - 2022 and the Greater Birmingham Future Face of Arts and Culture 2020.Casey’s second full poetry collection Please Do Not Touch was published by Burning Eye in 2021. Casey’s debut play ‘GrimeBoy’ was commissioned by the Birmingham Rep in 2020. He was commissioned by the BBC to write ‘The Ballad of The Peaky Blinders’ in 2019. In 2020 the poem was internationally recognised, winning a Webby Award. Casey has performed his poetry nationally, and internationally.Casey was named as one of ‘Birmingham Live’s’, Birmingham ’30 under 30’ of 2018, Casey is a Fellow of the University of Worcester and in 2021 was awarded an honorary doctorate by Newman University.www.caseybailey.co.ukThe 'gift' reading of 'The Way Home' is by Roy McFarlane. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/02/2230m 37s

66. On The Departure Platform - A Friend to Gill

In this episode, Gill Gregory talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to her – 'On the Departure Platform' by Thomas Hardy.Gill joined The Poetry Exchange at the National Centre for Writing in Norwich. We are hugely grateful to the National Centre for Writing for hosting us so warmly, and to all the readers who visited us there.Andrea is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange hosts, Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.The 'gift' reading of 'On the Departure Platform' is by Michael Shaeffer.*********On the Departure Platformby Thomas HardyWe kissed at the barrier; and passing throughShe left me, and moment by moment gotSmaller and smaller, until to my view               She was but a spot;A wee white spot of muslin fluffThat down the diminishing platform boreThrough hustling crowds of gentle and rough              To the carriage door.Under the lamplight’s fitful glowers,Behind dark groups from far and near,Whose interests were apart from ours,                She would disappear,Then show again, till I ceased to seeThat flexible form, that nebulous white;And she who was more than my life to me                Had vanished quite.We have penned new plans since that fair fond day,And in season she will appear again—Perhaps in the same soft white array—                But never as then !—‘And why, young man, must eternally flyA joy you’ll repeat, if you love her well ?’—O friend, nought happens twice thus ; why,                I cannot tell! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
18/01/2229m 14s

65. Song Of Myself by Walt Whitman - A Friend To Andrea

In this episode, Andrea Holland talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to her – 'Song of Myself' by Walt Whitman.​Andrea Holland is a poet and lecturer in Creative Writing. As winner of the Norfolk Commission for Poetry her collection 'Broadcasting' was published in 2013 (Gatehouse Press). The collection focuses on the forced requisition of several Norfolk villages for D-Day training in 1942, and the subsequent dislocation of villagers and community. Her pamphlet, 'Borrowed' (Smith/Doorstop, 2007) was first-stage winner of the Poetry Business Competition 2006. Her writing has appeared in journals such as Mslexia, The North, Rialto, Smith's Knoll, and in Slanted: 12 Poems for Christmas (IST, 2014).Andrea joined us at the National Centre for Writing in Norwich. We are hugely grateful to the National Centre for Writing for hosting us so warmly, and to all the readers who visited us there.Andrea is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange hosts, Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.The 'gift' reading of 'Song of Myself' is by Michael Shaeffer.*********From 'Song of Myself'Walt WhitmanI believe in you my soul, the other I am must not abase itself to you,And you must not be abased to the other.Loaf with me on the grass, loose the stop from your throat,Not words, not music or rhyme I want, not custom or lecture, not even the best,Only the lull I like, the hum of your valved voice.I mind how once we lay such a transparent summer morning,How you settled your head athwart my hips, and gently turned over upon me,And parted the shirt from my bosom bone, and plunged your tongue to my bare-stripped heart,And reached till you felt my beard, and reached till you held my feet.Swiftly arose and spread around me the peace and knowledge that pass all the argument of the earth,And I know that the hand of God is the promise of my own,And I know that the spirit of God is the brother of my own,And that all the men ever born are also my brothers, and the women my sisters and lovers,And that a kelson of the creation is love,And limitless are leaves stiff or drooping in the fields,And brown ants in the little wells beneath them,And mossy scabs of the worm fence, heaped stones, elder, mullein and pokeweed. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/12/2130m 36s

64. Kubla Khan by Coleridge - A Friend To Gregory Leadbetter

In this episode, poet Gregory Leadbetter talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to him – 'Kubla Khan' by Samuel Taylor Coleridge.​Gregory joined The Poetry Exchange at the Birmingham & Midland Institute - one of our first in-person exchanges since the pandemic.He is in conversation with Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Bennett and Roy McFarlane.Gregory Leadbetter is a poet and critic. He is the author of two poetry collections, Maskwork (2020) and The Fetch (2016), both with Nine Arches Press, as well as the pamphlet The Body in the Well (HappenStance Press, 2007), and (with photographs by Phil Thomson) Balanuve (Broken Sleep, 2021). His book Coleridge and the Daemonic Imagination (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011) won the University English Book Prize 2012.The 'gift' reading of Kubla Khan is by Roy McFarlane.*********Kubla Khanby Samuel Taylor ColeridgeOr, a vision in a dream. A Fragment.In Xanadu did Kubla KhanA stately pleasure-dome decree:Where Alph, the sacred river, ranThrough caverns measureless to man Down to a sunless sea.So twice five miles of fertile groundWith walls and towers were girdled round;And there were gardens bright with sinuous rills,Where blossomed many an incense-bearing tree;And here were forests ancient as the hills,Enfolding sunny spots of greenery.But oh! that deep romantic chasm which slantedDown the green hill athwart a cedarn cover!A savage place! as holy and enchantedAs e’er beneath a waning moon was hauntedBy woman wailing for her demon-lover!And from this chasm, with ceaseless turmoil seething,As if this earth in fast thick pants were breathing,A mighty fountain momently was forced:Amid whose swift half-intermitted burstHuge fragments vaulted like rebounding hail,Or chaffy grain beneath the thresher’s flail:And mid these dancing rocks at once and everIt flung up momently the sacred river.Five miles meandering with a mazy motionThrough wood and dale the sacred river ran,Then reached the caverns measureless to man,And sank in tumult to a lifeless ocean;And ’mid this tumult Kubla heard from farAncestral voices prophesying war! The shadow of the dome of pleasure Floated midway on the waves; Where was heard the mingled measure From the fountain and the caves.It was a miracle of rare device,A sunny pleasure-dome with caves of ice!A damsel with a dulcimer In a vision once I saw: It was an Abyssinian maid And on her dulcimer she played, Singing of Mount Abora. Could I revive within me Her symphony and song, To such a deep delight ’twould win me,That with music loud and long,I would build that dome in air,That sunny dome! those caves of ice!And all who heard should see them there,And all should cry, Beware! Beware!His flashing eyes, his floating hair!Weave a circle round him thrice,And close your eyes with holy dreadFor he on honey-dew hath fed,And drunk the milk of Paradise. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/11/2134m 22s

63. Old Mary by Gwendolyn Brooks - A Friend to Pete

In this episode, Pete Stones talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to him – 'Old Mary' by Gwendolyn Brooks.​Pete joined The Poetry Exchange at the Birmingham & Midland Institute - one of our first in-person exchanges since the pandemic.He is in conversation with Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Bennett and John Prebble.'Old Mary' is read by Pete Stones and Fiona Bennett.*********Old Maryby Gwendolyn BrooksMy last defenseIs the present tense.It little hurts me now to knowI shall not goCathedral-hunting in SpainNor cherrying in Michigan or Maine.Reproduced by consent of Brooks Permissions. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/10/2125m 45s

62. Eve Remembering by Toni Morrison - A Friend to Maria

In this episode, Dr Maria Augusta Arruda talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to her – 'Eve Remembering' by Toni Morrison.​Maria joined The Poetry Exchange online for one of our Lockdown Exchanges. She is in conversation with Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.The 'gift' reading of 'Eve Remembering' is by Fiona Bennett.*****Eve Rememberingby Toni Morrison1I tore from a limb fruit that had lost its green.My hands were warmed by the heat of an appleFire red and humming.I bit sweet power to the core.How can I say what it was like?The taste! The taste undid my eyesAnd led me far from the gardens planted for a childTo wildernesses deeper than any master’s call.2Now these cool hands guide what they once caressed;Lips forget what they have kissed.My eyes now pool their lightBetter the summit to see.3I would do it all over again:Be the harbor and set the sail,Loose the breeze and harness the gale,Cherish the harvest of what I have been.Better the summit to scale.Better the summit to be.From Five Poems (Rainmaker Editions, 2002) by Toni Morrison with silhouettes by Kara Walker. Used with permission from The Believer Magazine. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/09/2132m 23s

61. The Republic of Motherhood by Liz Berry - A Friend to Ana

In this episode, Ana Sampson talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to her – 'The Republic of Motherhood' by Liz Berry.Ana Sampson is a highly accomplished poetry editor. She has edited 8 poetry anthologies including 'Night Feeds and Morning Songs: Honest, fierce and beautiful poems about motherhood', as well as 'She is Fierce' and 'She Will Soar' - two bold and brilliant anthologies of women's verse throughout history. Ana's books have sold over 240,000 copies and she writes and speaks often about books and poetry in the media. She has also spoken about the hidden history of women’s writing at bookshops, festivals, libraries, schools and literary events. www.anasampson.co.ukWe are hugely grateful to Liz Berry and Chatto & Windus for allowing us to share Liz's extraordinary poem in this way. You can buy Liz's entire pamphlet - The Republic of Motherhood - here: www.poetrybooks.co.uk/products/republic-of-motherhood-liz-berryAna is in conversation with Poetry Exchange team members, Andrea Witzke Slot and John Prebble.The 'gift' reading of 'The Republic of Motherhood' is by Andrea Witzke Slot.*********The Republic of Motherhoodby Liz BerryI crossed the border into the Republic of Motherhoodand found it a queendom, a wild queendom.I handed over my clothes and took its uniform,its dressing gown and undergarments, a cardigansoft as a creature, smelling of birth and milk,and I lay down in Motherhood’s bed, the bed I had madebut could not sleep in, for I was called at once to workin the factory of Motherhood. The owl shift,the graveyard shift. Feedingcleaninglovingfeeding.I walked home, heartsore, through pale streets,the coins of Motherhood singing in my pockets.Then I soaked my spindled bonesin the chill municipal baths of Motherhood,watching strands of my hair float from my fingers.Each day I pushed my pram through freeze and blossomdown the wide boulevards of Motherhoodwhere poplars bent their branches to stroke my brow.I stood with my sisters in the queues of Motherhood—the weighing clinic, the supermarket—waitingfor Motherhood’s bureaucracies to open their doors.As required, I stood beneath the flag of Motherhoodand opened my mouth although I did not know the anthem.When darkness fell I pushed my pram home again,and by lamplight wrote urgent letters of complaintto the Department of Motherhood but received no response.I grew sick and was healed in the hospitals of Motherhoodwith their long-closed isolation wardsand narrow beds watched over by a fat moon.The doctors were slender and efficientand when I was well they gave me my pram againso I could stare at the daffodils in the parks of Motherhoodwhile winds pierced my breasts like silver arrows.In snowfall, I haunted Motherhood’s cemeteries,the sweet fallen beneath my feet—Our Lady of the Birth Trauma, Our Lady of Psychosis.I wanted to speak to them, tell them I understood,but the words came out scrambled, so I knelt insteadand prayed in the chapel of Motherhood, prayedfor that whole wild fucking queendom,its sorrow, its unbearable skinless beauty,and all the souls that were in it. I prayed and prayeduntil my voice was a nightcryand sunlight pixelated my face like a kaleidoscope.© Liz Berry. From 'The Republic of Motherhood' by Liz Berry (Chatto & Windus 2018). Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/07/2130m 37s

60. From Blossoms by Li-Young Lee - A Friend to Jessica

In this episode, Jessica talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to her – 'From Blossoms' by Li-Young Lee.​Jessica joined The Poetry Exchange online, via video call, for one of our Lockdown Exchanges.Jessica works as an Audio Producer with Listening Books, an audiobook lending charity for those that find their illness, mental health, physical or learning disability affects their ability to read the printed word or hold a book.Jessica is in conversation with Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.The 'gift' reading of 'From Blossoms' is by Michael Shaeffer.*****From Blossoms by Li-Young LeeFrom blossoms comesthis brown paper bag of peacheswe bought from the boyat the bend in the road where we turned toward signs painted Peaches.From laden boughs, from hands,from sweet fellowship in the bins,comes nectar at the roadside, succulentpeaches we devour, dusty skin and all,comes the familiar dust of summer, dust we eat.O, to take what we love inside,to carry within us an orchard, to eatnot only the skin, but the shade,not only the sugar, but the days, to holdthe fruit in our hands, adore it, then bite into the round jubilance of peach.There are days we liveas if death were nowherein the background; from joyto joy to joy, from wing to wing,from blossom to blossom toimpossible blossom, to sweet impossible blossom.Li-Young Lee, “From Blossoms” from Rose. Copyright © 1986 by Li-Young Lee. Reprinted with the permission of BOA Editions Ltd. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/06/2129m 41s

59. Good Lord The Light by Christian Wiman - A Friend to Krista Tippett

In this special, feature-length episode, pioneering broadcaster, writer and host of On Being, Krista Tippett talks about the poem that has been a friend to her: ‘Good Lord The Light’ by Christian Wiman.Krista Tippett has created a singular space for reflection and conversation in American and global public life. She founded and leads the On Being Project — a groundbreaking media and public life initiative pursuing “deep thinking and moral imagination, social courage and joy to renew inner life, outer life, and life together.” As the creator and host of the Peabody Award-winning On Being radio show, heard on over 400 public radio stations across the US, Tippett takes up the great animating questions of human life: What does it mean to be human, how we do want to live, and who will we be to each other?In 2014, President Obama awarded Krista the National Humanities Medal at the White House for “thoughtfully delving into the mysteries of human existence. On the air and in print, Ms. Tippett avoids easy answers, embracing complexity and inviting people of every background to join her conversation about faith, ethics, and moral wisdom.”Krista is also the author of three books at the intersection of spiritual inquiry, social healing, science, and the arts: Becoming Wise: An Inquiry into the Mystery and Art of Living; Einstein’s God: Conversations about Science and the Human Spirit and Speaking of Faith, a memoir of religion in our time.Krista is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange hosts Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.‘Good Lord The Light’ can be found in poet Christian Wiman’s latest collection – ‘Survival is a Style’, from Farrar, Straus and Geroux.You can listen to Krista’s extraordinary range of life-expanding conversations through the On Being podcast – which can be found wherever you get your podcasts and at www.onbeing.org. The 'gift' reading of 'Good Lord The Light' is by Michael Shaeffer.*********GOOD LORD THE LIGHTby Christian WimanGood morning misery,goodbye belief,good Lord the lightcutting across the lakeso long goneto ice —There is an under, always,through which things still move, breathe,and have their being,quick coals and crimsonsno one need seeto see.Good night knowledge,goodbye beyond,good God the winterone must wanderone’s own soulto be.From 'Survival is a Style' - Farrar, Straus and Giroux (February 2020) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/05/2142m 6s

58. The Horses by Ted Hughes - A Friend to Lewi

In this episode, Lewi talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to him – 'The Horses' by Ted Hughes.​Lewi joined The Poetry Exchange online as part of Manchester Literature Festival 2020. Lewi is in conversation with Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.The 'gift' reading of 'The Horses' is by Fiona Bennett.*****The Horses By Ted HughesI climbed through woods in the hour-before-dawn dark.Evil air, a frost-making stillness,Not a leaf, not a bird-A world cast in frost. I came out above the woodWhere my breath left tortuous statues in the iron light.But the valleys were draining the darknessTill the moorline blackening dregs of the brightening greyHalved the sky ahead. And I saw the horses:Huge in the dense grey ten togetherMegalith-still. They breathed, making no move,With draped manes and tilted hind-hooves,Making no sound.I passed: not one snorted or jerked its head.Grey silent fragmentsOf a grey still world.I listened in emptiness on the moor-ridge.The curlews tear turned its edge on the silence.Slowly detail leafed from the darkness. Then the sunOrange, red, red eruptedSilently, and splitting to its core tore and flung cloud,Shook the gulf open, showed blue,And the big planets hangingI turnedStumbling in a fever of a dream, down towardsThe dark woods, from the kindling tops,And came the horses.There, still they stood,But now steaming, and glistening under the flow of light,Their draped stone manes, their tilted hind-hoovesStirring under a thaw while all around themThe frost showed its fires. But still they made no sound.Not one snorted or stamped,Their hung heads patient as the horizons,High over valleys, in the red levelling raysIn din of the crowded streets, going among the years, the faces,May I still meet my memory in so lonely a placeBetween the streams and the red clouds, hearing curlews,Hearing the horizons endure.New Selected Poems by Ted Hughes. Faber & Faber; Main edition (6 Mar. 1995) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/04/2129m 17s

57. Still I Rise by Maya Angelou - A Friend to Fehmida

In this episode, Fehmida talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to her – 'Still I Rise' by Maya Angelou.​Fehmida joined The Poetry Exchange online, via video call, for one of our Lockdown Exchanges, as part of Manchester Literature Festival 2020.You can also find out more about our wonderful guest, Fehmida, and the work she pioneers for women and those who are under-represented in publishing here:www.fehmidamaster.comwww.masterhousepublishing.comFehmida is in conversation with Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.*****You may write me down in historyWith your bitter, twisted lies,You may trod me in the very dirtBut still, like dust, I'll rise.Does my sassiness upset you?Why are you beset with gloom?’Cause I walk like I've got oil wellsPumping in my living room.Just like moons and like suns,With the certainty of tides,Just like hopes springing high,Still I'll rise.Did you want to see me broken?Bowed head and lowered eyes?Shoulders falling down like teardrops,Weakened by my soulful cries?Does my haughtiness offend you?Don't you take it awful hard’Cause I laugh like I've got gold minesDiggin’ in my own backyard.You may shoot me with your words,You may cut me with your eyes,You may kill me with your hatefulness,But still, like air, I’ll rise.Does my sexiness upset you?Does it come as a surpriseThat I dance like I've got diamondsAt the meeting of my thighs?Out of the huts of history’s shameI riseUp from a past that’s rooted in painI riseI'm a black ocean, leaping and wide,Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.Leaving behind nights of terror and fearI riseInto a daybreak that’s wondrously clearI riseBringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,I am the dream and the hope of the slave.I riseI riseI rise.Maya Angelou, "Still I Rise" from And Still I Rise: A Book of Poems. Copyright © 1978 by Maya Angelou. Used by permission of Random House, an imprint and division of Penguin Random House LLC. All rights reserved. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
19/03/2127m 6s

56. Aubade by Philip Larkin - A Friend to Tom

In this episode, Tom talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to him – 'Aubade' by Philip Larkin.Tom visited The Poetry Exchange in February 2020 for what turned out to be our last live event of the year before the first Covid-19 lockdown. He joined us at beautiful Manchester Central Library and is in conversation with Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Bennett and Al Snell.The 'gift' reading of 'Aubade' is by Al Snell. *****I work all day, and get half-drunk at night.  Waking at four to soundless dark, I stare.  In time the curtain-edges will grow light.  Till then I see what’s really always there:  Unresting death, a whole day nearer now,  Making all thought impossible but how  And where and when I shall myself die.  Arid interrogation: yet the dreadOf dying, and being dead,Flashes afresh to hold and horrify.The mind blanks at the glare. Not in remorse  —The good not done, the love not given, time  Torn off unused—nor wretchedly because  An only life can take so long to climbClear of its wrong beginnings, and may never;  But at the total emptiness for ever,The sure extinction that we travel toAnd shall be lost in always. Not to be here,  Not to be anywhere,And soon; nothing more terrible, nothing more true.This is a special way of being afraidNo trick dispels. Religion used to try,That vast moth-eaten musical brocadeCreated to pretend we never die,And specious stuff that says No rational being Can fear a thing it will not feel, not seeingThat this is what we fear—no sight, no sound,  No touch or taste or smell, nothing to think with,  Nothing to love or link with,The anaesthetic from which none come round.And so it stays just on the edge of vision,  A small unfocused blur, a standing chill  That slows each impulse down to indecision.  Most things may never happen: this one will,  And realisation of it rages outIn furnace-fear when we are caught without  People or drink. Courage is no good:It means not scaring others. Being brave  Lets no one off the grave.Death is no different whined at than withstood.Slowly light strengthens, and the room takes shape.  It stands plain as a wardrobe, what we know,  Have always known, know that we can’t escape,  Yet can’t accept. One side will have to go.Meanwhile telephones crouch, getting ready to ring  In locked-up offices, and all the uncaringIntricate rented world begins to rouse.The sky is white as clay, with no sun.Work has to be done.Postmen like doctors go from house to house.Philip Larkin, "Aubade" from Collected Poems. Copyright © Estate of Philip Larkin. Reprinted by permission of Faber and Faber, Ltd. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/02/2125m 38s

55. Mushrooms by Sylvia Plath - A Friend to Jenny

In this episode, Jenny talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to her – 'Mushrooms' by Sylvia Plath.Jenny joined The Poetry Exchange online and is in conversation with Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Bennett and John Prebble.Fiona reads the gift reading of 'Mushrooms'.*****Mushroomsby Sylvia Plath Overnight, veryWhitely, discreetly,Very quietlyOur toes, our nosesTake hold on the loam,Acquire the air.Nobody sees us,Stops us, betrays us;The small grains make room.Soft fists insist onHeaving the needles,The leafy bedding,Even the paving.Our hammers, our rams,Earless and eyeless,Perfectly voiceless,Widen the crannies,Shoulder through holes. WeDiet on water,On crumbs of shadow,Bland-mannered, askingLittle or nothing.So many of us!So many of us!We are shelves, we areTables, we are meek,We are edible,Nudgers and shoversIn spite of ourselves.Our kind multiplies:We shall by morningInherit the earth.Our foot’s in the door.From Collected Poems (1981) by Sylvia Plath, published by Faber and Faber Ltd. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/01/2125m 52s

54. A Recovered Memory of Water by Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill - A Friend to Pádraig Ó Tuama

In this episode, poet, theologian and podcast host Pádraig Ó Tuama talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to him – 'Cuimhne An Uisce' / 'A Recovered Memory of Water' by Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill, translated by Paul Muldoon.Pádraig Ó Tuama is a poet and theologian from Ireland whose poetry and prose has been published widely across Ireland, the US and the UK. He presents Poetry Unbound with On Being, a hugely successful podcast where he explores a single poem. Short and unhurried; contemplative and energizing, this podcast had more than a million downloads of its first season.www.padraigotuama.comonbeing.org/series/poetry-unbound​Pádraig joined The Poetry Exchange online and is in conversation with Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.​Many thanks to Gallery Press for granting us permission to share the poem in this capacity. Do visit them for more inspiration here:www.gallerypress.comFiona reads the gift reading of 'A Recovered Memory of Water'.*****Cuimhne An Uisce / A Recovered Memory of Water by Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill, translated by Paul MuldoonSometimes when the mermaid’s daughteris in the bathroomcleaning her teeth with a thick brushand baking sodashe has the sense the room is fillingwith water.It starts at her feet and anklesand slides further and further upover her thighs and hips and waist.In no timeit’s up to her oxters.She bends down into it to pick uphandtowels and washcloths and all such thingsas are sodden with it.They all look like seaweed—like those long strands of kelp that used to be called‘mermaid-hair’ or ‘foxtail.’Just as suddenly the water recedesand in no timethe room’s completely dry again.A terrible sense of stressis part and parcel of these emotions.At the end of the day she has nothing elseto compare it to.She doesn’t have the vocabulary for any of it.At her weekly therapy sessionshe has more than enough to be going on withjust to describe this strange phenomenonand to express it properlyto the psychiatrist.She doesn’t have the terminologyor any of the points of referenceor any word at all that would give the slightest suggestionas to what water might be.‘A transparent liquid,’ she says, doing as best she can.‘Right,’ says the therapist, ‘keep going.’He coaxes and cajoles her towards word-making.She has another run at it.‘A thin flow,’ she calls it,casting about gingerly in the midst of the words.‘A shiny film. Dripping stuff. Something wet.’From 'The Fifty Minute Mermaid', Gallery Press, 2007. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/12/2028m 38s

53. A Short Story of Falling by Alice Oswald - A Friend to Charlie

In this episode, Charlie talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to him – 'A Short Story of Falling' by Alice Oswald.​Charlie joined The Poetry Exchange online, via video call, for one of our 'Lockdown Exchanges' and is in conversation with Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Bennett Alistair Snell.​Many thanks to Alice Oswald and United Agents for granting us permission to share the poem in this capacity. Find out more about Alice and her work here: www.unitedagents.co.uk/alice-oswaldAl reads the gift reading of 'A Short Story of Falling'.*****A Short Story of Falling It is the story of the falling rainto turn into a leaf and fall againit is the secret of a summer showerto steal the light and hide it in a flowerand every flower a tiny tributarythat from the ground flows green and momentaryis one of water's wishes and this talehangs in a seed-head smaller than my thumbnailif only I a passerby could passas clear as water through a plume of grassto find the sunlight hidden at the tipturning to seed a kind of lifting rain dripthen I might know like water how to balancethe weight of hope against the light of patiencewater which is so raw so earthy-strongand lurks in cast-iron tanks and leaks alongdrawn under gravity towards my tongueto cool and fill the pipe-work of this songwhich is the story of the falling rainthat rises to the light and falls againReprinted by permission of Alice Oswald and United AgentsSource: Falling Awake (W. W. Norton & Company, Inc., 2016) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/11/2028m 12s

52. Ae Fond Kiss by Robert Burns and I Am by John Clare - Friends to Brian Cox

In this episode, world-renowned actor, Brian Cox CBE talks with us about two poems that have been friends to him – 'Ae Fond Kiss' by Robert Burns and 'I am' by John Clare.Brian joined The Poetry Exchange online, from his home, over the course of lockdown in 2020. He is a Scottish actor who works in film, television and theatre, and as a multiple award-winner, has gained huge respect in the industry for the many captivating roles he has undertaken. He us perhaps most recently known for starring in HBO's hugely popular and critically acclaimed television series, 'Succession'.Michael reads the gift reading of 'I Am'.*****Ae Fond Kissby Robert BurnsAe fond kiss, and then we sever; Ae fareweel, and then forever! Deep in heart-wrung tears I'll pledge thee, Warring sighs and groans I'll wage thee. Who shall say that Fortune grieves him, While the star of hope she leaves him? Me, nae cheerfu' twinkle lights me; Dark despair around benights me.I'll ne'er blame my partial fancy, Naething could resist my Nancy; But to see her was to love her; Love but her, and love forever. Had we never lov'd sae kindly, Had we never lov'd sae blindly, Never met—or never parted— We had ne'er been broken-hearted.Fare thee weel, thou first and fairest! Fare thee weel, thou best and dearest! Thine be ilka joy and treasure, Peace. enjoyment, love, and pleasure! Ae fond kiss, and then we sever; Ae fareweel, alas, forever! Deep in heart-wrung tears I'll pledge thee, Warring sighs and groans I'll wage thee!*****I Amby John ClareI am—yet what I am none cares or knows; My friends forsake me like a memory lost: I am the self-consumer of my woes— They rise and vanish in oblivious host, Like shadows in love’s frenzied stifled throes And yet I am, and live—like vapours tossedInto the nothingness of scorn and noise, Into the living sea of waking dreams, Where there is neither sense of life or joys, But the vast shipwreck of my life’s esteems; Even the dearest that I loved the best Are strange—nay, rather, stranger than the rest.I long for scenes where man hath never trod A place where woman never smiled or wept There to abide with my Creator, God, And sleep as I in childhood sweetly slept, Untroubling and untroubled where I lie The grass below—above the vaulted sky. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/10/2032m 13s

51. Spring and Fall By Gerard Manley Hopkins - A Friend To Vahni Capildeo

In this episode, Forward Prize-winning poet Vahni Capildeo talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to them – 'Spring and Fall' by Gerard Manley Hopkins.Vahni joined The Poetry Exchange online, from their family home in Trinidad, as part of City of Literature - a week of conversations, reflections and connections presented by the National Centre for Writing and Norfolk & Norwich Festival.​www.nnfestival.org.ukwww.nationalcentreforwriting.org.ukVahni Capildeo is a Trinidadian Scottish writer inspired by other voices, ranging from live Caribbean connexions and an Indian diaspora background to the landscapes where Capildeo travels and lives. Their poetry includes Measures of Expatriation, awarded the Forward Prize for Best Collection in 2016, and Venus as a Bear, published in 2018. You can discover more about and purchase Vahni Capildeo's work at the Carcanet website (Vahni's publisher).Michael Shaeffer reads the gift reading of Spring and Fall.You will also hear Fiona mention some new publications by members of our creative team:Andrea Witzke Slot's 'The Ministry of Flowers' is published by Valley Press.Victoria Field's 'A Speech of Birds' is published by Francis Boutle.Sarah Salway's 'Let's Dance' is published by Coast to Coast, Spring 2021 and 'Not Sorry', a collection of flash fiction, is published by Valley Press Spring/Summer 2021. *********Spring and Fallby Gerard Manley Hopkinsto a young childMárgarét, áre you gríevingOver Goldengrove unleaving?Leáves like the things of man, youWith your fresh thoughts care for, can you?Ah! ás the heart grows olderIt will come to such sights colderBy and by, nor spare a sighThough worlds of wanwood leafmeal lie;And yet you wíll weep and know why.Now no matter, child, the name:Sórrow’s spríngs áre the same.Nor mouth had, no nor mind, expressedWhat heart heard of, ghost guessed:It ís the blight man was born for,It is Margaret you mourn for. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/09/2025m 56s

50. "Hope" is the thing with feathers by Emily Dickinson - A Friend to Lucy

In this episode, Lucy talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to her – "Hope is the thing with feathers" by Emily Dickinson.​Lucy joined The Poetry Exchange online, via video call, for one of our 'Lockdown Exchanges' that took place as part of City of Literature - a week of conversations, reflections and connections presented by the National Centre for Writing and Norfolk & Norwich Festival.​Many thanks to our partners, the National Centre for Writing and Norfolk & Norwich Festival for enabling this to go ahead in spite of the physical restrictions. Do visit them for more inspiration:​www.nnfestival.org.ukwww.nationalcentreforwriting.org.ukPlease also visit Lucy's website, 'The Rainbow Poems' to discover a space dedicated to sharing a colourful array of poems:www.therainbowpoems.co.ukFiona reads the gift reading of "Hope" is the thing with feathers.*********“Hope” is the thing with feathers - (314) by Emily Dickinson“Hope” is the thing with feathers -That perches in the soul -And sings the tune without the words -And never stops - at all -And sweetest - in the Gale - is heard -And sore must be the storm -That could abash the little BirdThat kept so many warm -I’ve heard it in the chillest land -And on the strangest Sea -Yet - never - in Extremity,It asked a crumb - of me.Emily Dickinson, "'Hope' is the Thing with Feathers" from The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson, edited by Thomas H. Johnson, ed., Cambridge, Mass.: The Belknap Press of Harvard University press, Copyright © 1951, 1955, 1979, 1983 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/08/2026m 46s

49. Vers De Société by Philip Larkin - A Friend to Stephen

In this episode, Stephen Beresford talks about the poem that has been a friend to him – 'Vers De Société' by Philip Larkin. ​Stephen Beresford is a highly acclaimed Film, TV and Theatre Writer, whose credits include his debut play The Last Of The Haussmans, which starred Julie Walters and Helen McCrory; Fanny and Alexander (an adaptation of the Ingmar Bergman film), and Pride - a film which tells the story of the lesbian and gay activists who raised money to help families affected by the British miners' strike in 1984. In 2020, Bereford's new play The Southbury Child was due to open at the Bridge Theatre, ultimately being performed in 2022 starring Alex Jennings and directed by Nicholas Hytner. Beresford wrote a new play Three Kings as part of Old Vic: In Camera series, produced and live-streamed during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.Stephen Beresford is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange hosts, Michael Shaeffer and Fiona Bennett.Michael reads the gift reading of 'Vers De Société'.*********Vers de Société by Philip LarkinMy wife and I have asked a crowd of crapsTo come and waste their time and ours: perhaps You’d care to join us? In a pig’s arse, friend. Day comes to an end.The gas fire breathes, the trees are darkly swayed. And so Dear Warlock-Williams: I’m afraid—Funny how hard it is to be alone.I could spend half my evenings, if I wanted, Holding a glass of washing sherry, canted Over to catch the drivel of some bitch Who’s read nothing but Which;Just think of all the spare time that has flownStraight into nothingness by being filled With forks and faces, rather than repaid Under a lamp, hearing the noise of wind, And looking out to see the moon thinned To an air-sharpened blade.A life, and yet how sternly it’s instilledAll solitude is selfish. No one nowBelieves the hermit with his gown and dish Talking to God (who’s gone too); the big wish Is to have people nice to you, which means Doing it back somehow.Virtue is social. Are, then, these routinesPlaying at goodness, like going to church?Something that bores us, something we don’t do well (Asking that ass about his fool research) But try to feel, because, however crudely, It shows us what should be?Too subtle, that. Too decent, too. Oh hell,Only the young can be alone freely.The time is shorter now for company,And sitting by a lamp more often bringsNot peace, but other things.Beyond the light stand failure and remorse Whispering Dear Warlock-Williams: Why, of course—Philip Larkin, 'Vers de Société' from Collected Poems. Copyright © Estate of Philip Larkin. Reprinted by permission of Faber and Faber, Ltd.Photo Credit: Rory Campbell Photography Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/07/2032m 14s

48. Fern Hill by Dylan Thomas - A Friend to Adrian

In this episode, Adrian talks about the poem that has been a friend to him – 'Fern Hill' by Dylan Thomas.​Adrian joined The Poetry Exchange online, for one of our 'Lockdown Exchanges' that took place as part of City of Literature - a week of conversations, reflections and connections presented by the National Centre for Writing and Norfolk & Norwich Festival. Our thanks also to David Higham Associates and Dylan Thomas Trust for permission to share the poem. Adrian is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange hosts, Fiona Bennett and Michal Shaeffer.Michael reads the gift reading of 'Fern Hill'.*****Fern Hillby Dylan ThomasNow as I was young and easy under the apple boughsAbout the lilting house and happy as the grass was green, The night above the dingle starry, Time let me hail and climb Golden in the heydays of his eyes,And honoured among wagons I was prince of the apple townsAnd once below a time I lordly had the trees and leaves Trail with daisies and barley Down the rivers of the windfall light.And as I was green and carefree, famous among the barnsAbout the happy yard and singing as the farm was home, In the sun that is young once only, Time let me play and be Golden in the mercy of his means,And green and golden I was huntsman and herdsman, the calvesSang to my horn, the foxes on the hills barked clear and cold, And the sabbath rang slowly In the pebbles of the holy streams.All the sun long it was running, it was lovely, the hayFields high as the house, the tunes from the chimneys, it was air And playing, lovely and watery And fire green as grass. And nightly under the simple starsAs I rode to sleep the owls were bearing the farm away,All the moon long I heard, blessed among stables, the nightjars Flying with the ricks, and the horses Flashing into the dark.And then to awake, and the farm, like a wanderer whiteWith the dew, come back, the cock on his shoulder: it was all Shining, it was Adam and maiden, The sky gathered again And the sun grew round that very day.So it must have been after the birth of the simple lightIn the first, spinning place, the spellbound horses walking warm Out of the whinnying green stable On to the fields of praise.And honoured among foxes and pheasants by the gay houseUnder the new made clouds and happy as the heart was long, In the sun born over and over, I ran my heedless ways, My wishes raced through the house high hayAnd nothing I cared, at my sky blue trades, that time allowsIn all his tuneful turning so few and such morning songs Before the children green and golden Follow him out of grace,Nothing I cared, in the lamb white days, that time would take meUp to the swallow thronged loft by the shadow of my hand, In the moon that is always rising, Nor that riding to sleep I should hear him fly with the high fieldsAnd wake to the farm forever fled from the childless land.Oh as I was young and easy in the mercy of his means, Time held me green and dying Though I sang in my chains like the sea. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/06/2031m 59s

47. Remember By Joy Harjo - A Friend To Rachel Eliza Griffiths

In this episode, writer and artist Rachel Eliza Griffiths talks about the poem that has been a friend to her – Remember by Joy Harjo.Rachel Eliza Griffiths is a luminous multi-media artist, poet, and writer. Her literary and visual work has been widely published in journals, magazines, anthologies, and periodicals including The New Yorker, The Paris Review, Black Nature: Four Centuries of African American Nature Poetry, Best American Poetry, and many others. Griffiths is widely known for her literary portraits, fine art photography, and lyric videos. Her extensive video project, P.O.P (Poets on Poetry), an intimate series of micro-interviews, gathers nearly 100 contemporary poets in conversation, and is featured online by the Academy of American Poets. Griffiths is the author of Miracle Arrhythmia (Willow Books 2010), The Requited Distance (The Sheep Meadow Press 2011), Mule & Pear (New Issues Poetry & Prose 2011), and Lighting the Shadow (Four Way Books 2015), which was a finalist for the 2015 Balcones Poetry Prize and the 2016 Phillis Wheatley Book Award in Poetry. Her enthralling collection of poetry and photography, Seeing the Body, was published by W. W. Norton in June 2020, and her debut novel, Promise, was published by Penguin Random House in July 2023. We are very grateful to Joy Harjo and W. W. Norton & Company, Inc. for their permission to feature the poem in this way. 'Remember' can be found in She Had Some Horses: Poems by Joy Harjo, 2008, W. W. Norton & Company, Inc.Rachel Eliza visited The Poetry Exchange 'long distance' in an online conversation between London and New York. She is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange hosts, Michael Shaeffer and Fiona Bennett.*********Rememberby Joy HarjoRemember the sky that you were born under,know each of the star's stories.Remember the moon, know who she is.Remember the sun's birth at dawn, that is thestrongest point of time. Remember sundownand the giving away to night.Remember your birth, how your mother struggledto give you form and breath. You are evidence ofher life, and her mother's, and hers.Remember your father. He is your life, also.Remember the earth whose skin you are:red earth, black earth, yellow earth, white earthbrown earth, we are earth.Remember the plants, trees, animal life who all have theirtribes, their families, their histories, too. Talk to them,listen to them. They are alive poems.Remember the wind. Remember her voice. She knows theorigin of this universe.Remember you are all people and all peopleare you.Remember you are this universe and thisuniverse is you.Remember all is in motion, is growing, is you.Remember language comes from this.Remember the dance language is, that life is.Remember.'Remember' reproduced from She Had Some Horses: Poems by Joy Harjo (c) 2008 by Joy Harjo. Used with permission of W. W. Norton & Company, Inc. All rights reserved. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/05/2028m 9s

46. 'Then or Now' - Adrienne Rich - a poem-score for Ballet Black

Then or Now - the episode featuring the poetry of Adrienne Rich and our collaboration with Ballet Black is no longer available, since the full dance production was able to return to stages around the UK following the pandemic. Follow Ballet Black's work and latest tour dates here: https://balletblack.co.uk.*********We are delighted to share a special edition of The Poetry Exchange podcast featuring the score from Ballet Black’s new piece, Then or Now, choreographed by William Tuckett, which would have had its world premiere at The Barbican, London, on March 26th 2020.The score features poems by Adrienne Rich and the music of Heinrich Ignaz Franz von Biber (1644-1704), played by solo violinist Daniel Pioro. Poetry Direction is by The Poetry Exchange’s Founder and Director, Fiona Bennett and poems are voiced by Natasha Gordon, Michael Shaeffer and Hafsah Annela Bashir.It is with great thanks to the Adrienne Rich Estate and all the artists involved that we are able to share this unique collaboration between Ballet Black and The Poetry Exchange with you as a prelude to the full experience, once the ballet can be performed.Adrienne Rich is one of the greatest modern poets of our time. She was a tireless activist and ambassador for human rights and social justice. She was an active force in the Civil Rights Movement, a leading voice in the Feminist Movement and spoke out against all forms of oppression and injustice. Her exemplary approach to political activism, her scholarly and artistic integrity make her a highly relevant and vital source of inspiration for our time. She died in 2012 and her legacy is a defining force in the ongoing development of poetry.You can find out more about the life and work of Adrienne Rich through the Adrienne Rich Literary Trust.We are grateful to The Adrienne Rich Literary Trust and W.W. Norton and Company, Inc. for granting us permission to feature poems from Dark Fields of the Republic, published by W.W. Norton in 1995.The extraordinary work of violinist, Daniel Pioro can also be found here: www.danielpioro.com/Photo credit: Camilla Greenwell and Ballet Black Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/05/204m 12s

45. Ashes Of Life By Edna St. Vincent Millay - A Friend To Laura

In this episode, Laura Wade talks about the poem that has been a friend to her – 'Ashes of Life' by Edna St. Vincent Millay.Laura Wade is an Olivier award winning playwright and screenwriter. Her National Theatre play HOME, I’M DARLING premiered at Theatr Clwyd in 2018 before playing at the National, where it received rave reviews. HOME, I’M DARLING won the award for Best New Comedy at the 2019 Oliviers.Laura’s screenplay THE RIOT CLUB, an adaptation of her acclaimed 2010 stage play POSH, opened in cinemas on September 2014. The film is directed by Lone Scherfig and stars Max Irons, Sam Claflin and Douglas Booth. Laura has also adapted Sarah Waters’ TIPPING THE VELVET for the stage and in 2018, Laura adapted Jane Austen’s unfinished novel THE WATSONS for the stage for Chichester Festival Theatre.You can find out more about Edna St. Vincent Millay and read more of her poetry at the Poetry Foundation: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poets/edna-st-vincent-millayLaura visited The Poetry Exchange in London. She is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange hosts, Michael Shaeffer and Fiona Bennett.*****Ashes of Lifeby Edna St. Vincent MillayLove has gone and left me and the days are all alike;Eat I must, and sleep I will, — and would that night were here!But ah! — to lie awake and hear the slow hours strike!Would that it were day again! — with twilight near!Love has gone and left me and I don't know what to do;This or that or what you will is all the same to me;But all the things that I begin I leave before I'm through, —There's little use in anything as far as I can see.Love has gone and left me, — and the neighbors knock and borrow,And life goes on forever like the gnawing of a mouse, —And to-morrow and to-morrow and to-morrow and to-morrowThere's this little street and this little house. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/04/2026m 37s

44. The Hug by Thom Gunn - A Friend to Sam

In this episode, Sam talks about the poem that has been a friend to him – 'The Hug' by Thom Gunn.​Sam visited The Poetry Exchange in Manchester Central Library, as part of the celebrations of International Mother Language Day in the city.​Many thanks to our partners Manchester Poetry Library, Manchester Libraries and Manchester UNESCO City of Literature for hosting us so warmly.You can find 'The Hug' in 'The Man with Night Sweats' by Thom Gunn, published by Faber & Faber in the UK and Farrar, Straus & Giroux in the USA. ​Sam is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Sarah Butler and Alistair Snell.*****The Hug ​by Thom GunnIt was your birthday, we had drunk and dined   Half of the night with our old friend       Who'd showed us in the end   To a bed I reached in one drunk stride.       Already I lay snug,And drowsy with the wine dozed on one side.I dozed, I slept. My sleep broke on a hug,       Suddenly, from behind,In which the full lengths of our bodies pressed:        Your instep to my heel,    My shoulder-blades against your chest.    It was not sex, but I could feel    The whole strength of your body set,            Or braced, to mine,        And locking me to you    As if we were still twenty-two    When our grand passion had not yet        Become familial.    My quick sleep had deleted all    Of intervening time and place.        I only knewThe stay of your secure firm dry embrace.​Thom Gunn, 'The Hug' from 'The Man with Night Sweats.' Copyright © 1992 by Thom Gunn. Used by permission of Farrar, Straus & Giroux, LLC. All rights reserved Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/03/2026m 2s

43. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert Frost - A Friend to Victoria

In this episode, Victoria talks about the poem that has been a friend to her – 'Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening' by Robert Frost.Victoria visited The Poetry Exchange in Battersea, London in 2019.Victoria is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange hosts, Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.'Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening' is read by Fiona Bennett.*********Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert FrostWhose woods these are I think I know. His house is in the village though; He will not see me stopping here To watch his woods fill up with snow.My little horse must think it queer To stop without a farmhouse near Between the woods and frozen lake The darkest evening of the year.He gives his harness bells a shake To ask if there is some mistake. The only other sound’s the sweep Of easy wind and downy flake.The woods are lovely, dark and deep, But I have promises to keep, And miles to go before I sleep, And miles to go before I sleep. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/02/2023m 45s

42. The Fury Of Overshoes by Anne Sexton - A Friend to Laura

In this episode, Laura Furner talks about the poem that has been a friend to her – 'The Fury of Overshoes' by Anne Sexton.Laura Furner is an arts producer living and working in London. A commended poet for the Foyle Young Poet of the Year Award in 2012, Laura went on to edit and publish work in the University of Leeds' creative arts magazine The Scribe, and has since worked with The Poetry Society and Poet in the City. Laura visited The Poetry Exchange at London Podcast Festival at Kings Place in 2019. ​Our thanks to the Anne Sexton Estate and Sterling Lord Literistic Agency for allowing us to share the poem with you in this way.Laura is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Andrea Witzke-Slot and Al Snell. *********The Fury Of Overshoesby Anne SextonThey sit in a rowoutside the kindergarten,black, red, brown, allwith those brass buckles.Remember when you couldn'tbuckle your ownovershoeor tie your ownovershoeor tie your own shoeor cut your own meatand the tearsrunning down like mudbecause you fell off yourtricycle?Remember, big fish,when you couldn't swimand simply slipped underlike a stone frog?The world wasn'tyours.It belonged tothe big people.Under your bedsat the wolfand he made a shadowwhen cars passed byat night.They made you give upyour nightlightand your teddyand your thumb.Oh overshoes,don't youremember me,pushing you up and downin the winter snow?Oh thumb,I want a drink,it is dark,where are the big people,when will I get there,taking giant stepsall day,each dayand thinkingnothing of it?Reproduced by permission of SLL/Sterling Lord Literistic, Inc. Copyright Linda Gray Sexton and Loring Conant, Jr. 1981. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/01/2026m 41s

41. Seachange by Kate Genevieve - A Friend to Prasanna

In this episode, acclaimed actor Prasanna Puwanarajah talks about the poem that has been a friend to him – 'Seachange' by Kate Genevieve.Prasanna Puwanarajah is an English actor, director, writer and former junior medical doctor. He is known for Ten Percent, The Listeners, The Crown and many other credits on stage and screen. Prasanna recently wrapped on Ballywalter, his feature directorial debut, written by Stacey Gregg and produced by Empire Street Productions. He and Jed Mercurio are developing the drama series Breathtaking for ITV. Prasanna's debut play Nightwatchman premiered at the National Theatre in 2011. He directed Moth at the HighTide Festival, and at the Bush Theatre, where it was a TimeOut Critics' Choice in the summer of 2013.  In 2019 he directed Venice Preserved at the Royal Shakespeare Company. His production of The Reluctant Fundamentalist was nominated for The Carol Tambor Award and the Amnesty International Freedom of Expressions Award at the 2018 Edinburgh Fringe.Thank you to Kate Genevieve for giving us permission to share her poem. Find out more about Kate and her work here: www.kategenevieve.comPrasanna Puwanarajah is in converastion with The Poetry Exchange hosts, Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.*****Seachangeby Kate GenevieveFor LPPerhaps we are riding the moon’s pathAlong the sea edgeWhere things are less clearAnd more alive?My heart as full as the seaFollows the shore line with certainty.For here is a path drawn by desire.A route touched by your darkness,And mine.Moon-struck.Lit up by her generosity,Touched by the light of strangersTogether with the old smile of wrinkled mountainsAnd all the living beings multiplying.Something special grows in the emptiness -Not innocence returned -But wholeness,Gold-seamed.this nightThis DayOn which so many doors fall open.Let go!The ocean ever rushes in to fill space revealedWith unforced irrepressible energy.We can no more control a life's storyThan we can command the animalsOr hold back the tidesOr ordain the fated meetings of the world.The door only opens at the right time.Instead, receive the gifts of sea-change:Take the moon-lit path along the shoreAnd meet what's fresh returning.At one with Earth's desiresAwake to everything that's growing.The mountain smiles.She knowsIt is more than time aloneHeals shattered pieces:It is the gift of other beings.For suffering dissolves into the fullness of night,With the memory that the dark bright nightShines with love.May all have eyes to see, ears to hear,This night -As full as the sea -Beyond sense and naming. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
18/12/1926m 2s

40. The Death by Heroin of Sid Vicious by Paul Durcan - A Friend to John

In this episode, acclaimed film, TV and Theatre Director John Crowley talks about the poem that has been a friend to him: 'The Death by Heroin of Sid Vicious' by Paul Durcan. ​BAFTA winner and Tony nominated director John Crowley is internationally acclaimed for his work both on the stage and the screen, with credits including The Goldfinch (2019) and Brooklyn, which was nominated for three Academy Awards (including Best Motion Picture) and won the 2016 BAFTA for Best British Film.John visited The Poetry Exchange in London. He is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange hosts, Michael Shaeffer and Fiona Bennett.Fiona reads the gift reading of 'The Death by Heroin of Sid Vicious'.*****The Death by Heroin of Sid Vicious​by Paul DurcanThere – but for the clutch of luck – go I.At daybreak – in the arctic fog of a February daybreak –Shoulder-length helmets in the watchtowers of the concentration camp Caught me out in the intersecting arcs of the swirling searchlights.There were at least a zillion of us caught out there –Like ladybirds under a boulder –But under the microscope each of us was unique,Unique and we broke for cover, crazily breasting The barbed wire and some of us made it To the forest edge, but many of us did notMake it, although their unborn children did –Such as you whom the camp commandant branded Sid Vicious of the Sex Pistols. Jesus, break his fall:There – but for the clutch of luck – go we all.‘The Death by Heroin of Sid Viscious’ by John Crowley - from A SNAIL IN MY PRIME: NEW AND SELECTED POEMS, The Harvil Press, 2011 Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/11/1925m 49s

39. De Ceder / The Cedar by Han G. Hoekstra - A Friend to Alida

In this episode, Alida talks about the poem that has been a friend to her – 'De Ceder' / 'The Cedar' by Han G. Hoekstra. You will hear the poem in Dutch and in an English translation by Alida herself.Dr. Alida Gersie is a widely published author and world authority on therapeutic story-work, the arts therapies, the uses of the arts in health and popular education. She designed and directed Postgraduate Arts Therapies training programmes at universities in the UK and abroad. Since the 1970’s she has advised leading thinkers on the uses of story to encourage pro-environmental policy and behavioural change. Alida is editor of and contributor to Storytelling for a Greener world: Environment, Community and Story-Based Learning. Stroud: Hawthorn Press, 2014.www.hawthornpress.com/authors/alida-gersie/Our thanks to Meulenhoff for granting us permission to share the poem with you. You can find 'De Ceder' in the original Dutch along with many other works by Han G. Hoekstra at dbnl.org - digitale bibliotheek vor de Nederlandse letteren.Alida is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Andrea Witzke-Slot and Al Snell.Al reads the gift reading of 'The Cedar'.*********De Cederby Han G. HoekstraIk heb een ceder in mijn tuin geplant.gij kunt hem zien, gij schijnt het niet te willen.Een binnenplaats, meesmuilt ge, sintels, schillen.en schimmel die een blinde muur aanrandt,er is geen boom, alleen een grauwe wand.Hij is er, zeg ik, en mijn stem gaat trillen,Ik heb een ceder in mijn tuin geplant,Gij kunt hem zien, gij schijnt het niet te willen,Ik wijs naar buiten, waar zijn ranke, prillestam in het herfstlicht staat, onaangerand,niet te benaderen voor noodlots grillen.geen macht ter wereld kan het droombeeld drillen.Ik heb been ceder in mijn tuin geplant.From 'Panopticum', Meulenhoff, 1946.*********The Cedarby Han G. Hoekstratranslated by Alida GersieI have planted a cedar in my garden’s soil.you too could see it, but it seems you don’t want to.A yard, you snigger, slags and rot,There’s mould that festers on the blinding wall.There is no tree, a drab divider, nothing more. It is there, I say, and my voice now trembles,You too could see it, but it seems you don’t want to.I point outside, where its slender, tendertrunk stands in radiant autumn’s glow, untouched,and way beyond doom’s fickle tricks.No worldly force can erode this vision.I have planted a cedar in my garden’s soil. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
18/10/1925m 46s

38. Special Episode - Latitude 2019 with Nadine Shah and Hannah Jane Walker

In this special feature length episode, recorded live at Latitude Festival, musician Nadine Shah and writer & theatre-maker Hannah Jane Walker talk about the poems that have been friends to them.You can find out more about the brilliant work of Nadine and Hannah Jane Walker here: www.nadineshah.co.ukwww.hannahjanewalker.co.ukThis is our first live show episode and features work by Philip Larkin, Elizabeth Alexander, Salena Godden and WB Yeats.Discover more of the brilliant Salena Godden's work and seek out her collection 'Pessimism is for Lightweights' from Rough Trade Books. We had a gorgoues time as part of The Listening Post at Latitude Festival 2019 and are delighted to be sharing it with you through our podcast! *****Days by Philip LarkinWhat are days for?Days are where we live. They come, they wake us Time and time over.They are to be happy in: Where can we live but days?Ah, solving that questionBrings the priest and the doctor In their long coatsRunning over the fields.*****Pessimism is for Lightweights by Salena GoddenThink of those that marched this road beforeAnd those that will march here in years to comeThe road in shadow and the road in the sunThe road before us and the road all doneHistory is watching us and what will we becomeThis road is all flags and milestonesImmigrant blood and sweat and tearsBuild this city, built this countryMade this road last all these yearsThis road is made of protest And those not permitted to vote And those that are still fighting to speak With a boot stamping on their throatThere is power and strength in optimismTo have faith and to stay true to youBecause if you can look in the mirrorAnd have belief and promise youWill share wonder in living thingsBeauty, dreams, books and artLove your neighbour and be kindAnd have an open heartThen you're already winning at livingYou speak up, you show up and stand tallIt's silence that is complicitIt's apathy that hurts us allPessimism is for lightweightsThere is no straight white lineIt's the bumps and curves and obstaclesThat make this time yours and minePessimism is for lightweightsThis road was never easy and straightAnd living is all about living alive and livelyAnd love will conquer hate. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/08/1952m 55s

37. O Captain! My Captain! by Walt Whitman - A Friend to Farah

In this episode, Farah talks about the poem that has been a friend to her – 'O Captain! My Captain!' by Walt Whitman.Farah visited The Poetry Exchange in London. She is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange hosts, Michael Shaeffer and Fiona Bennett.Fiona reads the gift reading of 'O Captain! my Captain!'Fiona also mentions 'The Brittle Sea' by Paul Henry as part of this epsiode, which is available from Seren Books.*****O Captain! my Captain!by Walt WhitmanO Captain! my Captain! our fearful trip is done,The ship has weather’d every rack, the prize we sought is won,The port is near, the bells I hear, the people all exulting,While follow eyes the steady keel, the vessel grim and daring; But O heart! heart! heart! O the bleeding drops of red, Where on the deck my Captain lies, Fallen cold and dead.O Captain! my Captain! rise up and hear the bells;Rise up—for you the flag is flung—for you the bugle trills,For you bouquets and ribbon’d wreaths—for you the shores a-crowding,For you they call, the swaying mass, their eager faces turning; Here Captain! dear father! This arm beneath your head! It is some dream that on the deck, You’ve fallen cold and dead.My Captain does not answer, his lips are pale and still,My father does not feel my arm, he has no pulse nor will,The ship is anchor’d safe and sound, its voyage closed and done,From fearful trip the victor ship comes in with object won; Exult O shores, and ring O bells! But I with mournful tread, Walk the deck my Captain lies, Fallen cold and dead. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
19/07/1925m 38s

36. The Guest House by Rumi - A Friend to Yasmin

In this episode, Yasmin talks about the poem that has been a friend to her – ‘The Guest House' by Rumi.You can find ‘The Guest House’ in SELECTED POEMS by Rumi, translated by Coleman Barks (Penguin Classics, 2004). We would like to thank Coleman Barks for granting us permission to share the poem in this way.Yasmin visited The Poetry Exchange at Manchester Central Library, as part of the celebrations of International Mother Languages Day in the city.Many thanks to our partners Manchester Libraries, Archives Plus, The Manchester Writing School at Manchester Metropolitan University and Manchester UNESCO City of Literature.Yasmin is the Founder and Editor in chief of Halcyon: a creative space aimed at empowering Muslim women.She is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Michael Shaeffer and Fiona Bennett.Fiona reads the gift reading of 'The Guest House'.*****The Guest Houseby RumiThis being human is a guest house.Every morning a new arrival.A joy, a depression, a meanness,some momentary awareness comesas an unexpected visitor.Welcome and entertain them all!Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows,who violently sweep your houseempty of its furniture,still, treat each guest honorably.He may be clearing you outfor some new delight.The dark thought, the shame, the malice,meet them at the door laughing,and invite them in.Be grateful for whoever comes,because each has been sentas a guide from beyond. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/06/1921m 30s

35. Mathios Paskalis Among The Roses by George Seferis - A Friend to John

In this episode, poet John McAuliffe talks about the poem that has been a friend to him – 'Mathios Paskalis Among The Roses' by George Seferis.John McAuliffe was born in 1973 and grew up in Listowel, County Kerry. He has published six collections with The Gallery Press. His first, A Better Life (2002), was shortlisted for a Forward Prize. His fifth collection, The Kabul Olympics, was published in April 2020 and was an Observer Poetry Book of the Month. John McAuliffe’s Selected Poems was published in October 2021.John McAuliffe is Professor of Poetry at the University of Manchester’s Centre for New Writing and Associate Publisher at Carcanet Press. He co-edits PN Review and The Manchester Review, as well as writing for other publications, and he previously worked as chief poetry critic at the Irish Times and as Deputy Chair of the Irish Arts Council.You can find “Mathios Paskalis Among the Roses” from GEORGE SEFERIS: Collected Poems 1924-1955. Bilingual edition, translated, edited, and introduced by Edmund Keeley and Philip Sherrard. Copyright © 1967, renewed 1995 by Princeton University Press. John is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Bennett and Al Snell.*****Mathios Paskalis Among The Rosesby George SeferisI've been smoking steadily all morningif I stop the roses will embrace methey'll choke me with thorns and fallen petalsthey grow crookedly, each with the same rose colourthey gaze, expecting to see someone go by; no one goes by.Behind the smoke of my pipe I watch themscentless on their weary stems.In the other life a woman said to me: 'You can touch this hand,and this rose is yours, it's yours, you can take itnow or later, whenever you like'.I go down the steps smoking still,and the roses follow me down excitedand in their manner there's something of that voiceat the root of a cry, there where one starts shouting'mother' or 'help'or the small white cries of love.It's a small white garden full of rosesa few square yards descending with meas I go down the steps, without the sky;and her aunt would say to her: 'Antigone, you forgot your exercises today,at your age I never wore corsets, not in my time.'Her aunt was a pitiful creature: veins in relief,wrinkles all around her ears, a nose ready to die; but her words were always full of prudence.One day I saw her touching Antigone's breastlike a small child stealing an apple.Is it possible that I'll meet the old woman now as I go down?She said to me as I left: 'Who knows when we''ll meet again?'And then I read of her death in old newspapersof Antigone's marriage and the marriage of Antigone's daughterwithout the steps coming to an end or my tobaccowhich leaves on my lips the taste of a haunted shipwith a mermaid crucified to the wheel while she was still beautiful. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/05/1926m 31s

34. Of Mutability by Jo Shapcott - A Friend To Hannah

In this episode, Hannah talks about the poem that has been a friend to her – ‘Of Mutability’ by Jo Shapcott.We’re delighted to feature ‘Of Mutability’ in this episode and would like to thank Faber & Faber for granting us permission to share the poem in this way. You can find ‘Of Mutability’ in OF MUTABILITY by Jo Shapcott (Faber & Faber, 2011). Hannah visited The Poetry Exchange at Manchester Central Library, as part of the celebrations of International Mother Languages Day in the city.Many thanks to our partners Manchester Libraries, Archives Plus, The Manchester Writing School at Manchester Metropolitan University and Manchester UNESCO City of Literature.Hannah is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Michael Shaeffer and Fiona Bennett.*********Of Mutabilityby Jo ShapcottToo many of the best cells in my bodyare itching, feeling jagged, turning rawin this spring chill. It’s two thousand and fourand I don’t know a soul who doesn’t feel smallamong the numbers. Razor small.Look down these days to see your feetmistrust the pavement and your blood teststurn the doctor’s expression grave.Look up to catch eclipses, gold leaf, comets,angels, chandeliers, out of the corner of your eye,join them if you like, learn astrophysics, orlearn folksong, human sacrifice, mortality,flying, fishing, sex without touching much.Don’t trouble, though, to head anywhere but the sky. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/04/1921m 7s

33. The force that through the green fuse drives the flower by Dylan Thomas - A Friend To Angela

In this episode, Angela talks about the poem that has been a friend to her – ‘The force that through the green fuse drives the flower' by Dylan Thomas.We’re delighted to feature ‘The force that through the green fuse drives the flower’ in this episode and would like to thank Weidenfeld and Nicolson for granting us permission to share the poem in this way.You can find ‘The force that through the green fuse drives the flower’ in The Collected Poems of Dylan Thomas: the Centenary Edition, published by Weidenfeld and Nicolson, copyright holder The Dylan Thomas Trust.Angela visited The Poetry Exchange at Manchester Central Library, as part of the celebrations of International Mother Languages Day in the city.Many thanks to our partners Manchester Libraries, Archives Plus, The Manchester Writing School at Manchester Metropolitan University and Manchester UNESCO City of Literature.Angela is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange hosts, Michael Shaeffer and Fiona Bennett.*********The force that through the green fuse drives the flowerby Dylan ThomasThe force that through the green fuse drives the flowerDrives my green age; that blasts the roots of treesIs my destroyer.And I am dumb to tell the crooked roseMy youth is bent by the same wintry fever.The force that drives the water through the rocksDrives my red blood; that dries the mouthing streamsTurns mine to wax.And I am dumb to mouth unto my veinsHow at the mountain spring the same mouth sucks.The hand that whirls the water in the poolStirs the quicksand; that ropes the blowing windHauls my shroud sail.And I am dumb to tell the hanging manHow of my clay is made the hangman’s lime.The lips of time leech to the fountain head;Love drips and gathers, but the fallen bloodShall calm her sores.And I am dumb to tell a weather’s windHow time has ticked a heaven round the stars.And I am dumb to tell the lover’s tombHow at my sheet goes the same crooked worm. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/03/1926m 59s

32. Barcarole by Pablo Neruda - translated by Robert Hass - A Friend To Mark

In this episode, Mark talks about the poem that has been a friend to him – ‘Barcarole' by Pablo Neruda - translated by Robert Hass.We’re delighted to feature ‘Barcarole’ in this episode and would like to thank Agencia Literaria Carmen Balcells, City Lights Books and Frederick Courtright for granting us permission to share the poem in this way.You can find ‘Barcarole’ in ‘The Essential Neruda’ - Selected Poems - edited by Mark Eisner, published by Bloodaxe Books in the UK and City Lights Books in the US.*****Barcaroleby Pablo NerudaIf only you would touch my heart,if only you were to put your mouth to my heart,your delicate mouth, your teeth,if you were to put your tongue like a red arrowthere where my dusty heart is beating,if you were to blow on my heart near the sea, weeping,it would make a dark noise, like the drowsy sound oftrain wheels,like the indecision of waters,like autumn in full leaf,like blood,with a noise of damp flames burning the sky,with a sound like dreams or branches or the rain,or foghorns in some dismal port,if you were to blow on my heart near the sea,like a white ghost,in the spume of the wave,in the middle of the wind,like a ghost unleashed, at the seashore, weeping.Like a long absence, like a sudden bell,the sea doles out the sound of the heart,raining, darkening at sundown, on a lonely coast:no question that night fallsand its mournful blue of the flags of shipwreckspeoples itself with planets of throaty silver.And the heart sounds like a sour conchcalls, oh sea, oh lament, oh molten panic,scattered in the unlucky and dishevelled waves:The sea reports sonorouslyon its languid shadows, its green poppies.If you existed, suddenly, on a mournful coast,surrounded by the dead day,facing into a new night,filled with waves,and if you were to blow on my cold and frightened heart,if you were to blow on the lonely blood of my heart,if you were to blow on its motion of doves in flame,its black syllables of blood would ring out,its incessant red waters would come to flood,and it would ring out, ring out with shadows,ring out like death,cry out like a tube filled with wind or weeping,like a shaken bottle spurting fear.So that's how it is, and the lightning would glint in your braidsand the rain would come in through your open eyesto ready the weeping you shut up dumblyand the black wings of the sea would wheel round you,with its great talons and its rush and its cawing.Do you want to be the solitary ghost blowing, by the sea its sad instrument?If only you would call,a long sound, a bewitching whistle,a sequence of wounded waves,maybe some one would come,(someone would come,)from the peaks of the islands, from the red depths of the sea,someone would come, someone would come.Someone would come, blow fiercely,so that it sounds like a siren of some battered ship,like lamentation,like neighing in the midst of the foam and blood,like ferocious water gnashing and sounding.In the marine seasonits conch of shadow spirals like a shout,the seabirds ignore it and fly off,its roll call of sounds, its mournful ringsrise on the shores of the lonely sea. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/02/1927m 33s

31. Dich / You by Erich Fried - A Friend To Katharine

In this episode, Katharine talks about the poem that has been a friend to her – ‘Dich’ / ‘You’ by Erich Fried.We are delighted to feature ‘Dich’ / ‘You’ in this episode and would like to thank Verlag Klaus Wagenbach for allowing us to use it in this way.Katharine visited The Poetry Exchange at St Chad's College Chapel in Durham, during Durham Book Festival, in association with Durham University Foundation Programme. We’re very grateful to all our Durham partners for hosting us so warmly.Katharine is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Michael Shaeffer and Andrea Witzke-Slot.‘Dich’ / ‘You' is read by Michael Shaeffer.*****Dich By Eric FriedDichdich sein lassenganz dichSehen, daß du nur du bistwenn du alles bistwas du bistdas Zarteund das Wildedas was sich anschmiegenund das was sich loßreißen willWer nur die Hälfte liebtder liebt dich nicht halbsondern gar nichtder will dich zurechtschneidenamputierenverstümmelnDich dich sein lassenob das schwer oder leicht ist?Es kommt nicht darauf an mit wievielVorbedacht und Verstandsondern mit wieviel Liebe und mit wievieloffener Sehnsucht nach allem – nach allemwas du istNach der Wärme und nach der Kältenach der Güte und nach dem Starrsinnnach deinem Willenund Unwillennach jeder deiner Gebärdennach deiner UngebärdigkeitUnstetigkeitStetigkeitDann ist diesesdich dich sein lassenvielleichtgar nicht so schwer‘Dich’ by Erich Fried from 'Es ist was es ist’ © 1983 Verlag Klaus Wagenbach, Berlin*********Below is a translation of the poem, published in ‘Love Poems’ by Erich Fried, trans. Stuart Hood, available from Alma Classics. YouBy Erich FriedYouto let you be youall you To seethat you are only youwhen you’re everythingthat you arethe tender oneand the wild onethat wants to break freeand wants to come close Whoever loves the halfloves you not by halfbut not at allwants to cut you to sizeto amputateto maim you To let you be youis it hard or easy?It’s not a matter of how muchforethought and understandingbut of how much love and how muchopen longing for everything –for allthat is you For the warmthand the coldnessfor the goodnessand obstinacyfor your wilfulnessand unwillingnessfor each of your gesturesfor your awkwardnessinconstancyconstancy Then thisletting you be youmaybe isn’t so difficultafter allFried, Erich. Love Poems (Alma Classics)The extract about translation quoted by Fiona on the Intro to this episode is from Kiki Dimoula’s book The Brazen Plagiarist, selected poems translated by Cecile Inglessis Margellos and Rika Lesser published by Yale University Press. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/01/1928m 25s

30. This Be The Verse by Philip Larkin - A Friend to Hannah

In this episode of our podcast, you will hear Hannah talk about the poem that has been a friend to her: 'This Be The Verse' by Philip Larkin.We are delighted to feature 'This Be The Verse' in this episode and would like to thank Faber & Faber for allowing us to use the poem in this way.Hannah visited The Poetry Exchange at St Chad's College Chapel in Durham, during Durham Book Festival, in association with Durham University Foundation Programme. We’re very grateful to all our Durham partners for hosting us so warmly.Hannah is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, John Prebble and Michael Shaeffer.'This Be The Verse' is read by Michael Shaeffer.*****This Be The Verseby Philip LarkinThey fuck you up, your mum and dad. They may not mean to, but they do. They fill you with the faults they hadAnd add some extra, just for you.But they were fucked up in their turnBy fools in old-style hats and coats, Who half the time were soppy-sternAnd half at one another’s throats.Man hands on misery to man.It deepens like a coastal shelf.Get out as early as you can,And don’t have any kids yourself.Philip Larkin, "This Be the Verse" from Collected Poems. Copyright © Estate of Philip Larkin. Reproduced by permission of Faber and Faber, Ltd.Source: The Complete Poems (Faber and Faber, 2014) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
14/12/1825m 30s

29. Last Post By Carol Ann Duffy - A Friend To Jackie

In this episode of our podcast, you will hear Jackie talk about the poem that has been a friend to her: 'Last Post' by Carol Ann Duffy.We are delighted to feature 'Last Post' in this episode and would like to thank Carol Ann Duffy and Peter Strauss at Rogers, Coleridge & White for allowing us to use it in this way.Carol Ann Duffy has recently published a collection of poems written over the course of her laureateship, entitled 'Sincerity', which is available from Picador. She has also edited an anthology, 'Armistice' - A Laureate's Choice of Poems of War and Peace, available from Faber & Faber.Jackie visited The Poetry Exchange at St Chad's College Chapel in Durham, during Durham Book Festival, in association with Durham University Foundation Programme. We’re very grateful to all our Durham partners for hosting us so warmly.Jackie is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Andrea Witzke-Slot and John Prebble.'Last Post' is read by John Prebble.*****Last Postby Carol Ann Duffy'In all my dreams, before my helpless sight,He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.'If poetry could tell it backwards, true, beginthat moment shrapnel scythed you to the stinking mud…but you get up, amazed, watch bled bad bloodrun upwards from the slime into its wounds;see lines and lines of British boys rewindback to their trenches, kiss the photographs from home-mothers, sweethearts, sisters, younger brothersnot entering the story nowto die and die and die.Dulce- No- Decorum- No- Pro patria mori.You walk away.You walk away; drop your gun (fixed bayonet)like all your mates do too-Harry, Tommy, Wilfred, Edward, Bert-and light a cigarette.There's coffee in the square,warm French breadand all those thousands deadare shaking dried mud from their hairand queuing up for home. Freshly alive,a lad plays Tipperary to the crowd, releasedfrom History; the glistening, healthy horses fit for heroes, kings.You lean against a wall,your several million lives still possibleand crammed with love, work, children, talent, English beer, good food.You see the poet tuck away his pocket-book and smile.If poetry could truly tell it backwards,then it would.© Carol Ann Duffy 2009 Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/11/1823m 42s

28. The Negro Speaks Of Rivers by Langston Hughes - A Friend to Roy McFarlane

In this episode of our podcast, you will hear extraordinary poet Roy Mcfarlane talk about the poem that has been a friend to him: 'The Negro Speaks of Rivers' by Langston Hughes.Roy McFarlane was born in Birmingham of Jamaican parentage and has spent most of his years living in Wolverhampton - and more recently Brighton. He has held the role of Birmingham’s Poet Laureate, Starbucks’ Poet in Residence and Birmingham & Midland Institute’s Poet in Residence. Roy’s writing has appeared in magazines and anthologies, including Out of Bounds (Bloodaxe, 2012), Filigree (Peepal Tree, 2018) and he is the editor of Celebrate Wha? Ten Black British Poets from the Midlands (Smokestack, 2011). He has three exceptional collections published by Nine Arches Press: Beginning With Your Last Breath (2016), The Healing Next Time (2018), and Living by Troubled Waters (2022). Roy is also a trustee of The Poetry Exhange and in 2023 he was appointed a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. We are delighted to feature 'The Negro Speaks of Rivers' in this episode and would like to thank Harold Ober Associates for allowing us to use it in this way. You can find the poem in 'Vintage Hughes' published by Penguin Random House.Roy visited The Poetry Exchange at the Festival in a Factory at the Emma Bridgewater factory in Stoke-on-Trent. We’re very grateful to Emma Bridgewater for hosting us so warmly.Roy is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Bennett and Al Snell.'The Negro Speaks of Rivers' is read by Fiona Bennett.*****The Negro Speaks of RiversBy Langston HughesI’ve known rivers:I’ve known rivers ancient as the world and older than the flow of human blood in human veins.My soul has grown deep like the rivers.I bathed in the Euphrates when dawns were young.I built my hut near the Congo and it lulled me to sleep.I looked upon the Nile and raised the pyramids above it.I heard the singing of the Mississippi when Abe Lincoln went down to New Orleans, and I’ve seen its muddy bosom turn all golden in the sunset.I’ve known rivers:Ancient, dusky rivers.My soul has grown deep like the rivers.From The Collected Poems of Langston Hughes, published by Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. Copyright © 1994 the Estate of Langston Hughes. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/10/1821m 55s

27. Continuous by Tony Harrison - A Friend to Peter

In this episode of our podcast, you will hear Peter talking about the poem that has been a friend to him: 'Continuous' by Tony Harrison.We are delighted to feature 'Continuous' in this episode and would like to thank both Faber & Faber and Tony Harrison for granting us permission to use the poem in this way. www.faber.co.uk/author/tony-harrison/Peter visited The Poetry Exchange at BALTIC Contemporary Arts Centre in Gateshead, as part of the Raising The Flag Event. We’re very grateful to BALTIC for hosting The Poetry Exchange so warmly. Peter is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, John Prebble and Degna Stone.'Continuous' is read by John Prebble.*****ContinuousBy Tony HarrisonJames Cagney was the one up both our streets.His was the only art we ever shared.A gangster film and choc ice were the treatsthat showed about as much love as he dared.He’d be my own age now in ’49!The hand that glinted with the ring he wore,his father’s, tipped the cold bar into minejust as the organist dropped through the floor.He’s on the platform lowered out of sight to organ music, this time on looped tape,into a furnace with a blinding light where only his father’s ring will keep its shape.I wear it now to Cagney’s on my ownAnd sense my father’s hands cupped round my treat –they feel as though they’ve been chilled to the bonefrom holding my ice cream all through White Heat.From 'Continuous' by Tony Harrison (Rex Collings, 1981). Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/09/1822m 4s

26. The Lake Isle Of Innisfree by W. B. Yeats - A Friend To Tom

In this episode you will hear Tom talking about the poem that has been a friend to him - 'The Lake Isle Of Innisfree' by W. B. Yeats.Tom visited us at HOME in Manchester. We are very grateful to HOME for hosting The Poetry Exchange - you can discover more about them and their work here:www.homemcr.orgTom is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Bennett and Alastair Snell.'The Lake Isle Of Innisfree' is read by Fiona Bennett.*****The Lake Isle Of Innisfreeby W.B. YeatsI will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made;Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey-bee,And live alone in the bee-loud glade.And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket sings;There midnight’s all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,And evening full of the linnet’s wings.I will arise and go now, for always night and dayI hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,I hear it in the deep heart’s core. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/07/1821m 24s

25. How The World Gets Bigger by Alyson Hallett - A Friend to Roxy

In this episode you will hear writer and performer Roxy Dunn talking about the poem that has been a friend to her - 'How The World Gets Bigger' by Alyson Hallett.Roxy Dunn is a poet, scriptwriter, performer and novelist. A graduate of the BBC Comedy Writersroom, Roxy has acted in multiple television sitcoms and her shows have received sell-out runs at The Edinburgh Fringe and SOHO Theatre. Her scripts have been optioned by several production companies and her comedy pilot Useless Millennials was commissioned and broadcast on BBC Radio 4. She is the author of two poetry pamphlets: Clowning (Eyewear) and Big Sexy Lunch (Verve Press) and her debut novel, As Young as This will be published by Fig Tree in April 2024.Roxy visited us at Pushkin House in London. We are very grateful to Pushkin House for hosting The Poetry Exchange so warmly. Thank you also to poet, Alyson Hallett for kindly granting permission for us to use this poem.'How The World Gets Bigger' is no longer in print but Alyson still holds a few copies. If you would like to buy a copy, you can contact her directly via the weblink above.Roxy is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange hosts Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.'How The World Gets Bigger' is read by Fiona Bennett*****How The World Gets Biggerby Alyson HallettThis morning there's a note pinned to your doorexplaining why you've had to rush outand cancel our meeting. I turn back intothe rain, watch it falling on tarmac, riveringin gutters, little bullets exploding. I unbuttonmy jacket, lift my face to the sky. This is betterthan crying; nowehere to be and nothing to do.I walk the christened pavement, cherry treehung like a chandelier, the corner at the endof the road suddenly appealing, the way itturns without revealing what lies beyond.From The Stone Library (Peterloo Poets, 2007) www.thestonelibrary.com Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/06/1823m 21s

24. Proem by Martin Carter - A Friend to Nicholas Laughlin

In this episode you will hear writer, editor and all-round-champion of Carribean literature Nicholas Laughlin talking about the poem that has been a friend to him - 'Proem' by Martin Carter.Nicholas Laughlin is programme director of the Bocas Lit Fest, based in Trinidad and Tobago, which runs an annual literary festival, a series of literary prizes, and year-round writer development and literary promotion activities for Caribbean authors. He is also editor of The Caribbean Review of Books and the arts and travel magazine Caribbean Beat, and co-director of the contemporary arts space Alice Yard. His book of poems The Strange Years of My Life was published in 2015. He was born and has always lived in Port of Spain, Trinidad. You can discover more of Nicholas Laughlin's thoughts and writings here: nicholaslaughlin.netNicholas is one of our first 'long distance' visitors and joined us via Skype, from Trinidad. Nicholas is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, John Prebble and Andrea Witzke Slot, who were together in London for the conversation.Our thanks to Bloodaxe Books for kindly granting us permission to use 'Proem', which can be found in 'University of Hunger: Collected Poems & Selected Prose by Martin Carter, ed. Gemma Robinson (2006). 'Proem' is read by both John and Andrea.*****Proem by Martin CarterNot, in the saying of you, are yousaid. Baffled and like a rootstopped by a stone you turn back questioningthe tree you feed. But what the leaves hearis not what the roots ask. Inexhaustibly,being at one time what was to be saidand at another time what has been saidthe saying of you remains the living of younever to be said. But, enduring,you change with the change that changesand yet are not of the changing of any of you.Ever yourself, you are always aboutto be yourself in something else ever with me.Martin Carter, University of Hunger: Collected Poems & Selected Prose, ed. Gemma Robinson (Bloodaxe Books, 2006). Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/05/1823m 37s

23. A Kite For Aibhín By Seamus Heaney - A Friend to Fiona

In this episode you will hear the founder and co-host of The Poetry Exchange, Fiona Bennett talking about the poem that has been a friend to her - 'A Kite for Aibhín' by Seamus Heaney.Fiona founded The Poetry Exchange in 2014 and it is wonderful to hear her in the guest's chair, talking about a poem that means so much to her. You can discover more about Seamus Heaney's work here: www.seamusheaneyhome.com. 'A Kite for Aibhín' can be found in 'Human Chain' by Seamus Heaney, published by Faber & Faber, 2010. Our huge thanks to Faber & Faber for granting us permission to share Heaney's poem with you in this way. The Poetry Exchange team had a wonderful few days together in Carcassonne, South of France last year and it was here that Fiona joined fellow Poetry Exchange team members, John Prebble and Becca Manley to talk about her friend.'A Kite For Aibhín' is read by Becca Manley.*****A Kite For Aibhínby Seamus HeaneyAfter 'L'Aquilone' by Giovanni Pascoli (1855-1912)Air from another life and time and place,Pale blue heavenly air is supportingA white wing beating high against the breeze,And yes, it is a kite! As when one afternoonAll of us there trooped outAmong the briar hedges and stripped thorn,I take my stand again, halt oppositeAnahorish Hill to scan the blue,Back in that field to launch our long-tailed comet.And now it hovers, tugs, veers, dives askew,Lifts itself, goes with the wind untilIt rises to loud cheers from us below.Rises, and my hand is like a spindleUnspooling, the kite a thin-stemmed flowerClimbing and carrying, carrying farther, higherThe longing in the breast and planted feetAnd gazing face and heart of the kite flierUntil string breaks and—separate, elate—The kite takes off, itself alone, a windfall.'A Kite for Aibhín'. Taken from 'Human Chain' by Seamus Heaney (published by Faber & Faber Limited, 2010) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
17/04/1824m 13s

22. Love by George Herbert - A Friend To Andrew Scott

In this episode you will hear renowned actor Andrew Scott talking about the poem that has been a friend to him - 'Love (III)' by George Herbert.Andrew visited us Battersea, London and is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members Fiona Bennett and Michael Schaeffer.'Love' is read by Michael Schaeffer.*****Love (III)by George HerbertLove bade me welcome. Yet my soul drew back,Guilty of dust and sin.But quick-eyed Love, observing me grow slackFrom my first entrance in,Drew nearer to me, sweetly questioningIf I lacked anything.‘A guest,’ I answered, ‘worthy to be here.’Love said, ‘You shall be he.’‘I the unkind, ungrateful? Ah my dear,I cannot look on thee.’Love took my hand, and smiling did reply,‘Who made the eyes but I?’‘Truth Lord; but I have marred them; let my shameGo where it doth deserve.’‘And know you not,’ says Love, ‘who bore the blame?’‘My dear, then I will serve.’‘You must sit down,’ says Love, ‘and taste my meat:’So I did sit and eat. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/03/1822m 38s

21. How Surely Gravity's Law by Rainer Maria Rilke - A Friend to Lisa

In this episode you will hear Lisa talking about the poem that has been a friend to her - 'How Surely Gravity's Law' by Rainer Maria Rilke.Lisa visited us at John Ryland's Library in Manchester and is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.'How Surely Gravity's Law' is read by Fiona Bennett.*****How Surely Gravity's Lawby Rainer Maria RilkeHow surely gravity’s law,strong as an ocean current,takes hold of the smallest thingand pulls it toward the heart of the world.Each thing—each stone, blossom, child —is held in place.Only we, in our arrogance,push out beyond what we each belong tofor some empty freedom.If we surrenderedto earth’s intelligencewe could rise up rooted, like trees.Instead we entangle ourselvesin knots of our own makingand struggle, lonely and confused.So like children, we begin againto learn from the things,because they are in God’s heart;they have never left him.This is what the things can teach us:to fall,patiently to trust our heaviness.Even a bird has to do thatbefore he can fly. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/02/1822m 0s

20. Return By C. P. Cavafy - A Friend To John Davis

In this episode, our guest is John Davis, who talks with us about the poem that has been a friend to him - 'Return' by C. P. Cavafy, translated by Rae Dalven.John is our first 'Long Distance' visitor to The Poetry Exchange via Skype! Joining us from Athens, John is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Bennett and John Prebble, who were in London for the conversation.'Return' is read by John Prebble.*****Returnby C.P. Cavafy, translated by Rae DalvenReturn often and take me,beloved sensation, return and take me -when the memory of the body awakens,and old desire runs again through the blood;when the lips and the skin remember,and the hands feel as if they touch again.Return often and take me at night,when the lips and the skin remember...From The Complete Poems of C.P. Cavafy, translated by Rae Dalven, with an introduction by W.H. Auden, New York 1961.The reading of the Greek poem you can hear in this episode is from: C.P. Cavafy, The Collected Poems, OUP 2007 (includes a parallel Greek/English text). Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
18/01/1820m 38s

19. This Poem by Salena Godden - A Friend to Dan Simpson

In this episode you will hear Dan Simpson talking about the poem that has been a friend to him - 'This Poem' by Salena Godden.Our huge thanks to Dan for joining us and speaking so eloquently and openly about his friendship with this poem. And to the ever-wonderful Salena Godden for granting us permission to feature the poem in this way. 'This Poem' can be found in Salena's collection 'Fishing In The Aftermath - Poems 1994-2014' from Burning Eye Books (2014).Dan visited us in Lambeth, London and is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members Fiona Bennett and Al Snell. 'This Poem' is read by Al Snell.*****This Poemby Salena GoddenThis poem is not designed.And this poem is not the map.It is not written to give you something to relate to.This poem will not be the words you recite to your lover in the night.This poem will not be the words you scratch into your prison cell walls with bleeding nails.This poem is not designed to arouse you or even confuse you.This poem will not make you laugh or cry or feel.It will not be the lines that make you remember how to live.It will not remind you of the time you cut your finger sledging,as vivid as blood in the snowand everlasting as the scar made that day.This poem does not taste like old five-pence pieces,and it will not sound like an ice cream van in summertime.This poem will not enlighten you like a Buddhist prayer.It will not fill you with wonder at the human condition.This poem will not feed you like potatoes and gravyand it will not answer your questions of being alone in this.This poem cannot be your friend or explain that reoccurring chewing-gum dream.It will not stop you calling out in the night in cold and acrid sweat.This poem cannot help you.It will not inspire you to take up writing or even to continue. This poem is not the way in or the way out.It will not feel like winning and it will not feel like losing.This poem will not make your bus come sooner. It will not make your cake rise or guess the lottery numbers.This poem is not written to be anything other than what you want to read into it,and if you expect a poem to ever do anything more then you should read this full stop.Salena Godden - 'Fishing In The Aftermath - Poems 1994-2014' by Burning Eye Books (2014). Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
14/12/1719m 2s

18. Dulce et Decorum Est by Wilfred Owen - A Friend to Joolz

In this episode you will hear poet Joolz Sparkes talking about the poem that has been a friend to her - 'Dulce et decorum est' by Wilfred Owen.Joolz visited us in Lambeth, London and is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members Fiona Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.Dulce et Decorum Est is read by Michael Shaeffer.*****Dulce et Decorum Estby Wilfred OwenBent double, like old beggars under sacks, Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge, Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs, And towards our distant rest began to trudge. Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots, But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind; Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots Of gas-shells dropping softly behind.Gas! GAS! Quick, boys!—An ecstasy of fumbling Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time, But someone still was yelling out and stumbling And flound’ring like a man in fire or lime.—Dim through the misty panes and thick green light, As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.In all my dreams before my helpless sight, He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.If in some smothering dreams, you too could pace Behind the wagon that we flung him in, And watch the white eyes writhing in his face, His hanging face, like a devil’s sick of sin; If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs, Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,— My friend, you would not tell with such high zest To children ardent for some desperate glory, The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est Pro patria mori. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
09/11/1723m 16s

17. 5AM by Roxy Dunn - A Friend to Paterson Joseph

In this episode you will hear extraordinary actor Paterson Joseph talking about the poem that has been a friend to him - '5 AM' by Roxy Dunn.Paterson Joseph is a beloved British actor and writer. Recently seen on Vigil and Noughts and Crosses, he has also starred in Peep Show and Law & Order UK and he plays Arthur Slugworth in the forthcoming Wonka movie. Paterson's debut novel is The Secret Diaries of Charles Ignatius Sancho, published by Dialogue Books in 2022 to great acclaim. https://www.dialoguebooks.co.uk/titles/paterson-joseph/the-secret-diaries-of-charles-ignatius-sancho/9780349702360/ Paterson visited us at The October Gallery in London. We are very grateful to The October Gallery for hosting The Poetry Exchange so warmly. Thank you also to the Roxy Dunn for kindly granting permission for us to use the poem in this way. Roxy Dunn is a bold and brilliant writer with many strings to her bow...you can find out more about her work in this fabulous interview with Verve Poetry Press, which publishes her collection 'Big Sexy Lunch'. Her debut collection (in which '5AM' features) is 'Clowning', from Eyewear Publishing. Please also feel free to explore more about Kiki Dimoula, the Poet behind Fiona's emerging friend, 'The Wrong Arrangement'.Paterson is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members Fiona Bennett and Michael Schaeffer.'5AM' is read by Michael Schaeffer*****5AMby Roxy DunnIt's not quite lightam I getting old?old people wake earlyhalf a croissant is on the desklike a squashed crescent and there's that record I bought with the Soviet rocket sleeveAround the corner in HighburyKeith's cat has given you fleasyour bags are packed for AntibesI wonder if I care about the right thingslike rabbits dying slowly and Brexitsometimes I’m secretly unfazedI feel selfish and middle-agedI'd like to play this rocket recordbut I don't have a record playerthe band are from Leeds, is that cool?I can't work out if this is regretor just the onset of dullnessI think I'll eat breakfast then sleep till nooneat the remains of last night's moon'5 AM' by Roxy Dunn. Printed by permission of Roxy Dunn. Taken from 'Clowning' (Eyewear Publishing, 2016) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/09/1725m 45s

16. The Island By A.A. Milne - A Friend To Liis

In this episode you will hear Liis talking about the poem that has been a friend to her - 'The Island' by A.A. Milne.Liis visited us at Wise Words Festival in Canterbury. For the first time, we held The Poetry Exchange in an open, public setting, amongst the poetry books at Waterstones, Rose Lane, Canterbury. We are very grateful to both Waterstones and to Wise Words for hosting The Poetry Exchange so warmly.Liis is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members Sarah Salway and John Prebble.*****The Islandby A.A. MilneIf I had a ship,I'd sail my shipI'd sail my shipThrough Eastern seas;Down to the beach where the slow waves thunder -The green curls over and the white falls under -Boom! Boom! Boom!On the sun-bright sand.Then I'd leave my ship and I'd land,And climb the steep white sand,And climb to the treesThe six dark trees,The coco-nut trees on the cliff's green crown -Hands and kneesTo the coco-nut trees,Face to the cliff as the stones patter down,Up, up, up, staggering, stumbling,Round the corner where the rock is crumbling,Round this shoulder,Over this boulder,Up to the top where the six trees stand....And there would I rest, and lie,My chin in my hands, and gazeAt the dazzle of sand below,And the green waves curling slowAnd the grey-blue distant hazeWhere the sea goes up to the sky....And I'd say to myself as I looked so lazily down at the sea:"There's nobody else in the world, and the world was made for me." Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/08/1720m 43s

15. Love by George Herbert - A Friend To Jonathan

In this episode you will hear Jonathan Barnes talking about the poem that has been a friend to him - 'Love (III)' by George Herbert.Jonathan visited us at Wise Words Festival in Canterbury. For the first time, we held The Poetry Exchange in an open, public setting, amongst the poetry books at Waterstones, Rose Lane, Canterbury. We are very grateful to both Waterstones and to Wise Words for hosting The Poetry Exchange so warmly.Jonathan Barnes is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members Victoria Field and John Prebble.*****Love (III)by George HarrisonLove bade me welcome. Yet my soul drew back,Guilty of dust and sin.But quick-eyed Love, observing me grow slackFrom my first entrance in,Drew nearer to me, sweetly questioningIf I lacked anything.‘A guest,’ I answered, ‘worthy to be here.’Love said, ‘You shall be he.’‘I the unkind, ungrateful? Ah my dear,I cannot look on thee.’Love took my hand, and smiling did reply,‘Who made the eyes but I?’‘Truth Lord; but I have marred them; let my shameGo where it doth deserve.’‘And know you not,’ says Love, ‘who bore the blame?’‘My dear, then I will serve.’‘You must sit down,’ says Love, ‘and taste my meat:’So I did sit and eat. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/07/1721m 39s

14. Turns by Tony Harrison - A Friend to Maxine Peake

In this episode, you will hear the brilliant actor Maxine Peake talking about the poem that has been a friend to her: ’Turns' by Tony Harrison.Maxine visited The Poetry Exchange at John Rylands Library in May 2016. We’re very grateful to John Rylands Library for hosting The Poetry Exchange. Thank you also to Tony Harrison and Penguin Books for kindly granting permission for us to use the poem in this way. Maxine Peake is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange hosts, Fiona Bennett and Michael Schaeffer.'Turns' is read by Michael Schaeffer.*****Turnsby Tony HarrisonI thought it made me look more 'working class'(as if a bit of chequered cloth could bridge that gap!) I did a turn in it before the glass.My mother said: It suits you, your dad's cap.(She preferred me to wear suits and part my hair: You're every bit as good as that lot are!)All the pension queue came out to stare.Dad was sprawled beside the postbox (still VR), his cap turned inside up beside his head, smudged H A H in purple Indian inkand Brylcreem slicks displayed so folks might thinkhe wanted charity for dropping dead.He never begged. For nowt! Death's reticencecrowns his life's, and me, I'm opening my trapto busk the class that broke him for the pencethat splash like brackish tears into our cap.'Turns' by Tony Harrison. From ‘Selected Poems’. (Penguin; 3rd Revised ed. edition, 7 Feb. 2013) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/02/1722m 7s

13. Poem (Lana Turner Has Collapsed) by Frank O'Hara - A Friend to Harry Jelly

In this episode of our podcast, you will hear Harry talking about the poem that has been a friend to him: ’Poem (Lana Turner Has Collapsed)' by Frank O'Hara.Harry visited The Poetry Exchange at John Rylands Library in May 2016. We’re very grateful to John Rylands Library for hosting The Poetry Exchange. Thank you also to City Lights Publishers for kindly granting permission for us to use the poem in this way. Harry is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Jacqueline Kington and Michael Schaeffer.’Poem (Lana Turner Has Collapsed)' is read by Michael Schaeffer and Jacqueline Kington.*****Poem (Lana Turner Has Collapsed)by Frank O'HaraLana Turner has collapsed! I was trotting along and suddenlyit started raining and snowingand you said it was hailingbut hailing hits you on the headhard so it was really snowing andraining and I was in such a hurryto meet you but the trafficwas acting exactly like the skyand suddenly I see a headline LANA TURNER HAS COLLAPSED!there is no snow in Hollywoodthere is no rain in CaliforniaI have been to lots of partiesand acted perfectly disgracefulbut I never actually collapsedoh Lana Turner we love you get up’Poem (Lana Turner Has Collapsed)' by Frank O'Hara from 'Lunch Poems: Pocket Poets Number 19'. (City Lights Publishers 2014). Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/12/1619m 32s

12. On Children (from 'The Prophet') by Kahlil Gibran - A Friend to Hafsah Aneela Bashir

In this episode of our podcast, you will hear the brilliant poet and theatre-maker Hafsah Aneela Bashir talking about the poem that has been a friend to her: ’On Children' by Kahlil Gibran.Hafsah Aneela Bashir is a Manchester-based poet, playwright, performer and mother, originally from East London. Founder and co-director of Outside The Frame Arts, she is passionate about championing voices outside the mainstream. Winner of the Jerwood Compton Poetry Fellowship 2019, she was writer-in-residence with Manchester Literature Festival, is an Associate Artist with Oldham Coliseum Theatre and a Supported Artist at The Royal Exchange Theatre. Creating socially engaged work, her play Cuts Of The Cloth was commissioned for PUSH Festival 2019. Her debut poetry collection The Celox And The Clot is published by Burning Eye Books.Hafsah has worked creatively with Manchester International Festival, Ballet Black, HOME Theatre Mcr, Manchester Literature Festival and ANU Productions Irl. Her SICK! Festival commission, Four Dholis And A Divorce explored mental health set in the South Asian community. Since her visit to The Poetry Exchnage, Hafsah has become a close and vital associate artist in our work.Hafsah Aneela Bashir visited The Poetry Exchange at John Rylands Library, Manchester in May 2016. We’re very grateful to John Rylands Library for hosting The Poetry Exchange. Do visit them for further inspiration!Hafsah is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Lesley Bennett and Michael Schaeffer.’On Children' is read by Fiona Bennett.*****'On Children' (from 'The Prophet') by Kahlil GibranYour children are not your children.They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.They come through you but not from you,And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.You may give them your love but not your thoughts,For they have their own thoughts.You may house their bodies but not their souls,For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.You may strive to be like them,but seek not to make them like you.For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.You are the bows from which your childrenas living arrows are sent forth.The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,and He bends you with His mightthat His arrows may go swift and far.Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;For even as He loves the arrow that flies,so He loves also the bow that is stable. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/11/1621m 17s

11. For Sigrid (from ‘The Bounty’) by Derek Walcott - A Friend to Mark

In this episode of the podcast, you will hear Mark talking about the poem that has been a friend to him: ’For Sigrid' by Derek Walcott.Mark visited The Poetry Exchange at The Chapel in St Chad's College as part of Durham Book Festival in October 2015. We’re very grateful to Durham Book Festival, New Writing North and St Chad’s College for hosting The Poetry Exchange. Thank you also to Farrar, Straus and Giroux for kindly granting permission for us to use the poem in this way.Mark is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Lesley Bennett and Michael Schaeffer.'For Sigrid' is read by Michael Schaeffer.*****‘For Sigrid’ from ‘The Bounty’ by Derek Walcott.The sea should have settled him, but its noise is no help.I am talking about a man whose doors invite a sail to cross a kitchen-sill at sunrise, to whom the reek of kelp drying in the sunlit wind on the chattering shoalor the veils of a drizzle hazing a narrow caveare a phantom passion; who hears in the feathering lancesof grass a soundless siege, who, when a bird skips a wave,feels an arrow shoot from his heart and his wrist dances.He sees the full moon in daylight, the sky’s waning rose,the gray wind, his nurse trawling her shawl of white lace;whose wounds were sprinkled with salt but who turns over their horrorswith each crinkling carapace. I am talking about small odysseysthat, with the rhythm of a galley, launch his waking house in the thinning indigo hour, as he mutters thanks overthe answer of a freckled, forgiving back in creased linen,its salt neck and damp hair, and, rising from cover, to the soundless pad of a leopard or a mewing kitten,unscrews the coffee-jar and measures two and a half spoons, and pauses, paralyzed by a sail crossing blue windows,then dresses in the half-dark, dawn-drawn by the full moon’s magnet, until her light-heaving back is a widow’s.She drags the tides and she hauls the heart by hawsersstronger than any devotion, and she creates monstersthat have pulled god-settled heroes from their housesand shawled women watching the fading of the stars."For Sigrid" from THE BOUNTY by Derek Walcott. Copyright © 1997 by Derek Walcott. Used by permission of Farrar, Straus and Giroux, LLC. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/05/1620m 44s

10. Restlessness by D.H. Lawrence - A Friend to Alison

In this episode of our podcast, you will hear Alison talking about the poem that has been a friend to her: ’Restlessness' by D. H. Lawrence.Alison visited The Poetry Exchange at St Chad's College Chapel as part of Durham Book Festival in October 2015. We’re very grateful to Durham Book Festival, New Writing North and St Chad’s College for hosting The Poetry Exchange. Do visit them for further inspiration!Alison is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Lesley Bennett and Michael Schaeffer.'Restlessness' is read by Michael Schaeffer.*****Restlessnessby D. H. LawrenceAt the open door of the room I stand and look at the night, Hold my hand to catch the raindrops, that slant into sight, Arriving grey from the darkness above suddenly into the light of the room. I will escape from the hollow room, the box of light, And be out in the bewildering darkness, which is always fecund, which might Mate my hungry soul with a germ of its womb.I will go out to the night, as a man goes down to the shore To draw his net through the surf’s thin line, at the dawn before The sun warms the sea, little, lonely and sad, sifting the sobbing tide. I will sift the surf that edges the night, with my net, the four Strands of my eyes and my lips and my hands and my feet, sifting the store Of flotsam until my soul is tired or satisfied.I will catch in my eyes’ quick net The faces of all the women as they go past, Bend over them with my soul, to cherish the wet Cheeks and wet hair a moment, saying: “Is it you?” Looking earnestly under the dark umbrellas, held fast Against the wind; and if, where the lamplight blew Its rainy swill about us, she answered me With a laugh and a merry wildness that it was she Who was seeking me, and had found me at last to free Me now from the stunting bonds of my chastity, How glad I should be!Moving along in the mysterious ebb of the night Pass the men whose eyes are shut like anemones in a dark pool; Why don’t they open with vision and speak to me, what have they in sight? Why do I wander aimless among them, desirous fool? I can always linger over the huddled books on the stalls, Always gladden my amorous fingers with the touch of their leaves, Always kneel in courtship to the shelves in the doorways, where falls The shadow, always offer myself to one mistress, who always receives.But oh, it is not enough, it is all no good. There is something I want to feel in my running blood, Something I want to touch; I must hold my face to the rain, I must hold my face to the wind, and let it explain Me its life as it hurries in secret. I will trail my hands again through the drenched, cold leaves Till my hands are full of the chillness and touch of leaves, Till at length they induce me to sleep, and to forget.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/04/1619m 32s

9. The Lake Isle of Innisfree by W.B. Yeats - A Friend to Martin

In this episode of our podcast, you will hear Martin talking about the poem that has been a friend to him: ’The Lake Isle of Innisfree' by W. B. Yeats.Martin visited The Poetry Exchange at The National Poetry Library at Southbank in London. We’re very grateful to The Poetry Library for hosting us. Do visit them for further inspiration!Martin is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Alastair Snell and Sarah Salway.'The Lake Isle of Innisfree' is read by Alastair Snell.*****The Lake Isle of Innisfreeby W.B. YeatsI will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made:Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey-bee;And live alone in the bee-loud glade.And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket sings;There midnight’s all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,And evening full of the linnet’s wings.I will arise and go now, for always night and dayI hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,I hear it in the deep heart’s core. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
17/03/1618m 5s

8. The moth by Miroslav Holub - A Friend to Claudia

In this episode of our podcast, you will hear Claudia talking about the poem that has been a friend to her: ’The moth' by Miroslav Holub.We are delighted to feature 'The moth' in this episode and would like to thank Bloodaxe Books for granting us permission to use the poem in this way. Do visit them for further inspiration! Claudia visited The Poetry Exchange at Greyfriars Chapel in Canterbury, as part of Wise Words Festival in September 2014. We’re very grateful to Wise Words for hosting The Poetry Exchange. Claudia is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Lesley Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.'The moth' is read by Michael Shaeffer.*****The moth by Miroslav HolubThe moth, having left its pupa in the galaxy of flower grains and pots of rancid dripping,the moth discovers in this topical darkness that it’s a kind of butterfly but it can’t believe it,it can’t believe it,it can’t believe that it’s a tiny, flying, relatively free mothand it wants to go back,but there’s no way.Freedom makes the moth tremble for ever. That is,Twenty-two hours.Miroslav Holub, Poems Before & After: Collected English Translations. Trans. Dana Hasova and David Young (Bloodaxe Books, 2006)*****Adaptation by Fiona Lesley Bennett.Czechoslovakia 1976 A man is shuttered away in a laboratoryhe stares down the lens of a microscopeinto the peppercorn eyes of a moth.At night words fall through him like particlesthat cluster and mutate in spiralling patternsNemuze uverit, nemuze uverit, nemuze uverit . Every twenty-two hoursthe moth hangs in its pupawaiting for the blood to falland for the wind and the currents. Columbia 2011 A woman is kept in a jar, the jaris kept in darkness, the darknessis blacker than her eyes. Inside herselfshe dreams she is a girl running barefootwith a net in the garden.creelo, creelo, creelo Somewherebetween thought and dream, betweendecades and hemispheres and speciesthe edge of belief beginslike a wing that trembles  and then lifts.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
19/02/1622m 39s

7. Ars Poetica #100: I Believe by Elizabeth Alexander - A Friend to John

In this episode of our podcast, you will hear John talking about the poem that has been a friend to him: ’Ars Poetica #100: I Believe' by Elizabeth Alexander.We are delighted to feature 'Ars Poetica 100: I Believe' in this episode and would like to thank Elizabeth Alexander, Faith Childs Literary Agency and Graywolf Press for granting us permission to use the poem in this way. John visited The Poetry Exchange at Greyfriars Chapel in Canterbury, as part of Wise Words Festival in September 2014. We’re very grateful to Wise Words for hosting The Poetry Exchange. Thanks also to Spread The Word for their continued support of the project.John is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Lesley Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.'Ars Poetica #100: I Believe' is read by Michael Shaeffer.*****'Ars Poetica #100: I Believe'by Elizabeth AlexanderPoetry, I tell my students,is idiosyncratic. Poetryis where we are ourselves(though Sterling Brown said“Every ‘I’ is a dramatic ‘I’”),digging in the clam flatsfor the shell that snaps,emptying the proverbial pocketbook.Poetry is what you findin the dirt in the corner,overhear on the bus, Godin the details, the only wayto get from here to there.Poetry (and now my voice is rising)is not all love, love, love,and I’m sorry the dog died.Poetry (here I hear myself loudest)is the human voice,and are we not of interest to each other?Ars Poetica #100: I Believe © 2005 by Elizabeth Alexander, first appeared in American Sublime, published by Graywolf Press, St. Paul, MN, and is used with the permission of Elizabeth Alexander. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
05/02/1616m 36s

6. Compost by Dan Chelotti - A Friend to Alice

In this episode of our podcast, you will hear Alice talking about the poem that has been a friend to her: ’Compost' by Dan Chelotti.We are delighted to feature 'Compost' in this episode and would like to thank Dan Chelotti, Poetry Foundation and Greying Ghost Press for granting us permission to use the poem. Follow the links to read more of Dan's disarming, beautiful work. Alice visited The Poetry Exchange at Greyfriars Chapel in Canterbury, as part of Wise Words Festival in September 2014. We’re very grateful to Wise Words for hosting The Poetry Exchange.Alice is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Lesley Bennett and Michael Shaeffer.'Compost' is read by Michael Shaeffer.*****Compost by Dan ChelottiThere is magic in decay.A dance to be doneFor the rotting, the maggot strewnPiles of flesh which pileUpon the dung-ridden earthAnd the damp that gathersAnd rusts and defiles.There is a bit of thisIn even the most zoetic soul — The dancing child’s armsFlailing to an old ska songConduct the day-old fliesAway to whatever rankNative is closest. Just todayI was walking along the riverWith my daughter in my backpackAnd I opened my emailOn my phone and DuffieHad sent me a poemCalled “Compost.” I read itTo my little girl and startedTo explain before I was threeWords in Selma startedYelling, Daddy, Daddy, snake!In the path was a snake,Belly up and still nerve-twitchingThe ghost of some passingBicycle or horse. Pretty, Selma said.Yes, I said. And underneath my yesAnother yes, the yes to my body,Just beginning to show signsOf slack, and another, my graspingIn the dark for affirming fleshThat in turn says yes, yesLet’s rot together but not untilWe’ve drained what sapIs left in these trees.And I wake in the morningAnd think of the coronerCalling to ask what colorMy father’s eyes were,And I asked, Why? Why can’tYou just look — and the coroner,Matter-of-factly says, Decay.Do you want some eggs, my love?I have a new way of preparing them.And look, look outside, I think this weatherHas the chance of holding.Source: Poetry (June 2014) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/01/1617m 6s

5. Prayer by Carol Ann Duffy - A Friend to Tricia

In this episode of our podcast, you will hear Tricia talking about the poem that has been a friend to her: ’Prayer' by Carol Ann Duffy.We are delighted to feature 'Prayer' in this episode and would like to thank Carol Ann Duffy for granting us permission to use her poem in this way.Tricia visited The Poetry Exchange at The National Poetry Library at Southbank Centre in August 2015. We’re very grateful to The National Poetry Library for hosting The Poetry Exchange. Do visit them for further inspiration!Tricia is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Fiona Lesley Bennett and Alistair Snell.'Prayer' is read by Fiona Lesley Bennett.*****Prayer by Carol Ann DuffySome days, although we cannot pray, a prayerutters itself. So, a woman will lifther head from the sieve of her hands and stareat the minims sung by a tree, a sudden gift.Some nights, although we are faithless, the truthenters our hearts, that small familiar pain;then a man will stand stock-still, hearing his youthin the distant Latin chanting of a train.Pray for us now. Grade 1 piano scalesconsole the lodger looking out acrossa Midlands town. Then dusk, and someone callsa child's name as though they named their loss.Darkness outside. Inside, the radio's prayer -Rockall. Malin. Dogger. Finisterre.‘Prayer’ from Mean Time by Carol Ann Duffy. Published by Picador, 2013. Copyright © Carol Ann Duffy. Reproduced by permission of the author c/o Rogers, Coleridge & White Ltd., 20 Powis Mews, London W 11 1JN Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
08/01/1618m 20s

4. Transfiguration by Edwin Muir - A Friend to Margaret

In this episode of our podcast, you will hear Margaret talking about the poem that has been a friend to her: ’Transfiguration' by Edwin Muir.Margaret visited The Poetry Exchange at The Chapel in St Chad's College as part of Durham Book Festival in October 2015. We’re very grateful to Durham Book Festival, New Writing North and St Chad’s College for hosting The Poetry Exchange. *****Transfiguration by Edwin MuirSo from the ground we felt that virtue branch Through all our veins till we were whole, our wrists As fresh and pure as water from a well, Our hands made new to handle holy things, The source of all our seeing rinsed and cleansed Till earth and light and water entering there Gave back to us the clear unfallen world. We would have thrown our clothes away for lightness, But that even they, though sour and travel stained, Seemed, like our flesh, made of immortal substance, And the soiled flax and wool lay light upon us Like friendly wonders, flower and flock entwined As in a morning field. Was it a vision? Or did we see that day the unseeable One glory of the everlasting world Perpetually at work, though never seen Since Eden locked the gate that’s everywhere And nowhere? Was the change in us alone, And the enormous earth still left forlorn, An exile or a prisoner? Yet the world We saw that day made this unreal, for all Was in its place. The painted animals Assembled there in gentle congregations, Or sought apart their leafy oratories, Or walked in peace, the wild and tame together, As if, also for them, the day had come. The shepherds’ hovels shone, for underneath The soot we saw the stone clean at the heart As on the starting-day. The refuse heaps Were grained with that fine dust that made the world; For he had said, ‘To the pure all things are pure.’ And when we went into the town, he with us, The lurkers under doorways, murderers, With rags tied round their feet for silence, came Out of themselves to us and were with us, And those who hide within the labyrinth Of their own loneliness and greatness came, And those entangled in their own devices, The silent and the garrulous liars, all Stepped out of their dungeons and were free. Reality or vision, this we have seen. If it had lasted but another moment It might have held for ever! But the world Rolled back into its place, and we are here, And all that radiant kingdom lies forlorn, As if it had never stirred; no human voice Is heard among its meadows, but it speaks To itself alone, alone it flowers and shines And blossoms for itself while time runs on.But he will come again, it’s said, though not Unwanted and unsummoned; for all things, Beasts of the field, and woods, and rocks, and seas, And all mankind from end to end of the earth Will call him with one voice. In our own time, Some say, or at a time when time is ripe. Then he will come, Christ the uncrucified, Christ the discrucified, his death undone, His agony unmade, his cross dismantled— Glad to be so—and the tormented wood Will cure its hurt and grow into a tree In a green springing corner of young Eden, And Judas damned take his long journey backward From darkness into light and be a child Beside his mother’s knee, and the betrayal Be quite undone and never more be done. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/12/1521m 7s

3. I Am Like A Rose by D.H. Lawrence - A Friend to Mary Anne

In this episode, you will hear Mary Anne talking about the poem that has been a friend to her: ’I Am Like A Rose' by D. H. Lawrence. Mary Anne visited The Poetry Exchange at Greyfriars Chapel in Canterbury as part of Wise Words Festival in September 2015. We’re very grateful to Wise Words Festival and Workers of Art for hosting and supporting The Poetry Exchange. Mary Anne is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members Fiona Lesley Bennett and Michael Shaeffer. 'I Am Like A Rose' is read by Fiona Bennet. ***** I Am Like A Roseby D.H. LawrenceI am myself at last; now I achieveMy very self, I, with the wonder mellow,Full of fine warmth, I issue forth in clearAnd single me, perfected from my fellow.Here I am all myself. No rose-bush heavingIts limpid sap to culmination has broughtItself more sheer and naked out of the greenIn stark-clear roses, than I to myself am brought. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
09/12/1516m 53s

2. The Second Coming by W.B. Yeats - A Friend to Dominic

In this first full episode of our podcast, you will hear Dominic talking about the poem that has been a friend to him: ’The Second Coming’ by W. B. Yeats. Dominic visited The Poetry Exchange at St Chad’s College Chapel, as part of Durham Book Festival in October 2015. We’re very grateful to Durham Book Festival, New Writing North and St Chad’s College for hosting The Poetry Exchange. Do visit them for further inspiration! Dominic is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members Fiona Lesley Bennett and Michael Shaeffer. 'The Second Coming' is read by Michael Shaeffer ***** The Second Comingby W.B. YeatsTurning and turning in the widening gyre   The falcon cannot hear the falconer;Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere   The ceremony of innocence is drowned;The best lack all conviction, while the worst   Are full of passionate intensity.Surely some revelation is at hand;Surely the Second Coming is at hand.   The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out   When a vast image out of Spiritus MundiTroubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert   A shape with lion body and the head of a man,   A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,   Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it   Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.   The darkness drops again; but now I know   That twenty centuries of stony sleepWere vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,   And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,   Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?Source: The Collected Poems of W. B. Yeats (1989) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
02/12/1520m 55s

1. Welcome to The Poetry Exchange

Welcome to The Poetry Exchange. We explore the idea of poems as friends. Over the last two years, we've been inviting people to come and talk to us about a poem that has been a friend to them. Our new podcast will share these conversations, illuminating readers' insights into poems and the power of poetry in our everyday lives. In each podcast episode you’ll be able to listen to one person talking about a poem and how it’s been a friend to them. You'll also hear a unique reading of their chosen poem, made especially for them. For now, here's a taster - some extracts of the conversations we've been having with people about poems as friends and the place of poetry in their lives. We hope you enjoy it. Click to subscribe to receive each new podcast episode as soon as it's released. The Poetry Exchange is generously supported by Arts Council England, Workers of Art, New Writing North and Spread the Word. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/11/154m 53s
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