Double trouble

March 26, 2009

Unsuitable Poems by Helena Nelson, Folly by Mike Stocks, daffodils by Lizzie

Unsuitable Poems by Helena Nelson, Folly by Mike Stocks, daffodils by Lizzie

Last night Mike Stocks and Helena Nelson read at the library, the closing double-hander for the Poetry Association of Scotland‘s (PAS) Spring programme, 2009. Mike, novelist (Down Deep and White Man Falling) and translator as well as poet, and Helena, poet as well as editor of chapbook press, HappenStance and Sphinx Magazine, read over two halves, with a break for wine and book browsing and a Q&A with PAS chair Joyce Caplan.

On his blog (he’s the Elephant House blogger in residence) Mike said, “Helena’s poetry – like mine, I hope – is approachable and appealing. In fact some of it – like mine, I fear – is said to be “quirky and satirical, not for the faint-hearted or under-10s…”. The mood in the SPL was high, and their set well-received; Mike read from Folly, his celebration of the sonnet in all its forms, and Helena from her pamphlet Unsuitable Poems. There was even, at one point, an appreciative roar from some Crichton’s Close drunks going about their business. You can borrow both collections from us.

Mike is about to embark on a trip to Buenos Aires to research his latest novel, The Melancholy School of Tango, while Helena’s How (Not) To Get Your Poetry Published  is an invaluable, enjoyable aid to those seeking publishing advice. A trip to the Tolbooth Tavern and a chat about Sedoka (not to be confused with Sudoku) with Rod Burns rounded the evening off nicely.

2 Responses to “Double trouble”

  1. Duncan Horner Says:

    Your blog is beauty in a page. I wish we could come up to your dreamy library in Edinburgh. I met Mike Stocks a couple of years back at the Guildford Book Festival and he was extremely charming. I didn’t realise he was also a poet.

  2. spl5 Says:

    Thanks for the lovely words Duncan. Glad you’re enjoying us from afar! If you do find yourself in our neck of the woods, do seek us out. Yes, Mike has Folly and Sonnets: translations of Giuseppe Gioacchino Belli.


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