Happenings 13: trails, tours, seagulls and newsletters

July 10, 2009

It’s been a busy week down the close, with many excitements.

We welcomed the arrival from Potts Printers of our latest Poetry Reader! This issue reflects upon our ‘Edwinday’ and asks for top EMA picks; we have Douglas Dunn writing about the work of his long-standing friend Seamus Heaney; we flag up two exciting projects – the Burns Banner and our Carry a Poem campaign – and we have a letter from Afghanistan. There’ll be a blog post next week on the history of our newsletter, which is as old as the library itself, having just discovered Lizzie’s treasure trove file of back issues. We hope you’ll pick the latest up next time you drop by!

We watched with some amazement the saga of the baby seagull, who, not yet buoyant, flaked out by the library for a sizable part of Tuesday. Today, an angry adult seagull was seen dive bombing passers by; we wondered if it was the parent on the search, and why it had such a penchant for men with bald pates?

On Wednesday we headed to St Andrew Square Garden to dispense some lunchtime poems. You can read more about our foray in this post, and if you’re on Facebook, see us in action in our photo album. We’ll be there again in August and September, so if you fancy picnicking with us, pop it in your diary now!

Votes close today for the National Lottery Awards poll! We’re extremely grateful to all who picked up the phone or clicked the Vote Now! button, and will keep you apprised of our progress!

Yesterday was an eventful day in the SPL: the afternoon held a treat for concrete poetry lovers, as our librarian Julie gave a tour of our concrete poetry holdings, particularly those of Edwin Morgan and Ian Hamilton Finlay in collaboration with the Ingleby Gallery‘s current exhibition of IHF. Thomas A Clark’s book was launched in the Ingleby at 6pm. Expect to hear more from Julie on her love of concrete poetry soon, and come onboard for another chance to join the tour on Saturday 25 July at 11am.

Then at 7pm, the SPL played host to the [re]launch of ANON: the anonymous submissions poetry magazine. There were individual listening pods trailed throughout the library, with a playlist made from recordings of the poems in the book, poems on the walls, poems being broadcast in the loos. A silent cinema nestled between our moving stacks upstairs, and the speech included an 8-handed rendering of one of the contributed poems. 90 people came, a copious amounts of wine was imbibed and the jazz folk fusion brought by Ewen Maclean, Emma Pethybridge, Callum, Tom Pickles and Jenny allowed people to sway deliciously among the shelves in between immersing themselves in a little audio poetry. Follow these links if you’d like to see Chris’s good pictures, and the nice things Amy said, about the library.

Next week, we’ll have Jane McKie launching her new collection, When the Sun Turns Green (Polygon) and the School of Poets, newsletter chat and a mull on events coming up! Meantime, a great weekend all!

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