Events in May & June!

May 13, 2011

We’ve rather a busy few months coming up here at the Scottish Poetry Library, so let’s get our diaries out and cut right to the chase!

Our Poetry Beyond Text exhibition opens today – lucky for some, Friday 13th May! Poetry Beyond Text is a two-year research project exploring our aesthetic and cognitive responses to visual-poetic art works, including concrete poetry, artists’ books, poetic prints, poem-photography, text film and digital poetry. Featuring newly commissioned work, it is installed in the library until Friday 15 July, and comes with an array of assorted events across May and June. On Wednesday 18 May at 7pm Deryn Rees-Jones and Marion Smith will discuss their collaboration, Vivam (2011), which took place as part of the Poetry Beyond Text project. On Tuesday 24 May, from 6.30 – 8.30pm, a workshop session will explore visual poetry, looking at how individual works are constructed, considering what happens when we read such poems, before having a go at creating our own visual poems. On Tuesday 7 June, Jim Carruth will be speaking about two recent collaborations: ‘Lot 76’ , created with Michael Waight, and ‘Three Little Words’, created with Murray Robertson, both part of the Poetry Beyond Text project. And on Wednesday 15 June at 6pm Poetry Whispers will showcase the work of local artists and poets who have responded to each others work, creating imaginative reiterations in their own medium.

We’re also hosting events as part of the Reel Festivals, which seeks to show that art and culture are the best way to learn about and better understand each others’ worlds, showing the reality behind the headlines. Reel Festivals 2011 focuses on Syria / سورياLebanon / لبنان and Scotland, with films, music and poetry events taking place. We’re delighted to welcome poets from Syria, Lebanon and Scotland to the library on Wednesday 18 May at 12.30pm for a short tour followed by an informal salon, a chance to discuss poetry in translation, borders, sip some tea and share work and stories. This is free and open to all interested writers, arts practitioners, and members of the public. On Friday 20 May the poets will return for an evening of contemporary English and Arabic poetry featuring new translations from these thrilling local and international writers: William Letford, Emily Ballou, Tom Pow, Rasha Omran, Golan Haji, Mazen Maarouf, Yehia Jaber. Also featuring short films and music from Reel Festivals, and free and open to all.

And is if that weren’t enough, we’ll be having a tea party and book sale on Saturday 21 May. ‘Lines of Flight’, poetry from three refugee poets based in Scotland will take place on Tuesday 21 June. Carlos Arredondo (Chile), Iyad Hayatleh (Palestine), and Qusay Husain (Iraq) will read from their work, followed by a discussion of the relationship between poetry and community, part of Refugee Week. And on Saturday 25 June, we’ll host  a Poetry Translation Centre chapbook tour event with Mohan Rana and Bernard O’Donaghue.

Of course, if you want a blissful escape though the words on the page, you can check out our Nothing But the Poem reading sessions, or our blissful Reading Poetry for Pleasure weekend in Moniack Mhor in June with guest reader John Glenday…