The Death Cafe. “Everyone welcome but not recommended for anyone recently bereaved.” I’m wondering if I should go to this on Monday 12 May as my cat died a few weeks ago.
She was twenty years old and this was, I’m told, a ‘good innings’. But she was part of our family for nearly half my life so our cat-lessness is making us sad.
But what’s this got to do with the launch of the twenty-first Swindon Festival of Literature, yesterday, noon, at Swindon Central Library?
Funny you should ponder. Sandwiched between Nathan Filer (The Shock of the Fall) and Kate Adie (Needs No Introduction), is the Death Cafe, a discussion about death and dying. You may partake of rich tea but perhaps not sympathy. Bring not your raw nerves; bring instead your pragmatism. Continue reading
Swindon Festival of Literature reached its climax at the Town Hall with the annual Poems and Pints event. Continue reading
Jo Bell Workshop
Workshops, full of anvils, lathes and maybe a vice or two, unless it’s the last day of the twentieth Swindon Festival of Literature when it’s something else entirely. Continue reading
Internationally acclaimed poet Fiona Sampson showcased her book. ‘Coleshill’ at the Arts Centre Studio. Continue reading
Domestic Cherry’s Swindon Festival Of Literature residency continued at Artsite Post Modern as Mabel Watson threw one of her infamous house parties. Continue reading
‘Just in case there are any people down from London for the day I’ll translate the Latin because I know that the highly educated people of Swindon won’t need me to’. Continue reading
Writer Ben Okri talks in poetry,
especially when talking of poetry,
‘the very nature of it is wild,
all poetry is spiritual’.
But Okri also considers poetry so powerful
that we have to be careful with it.
Tyrants have been known to be poets
We are walking amongst monsters
are protection against evil.
Follow the song.
Poetry wants nothing from you but
cascades of sound.
Make our hearts a festival.
Who’d have thought Death would have a sideline in sausages?
Anyone, I guess, who’d followed the reason for the Grim Reaper meeting a pig to its logical conclusion, ie to make bangers, bacon, chops and other stuff that you won’t find in a kosher/halal butchers.
This was the end of Piggery Jokery – a wonderfully funny puppetry tale of nature told to us by Hand to Mouth Theatre at the Swindon Festival of Literature’s Family Day, at Lower Shaw Farm – when Piggy Wiggy met the Grim Reaper of Winter. Continue reading
Word & Image with Tamar Yoseloff and BlueGate Poets
Surrounded by one of the best collections of 20th century British art outside London and in the company of Tamar Yoseloff one of the most critically acclaimed poetry tutors in the country, twenty poets responded to art at the Swindon Museum and Art Gallery in Bath Road. Continue reading