More exposure

8 Oct

I really liked Simon Kirwin’s poetry (his Sleeford Mods introduction, Lion the f**king cellar Lion, the political circus clowns – honk, honk!) but all I can think about is Andrew McMillan urinating. Okay so not him, exactly, but well.
I learned the following day in Andrew’s workshop that no publications have accepted Urination, or as it’s also known: Oh Andrew, please don’t read that one again. This doesn’t surprise me. It’s as strong as the first wee of the morning after a heavy night drinking. But he goes for honesty and it’s definitely honest. It’ll be the poster poem of his new collection.

In the workshop he let us peer behind the green curtain and see the workings of his poetry. He likes to expose himself. He likes something to be on the line. He wants the poetry to vibrate on the page. Poetry is a confession of his soul. It appealed to me, all this raw honesty, this wonderful expression of youth and its obsession with the body and what it can do (which slips away with age). But I’m wondering, does this make me a voyeur, albeit with permission, encouraged. Has poetry become dogging? Do we need this? Do I need this? Do I care if you don’t want it?

Andrew McMillan and Simon Kirwin read at Poetry Swindon Festival, 7 October 2016 at Richard Jefferies Museum Tent-Palace of the Delicious Air. Andrew’s workshop took place on 8 October 2016.

Written by Louisa Davison.

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