Poems, poems everywhere…
We’re now into week 2 of term, would you believe it? I am definitely liking having routine after the hectic-ness of Freshers’ Week, but I’m already finding my creative side slipping a little as lectures, looming essay deadlines, and – gulp – my career planning takes over. It’s already hard work being a third year! I can’t be the only one lacking in creativity this week though, so with that in mind I thought I’d do a little round up of reading/writing-related things that are going on this week. Specifically, poetry-related things. Oh, yes.
National Poetry Day occurs on the first Thursday of October every year- that’s the 3rd October 2013 – and is a day during which everyone is encouraged to engage with poetry in some form, whether that be reading, writing, speaking, or hearing a poem (or more than one!). Each year there is a theme, which is not mandatory but provides inspiration to help people get involved with poetry. This year the theme is ‘Water, water everywhere’, deriving from a frequently misquoted line from Samuel Coleridge’s “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner”. There are a number of events going on in venues all over the country as well as online.
Sound good, right? What’s even better is that National Poetry Day also coincides with Exeter Poetry Festival which runs from the 30th September through the 6th October. Again, there are a number of events planned including readings, workshops, and open mic nights. I have already booked my ticket for a lecture that is being held at the University of Exeter on the 4th October entitled ‘Beyond Borders’ which aims to challenge the categorisation of contemporary poetry – I know how to spend my Friday evening!
October 3rd also marks the official launch of a new literary app, The Love Book, which is a compilation of works centered around the theme of love. I shouldn’t be as excited by this app as I am, but it completely exceeded my expectations. Plus, it has Helena Bonham Carter reading excerpts from Harry Potter, two things which have me sold regardless of any other content…
With a simple and colourful layout, The Love Book app allows you to search by genre, author, title, first line, word, or browse through the whole collection by category. The app includes poetry, quotes, short prose and letters by a range of authors from Shakespeare to e.e. cummings, Ovid to Alice Oswald. My favourite function though has to be the audio clips which are read by a number of well known people including Tom Hiddleston and Helena Bonham Carter. There are also options to record your own audio clips and share them online through social networking sites, which is pretty cool.
The app is currently available for iPhone and iPad with an Android version in the works, and it costs a very worthwhile £1.99. The icing on the cake? 10% of all sales go to Save the Children, so you’re also helping a worthy cause.
Happy National Poetry Day!