Poets In Partnership/ Pablo Neruda Probe / Well Overdue Book – Poetry News Roundup February 22nd

Today My Poetic Side brings you Poets in Partnership, the reopening of the case into the death of Pablo Neruda and an overdue library book!

Poets in Partnership

The poet Daljit Nagra is currently undertaking a quest to find the best highlights from the last 90 years of poetry archives from the BBC.

For the month of March, the poet has selected a number of programmes that feature Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath which will be run under the title “Two of a kind – Poets in Partnership,” they will be broadcast on BBC Sounds and BBC Radio 4 Extra.

This is the first time that these programmes will have been aired since their original transmission in 1961. The first programme will look at the then husband and wife pair as they talked about writing and their life together.

There will also be some discussion with poetry students of Daljit Nagra about the lasting influence that Plath and Hughes have had on newer generations of poets.

The selection of recordings that have been chosen include Sylvia Plath: The Living Poet from 1961, and Ted Hughes: Listening and Writing –  which was a series commissioned for BBC Schools radio from 1963 to 1965. The later is  on the themes of learning to think, writing and landscape.

Daljit will also be sharing his Poetry Extra Book of the Month which is selected from a number of poetry collections which have been recently published.

Court Rules Death of Neruda Must be Reinvestigated

An appeals court in Chile has ruled that the death of Pablo Neruda, the Nobel Laureate poet needs to reinvestigate. They stated that new steps should be taken to clarify the cause of the poets death. The poet died just days after the 1973 coup in the country.

In December last year, a request made by the poet’s nephew was rejected by a judge. Rodolfo Reyes wanted to reopen to case to see if the cause of his uncle’s death had been something other than the cancer listed as the cause on his death certificate. At the time he stated that he had evidence from forensic experts in several countries that Neruda has been poisoned with Clostridium botulinum. These results were overthrown, and the judge at the time deemed them inadmissible.

However, on Tuesday this week, an appeals court based in Santiago revoked this decision and ordered that the case be reopened. They have requested that a calligraphic analysis of the writing on the death certificate be made as well as an in depth analysis of the test results for the poison.

The questions surrounding the death of the poet have been ongoing for many years, and his body was exhumed in 2013 in an attempt to determine the definitive cause of his death. It was claimed at the time that no traces of poison had been found. However in 2017 the authorities reported that minute traces of Clostridium botulinum had been found in his skeletal remains.

Very Overdue Poetry Book Returned

A collection of poetry, titled “Heart Throbs” was recently returned to the library, it was 93 years overdue!

The book, which was written in 1905, was found by an individual who was cleaning the shelves in her great aunt’s house. The library were confused at first as despite its age the book is in such great condition. However, they saw the funny side of the incident and even created a social media post about it.

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