Saving Poet’s Grave/ Poetry Names Tiger Cubs/ Costa Book of the Year Winner – Poetry News Roundup February 7th

We start the week with a look at the trust hoping to save a poet”s grave, the poetry inspired names for a pair of tiger cubs and the winner of the Costa Book of the Year award.

Coleridge Trust Receives Gift to Help Save Poets Grave

A £20,000 donation has been made to the trust that is fighting to save the grave in Highgate of the poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge. The grave is currently at risk of “benign neglect.” The donation comes from an anonymous benefactor who is said to have a “keen interest” in the poet who is entombed beneath the Highgate church of St Michael.

The Coleridge Trust is made up of, amongst others, living members of the poets family, including the current chairman of the V&A Sir Nicholas Coleridge. They are hoping to be able to kickstart their fundraising drive by raising £100,000. The aim of the project is to be able to provide the poets memory and his family with a memento that is befitting of the place that he holds in the literary history of England. They also hope to be able to create a study centre in the crypt of the church.

Coleridge, who is perhaps most well-known for penning “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” lived for the last 18 years of his life in Highgate. The fundraising has been somewhat slowed down as a result of the events of the last couple of years, however it is hoped that now things are beginning to get back to normal, the community of Coleridge fans will be able to help boost the funds once more.

Poetry Inspires Tiger Names

Two young tiger cubs at the Shanghai Zoo have now received their official names on the occasion of the start of the Chinese New Year. 2022 is the year of the tiger and the cubs, who were born in June, have been named as Kai Feng and Nan Feng.

The names are inspired by the “Shinjing” (The Classic of Poetry), the oldest collection of Chinese poetry in existence. The name Kai Feng is the name of a poem, meaning balmy wind whilst Nan Feng means spring wind in Chinese.

The names were chosen by a public poll which asked for members of the public to suggest appropriate names for the pair.

Costa Book of the Year Winner

A former teacher, Hannah Lowe, has been named as the winner of this year”s Costa Book of the Year award.

Her winning collection is a selection of modern sonnets that were inspired by the decade that she spent teaching in a school in inner London. “The Kids” was described by the chair of the judges as “a joy to read.” There are a total of 66 sonnets in the book and they look at the highs, and the lows, of teaching A-Level English, with fictional portraits of some of the students she encountered during her time as a teacher. The collection is also inspired by Lowe’s own time as a teenager and more recently as a mother.

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