Poetry Day Celebrations/James McCash Award – Poetry News Roundup October 2nd

Our final poetry news roundup of the week looks at some of this year’s National Poetry Day celebrations and the winner of this year’s James McCash poetry award.

Wordsworth Lines Chosen by Charles to Mark National Poetry Day

Yesterday marked National Poetry Day and the annual event was marked with a special event that featured the poet laureate Simon Armitage, the author and poet Margaret Atwood – who will be debuting one of the poems from her new book, and Cerys Matthews the Welsh singer. This year the theme of the celebration was “Vision”.

The Prince of Wales also joined in with the celebrations with a reading of some of his favourite lines of poetry by William Wordsworth. Charles has been helping to mark this special day for a number of years and last year selected Bernard Levin’s “Quoting Shakespeare” to read.

Simon Armitage will be doing a special reading from Dove Cottage in Grasmere, the former home of Wordsworth.

In a first for National Poetry Day, a 24-hour poetry lock-in will be being held on Instagram Live.

Around 40 local BBBC radio stations have offered their listeners the chance to upload their own poetry inspired by the “poem in 10 minutes” classes run by Kate Clanchy.

“Something Clicked”

As part of the celebrations that took place yesterday to mark National Poetry Day, the poet laureate Simon Armitage and BT unveiled Armitage’s latest poem “Something Clicked” a reflection on what life in 2020 has been like.

BT replaced all their adverts, both print and audio during National Poetry Day with extracts of the poem, and in the case of their television adverts, they accompanied the words with some stunning visuals.

The poem took a look at the significant increase in peoples reliance on broadband during the pandemic as a way of staying in touch with family, being able to work and grocery shop from home, and of course for the countries youngsters how it helped them with home learning.

The poem also looks at how many people have taken this time of lockdown as the opportunity to reflect on what is important in life and make those changing, they have maybe been thinking about for a long time.

The Marketing Communications Director of BT said that he was delighted to have been part of a project that involved the poet laureate and he is looking forward to seeing how people react to the poem.

2020 James McCash Scots Poetry Prize Winner Announced

The 2020 winner of what is one of the premier poetry awards on the Scottish calendar was announced yesterday. Sheila Templeton was named as the winner of the James McCash Scots poetry prize for her poem, named The Clyack Shafe, which, translated, means the last harvest sheaf. The theme this year was “Travelling Hopefully”.

The award has been running since 2003 and this is the 4th time that Templeton, who formerly taught history has either won the top prize, although she did share the prize sometimes.

Her poem was inspired by part by her father who was a railwayman and includes great use of authentic Scots.

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