‘But here and now, for sanity sake, I abandon the endless stream of anger in the digital world, stuff my silenced phone in my back pocket, pick up a pair of secateurs and venture out into the fresh air’. On Douglas, Atholl and ‘..celebrating a natural world without borders, the spirit of human adventure, and offering a fragrant protection against bad politics’.
‘Throughout my life those Anglo-Scots-Irish links have pulled complicated strands of loyalty, plucking a confusion of romantic emotional responses. Who the hell am I?’
‘Poetry readings were performed here for Refugee Week. Poetry postcards offered to passers by on National Poetry Day. Poetry twirled on willow stakes in the garden. Poetry projected on to the plinth of the Melville Monument and hung on buildings under construction around the square’. But no more…?
This year’s Black History Month opens a new chapter in Scotland with a campaign to establish Scotland’s own museum of empire, slavery, colonialism and migration.
This is a good time for satirists, though there’s no clear line between farce and tragedy in the real life script written in the words of our political leaders. Fay Young samples poetry and music inspired by Trump, May and Brexit.
Kate Tough’s poetry stirs hearts and minds as Glasgow celebrates Slavery Remembrance Day 2017 with growing openness about the city’s link with the slave trade.
‘Men may be from Mars,’ Tom says with a chuckle, handing me the signed copy, ‘but that does not mean we are without feelings.’
Top down policy won’t transform those wasted spaces. Meaningful regeneration grows upwards from community grassroots but it needs help from above. Fay Young introduces two articles by Susan Mansfield describing how empowered communities can transform local environments and quality of life.
So much for nostalgia. To a soundtrack of the Beatles, a newsfeed of race riots across the US, death dropped daily on Vietnam. Israel’s Six Day War with Syria, annexing The West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem. Fay Young revisits the Summer of Love through the cloud of Brexit
Two years ago the poet Tony Walsh wrote and performed We Are Manchester for the twentieth anniversary of the Manchester Arena. Poetry commissioned for a different occasion now takes on searing new significance.