A selection of five poems for this general election in hard times. To shine a light on our better nature, to remember how many different people are responding to the urgent issues of 2019 with human kindness, concern, and courageous conscience.
The Corbenic Community in Perthshire, home to people with learning difficulties, is a special place too for poets, sculptors – and the rest of us
“It’s terrifically rewarding to think a recently written poem by a 71 year old can be a winner.” Cynthia Kitchen digs into the childhood memories which inspired her award winning poem.
“British racism has evolved. We no longer see gangs of racist folks roaming the streets. They now wear suits and ties
Some form political parties…” Benjamin Zephaniah’s poetic analysis of institutionalised racism has particular resonance in the aftermath of the Windrush scandal.
‘All I knew was that I was getting at least as much of an education from Bob as I was from the University. Bob was only four years older but he was a postgraduate student in philosophy, formidably well read, and in touch with the larger political world of which I was only distantly aware’ – a memoir of our late editorial board member
‘Revisiting the collection now, it carries a comforting message in a winter of rampaging flu, overcrowded hospitals, and political uncertainty about how to heal the health service. Love, life, birth and death – the great levellers. We are all ‘common, one of the flock’. (Happy new year!).’
This year’s Sceptical Scot poem for Christmas – so soon since the last one – is a poignantly, tenderly beautiful poem by Christine de Luca.
‘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…?
“I come along with a confused man and leave with my husband.” Gordon Munro reviews Mind the Time, a poetry project using football memories to enhance the lives of people with dementia and those closest to them.
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.