The Poetry School and the London Parks and Gardens Trust have hybridised!
Between now and London Open Gardens Weekend (13-14 June 2015), seventeen poets (including two members of the Poetry School staff) will be running mini-residencies in some of the London gardens that take part in the annual LPGT scheme. There are city gardens and graveyards, wildlife gardens and stately home gardens … each of them will host a poet who will be looking for new work and audiences amongst the veg plots, orchards and flowerbeds.
Poet Sarah Hesketh manages the London Open Gardens weekend. This collaboration with the Poetry School – which we’re calling Mixed Borders – is the perfect way to combine her love of the horticultural and the poetical. Our first session saw us leading a residency training session (covering hostile audience awareness, spiky plant risk analysis, blank page minimisation strategies and all the other fun stuff) followed by an afternoon in the garden of the Jamyang Buddhist Centre in Kennington writing garden-themed poems in situ.
Over the next six weeks, we’ll be reporting on the poets’ progress, showing you their gardens, poems and projects. Meanwhile, here’s a sweet-smelling bouquet of all the participating poets’ favourite garden flowers: forget-me-nots, fuschia, rose, peony, freesia, medlar, pulmonaria, cornflower, cyclamen, honeysuckle, lavender, snowdrop, granny nightcaps, columbine, sweet williams.