Those of you who have been following The Consolations of Writing for a while now will be aware that for the last year I have been working on a poetry project involving writing a poem for each day in the Anglican liturgical calendar. It’s been a mammoth task, but, with over 200 poems written, the project is coming to a close, with a few more Easter poems left this week and then one straggler of a poem for Ascension Day in May.
Naturally, it will be with some degree of relief that I’ll finish the project. But…I’ve kind of enjoyed having a big creative task to work on. It’s helped ensure that I write something almost every day of the week, and everyone will tell you that regular writing is the main way to keep developing artistically.
So – I’ve decided to start a new project, beginning next week. And I’d like your support with it.
I’m tentatively calling it “The 12 Poets Project”, and this is what it will involve: for each of the next 12 months I’m going to read and explore the work of one Christian poet. I will pick four of their poems which particularly interest me and will use these as the basis for four of my own poems. The poems I write will be in response to the original: I might borrow a feature of the original poem – the form, the a key image – or respond to the poet’s ideas. And each month I will also write a reflection on the work of that poet.
Why would I do this? Because I figure that studying some of the masters of the craft has to be a good thing. Because I want to learn as much as I can about the craft of writing poetry and I want to see how other poets have used their poetry to represent and explore matters of faith.
Of course, a project like this is much more fun when it involves other people. So – I’m inviting all of you to join me with it. You can join in a few ways:
– By suggesting poets you think I might like to include in the project.
– By reading the poets with me and offering your own thoughts, insights, poems etc. in response.
– By spreading the word and seeing who else we can get on board.
Please let me know any thoughts you have. I’d love to hear from as many of you as possible. Let the suggestions for poets start now…