"A poet’s hope: to be like some valley cheese, local, but prized elsewhere” WH Auden
I starting writing poetry as a child and have kept nearly everything I wrote, stuffed into carrier bags. My father and maternal grandfather were writers and I inherited art and documents belonging to my father, including his art school folder. I have been able to see the progression of talent, into a person who made a living be ing creative.
A theme of some of my current poetry reflects on the need to communicate in this language and the pathway to recognition. I am familiar with the well read and loved British poetry and I know local talent can quickly be prized elsewhere. Torbay should be proud of the poets writing and performing locally.
By bringing together six local poets I wanted to show how poetry is the language used to express emotion from a young age and, how with the addition of maturity, support and the continuing need for expression through poetry, something rather wonderful is achieved – the insular, inward seeing child becomes someone willing to reach out and share their human experience with empathy, wit and skill.
W H Auden also said “You owe it to all of us to get on with what you're good at.”
Anyone, child or adult, may see the exhibition and remember a small spark of joy they had writing or reading poetry. I hope they will seek out the writing and performances of their local poets who show that poetry helped make them human.
How Poetry Made a Human runs at Torquay Library until 31st October 2017.