Melanie Gow reviews Mapping Poetry, the latest poetry event from Fast Culture and Claire Trévien.
I spent a gorgeous, gentle evening indulging in a dissimilitude of rhythmical words that wandered a room touching the oddments with a recognition odd things share.
I was at Fast Culture’s Mapping Poetry event organised by Claire Trévien of Sabotage Reviews, in the Jolly Cricketers, Seer Green. A pub that feels like your aunt’s front room, after your cousins have left home. With cricket memorabilia lying happily amongst the unused sterling candelabras and crooked mirrors. Claire, who was wearing a shirt with the globe stretched around it, brought together a diverse and intriguing line up of poets who turned a Monday night into a great start to the week.
Jonathan Steffen, a published poet in numerous publications over the last 30 years, also has short stories, novels, literary translations, songs and instrumental music in his catalogue. Bangkok born Tori Truslow, a bicultural writer of surreal and speculative fiction, fairy tales, travel stories, articles and ‘other oddments’. And, Christine Webb, who made her mark on the poetry scene when she won the annual Poetry London with her poem Seven Weeks.
The whole evening was lovingly thought through, there was a pamphlet designed like a map of the evening, folded into a perfect triangle on parchment, with a sample poem from each poet. Claire Trévien also provided large glass jugs of water, terracotta dishes of nibbles, and a round of poetry bingo with prizes, while Tori had hand drawn a poetry picture puzzle for us all to decipher. All finished off with an open mic. All in all a perfectly pleasant way to spend an evening, the things that stand out are often the oddities.
Melanie Gow is an editor, a producer and the M.D. of Glow Productions.
Claire Trévien is a poet based in Leamington. Her first collection is published by Salt Publishing and is called Low Tide Lottery.
All photographs by Melanie Gow.