Thursday, October 06, 2011

National (Shed) Poetry Day

It's National Poetry Day today. Those of you who enjoy both sheds and stanzas should make a beeline for the work of John 'Shedman' Davies who both writes about sheds and tours the country's festivals performing from inside a shed. His collection 'Shedman' is particularly worth investigating.

Our favourite poem about garden offices and shedworking is Where Eagles Dare by Matt Harvey - in fact we liked it so much that it is included in the Shedworking book. Here it is:
A silver trail across the monitor;
Fresh mouse-droppings beneath the swivel-chair;
The view obscured by rogue japonica.
Released into the wild, where earwigs dare -

You first went freelance - and then gently feral.
You worked from home - and then wandered out again,
Roughed it with spider, ant, shrew, blackbird, squirrel
In your own realm, your micro-vatican.

No name conveys exactly what it is -
Chalet? Gazebo? You were not misled
By studios, snugs, garden offices,
Workshops or outhouses. A shed's a shed -

And proud of it. You wouldn't want to hide it -
Wifi-enable rain-proof wooden box.
A box to sit in while you think outside it -
Self-rattling cage, den, poop-deck, paradox,

Hutch with home-rule, cramped cubicle of freedom,
Laboratory, thought-palace, bodger's bower,
Plot both to sow seeds and to go to seed in,
Cobwebbed, Cuprinol-scented, Seat of Power.
Matt's excellent collection The Hole in the Sum of my Parts in which this appears is published by the Poetry Trust, nicely illustrated by David Hughes, and I would urge all readers to snap up a copy now. You can buy direct from Matt's site shop here.

And here's Dominic Taylor reciting his poem 'The Shed' during the Cuisle-Limerick City International Poetry Festival 2005, recorded by John Davis.

Thursday posts are sponsored by Atelier garden studios which are sustainable, stylish, flexible, functional and future proofed

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