Thursday, October 18, 2007

Pick Your Morgan

Lesley Duncan, poetry editor at The Herald, Scotland’s biggest broadsheet newspaper, draws our attention to a new volume of Edwin Morgan poems which will be distributed free as part of Glasgow’s “Aye Write” literary festival next year. The book will contain 50 poems, ten of which will be chosen by public vote. We can vote for our favourite Edwin Morgan poem, together with fifty words explaining our choice, and email it to poems@theherald.co.uk to arrive no later than 4 November.

How to choose? Morgan has written so many great poems. There are the obvious choices of his better known work – Strawberries, King Billy, Loch Ness Monster’s Song, Glasgow Green – and I’ve no doubt these ones will pick up a lot of votes just because they are popular. But are they the best? I have my doubts. I’ve been blown away by so many of Morgan’s poems. I’ll have to think about this one.

And why wasn't Morgan mooted as a possible literary Nobel Winner? Is he so far off the radar?

4 comments:

Sorlil said...

It's only been in recent years that I've come to appreciate Morgan's poetry (I hated reading 'In the Snack-bar' at school) and only in the last year that I've really come to love his work. In fact I was flicking through his 'Selected Poems' the other night marvelling at some of the many love poems especially 'One Cigarette' and 'Absence', wonderful poems.

Rob said...

School sometimes has a lot to answer for. That Selected is excellent. I have a Collected as well, which is too old to include poems he's published in the last couple of decades. And I have a few other books, including his pamphlet collection on Mariscat Press, Demon, which is great stuff.

Anonymous said...

Doing my higher english at the moment and studying In the Snack-Bar. Any advice on how I could make my essays better?

Rob said...

Best of luck with the exams, anon. I don't know how to make essays better, other than by working hard and reading a lot. The main thing is to enjoy the poetry, appreciate good teaching, and not allow bad teaching to kill off the magic. Easier said than done sometimes...