National Poetry Day will see Poetry Society Member Jean Atkin become the first ever Troubadour of the Hills, thanks to the Ledbury Poetry Festival.
The Festival, in conjunction with the Malvern Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), have appointed Jean to the new position, and she will recite poems in that capacity for the first time at Ledbury Books and Maps in the High Street on National Poetry Day, 4 October.
Jean said: “I am so excited to be Troubadour of the Hills – such a treat for someone like me who loves to be outdoors and habitually writes while walking. I first remember seeing the Malverns from a train in my teens, and was bewitched then by their sense of mountains in miniature. They mark an edge where England begins to grow wilder.”
Jean has written a new poem, commissioned by Ledbury Poetry Festival and Malvern Hills AONB, which Jean will perform at the Ledbury Books and Maps event.
She added: “I hope during my time as Troubadour of the Hills that I can encourage many poets to pick up their pencils and write. Come along and join us on the Malverns – we plan workshops and walks in extraordinary places. But if you can’t get to these hills where three counties meet, then join in to share the poetry of your own hills through this project. I’m looking forward to reading small mountains of new poems.”
Jean’s commissioned poem, ‘One uncertain history of the Malverns’, meanders from Bromesberrow to Raggedstone, Hollybed to The Gullet, Midsummer Hill to Chase End Hill. It takes in sheep and cattle, common and car park, blackberries and fossils.
The poem will act as a call out to poets everywhere to write their own poems inspired by hills.
As Troubadour of the Hills Jean Atkin will lead workshops for schools in special locations on the Malvern Hills and write poems inspired by the landscape and history. Spring events will also offer the general public opportunities for exploring the Hills and little visited places in the area and to write poems about this special and remarkable landscape. There will also be a special event at Ledbury Poetry Festival, 2019.
26 September 2018