Keeping House at William Cowe & Sons

Keeping House at William Cowe & Sons

William Cowe & Sons, Bridge Street, Berwick.

In 2012, as part of conservation work in Berwick-upon-Tweed, Cumbrian poet Jacob Polley and film-maker Ian Fenton were invited to document the maze of shops and living spaces that make up William Cowe and Sons, a family business dating back to 1801.

Behind the shuttered doors, amongst the ledgers, the stuffed cupboards, the tea chests, and the family memorabilia, they discovered a decaying world caught between the near and distant past, where everything seemed imbued with historical significance.

Commissioned by Northumberland County Council’s At the Crossroads; heart of Berwick upon Tweed Townscape Heritage Initiative,  Keeping House is an evocative documentary exploring the beguiling atmospheres of the William Cowe & Sons cockle shop.

Keeping House Trailer
Directed by Jacob Polley and Ian Fenton
UK / 2014 / 16min / Cert. N/A

World premier to be shown at the Berwick Arts Festival on Saturday 20 September 2014.

Further information at berwickfilm-artsfest.com/events-and-films/130/134/keeping-house

commonwealth games

Poetry Postcards

BBC Radio Scotland are collating a poem from every competing nation in the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games. The aim is to capture the essence of who the people of the Commonwealth are today.

Jacob’s ‘North-South Divide‘ from The Brink  has been chosen as England’s Postcard poem.

 

The North-South Divide

fills with flood-water;
the bows of Scotland lift clear
of the Atlantic, cod roam
the East Anglian plains, kelp
throttles Sherwood, the chimneys
of the Midlands slowly barnacle,
Cumbria tilts;
congers lie in catacombs
cold-wiring our relics,
our kings’ bones;
a whale hangs a moment
singing in the vault
of St Paul’s, men dive
through their Southern libraries,
where crabs unpick the calfskin
of our histories;
Stratford-under-Avon
is swanless and rip-tidal,
hagfish haunt Leicester Square,
anglerfish twinkle
through Trafalgar’s oyster beds.
Look from Manchester
out to sea; the South you knew
from quiz shows and road maps
from nursery rhymes and bad news
is gathering a storm
to its heaving,
gull-broached,
heavy-breakered bosom.

BBC Poetry Postcards

Jacob Polley Readings

Shore Poets: May

Jacob is appearing in Edinburgh on Sunday 25th May at one of Scotland’s leading venue’s for live poetry reading, Shore Poets.

Shore Poets are an informal but durable collective who have been providing a platform for new poets to read alongside more established names on the Scottish scene since 1991.

Reading alongside Jacob will be Hamish Whyte. For the past thirty years Hamish has run Mariscat Press, and he has edited several anthologies, including Mungo’s Tongues: Glasgow Poems 1630-1990,  An Arran Anthology, and Kin: Scottish Poems about Family. Hamish’s pamphlet ‘Christmasses’ was published by Vennel Press in 1998. His long poem Window on the Garden was published as a book jointly by Essence Press and Botanics Press in 2006. Shoestring Press published A Bird in the Hand in 2008 and The Unswung Axe in 2012.

The new Shore Poet for May is Pippa Goldschmidt. Pippa is best known for her novel The Falling Sky, published by Freight Books in 2012 and short-listed for the 2012 Dundee Book Prize. However, she also writes poetry and short fiction, and has won various accolades for her writing in all genres – including a Scottish Book Trust New Writers Award in 2011/12.

The venue is Henderson’s at St John’s, Lothian Road, Edinburgh
7.45 pm to 10.00 pm
Sunday 25th May 2014
Bar from 7.15pm
Admission £5 / Concessions £3

St. Andrews Lane

Stanza 2014 Poetry Festival

Scotland’s most renowned poetry festival takes place in St Andrews

This year will see over 40 festivals celebrating literature, storytelling and poetry across Scotland. Of poetry in-particular, the most renowned being StAnza, the annual international festival that takes over St Andrews each March.

Part of the magic of StAnza is how poets and poetry permeate the entire town, from coffee shops to street corners. Jacob Polley will be reading at the Frazer Gallery on South Street, St. Andrews on Friday 7th March to a select audience of just twelve people (booking essential)

The festival runs from the 5th – 9th March.

www.stanzapoetry.org

Jacob Polley on Writing The Havocs

Jacob Polley on writing The Havocs

 

 

 

 

Have you ever sat in a public library and, looking out of the window, seen the branches of trees and, at the same time, the reflection on the glass of bookshelves and spinners so, as it gets darker …

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