Bangor International Poetry Season: Give Poetry a Chance!
By Jack H. Upton
This October, Bangor hosted possibly one of the biggest literary appreciation events in the UK of 2014; an entire month dedicated to Poetry.
I’m sure most of you approach this subject with a pinch of salt – I personally have never been excited by poetry – and for the poetry lovers out there, I’m sure most of you did not know what to expect from Poetry Month.
However, the sheer breadth of Bangor Poetry Season perhaps gave me hope for the Poetic Arts, after all. The turnout was incredible and the enthusiasm was contagious – to the extent that you can now pronounce me a convert to poetry.
There were poetry events left, right and center ranging from poem and book readings by local artists hosted by P.A.P.E.R.S. ‘Off The Pages’ Event, to explorations of Sound and Silence in The Blue Sky Cafe with Czech artist, Martin Zet, who also several poetry meetings and practical sessions. There was also a National Poetry Day on Menai Bridge and even Bangor University opened up its lecture rooms to esteemed poets from all over the world such as Hu Dong (China), Ivana Milankov (Servia), Wioletta Grzegorzewska (UK-Poland), Victor Rodriguez Núňez (Cuba), Olga Pek (Czech Republic), Zuzana Husarova (Slovakia) and Welsh poets such as Nia Davies, Robert Minhinnick, Twm Morys and Amoeba Twins with Steven Hitchins.
With such a variety of artists ranging from more traditional poetry to all kinds of modern form, there was something for everyone in the audience. This truly was a showcase of talent from all over the world and, more importantly, a statement that poetry is still very much alive and kicking in Bangor at least.