I mentioned the other week that the Saboteur Awards are now open to nominations. This year they have introduced a new category, the Wildcard, which covers poetry-related stuff which does not fit any of the other categories. Lunar Poetry Podcasts meets this criterion. If you have listened to any of the podcasts and enjoyed them, please consider nominating it.
I feel less awkward about canvassing for this than I would for the magazine, because the podcasts are primarily the work of someone else, and I have been little involved in them.
Not long after I started Lunar Poetry David Turner spoke to me about an idea he’d had of starting a series of podcasts talking to poets and spoken word performers about their work, including some examples of it in the podcast. I had had a vague notion that something along those lines would be a good idea, but did not have the time, energy or expertise to do it myself. When David offered me the option of including the podcasts under – for want of a better term – the LP aegis, I jumped at the chance. Shortly after, we recorded the first Lunar Poetry Podcast with Pat Cash in my kitchen.
Since then David, with occasional help from Michelle Madsen, Lizzy Palmer, Kyla Manenti and myself, has managed to bring listeners over 70 interviews and performances from Turkey, Sweden, Cuba, Nigeria and all over England. I think these offer something important and unique to the world of contemporary poetry. There are other poetry and literature podcasts, but none which offer the breadth of subjects LPP does, or which give such prominence to spoken word performers who are poorly served by mainstream poetry coverage, presenting their work in a suitable medium.
In recent months, the Podcasts have included subjects such as collaboration, criticism, issues surrounding gender, sexuality and race, and the rediscovery of the work of Rosemary Tonks.
I know that David wants to expand the podcasts, taking them outside of London more often, but Lunar Poetry Podcasts is entirely unfunded and relies solely on David and the other presenters’ ability to find the time and resources to research and record them. Recognition such as a nomination for a Saboteur Award would be extremely helpful to attempts to build the Podcast’s profile and improve its ability to expand as we would like it to.
So, as I said, if you think these podcasts offer something useful to the discussion of modern poetry, please think about nominating them. The deadline for nominations is April 24th. If you have not yet listened to any of the podcasts, you can find the whole archive on YouTube, and follow the Podcast page here, where we are currently updating the archive at a rate of one a day – we should be up to date by the first week in May. You can keep up to date with new podcasts by following @Silent_Tongue on Twitter, and checking in with the Podcasts’ Facebook page.