Julia Bird

Poems, Readings, Projects, Notices

How Does Your Garden Grow? June 15, 2015

Filed under: Uncategorized — juliabird @ 6:56 am

snailsWith Southwark bells and snail shells. The Poetry School (where I work) and the people behind London Open Garden Squares weekend collaborated on a scheme to put 16 poets-in-residence in London gardens over the summer. I was a guest of Nomura International plc, whose 6th floor roof garden overlooks the Thames in the centre of the city. I spent the weekend talking to hundreds of garden visitors, and will be combining their observations into a poem over the next month or so. A drizzly day on Sunday brought all the snails out – and a proper Oranges and Lemons-style ringing of Southwark Cathedral bells.

As well as formal planting, the garden has a veg patch, established and maintained by the three women who run the company switchboard. When I initially visited Nomura’s garden, the first thing I spotted was the corks on the end of the canes, protecting the eyes of unwary produce-pickers. I couldn’t have dreamed up a better metaphor for the garden’s transformative power – and I started to think about what would happen if this power started to spread. What if we could grow skyscraper gardens up and down the entire length of the Thames?

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For the Rooftop Gardeners of Nomura plc

Each time champagne shakes on a deal, someone

saves the popped corks for blunting the ends

of the raspberry canes. Once, a banker’s jacket,

left for a lunchtime on a propped-up spade,

kept the fruit unpecked by birds for weeks.

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Pea-shoots in polystyrene coffee cups

crowd a trading desk. Outside, the river –

that wild water feature – takes the seed-heads

blown from the roof, the leaf-mould and blossom,

the gold-dust pollen, and deposits them downstream.

 

Porigami! June 8, 2015

Filed under: Uncategorized — juliabird @ 4:29 pm

pigeon

A very uxorious bird is the pigeon. The paper version conceals a hidden love poem. It’s origami + poetry which is porigami obviously, and I will be making porigami for four days at the Southbank Centre’s Festival of Love later this month. Come and say hello.

 

Forever Joyful … May 5, 2015

Filed under: Uncategorized — juliabird @ 8:11 pm

keats flowers image no textLook, look at this lovely image by Linda Hughes for the latest Joy Forever poster! And the tickets are on sale now too …

“White hawthorn, and the pastoral eglantine … fast-fading violets … the coming musk-rose”: this is the tussie-mussie arranged by Keats in his ‘Ode to a Nightingale’, tussie-mussie being the Georgian term for a posy of flowers. Keats’s reflections on flowers are the starting point for a picnic combining performances of his poems and letters, games, gifts and tea. With poets Julia Bird and Mike Sims.

Keats House, 10 Keats Grove, Hampstead, London NW3 2RR

Sunday 7 June 2015, 2-3.30pm

Tickets £8 / £6 concessions

Includes light refreshments

 

Me and a Middle Aged Mermaid April 17, 2015

Filed under: Uncategorized — juliabird @ 2:47 pm

mermaidMore details of the reading on 13 May as part of the Wandsworth Fringe Festival.

Pictured left is not the middle aged mermaid drag queen I’ll be reading with, but it is a middle aged mermaid with a somewhat drag aesthetic.

Wandsworth Fringe Variety Show, featuring performances to delight your senses. An old school variety show with acapella singers, fun filled cabaret, poetry, comedy, avant garde performance art, and more!  Performing for your pleasure are:

Claire Benjamin – Host
Lynn Ruth Miller – Our delectable Octogenerian Cabaret performer
Gareth Edward – Middle aged mermaid
Treblemakers – Beautiful female acapella singers
Silvia Ziranek – Performance artist
Julia Bird – Poet
Steven Seller – Singer comedian
Dan Simpson – Spoken word performer
Mark Lester – Singer comedian

 

A Joy [is still] Forever March 31, 2015

Filed under: Uncategorized — juliabird @ 2:24 pm

flowersMore Keatsing, this time florally, for his house festival in June …

A Joy Forever: afternoon tea in the company of John Keats, with poets Julia Bird and Mike Sims. 2pm, Sunday 7 June

‘White hawthorn, and the pastoral eglantine … fast-fading violets … the coming musk-rose’ is the tussie-mussie arranged by Keats in his Ode to a Nightingale, tussie-mussie being the Georgian term for a posy of flowers. Keats’ thoughts and feelings about flowers are the starting points for an afternoon picnic combining performances of his poems and letters, games, gifts and tea. Price includes light refreshments.

Tickets from here eventually (not on sale at the time o’ posting).

 

Monoglot Intrigue

Filed under: Uncategorized — juliabird @ 2:15 pm

thesisHere are the beautifully bound thoughts of Italian student Barbara Gerallini who has written her degree thesis on my poetry. Maddeningly, I’ve got to wait till it gets translated before I can see what she’s written.

 

Some more readings …

Filed under: Uncategorized — juliabird @ 2:11 pm

I’ll be in Letchworth with the Firm of Poets on 19 June, in Bloomsbury with them on 28 October and at the Torbay Festival of Poetry on 23 October. More details as I have ’em.

 

 
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