A new anthology of poetry written by three young poets from Hampshire and Dorset, is to be launched at the Winchester Poetry Festival next month.
The anthology entitled Poetry Ambassadors is a collection of work from the Poetry Ambassadors Scheme, a year-long project that matched three poets with professional writers who provided mentorship, support and encouragement.
The poems come from each writer’s own experiences and feelings and explore themes such as loss, identity and family.
The poets will perform some of their work at the Winchester Poetry Festival, which takes place from 8 to 10 October at the Winchester Discovery Centre.
The Poetry Ambassador Scheme is run by the Festival in partnership with the University of Southampton and ArtfulScribe and was supported by the Foyle Foundation and the Arts and Humanities Research Council. The young poets spent time with their mentors in one-to-one and group sessions to develop their skills, hone their writing ability and discover their voice.
Writers Of Poetry Ambassadors
Kaycee Hill, 25, from Southampton, worked with Aviva Dautch, an acclaimed poet and academic specialising in Jewish arts and culture. Kaycee said: “As an emerging writer who had recently graduated from Creative and Professional Writing, I was really keen to apply for the Scheme, so I could keep working on my craft and developing my skillset. I have built a great rapport with my mentor Aviva and the workshops have allowed me to define how and why I write. The poetry I have written is stark, honest and surprising – this anthology is a demonstration of how much emerging voices can achieve when given the opportunity to.”
Eve Wright, 18, from Dorset, worked with Romalyn Ante, an award-winning poet who juggles her writing with a full-time job as a specialist nurse practitioner. Eve said: “I thought I was more of a storywriter, but it turns out, there was a poetry writer hidden deep within me after all. I thought I had found every way to love poetry, and writing generally, and now I have just found more ways to fall in love with it. The scheme will give me the confidence to pursue other opportunities like this in the future, especially now I know how valuable they can be because I’ve seen them in practice.”
April Egan, 18, from the Isle of Wight, worked with Caleb Parkin, a writer and teacher, who won the Winchester Poetry Prize in 2017. April said: “I’m now more aware of poetry than I ever have been before, and I think this has made me less afraid to have my poetry read. I have made many friends in the poetry community as a result of the confidence participating in this scheme gave me and these poetic connections are infinitely valuable to learning more about poetry, which at its core is about people. Considering different perspectives is something I will definitely take with me and use to improve my writing in the future.”
More From Poetry Ambassadors:
Established in 2013, the Winchester Poetry Festival is a biennial event, held in the historic city of Winchester, Hampshire. With more than 30 poets performing, holding workshops and discussions, there will be something for every literary enthusiast. The Festival holds an annual competition entitled the Winchester Poetry Prize, with the winner being announced at the festival. Winchester Poetry Festival is supported by Arts Council England.
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