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Twas the Night Before Christmas!

December 19, 2009

Hello all, I’m very pleased to herald the SPL’s Christmas Podcast. This is a really amazing one, with Robyn Marsack and I discussing Home and a special, brilliant version of Twas the Night Before Christmas with Toby Mottershead. It’s a rollicking, stocking-bursting treat and we hope you love it. On this podcast, you also get to hear two of my poems: My 100-Year Old Ghost and Oregon Trail.

Twas the Night Before Festivus…

“He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,/ And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.”

In this Festivus podcast we feature a specially commissioned interpretation of the classic Christmas poem ‘A Visit from St Nicholas’ aka ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas’ from the amazing Toby Mottershead and some of Black Diamond Express (listen to Toby on another podcast in our series). And as home is something many of us return to at this time of year, we’ve also a discussion on poetry and homecoming between New Zealand born Robyn Marsack, Director of the Scottish Poetry Library, and Connecticut bred Ryan van Winkle, Reader in Residence at the SPL and Edinburgh City Libraries. They talk about their respective journeys to Scotland from their native lands and explore the influence of the poems they have brought with them from their homes and a few they have picked up along the way.

From all of us at the Scottish Poetry Library, Season’s Greetings, Nollaig Chridheil and Guid Yule!

Email Ryan and Colin about your thoughts on the podcast and what’s whetting your poetical whistle for 2010.

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Double K only on the SPL!

December 15, 2009

“We get our sense of music in a language from lullabies, from baby language, from talking to dogs…”

Ryan asks the staff of the Scottish Poetry Library which poetry books they’d recommend for seasonal gifts, and catches up with multi-talented writer Kapka Kassabova for a scintillating interview. Presented by Ryan Van Winkle. Produced by Colin Fraser. Incidental music by Ewen Maclean. Email Ryan and Colin.

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December 14, 2009

Francis Bickmore, Toby Mottershead and Black Diamond Express

“Like when you get a smell of something that your gran used to make, reading the poem took me back to being a kid again…”

Ryan chats with Francis Bickmore, senior editor at Canongate Books, and Toby Mottershead of Black Diamond Express about their favourite
poem, Coleridge’s ‘The Rime of the Ancient Mariner’. Their discussion covers Nick Cave, Iron Maiden, what we expect from literature and how poetry can fit neatly into a busy schedule, among other things. Also
features the track ‘Jack’ by Black Diamond Express. Presented by Ryan van Winkle. Produced by Colin Fraser. Incidental music by Ewen Maclean. For feedback, mail splpodcast@gmail.com

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Poetry Podcast – Get it in ya…

December 2, 2009

Chemical Poet Alasdair Maloney and actors Gilchrist Muir and Jamie Gordon

“I like to let the natural sounds fill my head…”

In this bumper packed edition of the SPL podcast, Ryan chats with actors Gilchrist Muir and Jamie Gordon about reciting poetry to all
and sundry at the Poetry Garden in St Andrews Square. He also discusses poetry and hip-hop with multi-talented poet and performer Alasdair Maloney whose track ‘Thunder and Sun’ with his band Sileni rounds off this week’s episode. Presented by Ryan van Winkle. Produced
by Colin Fraser. Incidental music by Ewen Maclean.

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