Reviews and comment from the Demon Crew - creative writers at De Montfort University, Leicester.

Friday, 2 March 2018

"Come hungry Muses ..."

Professor, poet and critic Gregory Woods delivered an inspiring and thought-provoking poetry reading at Wednesday's Cultural Exchanges event.
Woods began the event by reading poems from several of his collections of poems, including An Ordinary Dog.
He also talked about the range of people who have prompted and inspired his poems, briefly referring to Homintern, his major work of cultural history and criticism, which is about the internationalism of gay culture in the twentieth century.
As a creative writing student my first reaction when he said "I use traditional metres and rhymes... because I think they're beautiful" was a stifled groan - but when Woods stated during the Q and A that he often treats form as "a wind-up toy, to see where it goes " I found myself beginning to understand how poets balance the craft and enjoyment of writing.
Woods also admitted some nervousness in reading the poem 'Mothers of Sons,' as he worried it would offend mothers even though many mothers have told him they love it.
He explained that throughout his career he has learned the valuable lesson of your most beloved and well received poems may not be one you particularly like.
The diversity of poetry forms and themes within the poems and the voices drew well-deserved applause as the reading drew to an end. However when later asked whether he would have preferred applause after every single poem, Woods responded, “I’m grateful people don’t throw things!”

E. Towers

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