Poem of the week – Ode To Bicycles

bicycle-159680_1280As Yorkshire is welcoming the first ever Tour De Yorkshire this weekend I thought it would be nice to have a bicycling poem on the blog this week. The race kicked off today in Bridlington and is finishing in Roundhay in Leeds on Sunday.

I found this poem on the Bicycling Life website. It is written by Pablo Neruda, a Chilean poet. Pablo was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1971 and died in 1973. Interestingly he was portrayed as one of the principle characters in the film “Il Postino.”

Ode to Bicycles

I was walking
down
a sizzling road:
the sun popped like
a field of blazing maize,
the
earth
was hot,
an infinite circle
with an empty
blue sky overhead.

A few bicycles
passed
me by,
the only
insects
in
that dry
moment of summer,
silent,
swift,
translucent;
they
barely stirred
the air.

Workers and girls
were riding to their
factories,
giving
their eyes
to summer,
their heads to the sky,
sitting on the
hard
beetle backs
of the whirling
bicycles
that whirred
as they rode by
bridges, rosebushes, brambles
and midday.

I thought about evening when
the boys
wash up,
sing, eat, raise
a cup
of wine
in honor
of love
and life,
and waiting
at the door,
the bicycle,
stilled,
because
only moving
does it have a soul,
and fallen there
it isn’t
a translucent insect
humming
through summer
but
a cold
skeleton
that will return to
life
only
when it’s needed,
when it’s light,
that is,
with
the
resurrection
of each day.

Pablo Neruda

I will be enjoying the race ending on Sunday in Roundhay Park. Our mobile library will also be there so you can enjoy bikes and books – a perfect combination. It will be even better if the sun is shining!

Read Regional Author Events

PrintWe are very pleased to be taking part in the Read Regional campaign again this year. Now in its seventh year, Read Regional is a unique campaign run by New Writing North that partners with libraries and publishers to give readers the chance to meet authors in their local libraries. As well as the author events, all of the Read Regional titles are stocked in 19 library authorities across the region, creating a wealth of northern literature available to borrow. To find out more about all the authors featured in this years campaign visit the Read Regional Website.

Last-King-of-Lydia1We are hosting 3 events over the next few weeks. Next Wednesday 29th April Tim Leach will be visiting Chapel Allerton Library to talk about his latest book, The Last King of Lydia. This is the story of Croesus. Croesus was the wealthiest man of the ancient world, whose name is proverbally associated with magnificent riches – ‘rich as Croesus’, as it is sometimes said. Yet the thing that seemed to concern him the most in his life was not wealth or power, but happiness. Come along at 5.45pm to hear why Tim chose Croesus to write about and the research he carried out to do so.

Quick-The-copy1On Monday 11th May at 5.45pm Rothwell Library are hosting an event with Lauren Owen. Lauren will be talking about her debut novel, The Quick. This is a Victorian gothic tale set in Yorkshire. To discover the secrets of ‘The Quick’ you must first travel to Victorian England, and there, in the wilds of Yorkshire, meet a brother and sister alone in the world, a pair bound by tragedy. You will in time, enter the rooms of London’s mysterious Aegolius Club – a society of the richest, most powerful men in England. And at some point – we cannot say when – these worlds will collide.

TookeyMissel-childCVR6mmLater in May we will be hosting a Poetry morning at Oakwood Library. This is on the 21st May and starts at 11.00am with a poetry workshop where you can read and discuss a selection of poetry.  Following that Read Regional poet Helen Tookey will read from her latest collection of poems.

Do You Think You Could Write For Television?

Channel 4 has joined the Northern Writers Awards to search for undiscovered writing talent from the north of England. The scheme, launched recently is to identify raw and diverse television talent from the north of England. Launched by Northumbria University, Newcastle, the new award will offer a unique opportunity for two writers to be mentored through the script commissioning process with Lime Pictures and RED Production Company. The Channel 4 / Northumbria University Writing for Television Award will open for submissions on Friday 14 November, as part of the annual Northern Writers’ Awards, and is open to both complete beginners as well as those who already have some writing experience.

One of the winning writers will be mentored by Lime Pictures in Liverpool (Hollyoaks) and will shadow the process of script development, from first draft to broadcast script. This may lead to a commission to write an original episode of the serial that will be broadcast on Channel 4. The other winner will be mentored by RED Production Company in Salford (Scott and Bailey; Happy Valley) and will receive advice on script development and technique. They will also receive support from top television professionals to develop their own original ideas for broadcast. Channel 4 has a unique remit to represent and to portray the diversity of contemporary Britain, so would particularly encourage submissions from Black and Minority Ethnic and disabled writers, who are particularly underrepresented in this area of the TV industry.

Further details of the competition can be found at Northern Writers Awards