Thursday Scratch Nights
with Debrorah Fielding, Richard Frost, Elena Cay, Guy Russell, James Brightman
Thursday 8 August / 6.30pm / Free
The first of two consecutive evenings of spoken word from several Milton Keynes based writers and poets.
The Bard of Stony Stratford is a figurehead for the spirit of creativity, culture and community in the town. The Bard will hold tenure for one year, during which time they will write bespoke pieces celebrating local cultural activities and achievements, and perform at community events. Since its original conception in 2011, the Bard of Stony Stratford has become established as a cultural envoy for the town.
The third Bard, Richard Frost, has performed at the Library on National Libraries Day and has accepted invitations to write and perform poetry to celebrate the Big Draw, a Riverside Festival fundraising event, the Stony in Bloom Seed Day, the Community Orchard Apple Day and numerous others.
Deborah Fielding is a writer based in Milton Keynes. ‘I am interested in the particular, the details. My work is concerned with the specific - moments of decision, action or stillness. I delight in a sharp line, a perfect curve or a beautiful sequence and have an affection for unifying events in community - whether joyful or distressing - they make great stories’.
Fielding has completed an MA in Creative writing at the University of East Anglia.
Guy Russell has been writing and publishing poetry in many styles and genres since he was teenager. Most recently he has been using traditional forms to express contemporary sensibilities about relationships, aesthetics and science.
Russell has lived in Milton Keynes since 1996. He is currently the chair of the Literature Panel at Arts Gateway MK and works for the Open University. Recent publications in Emergency Verse (Caparison), Brace: A New Generation In Short Fiction (Comma), Troubles Swapped For Something Fresh (Salt) and The Iron Book of New Humorous Verse (Iron). He reviews poetry in Tears in the Fence and elsewhere.
James Brightman: ‘Without a doubt, Milton Keynes has been a constant inspiration in the decade of my poetry life. In my normal life it has been quite the muse too, but there are only so many times that someone can sit under the Midsummer Place tree without being swiftly moved along.
All the poems that I have submitted have their breath and soul situated in Milton Keynes – the singing Big Issue seller of CMK, the gardens of Willen Hospice and the suburban stoicism of Bletchley town to name but a few.’
Eleni Cay is a researcher who occasionally likes to escape the everyday to the world of poetry.
‘I love swans, Chopin and watching the clouds. Sometimes, from a fleeting spurt of inspiration, my thoughts come to me as metaphors and create a unique, authentic space which longs to be shared. I firmly believe in the power of such spaces in all of us. These lyric confessions are my invitation to open up such spaces in you and your friends. Together, we can capture the serendipity of life.’