December Poetry Salons

December, the nights are long, the light is clipped and the trees have shed their weight. All things wild need an inward turn, and our hearts are no different. 

And yet, the whirl and fizzle of December can cast a spell. Those shopping lists, those awkward party moments, the challenge of consumerism and an obligation to feed the big capitalist machine which has little to do with the word ‘present’, as in presence. Yet when we carve to the core of what this time of year can actually holds, we find the lexicon of the sanctified, longing for our attention. 

As an antidote to the noise, and as an offering into the space of presence, last year I recorded a series of short poetry salons, reading words which carried my own heart through the year, and continue to. Over the space of this series of salons, recorded around my own fire, I share poems which span the great themes of our life: love, longing, loss. There are poems too about the mystical and the mythic, poems from the margins of our everyday encounters, and poems which speak to the act of poetry itself, as a wayfinder and a guide. 

As we shift gear towards the end of 2018, I want to share these recording again, and also a promise to record a few more episodes as the year draws out, with poems which crossed my path and touched me over the last 12 months- some shared at the live poetry salons in my home, and some sent on from friends afar. 

The recordings come with an invitation and a hope: that every few days in December, you’ll find 15 minutes to pull up a chair, make yourself cozy, and lean in to listen. I hope my own reflections are a mirror to yours too, and that my selections invite you to hunt down the words or people which made your own heart stir. You never know, they may even inspire you to pick up a pen and search for the poetic in you too, until a new poem is born, and therefore new life. 

Happy listening all, 

Clare. x 

You can listen to all over on Soundcloud:

One: On the origin of the salon and poetry as a communal act. 

Two: On poetry as lineage and a cauldron of childhood memory

Three : On poetry as map. Exploring poetry help us find our way back to our inner and outer worlds.

Four:  On poetry and the body

Five: On poetry and the forgotten voices

Six: On the poetry of the magical and mystical 

Seven: On landing on joy.