At a time when regular poetry events were no longer running due to Covid-19, PPP were delighted to be commissioned by Creative Black Country to run a series of online poetry activities across our region. ‘Stay Up Your Own End’ provided a platform for people to share their own work about some aspect of life in their area, was open to poets of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities, and ran until 20th July 2020.
The first poetry prompt went live on Monday 25th May and focussed on the Walsall area, with the Walsall event being held ‘live’ in the Poets, Prattlers, and Pandemonialists Facebook group on Monday June 8th, and subsequent events – centred on Dudley, Sandwell, Wolverhampton, and Stourbridge – held on the following Monday evenings in the same Facebook group.
At each event a ‘judge’s favourite’ was chosen and secured a £25 prize for the author, plus the opportunity to work with us on creating a video of their piece for our sixth and final event – a grand finale on 20th July – which featured the five winning poems as well as videos from each of our five judges.
Our thanks to local favourites of the Black Country poetry scene Richard Archer, Rick Sanders, Roy McFarlane, Kuli Kohli, and Heather Wastie for being our prompt writers and judges. And to Creative Black Country for enabling this new poetry platform while the usual avenues were closed.
It was wonderful to see so many people – whether or not they considered themselves a poet – joining this project by submitting work, or coming along to our Facebook page to read what local people had to say about life in their part of the Black Country. Thank you all.