Why Poetry? is the question that the new anthology from Lunar Poetry Podcasts team asks.
Why Poetry? presents the work of 28 poets, all former guests of the podcast series, including Helen Mort, Melissa Lee-Houghton, Rishi Dastidar, Mary Jean Chan, Giles Turnbull, Jane Yeh and Joe Dunthorne. Although the poets are Lunar alumni, many of the poems are new, so old fans and recent converts will find much to love.
Since David and Lizzy Turner began Lunar Poetry Podcasts in October 2014, the series has archived well over 200 poets spanning more than 120 episodes and 8 countries. In 2017 LPP was shortlisted for a Saboteur Award and British Podcast Award – Represent Category, recognising the great work that is done in widening the voices that are heard in mainstream media. All of their podcasts are transcribed, to ensure accessibility.
Just like their podcasts, which explore the lives of poets as much as they traverse poetry, this book is as much a conversation as it is presentation. It features introductions by many of the poets featured, and interviews with David Turner by poet Abi Palmer – turning the tables on Lunar Poetry Podcast founder. The podcasts were set up to be a zine of long form interviews, and like a magazine, there’s a variety of extracts and edited highlights to intersperse the poems. Creative practice has always been a key part of the podcast, and the experience of being in the world and its effect in the work written or performed is a vein that runs throughout Why Poetry?
This is a book of more than just poetry. It’s a book about creativity, connection, and communication. It shows just how life affirming poetry can be. That, surely, is the reason why.
‘Why Poetry?’ is published by Verve Poetry Press. Buy your copy here.