I am going away for a weekend in October, it's going to be my first weekend away since I had my first child. He's just turned eleven. My husband could not believe this could possibly be true. Neither could I. But it is, and it's time.
I'm off down to my home town, for the Ilkley Literature Festival, or a bit of it anyway. I'm going to see Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall with my Mum. I may swoon, she's assured me, she won't. I'm going to see some local poets with my Dad. I am going to meet with friends I've known since middle school for lunch at Bettys. And I am going to lots and lots of events.
One of the poets I'm going to see is Hollie McNish. I cannot wait. She's chuffing marvellous. You can go see her too, if you're near Ilkley, there are still tickets for sale here. And if you can't make it, if you don't know what all the fuss is about, or if you'd just like to Hollie fix, here are five of my favourites of her poems right now.
Embarrassed is the poem that I first heard about. I used to work in breastfeeding research, looking at things that might help support women to feed their babies themselves. This will do it. This and more.
But it's not just breastfeeding that I completely agree with Hollie on, here's her marvellous take on immigration.
and this, this I don't even have words for
I love how little kids feel about their bodies, and about mine. I am trying to learn to respect the good stuff, the strength, the growing of actual human beings, the ability to recover. I know that I look good if I feel good, and nobody else cares how fat or wrinkly I am, and I try not to worry about how acceptable I look, but it's not easy. This is a great poem on the subject.
and this is the last one I'm sharing today, but I'm yet to find a Hollie McNish poem I don't like.
Let me know if you are going to see Hollie in Ilkley this year. No pressure Hollie, but I'm expecting you to be great!