Poetry line-up announced for Wimbledon BookFest

L-R: Dr Laura Peters, head of English and Creative Writing, professors David Harsent and Fiona Sampson and the Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul O’Prey.

L-R: Dr Laura Peters, head of English and Creative Writing, professors David Harsent and Fiona Sampson and the Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul O’Prey.

First published in News This Is Local London: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

Award-winning poets will be among a host of literary stars entertaining visitors at Wimbledon BookFest this autumn.

With tickets already on sale for the 10-day festival, literary afficionados are advised to book early for the chance to attend some exclusive poetry recitals and workshops.

As the nation remembers those who died in World War One a century on, Professor Paul O'Prey, president of the War Poets Association and a world expert on soldier poet Robert Graves, will discuss his new anthology 'Poems From The Front'.

Professor O'Prey, who is also vice-chancellor at Roehampton University, will challenge the view that all war poetry conveyed anti-combat sentiments.

During the talk on Sunday, October 12, he is expected to argue many of his subjects who wrote about what they saw did so without flinching, and discovered, in the darkest days of the war, a great compassion and a renewed sense of humanity.

Professor O’Prey, who lived with Graves in the last years of his life promises to provide a unique insight into the poet’s controversial work ‘November 11’. The poem was deemed unpublishable until the 1960s because of its portrayal of public celebrations on Armistice Day.

For aspiring poets, a daytime writing workshop for 12 people on the same day will be hosted by Fiona Sampson, editor of Poet Magazine and her Roehampton University colleague, poet and scriptwriter David Harsent.

Other poetry-based events taking place during the festival include an evening of Irish poetry and music with Dónal Cox on October 4, and readings of the works of Chilean Nobel Prize winner Pablo Neruda by actress Juliet Stevenson on October 8.

Tickets and more details are available at www.wimbledonbookfest.org

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