Erasmus Darwin House

Today I head to the Erasmus Darwin House in Lichfield, to give a talk this evening combining discussion of ‘science poetry’ with readings of science poems. This is based on the talk I gave at the Linnean Society and grew from meeting a delightful lady, Jenny, after the LinSoc talk, who works at the Erasmus Darwin House.

On Wednesday I’m running three creative writing workshops with two different schools, focusing on writing rough drafts of science-inspired poems. We’re going to use some of the excellent resources at the Erasmus Darwin House – fossils and a DNA model – and we’re also going to look at a small example of Erasmus Darwin’s own, ah… mellifluous…poetry.

I admit I have not read all of The Botanic Garden, and the sample we’re using with the school children is about 8 lines, but I’m delighted to have been able to pull a copy of The Loves of the Plants off my bookshelf, given to me by a sweet elderly gentleman upon my first visit to the Scottish Poetry Library. I didn’t know the gentleman but he’d come to hear me read from Darwin’s Microscope, and I suppose it’s now all coming together in that pleasantly mysterious way that things tend to do…

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