Camarade at the Nova festival

Everyone involved in this undertaking couldn't have been more generous to be around all day of a long day, even when the torrential rain and subsequent 'festival' mud swamp somme conditions were only one of the many challenges we faced to make this reading happen at the Nova festival, in Bignor Park, in rural Sussex, on a Sunday afternoon. I probably would have burst a vessel were it not for the generosity of spirit and good will, and serenity, of all the other 18 poets who made the journey with me. If it wasn't late bus drivers taking random road breaks, the horrific British summer weather, painfully unfunny festival comedian introductions, traffic jams for miles and so forth, the day would have been perfect. However, thinking of it past tense, as I said it my post reading remarks, there is an undoubted glory to the proceedings now precisely because of the levels of absurdity the day managed to register.Of the many pleasures the day brought, seeing the amazing work producing by Georges Szirtes and Carol Watts made it entirely worthwhile. Carol has been a mentor to me, and George was so unusually gracious about doing this reading, and I believed, though they had never met before, that both their practises as poets, while being divergent stylistically, maintained a fundamental core of dignity and humanity and energy, and so it seemed to prove. Their work was really striking and I believe will continue on into the future.
It was also a real privilege to host two of the most exciting young, modernist / avant garde poets I've come across recently, Juha Virtanen and Robert Kiely, who both stepped up for the reading without much warning and produced a real display of their talent as writers.
Philip Terry & Tom Jenks
Andy Spragg & David Berridge
Simon Barraclough & Isobel Dixon
Emma Bennett & Holly Pester