Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Between the lines: Andrew Motion's advice to the next poet laureate

The Guardian, Wednesday November 26 2008

Be warned. If you interpret the job as I have done - that being poet laureate means not just writing poems but trying to champion poetry - you will find there is an unimaginable difference between leading a relatively private life and the public life suddenly required of you.

It is not just about having to get up early to appear on the Today programme. It is everything that comes with having your life picked over.Be aware of the almost continual slew of requests to do or write this or that.

It took me a while to work out what I could and should say no to. Part of the job, of course, is that the poet is required to write on public occasions. These poems can be difficult to write; left-handed poems written with a right hand, so to speak.

Read the full piece at The Guardian online.

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