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Help Ledbury Poetry Festival welcome three extraordinary poets from Argentina, Chile and Trinidad to perform and connect with audiences
140 backers pledged £6,042 to help bring this project to life.

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£6,042

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Laura Wittner, Enrique Winter and Shivanee Ramlochan
Laura Wittner, Enrique Winter and Shivanee Ramlochan

What is Ledbury Poetry Festival?

Ledbury Poetry Festival is a charity which works to build a community for poetry, poets and audiences with over 60 events at the main Festival between 5 - 14 July 2019 and a year round programme of school and community activities. This project is reaching out to poetry lovers and those who support the idea of poetry crossing barriers and borders to connect people through language and creativity. When we read and hear poets from different countries and contexts, we realise how much connects us and we enjoy all that is distinct and unique.  Join us to share the work  of three poets from Latin America and the Caribbean with new audiences and build a bridge between their words and our lives.  

What will this project do?

Help Ledbury Poetry Festival welcome three exciting young international poets: Enrique Winter from Chile, Laura Wittner from Argentina and Shivanee Ramlochan from Trinidad. There is so much possibility in these exchanges and so much to gain. From Enrique Winter's investigations into masculinity, to Shivanee Ramlochan giving voice to those traditionally repressed because of gender or sexuality, to Laura Wittner's evocations of experience, all three poets are exploring themes that are challenging and relevant and using form and language in interesting ways.   

By supporting this project and showcasing these poets from Chile, Argentina and Trinidad, you can help Ledbury Poetry Festival make them and their work accessible to UK audiences at a time when this might not otherwise be possible. 

Poems can offer a window on a different culture and country, a different way of thinking and seeing the world. These poets are at a crucial time in their careers when the opportunity to travel and meet audiences and poets in a foreign country can truly enhance and expand their writing potential and impact.   

Unique and enjoyable events
Unique and enjoyable events

What will happen?

This project will enable Laura Wittner, Enrique Winter and Shivanee Ramlochan to travel from Argentina, Chile and Trinidad to perform in three events at Ledbury Poetry Festival between 5 and 14 July 2019. These events will involve poetry readings, interviews, conversations about poetic inspirations, as well as cultural and political context. Each event will last one hour and happen in the Festival's intimate main venue, an atmospheric former chapel on a cobbled lane in Ledbury's medieval town centre. Audiences will have an opportunity to ask questions and supporters of this project can enjoy rewards which include a VIP reception and a chance to meet and chat informally with the poets. These events will happen alongside a huge range of Festival events including with emerging European poets, Margaret Atwood, Ilya Kaminsky, Simon Armitage, Hannah Sullivan, Andrew Motion, Ishion Hutchinson, Jay Bernard, Phoebe Power, Daljit Nagra and poetry lovers including Ali Smith and Alexei Sayle, all of whom meet in hospitality which is where the VIP receptions will take place for supporters of this project. The Festival atmosphere at events and in hospitality is friendly and welcoming. 

How will the funds raised be spent?

This project will fund the cost of flights, accommodation and daily meals for the three poets to enable them to share their work with a wider audience. This project will enable Ledbury Poetry Festival to welcome international poets who would not otherwise be able to perform at the Festival. It will enable dialogue around key themes and issues that arise and this will have a broader impact on audiences and poets. 

Why Kickstarter?

Ledbury Poetry Festival is committed to bringing people together and opening up possibilities for engagement, participation and collaboration. It is through these same qualities that supporters will bring this project to life and make it happen. 

A  Festival event in Burgage Hall where Laura, Enrique and Shivanee would perform. Photo by @PaulLigas
A Festival event in Burgage Hall where Laura, Enrique and Shivanee would perform. Photo by @PaulLigas

 Find out more about the Poets: 

Shivanee Ramlochan is a Trinidadian poet, critic, and book blogger. Her first book of poems, Everyone Knows I Am a Haunting (Peepal Tree Press, 2017) was was shortlisted for the Felix Dennis Forward Prize for Best First Collection. Find Shivanee’s work online at www.novelniche.net, shivaneeramlochan.com, @novelniche.

 Roy McFarlane says, "I had the pleasure to hear Shivanee read from her new collection. It was gut wrenching and you could hear a pin drop."

My hair is the hundred thousand wires

of my love and it holds you safe.

In its jungle, you are queen.

In it, you learned that ink and blood,

and salt, that these three grow

the truest trees.

(from 'Materna')

"Shivanee Ramlochan's astonishing debut gives voice to sufferings and struggles of women, the queer and non-binary, reminiscent of Audre Lorde’s call for “the transformation of silence into language and action”. But what makes this collection truly revelatory is its bold envisioning of a Trinidad – and, beyond that, a world – in which identities and hierarchies of power are fluid rather than fixed." The Guardian

Shivanee Ramlochan
Shivanee Ramlochan

Prize-winning Chilean author Enrique Winter’s four collections of poetry include Rascacielos (Skyscrapers) and Lengua de señas (Sign Tongue). He is also a translator of Emily Dickinson, G. K. Chesterton, Philip Larkin and Charles Bernstein. Winter is a writer-in-residence at Universidad de los Andes in Bogotá. Find Enrique's work online at Asymptote Journal, Latin American Literature Today 

One sol, like the sun god

of the same name, a tip for a waitress

surprised by her own luck.

(from 'Suns')

Enrique Winter is one of the most prominent poets of his generation. “To conjure the impermanence of now just at the moment of its slipping away is Winter’s real gift: ‘In layers the sea is setting on the sun / the memory of the memory of light / sheets that slide back the spilt milk / during the front crawl / and a new opportunity to understand ourselves / in pairs the night brings.” When Winter is with us in the present, he feels the deep reflections of each word’. Asymptote Journal

"Like castles of silt and shards, these poems are whimsical and sharp, held together by a smoked rhythmic force of acrobatic associations (sound senses), where ugly is disfigured as beautiful and permanence dissolves into evanescence. Winter’s poems won’t fall down, no matter how hard you read them."—Charles Bernstein 

Enrique Winter
Enrique Winter

Laura Wittner was born and lives in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She has published more than seven collections of poetry and translated Leonard Cohen, Anne Tyler and others into Spanish. She also writes children’s books.

When I raise my eyes I see snow,

snow gleaming from the television.

As always, places where one is not

shimmer on the map.

Certainly, I'd miss the flower market

and waking in this eighth-floor flat

which opens out in defiance of the wind.

(from 'Another City') 

Laura Wittner
Laura Wittner

More about Ledbury Poetry Festival:

Ledbury Poetry Festival is trailblazing in terms of its international and artistic events and the wider programme that support emerging poets, champions diversity and engages schools and community groups. It is located in a beautiful market town in rural Herefordshire. Ledbury Poetry Festival has an international reputation as the biggest and best poetry festival in the UK and for 23 years and counting the Festival continues to join places, poetry and people.  

Medieval buildings form an atmospheric backdrop for Festival events. Photo by @PaulLigas
Medieval buildings form an atmospheric backdrop for Festival events. Photo by @PaulLigas

More about the Rewards:

A letter press printed poster by Ledbury Tilley Printers will give you a special keepsake in the form of a beautifully hand printed poem by one of the three poets.  

Advance tickets and VIP tickets to the Festival events in which each poet is performing. Not only will you receive tickets, you will also see your name in the Festival programme as a supporter of this campaign. 18,000 copies of the Festival programme are distributed and we are keen to credit all our supporters in person because without you these poets could not appear at Ledbury Poetry Festival. You, and all the supporters whose names appear alongside you, believe in the power of engagement, participation and collaboration to make change happen. Thanks to you, poets from different countries and contexts will be able to exchange ideas and begin new conversations around poetry and  key issues. This is vital in today's complex and troubled times. Increasingly poets are holding a mirror up to the world and enabling new perspectives and new dialogues to begin.

Enjoy a 'behind the scenes' perspective with a reward that includes VIP tickets. This will enable you to chat with the poets informally in the Festival's hospitality which serves delicious local food and drink such as speciality cheeses, ciders, pies, cakes.  

Enjoy VIP treatment and a 'behind the scenes' Festival experience
Enjoy VIP treatment and a 'behind the scenes' Festival experience

Risks and challenges

All three poets have visas in place to ensure that they have permission to enter the UK to perform at Ledbury Poetry Festival. The Festival is experienced at welcoming international poets and ensuring that travel plans and other arrangements are carefully planned and executed.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £10 or more About US$ 12

    An artist designed e-postcard of a poem

    You will receive a specially created e-postcard as a thank you. The postcard will include an illustrated poem by one of the poets.

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge £30 or more About US$ 37

    2 event tickets and a programme credit

    Your name will feature in the Festival programme of which 18,000 copies are printed. Plus an advance ticket to a World Poets Festival event with either Shivanee Ramlochan, Enrique Winter or Laura Wittner. These events last one hour and involve readings and conversation with an experienced host.

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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge £30 or more About US$ 37

    Letterpress poster of a poem

    Handprinted by Tilleys Letterpress in Ledbury, these stunning A4 sized posters will feature a poem by the poet of your choice.

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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge £60 or more About US$ 75

    2 VIP tickets and your name in programme

    Enjoy reserved VIP seating for two at the Festival event and an invitation to a reception with the poets after the event. Your name will feature in the Festival programme of which 18,000 copies are printed.

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge £200 or more About US$ 249

    Event sponsor

    See your name beside the Festival event you sponsor and a personal vote of thanks given at the beginning of the event. Includes a VIP ticket to the event and an invitation of a special reception after the event.

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Funding period

- (30 days)