Stevie Smith's recent editor Dr Will May, University of Southampton discusses hull-born Stevie Smith's unique, whimsical and deeply human poetry.
Quirky, original and moving Stevie Smith is undergoing something of a critical revival fuelled by Will May's recent edition of her poems and drawings. Silly, childish dotty, batty droll or, as Seamus Heaney refered to her, a cross between Mary Poppins and Lawrence Olivier's Richard III, Will May offers new insights into Smith's work and explores her extraordinary contribution to English literature.
Born in Hull in 1902, Smith's father ran away to sea soon after she born. Her mother died when Smith was seventeen leaving her in the care of her indomitable 'Lion Aunt of Hull' who moved the family to Palmer's Green, London when Stevie was three. She began writing in the 1930s and her Novel on Yellow Paperaroused much curiosity and interest. Several poetry collections and two novels later she suffered a period of neglect and depression in the 1950s before a return to popularity in the 1960s as a woman poet and reciter of her own work.
Hull History centre holds several important items relating to Stevie Smith including the original typescript ofNovel on Yellow paper, a roller blind on which she inscribed a well-known stanza by the Emperor Hadrian and several drawings. Will May's talk celebrates this unusual and original poet in her hown town of Hull.
Free Admission - All Welcome
Doors will open at 11:30am.
Age restrictions: Attendants must be over 12 years old.