Last night saw the first in Edge Hill’s series of Inaugural Lectures: Professor Robert Sheppard exploring ‘Poetics as Conjecture and Provocation’. It was a magnificent performance (and to think earlier in the day we were discussing whether Robert might need a microphone.) I never know what to expect from the inaugural lecture as a genre of performance – celebration of a point reached in a career, space to range across areas of expertise, a certain license to indulge? In a way this one encompassed all three – unravelling and reweaving the genre as it went long – and with actual poems too.
I’ve just learned Robert is from Southwick, directly across the East/West border (in Sussex) from where I was raised (Portslade.) That explains everything… I’ll be on the lookout for those telltale matter/anti-matter differences between us from now on.