How do you Carry your Poem?

That’s what the Scottish Poetry Library wants to know. I’ll be sharing the poem that I carry in my wallet and the one I have pasted to my bathroom mirror in the coming weeks. The SPL’s Carry a Poem campaign is launched on National Poetry Day (Oct. 8th) but – you can get started now by sharing what poems you carry with you here and now.

I’ll be collecing your poems at the Stockbridge Library on 6 October at 15.00. Come along, listen to poems and swap tales.

Here‘s an example of what they are looking for.

And here’s what they say on their blog:

“We want to know the poem that means the most to you. We want the story that goes with it. And we want to know how you carry it.

We’re searching for people’s most treasured poems – and we need your help. Can you spare five minutes to let us know about a poem that means a lot to you? Maybe it’s one you learned at school, and still know by heart. It could be a poem that was recited at your wedding, or that one that offered some consolation. Perhaps it calls to mind a particular place that’s special to you, or just cheers you up every time you read it. You might love your poem for its comforting familiarity, or its ability to unsettle you; because it takes you right inside yourself, or right outside; because it captures the way you see things, or helps you see things afresh.

As part of our ‘Carry a Poem’ campaign, we’re collecting people’s tales about poems that matter to them. We’re encouraging everyone to think about their vital poems and the stories that lie behind them, and we’re keen to learn about the poem choices of people all over Scotland, from all walks of life.

You’ll be able to read and listen to some of these poems and stories on our website, and maybe even in a publication of some kind. Your choice will strike a chord with people you’ve never met – and maybe you’ll discover a new treasured poem to carry with you.

If you have a poem you carry with you, and you’d like to share, we’d love to hear it. You can either respond to this post, or email Here’s some guideline questions that might help:

  • Where and when did you first encounter the poem?
  • What did it mean to you then? How did it make you feel? Did it change you in any way?
  • What does it mean to you now?
  • Do you actually carry it? (e.g. in your head, on your ipod, in your wallet or diary, etc)
  • And would you be willing to take part in audio/video recording for our Carry a Poem site?

We’d be very glad to have your stories on board.”

So, what are you waiting for — let us know the poem you carry with you.