To prepare for the marathon I went to the Poetry Library on the South Bank. While browsing, choosing books randomly, a title caught my eye – Barbaric Vast and Wild: A Gathering of Outside and Subterranean Poetry from Origins to Present – and it fell open on a page that featured Library of Unwritten Books, a past art project of mine to collect possible but unrealised ideas for books. I had completely forgotten our inclusion by the editors and actually not seen the anthology due to it being an American title. After the shock of this chance encounter, came a realisation that this is exactly where I want to be, where I continue to draw inspiration from.
Barbaric Vast and Wild will be my companion on the half-marathon with its wonders and eccentricities such as The Kommunist Manifesto, written in West Riding of Yorkshire Dialect and Ode to the Pubic Hair by Gwerful Mechain, a 15th century Welsh poet.
Other preparations include cutting my fringe and cleaning my keyboard. I am wearing mostly white – not so practical for mudlarking, which may intersperse the writing.
Thanks to Jerome Rothenberg and John Bloomberg-Rissman for the inclusion and the inspiration.