Introducing the Tawe Mega Poem

As part of Art Across The City 2014, we have commissioned three artists and three writers for the Dylan Thomas 100 centenary celebrations, all promoting contributions to the Tawe Mega Poem.

New commissions from Jeremy Deller, Jon Burgerman and Ultimate Holding Company will be difficult to miss across Swansea. Deller tells us More Poetry Is Needed in his large scale mural; Bob & Roberta Smith’s Art Makes Children Powerful is a bold call to arms emblazoned along Oystermouth Road; Ultimate Holding Company have created four monolthic heads from 3D scans of locals frequenting the Bus Station.

Writer Niall Griffiths has created stories for each of the heads; Rachel Trezise has written micro-fictions based on conversations in Swansea pubs and poet Rhian Edwards will be leading workshops and writing the opening lines of the Tawe Mega Poem.

These works, although individual in their own right, are also a way of provoking contributions to the Tawe Mega Poem, an online, ongoing collaborative poem where everybody is invited to contribute a line. Each contributor responds to the previous line. Rhian Edwards will be leading schools workshops and two further workshops at Swansea Museum to initially promote the poem, with the artworks in Art Across The City further inspiring people. An online campaign will further promote the Tawe Mega Poem.

Rhian Edwards has written the opening lines are a poetic response to Swansea, echoing Dylan Thomas himself:

Baptised by Vikings and anchored like Rome
in a brine basin of seven snapdragon hills,
spills this marble town and city of laughter.
A pother of ship sails, a smelting brume,
Copperopolis, coal harbour, metal morphosis
to fire-clay, alum, tin-plate and porcelain.
To the coffee-ringed poems in the ruins
and scrawling ashes of the Kardomah Cafe.

People will be able to contribute their own lines to the Tawe Mega Poem when it is launched on the Art Across The City website on 13th March 2014. We are looking from participants from all over the world, from all ages and abilities. You will be able to write a line of up to 140 characters before posting online in our dedicated webpage, built and designed by SilvaBokis.

We want the Tawe Mega Poem to spread as far as possible, to the widest and most diverse audience possible.

We look forward to your poetry!