To help promote LGBT poetry, Camden LGBT Forum have created the post of First LGBT Poet Laureate.
The recipient of the title “First LGBT Poet Laureate” which will be formally announced during LGBT History Month in February is Trudy Howson.
This inaugural post was devised by Camden LGBT Forum to promote LGBT poetry in London and the UK. Camden LGBT Forum is a charity that supports local LGBT residents.
A spokesperson for the Forum, said: “The Arts is a powerful tool we use to celebrate diversity and promote cohesion amongst our communities. During the last six years our INCITE Poetry event has been paving the way for LGBT talent to foster positive change through spoken and written word.”
The term of the appointment is for three years. During this period Trudy will be expected to.
♦ Write poems for nationally and internationally recognised LGBT days and events.
♦ Write, perform and promote poetry that reflects and celebrates the very diverse experience of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans people within our society
♦ Raise the profile and accessibility of LGBT poetry
The LGBT Poet Laureate’s poetry will:
♦ Portray the lives and experiences of the LGBT community.
♦ Celebrate our style and culture.
♦ Support LGBT people who feel isolated and marginalized within our society
♦ Encourage within our community a sense of self-respect and pride
♦ Raise a greater public awareness of the LGBT community
♦ Encourage LGBT people of all ages, nationalities and types, to read, write, watch and listen to poetry.
In her poetry, ex actress and ex long-haul traveller Trudy Howson’s explores landscapes, internal and external and writes about the landscape of the LGBT community with warmth and humour. Her work is topical, inspirational and she is currently developing a living interactive form of poetry.
Trudy has performed her poetry in pubs, clubs, theatres, fields and forests. On boats, buses, local and national radio and TV and has performed extensively in India, South East Asia and Burma.
Her poetry has been published in The Telegraph, The Times, and The London Review, as well as numerous magazines and online publications. She wrote a living-interactive poem for The London Olympics called “Going for Gold” which the BBC filmed and used as a trailer in the run up to the Games
For the last 3 years Trudy has been hosting INCITE@The Phoenix, a monthly LGBT poetry event in an iconic theatrical venue in the West End where she will be making the official announcement about her new role on Monday, February 15.
Trudy said: I’m thrilled and honoured to be offered this innovative role. I’m also aware of the responsibility of representing a community as diverse as ours is, but I’m determined to set a high standard for those who come after me. Inclusion is a key issue, I want to really reach out to all our community. I believe poetry can bring the best out of us.
“I’m sure many of you already know my work on the LGBT circuit. Probably some of you have commissioned me in the past to write a poem for your specific event. I thank you for your support over the years. I suppose I’m one of those overnight successes that has taken years to get here!”
To contact the Camden LGBT Forum, email: mailto:camdenlgbtforum.org.uk
Or telephone: 020 7388 5720
A Poem for International Coming Out Day
Coming Out Kiss
It was that kiss that did it.
Blew away my misconceptions about lads,
About fancying them that is…
About wanting to be their ‘girlfriend’.
Tracey was trouble with a capital T.
Tall tempestuous, a truant and a tease.
She cut a swathe through all the boys,
Discarded them like broken toys.
I was twelve, she was sixteen…
And a walking, talking living dream.
I was bored with secondary school,
I preferred fighting and playing the fool.
On that day she noticed me,
Said she’d teach me how to be
A femme fatale like she was.
The first lesson was kissing…
For more information about First LGBT Poet Laureate, click here: