Tuesday, May 17

Jo Shapcott on why science matters to poetry

"Anyone who is curious, and I hope most poets are, will have that hungry attitude - the one that says there is nothing that is not interesting, and almost nothing not worth celebrating. I don't think poets have to understand science but I'd be amazed if their curiosity didn't lead them into wanting to know. I'm actually against writing about science - for the poet it's more that anything urgent within the consciousness will emerge in poems. Because of what the contemporary human knows about herself, inside and out, and knows about the Earth - and because of what humans do it - it would be amazing if some of these urgent nudgings didn't relate to science."

Image by Science Museum London

Jo Shapcott is an English poet.  Her most recent book, Of Mutability (2010), won the Costa Book Award.
Source: Centre for Poetry and Science, University of Liverpool