Mike Harding returns to The Portico Library to share his new poetry collection, Cosmos Mariner. In these poems, Mike draws on his own life-story and engages the reader and listener alike with his own inimitable talent. Join us for an evening of drinks, poetry and story-telling and be some of the first to hear these poems read in the author’s own voice.
The Cosmos Mariner was a real ship which caught the attention of American poet Conrad Aiken (1889 – 1973) and piqued his interest further when, checking the shipping news, he found its destination was listed as ‘unknown’. This trope reappears throughout the dark undertow of this collection which contains poems reflecting the distracted political times of today. There are longer poems too, such as King Cotton which looks at the links between Savannah, Georgia and Salford and the role of two Irish sisters in the Communist Manifesto. Another long poem A Murano Dagger explores notions of Catholic guilt in a young boys awakening sexuality. Against this, gentler poems such as The Cleggan Sonnets and The Curve of Love show Harding’s gift for capturing the fleeting moment of sight and sound and fixing them with a piercing simplicity that remains in the memory.
Mike Harding is one of the UK’s most beloved folk artists. He currently divides his time between his hugely popular internet folk show, reading his poetry at Literary Festivals and playing mandolin in the Giggleswick Ceilidh Band. He also keeps a close eye on the UK folk scene as the organiser of the Settle Folk Gathering, resident compere of the Costa del Folk festivals in Spain and Portugal, and as Joint Patron of the Beverley Folk Festival.
Tickets for this event are £10 and are available from The Portico Library booking page here.