Beowulf Poetry and new ‘Beowulf By All’ community translation project

Hwaet everyone! It’s continued to be a fun summer on the Beowulf front here! In the last couple of weeks two of my Old English inspired poems have been published online. Many thanks to Ink, Sweat & Tears for publishing ‘Queen Wealhtheow: Cup-bearer’ (here), inspired by the Queen of Heorot in Beowulf, and Green Ink Poetry for including one of my modern riddles in their latest collection on the theme of ‘Pyres’ (here).

I am currently working on a poetry book inspired by Beowulf (and if you’d like to find out more, you can hear two of my poems on the dragon in my Great Writers Inspire podcast here and about Grendel’s Mother on the Beowulf episode of Backlisted here). It’s great to see a couple of the poems out in the world in magazines!

Last month, the wonderful community translation project Beowulf By All was published in book form by Arc Humanities Press. I contributed a dozen lines of translation to this project back in 2016 and it’s been fantastic to see the project come to fruition. The book is available in hardback, paperback, and as a free Open Access PDF download (here).

The brilliant thing about the publication itself is that it’s been set out as a workbook so each page opposite the translation is blank for your own work! Over two hundred different translators contributed to the project and the workbook format encourages readers to get involved too. (I was amused to read my own translation from 2016- I must admit that it isn’t especially stylish!!- and funnily enough I had recently translated part of the same passage for my poetry project and when I compared the two, I could definitely see how far I’d come in terms of my own translation skills!!)

I’ve added a specific page to my blog to collect up all my Beowulf work here (or top right!). I can’t wait to teach the poem again to my incoming Univ freshers! I already have lots of new ideas for how we might approach the poem this year!

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