What is poetry town?

Poetry Town began in 2015 with a weekly poem displayed in the window of Kirkdale Bookshop. Following overwhelmingly positive responses from customers we have decided to partner with Sydenham Arts to build on the idea and fill Sydenham with poetry­ not just by famous poets but by local people, both young and old.
My Final Gift to Life by Mahadai Das (1954-2003)
16th August 2017

Death would be my final gift to life.
Then: if I must die, I must.
Let the progeny of stars light my path to heaven.
‘Me’ will be one more star to fiercely light
the darkness of this land.
This body will bear the final calamity.
I will not be the fish caught
in his wily net.
I will not touch his rotting sceptre beaded
with murder,
nor eat my bread in a crumbling house overrun
with rats.
All over the land is heard the sound of women
weeping; the muffled voice
of children starving in the drought.
Who can inhale the stench of wickedness
or dwell whole in this leprous air?
In their sad coat of mange, dogs
hang their hungry heads.
The night is pierced by strange cries of woe,
but he who stirs their tears
in the cauldron of his vanity,
preparing for a feast and a night of loud song,
little knows he of we who
sharpen our spears in night’s
naked hours.
Death be my final gift to life.