R-Words: Infectious Poetry for Everyone 

As we navigate the pandemic we have all learned more medical terminology and nothing has been more important than the ‘R number’, explaining the rate of infection. Yet for writer and theatre director Ross Mackay, the R number is the inspiration behind his joyful mass participatory poetry project, R-Words. Ross commissioned twelve poets to write the first line of a poem. Each of these poetic launch pads were then sent out into the world, the poems growing and meanings morphing as more lines were added. Several of Edinburgh International Book Festival’s community writing groups worked on the R-Words. In this celebratory event, Ross discusses how the poems and the project have evolved and is joined by some of the R-Words participants to read their poetic creations. The R-Words poetry project is supported by the Tom McGrath Trust. This event is part of Citizen, our long-term creative programme working in partnership with organisations across Edinburgh and Musselburgh, offering local people a platform to explore identity, connection and place. Find out more about our Communities Programme: ontheroad.edbookfest.co.uk   

This is a live event, with an author Q&A. If buying a ticket to watch the event in-person, some of the participants of this event will be on stage, and some will take part remotely and you’ll see them on a large screen in the venue.


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