Pelican Project Poetry Pin in Exeter

Working with the Pelican Group in Exeter geotagging poetry across Exeter city with the https;// channel commissioned through Daisi – Devon Arts and the Exeter Reboot project.

Mid May saw a great little workshop about words in Exeter with the Pelican Group, a local company working with under privileged and mixed abilities young residents. The workshop began with a session showing how Poetry Pin works, which is very simple and before I’d managed to get around the whole group to log on, one pupil had already posted a poem! We then moved inside to transition to the next phase, but I found that certain individuals changed disposition completely, which I put down to the ‘classroom syndrome’, with too many years of institutional lecturing and exclusion. If I were to run the same workshop again, then I would deliver as much as possible outside, and since the weather was so excellent there was no reason not to really.

After some word generation and storytelling with my shells, we then broke for lunch and re convened on the Cathedral Green. It was crazy hot and felt more like a festival site than the regular city centre. The final job of the day was to write 360° poems responding to the surroundings, each pupil threw some words together on the cards I’d provided, which they then transcribed and geotagged through

Footy Skills
Selfie stills
Hundreds of Tesco meal deals
Mums and dads
Nans and grans
College kids making weekend plans

by Charlie

Cathedral green on its brightest day,
All the bright colours for the gay pride parade,
The old Tudor house,
Beams and stone,
Who once lived there?
We will never know,
Thousands of years know as the capital
Poems all around,
But yet to find
How long it’ll take
For the city to come alive.

by Conor


All in all, it was a great session, very simple but effect and interesting for the pupils to actively use their mobiles as part of the session. Their words are now tethered across Exeter Cathedral green and around Exeter Central library, so if you are in the city then hunt them out and add your own 360° poem.