Today, on National Poetry Day 2018, a ceremony took place to mark the tenth anniversary of the dedication of St Andrew Square as Edinburgh’s poetry garden, a city centre space for public enjoyment and quiet reflection.
To mark the occasion Alan Spence, Edinburgh’s fifth Makar, led a quiet celebration round the Poetry Tree, a tree grown from seed collected in the mountains of Japan, which was donated by the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh in an international act of friendship after the 2011 earthquake in Japan. The tree was planted by RBGE staff with official recognition of the Japanese consul in July 2011. A Poetry Tree plaque was planted on National Poetry Day 2018 bearing a haiku written by Alan in the presence of three of the previous four makars (pictured above).
The day before we spoke to a group of people involved in the dedication – Alan Spence, Fay Young and David Knott of the RGBE – to discuss the Poetry Tree and the Edinburgh Makar’s plans for future projects involving Edinburgh’s green space.
You can listen to the mini-podcast, which includes Spence reading a specially-written haiku, below<