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June’s Stories and Poems

Written by Lily Kehoe, 19th June 2023

June is Pride Month, and to mark the occasion this month’s Monthly Stories and Poems selection feature stories, extracts and poems by LGBTQIA+ authors.

Some of the texts included in June’s pack have been read in the Pride on the Page Shared Reading groups at the Mansion House at Calderstones (Wednesdays, 2.00pm – 3.30pm) and The Reader Bar and Restaurant, Mount Pleasant in Liverpool (Thursdays, 6.00pm). Both groups are open to drop-ins, if you’re keen to explore more stories and poems from the LGBTQIA+ experience.

We meet characters in this month’s stories and extracts who are experiencing moments of upheaval in their lives, through the ending of relationships as well as the formulation of new ones. For some, there is hope for something new to be discovered amidst moments of isolation. For others, there comes a time of exile as realisations come to light and difficult decisions must be made. Some choices seem to be made on the spur of the moment, with little reasoning behind them, but diving deeper beneath the surface reveals more to be found.

June’s stories and extracts are:

‘Staying Alive’ (extract from Upstream) by Mary Oliver

‘Brown Manila’ by Patrick Gale

‘Winter in the Air’ by Sylvia Townsend Warner

‘Dream House as Picaresque’ (extract from In the Dream House) by Carmen Maria Machado

‘The Swimmer’ by John Cheever

Relationships in their different forms continue to be a focus in June’s poetry selections, connecting people to family members, friends and lovers, as well as to nature, the wider world and the creatures within it. Many emotions emerge, with quietness and humour, and a feeling of close empathy between those who may seem to be very different from the outset.

‘A Spider’ by Colette Bryce

‘I Invite My Parents to a Dinner Party’ by Chen Chen

‘Teacher’ by Carol Ann Duffy

‘Of a Certain Friendship’ by Elsa Gidlow

‘Evergreen’ by Oliver Baez Bendorf

If you're a Reader Leader head to the Online Community Hub to download this month's selection.

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