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June’s Monthly Stories and Poems

Written by Lily Kehoe, 20th June 2024

We’re going travelling through our literature choices in June’s Monthly Stories and Poems selection, as the theme is On our travels. Whether you have a holiday planned to somewhere distant, or you’re staying closer to the wonders of what’s near to home, we hope that this month’s stories, extracts and poems will be a good travel companion.

As part of this month’s pack, we’re journeying into some of the texts on the Reader Bookshelf for 2024-25. Going on our travels certainly sparks a lot of Wonder! There is an extract from Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift and two poems from the collection A Book of Luminous Things: An International Anthology, edited by Czeslaw Milosz, to enjoy.

We’re also including texts that have been tried and tested for readers who have English as a second or additional language.

Travel can take us to places that are new and previously unknown to us, and we can also travel where we are, to new places within ourselves and in our relationships to people that we know well, as well as those people we encounter for the first time. This month’s stories and extracts allow us to encounter all kinds of new experiences, some which feel unsettling, others that feel surprising – all which open up new worlds to those who find themselves within them.

June’s stories and extracts are:

A Voyage to Lilliput (extract from Gulliver’s Travels) by Jonathan Swift

Flight by Doris Lessing

In and Out the Houses by Elizabeth Taylor

In a Strange Land by Vicky Seal

The act of remembering (extract from Shifters) by Benedict Lombe

We embark on intrepid adventures in this month’s poetry choices, as we think about the reasons why we might decide to go on a long journey – is it for the places we’ll see, the people we might meet or the excitement of a new challenge? Other journeys we find ourselves on can appear much more simple, like going on a train ride or opening a door, but, as we discover as we do Shared Reading together, there is often a lot more going on beneath the surface.

They were pilgrims all (extract from The Canterbury Tales) by Geoffrey Chaucer, translated by Nevill Coghill

A Journey by Edward Field – from A Book of Luminous Things: An International Anthology

We Started Home, My Son & I by Jaan Kaplinski, translated with Sam Hamill & Riina Tamm – from A Book of Luminous Things: An International Anthology

The Door by Miroslav Holub

Miracles by Walt Whitman

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

We’re holding a Summer Wellbeing afternoon focused on Kathleen Jamie's Surfacing at the Mansion House home in Calderstones Park on Sunday 10 August which will give the chance to explore the collection as well as the wonders of Calderstones Park. Tickets for the afternoon can be booked here.

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