John Hegley’s Animal Alphaboat stops off in Hackney for World Poetry Day

Children’s poet John Hegley performed his Animal Alphaboat at Hackney Central library yesterday (Tuesday 22 March) in celebration of World Poetry Day (Monday 21 March).

Over 70 children and their parents packed in to the council’s library to join in the silliness and inventive wordplay experience through John Hegley s unique approach to poetry dance and song. Local families were entertained with an hour of song, belonging and unicorn-creation with a plain handkerchief. There were no alligators in sight but there were some parrots!

Local mother Sarah Girvan said: “John Hegley is awesome! We love the library – loads of great entertainment, free computer services and loads of brilliant books, of course!”

Jes Benstock’s son Jacob read out the Dragon Poem which had been written by the Hackney Central Chatterbooks Group. He said: “Great to see a legend like John Hegley coming to our local library. It’s a fantastic resource here – the librarians have really encouraged my son to read and enjoy books. Events like the Boys Book Club and performances like today’s bring the kids closer to literature in a thoroughly enjoyable way.”

Hackney Council s Cabinet Member for Community Services, Councillor Jonathan McShane said: ““Events like this one with renowned poet John Hegley is just an example of what your local library can offer you. As well as books you can use the internet and it’s free. If you need information about your local area or want a place to study then your library is the place to go. Why not join your local library and start taking advantage of what s on offer?"

World Poetry Day is a time to appreciate and support poets and poetry around the world. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s (UNESCO s) first World Poetry Day was held on March 21, 2000.