Monday's Shindig at The Looking Glass in Leicester was another good night - attendance might have been slightly down on the first one, but the universities are still on holiday, I think, so that didn't help.
Simon Turner overcame a head-cold that threatened to turn his set into a Tunes advert ("a first-class return to Dottingham" - anyone remember that?) to give a taste of his second collection, Difficult Second Album, which should be out next week. It sounds as if it will venture into more political territory than his debut, although it retains the wonderful rhythms and great feel for urban pastoral that made that book such a pleasure.
Myra Connell's reading was terrific, too. Her John the Baptist poem (I haven't got From The Boat to hand just now, so can't check the actual title) really came to life, and made me re-read it several times when I got home. I've already talked at length about her chapbook, and hearing her read from it just reinforced the big impression it's already made.
Finally, Lydia Towsey needs no introduction in Leicester (and not just because of her wonderfully pink hair), and she was as good as always. I especially like her African poem - it swoops from funny to serious and back again more than once. It was particularly nice that she was able to read a poem actually written in The Looking Glass, too.
In between times, there were some excellent open mic readers, too. Good to catch up with Malc Dewhirst, the man behind the Polesworth Poets Trail, who read well.
Plans are already in hand for the next Shindig, on June 14th - it's looking like a great line-up of George Ttoouli, Jacqui Rowe and Deborah Tyler-Bennett.