Long-time Hackney resident Tim Wells is heading up a project to document the ranting poetry movement of the 1980s. This was poetry done by working class people inspired by the DIY snottiness of punk.
His Stand Up And Spit blog is a great collection of documentation of ranting poetry, including 1980s fanzines and music press excerpts and some current interviews and reminiscences from former ranters (and some that never stopped).
Also worth checking out is this piece by another Hackney resident, Janine Booth, on her time as a ranting poet, and why she gave it up to become a trade union activist. She has recently returned to poetry though, and has published an anthology called “Mostly Hating Tories”.
Stand Up And Spit events/gigs are happening in London too:
Tim’s own anthology “Rougher Yet” includes a number of poems about growing up in Hackney and how the borough is changing…