Poetopography is the study of poets and poetry in time/space, in psychohistory/psychogeography.
It is interested in things such as knowing that the only page handwritten by Shakespeare thought to be extant is the ‘Hand D’ page on display at the British Musuem. It is from the collaborative play called Sir Thomas More, and Shakespeare’s contribution was an impassioned speech by Sir Thomas on the theme of ‘pity the poor immigrant’.
Poetotopgraphy is also interested in finding out about Shakespeare’s known lodging in the City at the beginning of the Jacobean era in 1603. It’s recorded that he lived in the now vanished Silver Street. An underground car-park is almost exactly where his house would have stood. It’s close to this section of London Wall.
The author Charles Nicholl is a brilliant researcher who has shed light on all this, an honorary poetopographer for sure.
For years I have been a psychogeographical poet and Londonist. It’s great stuff even if it leads some to snideness. As there have been schisms to mythogeography, deep topography, and even psychogeology, I’ve decided to name my own approach poetopography and work with that. I’d never been that interested in what every Tom, Dick and Harry was upto. Poetry and poets was the obsession.
The banner image is by the artist-anarchist Mike Lesser and features the ghostly heads of Shakespeare, Blake, Rimbaud, and Yeats.