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Poem at Golden Square, Birmingham

Contributed by Fonts In Use Staff on Dec 10th, 2019. Artwork published in
circa 2015
Poem at Golden Square, Birmingham 1
Source: Uploaded to Flickr by Birmingham Phil and tagged with “lucidasans”. License: All Rights Reserved.

Ian McMillan’s poem “Talking to Somebody about the Jewellery Quarter” was inspired by a visit to the neighbourhood in central Birmingham. In 2015, it was laser-cut into the seam that runs down the middle of the Golden Square on Warstone Lane, Birmingham. [The Hockley Flyer] The typeface in use in Lucida Sans, in roman and italic styles. The text reads:

Poem at Golden Square, Birmingham 2
Source: Birmingham & Midland. License: All Rights Reserved.

This place shines. It really shines.
Put that in your poem: it shines.
I’m scribbling as fast as I can,
but this place is many faceted.
Like a jewel, you mean?
Very clever. Don’t forget: it flippin’ shines.
It’s a kind of multi-faceted and gleaming and, yes, shining, asset.
To a city that’s already full to bursting with ideas and places.
Put this in your poem: it’s been here for two hundred years.
And have you mentioned The Big Peg?
Not yet but I will, I will, It was a place where jewellers with their gleaming faces?
Yes, if you like, gathered in this city … am I making myself clear?
It kind of moves, this place, it dances, it shimmies, it’s never still.
Shimmers. I like that. That’s really helpful, thankyou very much.
No, shimmies, mate; it dances, this place really moves and shines.
A bit like a jewel does; Thanks, thanks … It sparkles to your touch.
The Jewellery Quarter: craft and art and business meet. Sublime!

This piece of public art is part of the winning redevelopment proposal conceived by BPN Architects together with artist David Patten and Landscape Architects Capita.

Poem at Golden Square, Birmingham 3
Source: Jonathan Todd. License: All Rights Reserved.
Poem at Golden Square, Birmingham 4
Source: The Golden Square. License: All Rights Reserved.
Poem at Golden Square, Birmingham 5
Source: BPN Architects. License: All Rights Reserved.


  • Lucida Sans




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