Poet Simon Armitage has announced a plan to walk 260 miles along the English coast this summer. During this sojourn, Armitage will offer readings at pubs, schools and other venues in exchange for food and shelter, carrying no money and relying on his pen to sustain him.
"The whole idea is that of the barter. All I've got to offer is my work, and the reading of it," he told the Guardian. "Will that be enough for people to say I can stay at their home, or that they'll give me some sandwiches? I'm looking for anyone who can tolerate me . . ."
One hopes that the locals like poetry, because besides tolerance, Armitage is also looking for someone to "sherpa" his "unfashionable turquoise suitcase" between stops.
The poet, who was honored with a Commander of the British Empire (CBE) honor by Prince Charles in 2010, will leave from Minehead, a town on the coast of Somerset, on Aug. 29 and walk the distance to Land's End, a peninsula in Cornwall, where he plans to arrive on Sept. 17.