IMLD 2023 – Words from the Childhood Home: A Chain Poem for International Mother Language Day

  • DATE

    20 February - 31 March 2023

  • TIME

    9:00 am to 5:00 pm

  • AGES

    All ages welcome


    Free (no booking required)


    Manchester Central Library
    St Peter's Square, Manchester, M2 5PD

Throughout the whole of February and March, Manchester City of Literature will have an exhibition available to celebrate International Mother Language Day, showcasing our international connection to the other UNESCO Cities of Literature and celebrating Manchester’s work at home.

The exhibition is FREE and is situated in the Manchester Histories Hub on the Lower Ground Floor of Manchester Central Library. Drop in any time during February and March to see these amazing exhibits.

There is a very special part of this exhibit created just for this IMLD

Words from the Childhood Home: A Chain Poem for International Mother Language Day 2023

From Monday 20th February

‘Words From the Childhood Home’ is a brand new, exciting, multilingual chain poem written by nominated poets representing UNESCO Cities of Literature to celebrate International Mother Language Day 2023. 

Manchester City of Literature invited our fellow UNESCO Cities of Literature to nominate a poet to respond to Anjum Malik, a Manchester Multilingual City Poet who writes in Urdu and English. 

Anjum started the chain poem with a four-line stanza on the theme of ‘Childhood Home’, reflecting on the power of family (and all the forms that this takes), native languages and memory. Each participating poet was tasked with producing a four-line stanza (in their mother tongue and with a translation into English) in response to the words of the poet that responded before them. Together, members of the Cities of Literature network (Bucheon, Dunedin, Edinburgh, Heidelberg, Lviv, Melbourne, Montevideo, Nottingham, Seattle, Tartu and Wonju) have produced a stunning poem which captures the rich nuances of international poets’ lived childhoods.  


We have created a page showing the public transport options for reaching each IMLD event venue and a page with various itineraries to help you turn IMLD into a day out.