Unwritten Poems invites poets of the Caribbean diaspora to explore new perspectives on the Caribbean experience during the First World War.
In 1915, Britain’s War Office agreed to accept the first volunteers from the West Indies. A total of 15,600 men eventually joined the British West Indian Regiment’s 11 battalions during the First World War. However, these soldiers’ stories remain largely unheard – and while the wealth of First World War poetry has had a profound impact on our understanding of the conflict, very little of it addresses the war’s impact on the Caribbean men who served, their families and communities, and the relationship between the Caribbean and the UK in the decades that followed. Unwritten Poems considers what it means to be cast into and then omitted from a story or events, left voiceless on a cultural landscape that treasures self-expression.
Co-commissioned by 14-18 NOW, BBC Contains Strong Language and the British Council