Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Dylan the literary cat...

My cat has taken to "helping" me with my current novel edit...

Christmas at Eden 2013

This year I was thrilled to be working with Charlestown school near St Austell. We had a great tea party, in which our guests brought fabulous old photo albums and toys with them. We made decorations, based on this idea of a box or album of treasured memories. Thanks to the teachers and pupils at Charlestown school for all their hard work and the lovely Robbie at The Eden Project for all his help.

Thursday, 10 October 2013

The Broadsheet.

I should have posted this earlier as the launch was last week as part of the Exeter Poetry Festival, but I was thrilled that my poem "Suspension" was chosen to be in the launch of The Broadsheet, a new poetry magazine and the brainchild of Simon Williams - currently the Bard of Exeter! I sadly had to miss the launch as I was at a conference as part of the Bath Children's Lit Fest, but I would encourage you to investigate. If you want to buy a copy I would get in contact with Simon via his website http://simonwilliamspoet.moonfruit.com
I managed to find a photo of the launch I missed!

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

My friendly neighbourhood sea mist...

Yes my local view is somewhat pretty, but it's rare I have to stop the car on my local cliffs to take a photo. This was Sunday late afternoon as the evening sea mist was descending - not long after, you could see it moving along the village streets like smoke... The sea and weather being alive often come up in my children's workshops, and this feels pretty much like proof...

Sunday, 1 September 2013

Friday, 26 July 2013

Monday, 22 July 2013

The Story Republic

As mentioned in the previous post I have recently been thrilled to be working with KEAP (Kernow Education Arts Partnership) on the Arts Council funded project The Story Republic. This has seen me work in nine schools across Cornwall, and has involved many more schools than this and lots of other writers and artists. This has led to a wonderful body of work being created by children and teenagers inspired by Cornwall and the poetry of Charles Causley. This work has recently been displayed in a travelling exhibition, which this week will come to The Exchange gallery in Penzance. It will open on the 24th, which is this Wednesday. There is a website for the project, which is now up and running, and there is a library where you can upload your work. Do visit it at www.thestoryrepublic.co.uk

It has been a wonderful project and it feels quite strange that my work in schools for this part of it is over! But here are some photos of the work I created with Constantine Primary School. They are banners showing maps of imaginary versions of Constantine, including pockets containing miniature books of the children's writing. I would also encourage you to watch the video of the work created by Mousehole school in my previous post. There was so much more as well! If you are in Penzance this week do pop along to The Exchange and check it out.

Thursday, 18 July 2013

Neverending Chimes - Mousehole School

I was lucky recently to spend a day with Class 4 at Mousehole school near Penzance as part of The Story Republic project I have been working on with KEAP. We spent the morning exploring the village and gathering ideas for interesting poetic descriptions, then in the afternoon we wrote a group poem using them. The children were originally keen to write their own Mousehole version of "As I go down Zig Zag" by Charles Causley, but it ended up being much more dreamy and strange in a wonderful way. The children then worked with artist Jonathan Hayter to create an animation using the poem they created with me as the soundtrack. And now here it is!

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Penair Lit Fest this weekend

I will be running a site-specific poetry creating workshop this Saturday at the Penair Literary and Arts Festival, St Clement, Truro - it starts at 11 and is aimed roughly at 9-14 year olds though other ages I'm sure are welcome. So yes do come along and join in if you fancy. I am also giving a reading of my work...

Sunday, 7 July 2013

Monorail of the day!

One of my big fixations that has bizarrely not made much of an appearance on this blog is monorails, (I am also very fond of chair lifts and funicular railways). So to start here is one of my favourites - the suspension monorail in Wuppertal, Germany. Opening in 1901 it's the oldest of its kind. And even an elephant fell out of it in 1950 - though frankly with only minor injuries. I wish all cities were traversed in this way...

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Belgrade Poetry Festival

I just got back from reading at the Belgrade poetry festival. It was really great and I met some lovely people - poets and translators. Me and Ana did a live performance of part three of The City and I also read some of my other poems more informally in a cafe. There was much beer and laughter. Here is a link to the programme where you can read a bit of me and Ana's work in Serbian and see the other poets... http://trgnisepoezija.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/alis-medikot-ana-seferovic.html

Friday, 26 April 2013

The urban swans are nesting again...

I really am weirdly fond of Plymouth...

Monday, 15 April 2013

Vintage Textron Ads

When I went to the Museum of Witchcraft in Boscastle last week to write a review for museeme, one of my favourite unexpected discoveries was a vintage advert for Textron fabrics which consisted of two girls on broomsticks wearing Textron blouses, their bottom halves made of grass and reeds like some strange marsh mermaids. I have searched and searched for that image and sadly failed, but in the meantime found so many amazing vintage ads for Textron (the tree stove one I actually own a print of not realising what is was for!) that I felt I had to share some here.

Thursday, 11 April 2013

The oldest known image of Lisbon...

I've become a bit obsessed with going to Lisbon recently. Here's the apparently earliest known image of said beautiful city from the Crónica de Dom Afonso Henriques by Duarte Galvão of 1500-1510.

Thursday, 4 April 2013


My friend Ryan Norris, who did the great music for part three of me and Ana's The City poem has a new video "Sideman" under his Coupler moniker. You can watch it here

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Calling all collectors!

Do you, or does someone you know, have a collection - it doesn't matter how big or small or esoteric? Do you have a space or selection of objects that is like your own miniature museum in a corner of your house? A windowsill? A cabinet of curiosities? Have you organised an exhibition in a non-traditional space? Do you have an interesting way of curating the world around you? If so I would love to hear from you for my other blog museeme, which can be found here. So please message me!

Friday, 22 February 2013

Poetry Pasties

I was really thrilled to be working for a couple of days in Veryan School on the Roseland peninsula last week, for the local Under Our Feet creative project in schools. The first morning was spent cooking and we made fantastical pasty creatures with wings and horns and tails. We spent the afternoon then working on the characters of our creatures and creating stories. Day two was spent working on atmosphere and poetry (including changing how one feels in a room by finding a special place - including the bin it would seem!), culminating in a craft afternoon where we made what can only be described as Dada poetry pasties - cardboard pasty type objects filled with lines from the children's earlier poems and descriptive work like ingredients to be shaken up to make a new recipe for a poem each time. Tristan Tzara would be proud...!

Monday, 18 February 2013

Museeme - my new blog!

Today I have launched my new project - museeme, a celebration of stuff in a virtual world - a blog which seeks to explore the definition of what a museum and curation can be, all the strange personal and public museums, archives and collections of the world, and the hidden stories and meanings behind groups of objects, places and art works. Everybody is welcome to submit ideas for featured collections, reviews, articles etc, so do check it out at http://museeme.blogspot.co.uk, and please list it in your links if you like it.

Saturday, 26 January 2013

Dragon Glacier

In the 18th and 19th centuries when the alps and mountains in general were not seen so much as a place to visit as to fear, there were many caricatures done, illustrating glaciers for example as dragons. Here's a good one, though sadly I'm not sure who it's by... But I do like the idea of ice dragons slowly rumbling down the mountains like a slow ice slick...