Behind the scenes at a ship launch with Jan Winward

During our year of workshops in Middlesbrough, Jan has been a staunch participant with many interesting memories of her working life in the heyday of industrial Teesside. Never one to sit easy with the more poetic side of our writing exercises, Jan elected to film an interview for her digital story and tell us how … Continue reading Behind the scenes at a ship launch with Jan Winward

Ally’s Digital Stories

Today we're bringing you three short digital stories by Ally O'Neill, one of our workshop participants who has been learning how to combine her writing with filming and editing skills. She is deeply motivated by her love of Nature, and feels it is her mission to show people how connection with the earth can be … Continue reading Ally’s Digital Stories

Landlocked by Oz Hardwick

Landlocked The wood is polished walnut, warped by wind and waves, polished by sun, then jerry-rigged into place to make a built-in bunk, a low bench, a fold-down table, and bookshelves filled with paperbacks bought in newsagents and railway stations. A circular mirror reflects brass-rimmed portholes onto suburban shrubbery, and a gilded cage holds a … Continue reading Landlocked by Oz Hardwick

Mania from Caoin by Fran Lock

Our final poem chosen by Jane Burn for her 'Surviving Trauma' series is by Fran Lock.  Fran Lock is a sometime itinerant dog-whisperer and the author of seven poetry collections, most recently the pamphlet Raptures and Captures (Culture Matters, 2019) in collaboration with collage artist Steev Burgess, and Contains Mild Peril (Out-Spoken Press, 2019). She is an associate … Continue reading Mania from Caoin by Fran Lock

Everywhere is always full of holes by Denni Turp

Please welcome Denni to the blog, with a poem that speaks simply and eloquently of how normal is forever altered by trauma and loss. Everywhere is always full of holes The pier at Southwold with the water clock we watched so long to see the hour, the amusements, and the beach huts bright and neat … Continue reading Everywhere is always full of holes by Denni Turp

In Situ by Mel Eaton

Mel Eaton’s poem ‘In Situ’ is a poem of snapshots - of trying to make sense of being cast adrift in a world of medical jargon by becoming absorbed in watching raindrops on a window. It is a poem of sinking and sadness, of passing that endless time spent waiting. It is a poem of … Continue reading In Situ by Mel Eaton

Howls by Ann Cuthbert

In Ann Cuthbert’s poem ‘Howls’, we see how terror and tragedy can hide in the utter-ness of the everyday. It is not always loud or visible. This is the crumbling of an individual amongst the mundane and it is so much more effective for that. When she gets a chance to be alone, she howls. … Continue reading Howls by Ann Cuthbert

Some Of The Things I Was In 2019 by Sheila Jacob

"I chose this poem as a representation of immediate trauma - this experience is obviously very fresh in the mind of the poet and the way that she took refuge in nature to survive is nicely expressed. I especially liked the last stanza." - Jane Burn, guest editor Some Of The Things I Was In … Continue reading Some Of The Things I Was In 2019 by Sheila Jacob

The Tall God In The Wood by Susannah Violette

"Here is witchery and incantation, a poem of deep and darkness, legend and lore. I found so much to like in this earthy piece full of blood and guts." - Jane Burn, guest editor. The Tall God in the Wood the jack knife flicking of red worms the quickening soup of his mouth the way … Continue reading The Tall God In The Wood by Susannah Violette

Honour by Finola Scott

"Finola Scott’s poem ‘Honour’ brings us the shock of a younger person’s mortality. I feel very strongly the sense of the loss of someone else’s son through the conversation with her own child. Death touches every one of us and in many ways, we never expect it in those younger than us. The poem suggests … Continue reading Honour by Finola Scott

Question by Marg Roberts

Welcome to a series of weekly poems, selected by guest editor Jane Burn on the theme of Trauma. We start with Question by Marg Roberts. Jane says ‘Question’ is a snapshot into a surreal world. It has an uncomfortable air of other-worldly un-belonging, a suffocating sense of displacement. It speaks of a fate that so … Continue reading Question by Marg Roberts