Mapping Memories, Over the Fields, on the Isle of Wight

Over the Fields poetry map

I am currently preparing for a talk I will be giving this Thursday, 22nd June at Quay Arts, the Isle of Wight’s leading art gallery and venue for live events.  I was thrilled to be invited to speak about my poetry map, Over the Fields, as part of the events and activities taking place around Richard Long’s show, The Isle of Wight as Six Walks, 8th April – 1st July.

Photograph by Bill Mudge

I will be talking about how and why I came to make the map. Regular readers of my (somewhat irregular) blog will know that this was a process of going for walks with my Dad and my son, over 18 months, beginning in January 2014, and ending in August 2015. The map was self-published after being beautifully designed by my best mate, and printed and folded into a pocket-sized A6 fold out full colour working map, with poems on one side and photos and map on the other.

Since then the map and I have been on quite a journey, and I have been able to achieve some of the aims I had for it, and other things have happened which were unexpected but equally wonderful.

Running Through Six Acre Meadow

I will talk about this tiny piece of greenbelt, and the impact it continues to have on my family. I hope you can join me for a walk through the poems and a chance to think about memory, family and place. And walking itself, and why it continues to inspire creativity.

Information and booking here.

Facebook event here.

Thursday 22nd June, 7.30pm – 9.00pm £7

Quay Arts, 15 Sea Street, Newport Harbour, Isle of Wight PO30 5BD

 

 

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#Grenfell survivor ‘only passed 8 people on stairs all the way from upper floor’

#Grenfell survivor ‘only passed 8 people on stairs all the way from upper floor’

I am re-blogging this because people need to be heard. The situation is untenable and people are being treated appallingly by the council and the state This HAS TO CHANGE. My heart goes out to everyone affected. The truth must be told.

The SKWAWKBOX

The SKWAWKBOX had a long and traumatic conversation this evening with a businesswoman based near Grenfell Tower who has friends and employees affected by the terrible fire and has been working to provide support and shelter to them and others.

The woman, who wanted her information to be told but asked not to be identified, told this blog about families who survived and those that didn’t, about the contribution of police and council staff or the lack of it – and about fears that the real death toll could be even higher than the 150-200 that music stars Lily Allen and Saskilla told reporters about.

Her own words, unadorned apart from the removal of names and floor numbers, follow:

There are two children that we know really well who were in the block. One family got out, the father was able to shield their little girl and thank God…

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Austerity by Lucy Furlong

On this day when apparently ‘Austerity’ is over, it seems a good time to revisit this poem, published this time last year.
Now hope is round the corner… for the many.

I am not a silent poet

in each escape from the latest cut
there is no trusty hat pulled out
from a closing tomb or laser
forcefield , avalanche, landslide

each escape is a letting go
of a dream, a job, a holiday, a meal,
a home, an ambition, an expectation,
a future, security, equality, a chance

is being homeless-at-home in middle age
a single parent with the rug pulled out
in debt, ignored, lonely, anxious, desperate
the sheets hanging out of the window

unknotted and falling, no one to catch us
when we

fall

no
safety
net
left

a harder nudge each few months
while I Brace! Brace! for both of us

hope against hope the push from
behind is pushed out of office and

wall
a
against
^ up ^

before there is nothing left to cut

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this foot learned

this moment is a foot fall of bruises

twisted ambition faltering goodwill

disappointed     pain missed       steps

this moment      is resting              resting

recovering returning walking      turned

degrees-different path // this foot  learned

this moment is still the journey

Kingston’s Apple Story, By A Michelson’s Seedling

seethingography

*Launching today!*

Alison Fure’sKingston’s Apple Story, By A Michelson’s Seedling,is the third chapbook to be published on the Seethingography imprint of Sampson Low Ltd. This colourful A6 pamphlet tells the story of Kingston’s orchards and apple growing heritage across 16 pages, squeezing in juicy chunks of local history, and the importance of orchards as places sustaining an amazing amount of wild life and rich biodiversity. You will also find out about some of the fascinating people in the Borough who remember, for example, what life was like as a child in Hook when it was full of orchards!

“Behind the bakery was an orchard from which I was chased many a time by the irate owner, named by us as ‘old man Phipps…We rarely did any scrumping in the orchard, just used it for Cowboys and Indians and tree climbing.” (J. Mutimer, Hook resident, 1920s)

It features…

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David Russamano Launches his first Poetry Collection!

I will be hosting David’s launch and reading from my new chapbook, Villiers Path: Scalloped Time, which is published by Sampson Low Ltd- more about that coming soon!

seethingography

Come along and enjoy poems and drinks in the cellar venue of the historic Flying Horse pub – apparently, the last on Oxford Street, on Saturday May 20th! David Russamano, who has graced Seething Writers meet ups on a number of occasions, launches his first chapbook, (Reasons for) Moving, and we would love you to come and join us to celebrate!

(Reasons for) Moving is published by Structo publishers (read what they say about it here), the wonderful team who publish the Structo literary magazine, which, if you haven’t read it, is really a beautifully produced journal of writing worth seeking out.

What people have said about (Reasons for) Moving:

This is an impressive and enjoyable collection of poems. Russomano deserves readers.

— Wendy Cope

Russomano is an intriguing new poet I expect big things from, based on the poems here, which seem intelligently poised between American and…

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Blossom to Fruit Writing Workshop at Kingston Environment Centre, 4th March 2017

apple-day-image

As part of Apple Day at Kingston Environment Centre, on Saturday 4th March, I will be doing this!

Blossom to Fruit: A writing workshop to explore our relationship with fruit and trees, their histories and our memories…

Write about your favourite pear tree, your grandma’s apple pie, be inspired by our local history of orchards and fruit-growing; is there a particular variety of apple you would like to pay homage to? We will explore all these possibilities and more at the start of Kingston Environment Centre’s Apple Day.

£10 per place-  this will be a donation towards raising funds for a leaflet about the Borough’s Apple Story. More about Alison’s fundraising here. This is an important part of our local heritage and I am hoping we can help Alison achieve her aim by having fun writing about our relationships with fruit and trees!

12 places available- please book in advance to secure your place!

Lucy 07859997617 or Alison 07867507086

Time: 10.30-12 midday

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this is a picture of my Dad telling me stories about crab apples…

 

Please come! This will be the start of a wonderful day of apple and orchard related talks and activities.

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