June 2008

Next Paston workshop

Posted by Tim Lenton on 27 June 2008 at 18:07 in Journal

Tags: paston verses Workshop

Balanced like light on fields of barley View image

The Paston workshop this Sunday (June 29) will be led by Caroline Gilfillan and Annette Rolston, and will probably follow a similar pattern to the last one. Caroline says: "We'll all work together for a short time, and then the artists will work with Annette, and the writers with me – though I must stress that you can move between writing and visual arts and vice versa. I know that several of you are interested in both, and that's fine.

"In the writing section of the workshop, we'll spend some time on new material – we have two new writers joining us – and devote some time to sharing and workshopping poems you've already written. Some of these will have been circulated already, but please bring copies of up to three poems – eight copies of each should be more than enough. Getting feedback on your work and having it heard can be such an exciting, instructive experience, so do bring work with you. Plus, hearing the work written by others is always interesting and inspirational.

"This part of the workshop might also help you decide which poems you might want to put into the book, too – if you need to choose. I'll prepare some activities both around writing in a specific form (probably the sonnet) and writing in free verse. As before, we'll use specific extracts from the Paston Letters as source material."

Here is an example of a ghazal written by Caroline at a previous workshop:

St Margaret’s Church, Paston

The wind sighs through the pale horse chestnut flowers
And ivy spills like water over elderflowers.

A spider’s web is glued from pew to pew,
Its maker crouching in the carved wood flower.

Outside I gather speedwell, borage and cranesbill
untended beside the dipping heads of gilt rose flowers.

Beneath the stinging locks of nettles, a tombstone warms my hand.
And Margaret gives thanks for every leaf and flower.

And here is a verse from Tim Lenton, also based on the Letters and written at a workshop:


I fear that Partridge may attack
He really has no business here
My husband must come home and drive him back

A thousand angry men are drawing near
And he is miles away in London town
While I am pregnant, lost in fear

I'll write and tell him to come down
He must bring crossbow, spear and shield
And I will wear my broadcloth gown

He'll slaughter Partridge in the field
The thousand men are bound to yield

The photograph at the top of of this section is of St Margaret's Church, Paston, from the path to the cliffs. It shows how unusual it is in being situated in a hollow, whereas most Norfolk churches are at high points. The picture was taken by Tim Lenton, who added this verse to it:

Balanced like light on fields of barley
Margaret the sleeper
slips into the background
becomes part of the picture
seen from the sea

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More pictures from Paston

Posted by Tim Lenton on 1 June 2008 at 17:44 in Journal

Tags: annette caroline lucy paston rupert Workshop

In the swing of creation View image Artists at work View image Workshop leader Caroline in the garden View image Poetic inspiration View image Working on an image View image Project leader Lucy Care View image Workshop leader Rupert at the press View image

A selection of photographs taken at the two most recent workshops at The Barn, Dayspring. At the first, on May 11, Annette Rolston was leading with Rupert Mallin; at the second, on May 31, she was in charge of the artists while Caroline Gilfillan was with the writers. Some high quality work is being produced, and the prospects for the planned book and exhibition are excellent. However, a great deal remains to be done.

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