a new artwork, some poems popping up & The Unspeakable Secrets of the Aro Valley.

Most of my residency money went on dull, quotidian things (living!) but I did want to buy a small piece of art as a momento of the experience. Excuse the truly awful photograph – it’s hard to photograph shiny glass, but here is what I chose. (Trust me, it looks much lovelier in real life.) It’s by English artist Valerie McConachy and I got it from a great local shop called Urban Charm.


I liked the mix of splashy, loose paint at the bottom (and the colours) coupled with the wit and nostalgia of the print. Also, I think it works as a visual metaphor for writing. The tiny man trying to plant the huge, beautiful but ungainly flower…

In other news, Tim Jones chose my poem ‘Oh Dirty River’ for the Tuesday poem a couple of weeks back. READ IT HERE. I got some really interesting comments on the poem. It seems to have struck a chord with people who grew up in similar semi-rural towns to me.

Megan Young gave my poem Garlic Planting Time another outing on her lovely poetry and photography blog, Stretching Light. READ IT HERE. 

& I wrote a review of Danyl MacLachlan’s ‘The Unspeakable Secrets of the Aro Valley’ for Swampthing Magazine’s new Friday Book Club. READ IT HERE – it’s the second review in, click the arrow at the bottom right.

I’m currently reviewing a happy heap of other books for Swampthing which will appear over the coming weeks, too. I do love book reviewing. If anyone wants books reviewed for their print or online publication, do get in touch! (However, I have enough voluntary reviewing work and am currently after paid opportunities only.)

If you would like to hear my writing news in a more timely fashion via Facebook, I have a writer page HERE. (You don’t have to be my FB friend to follow it.)

Have a lovely day!


2 thoughts on “a new artwork, some poems popping up & The Unspeakable Secrets of the Aro Valley.

  1. What a good idea! You’ll look at that artwork forever now, and remember your (first) residency. I don’t always leave a comment on your posts, but I always love them.


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