Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Tins: Memories From The Past

Mum's Birthday Tin

I made a tin as a special surprise present for my mum's 87th birthday. It includes a picture of the streets where we lived in the 50s and early 60s. The border inside is a map showing the town, Stourton (now completely demolished, church, schools and all). The inset picture is of mum and dad in their courting days, sitting on a bench in Stourton Park. 

Mum was only about 15 or 16 at the time. The streets we lived in were called 'The Idas' after the wife of the man who built them. We lived on Ida Terrace. The houses were constructed from the bricks and rubble left from slum clearances. People used to say that the houses had the fleas built into them! 

Here's a fuller map of the location on the back of the tin. I used a Pontefract Cakes tin because the road on the picture is Pontefract Road. 

Mum was delighted with the tin and likes to tell the stories behind it to all the people who visit her. Here's mum on her birthday surrounded by children, grandchildren and great grandchildren!

My poem 'Google Earth' recently published by The Letterpress Project mentions Ida Terrace. You can read it on the site here.

Here's an image of the poem as it was originally published in the magazine Mslexia.

More Writing Bits and Bobs

666 Horror Anthology

This arrived yesterday.  I have four stories in here: 'Loft Conversion' (competition second prize); 'The Pond' (shortlisted entry); 'Bad Vibrations at Stratisfest' and "a Perfect Match' (both longlisted entries). I've had fun reading the other pieces of flash fiction in this Fantastic Books Publishing anthology. Love the cover!

Here's a taster - the opening paragraph from 'A Perfect Match'.

A Happy Anniversary - Roald Dahl

This year is the centenary anniversary of the year of Roald Dahl's birth. On November 3rd, the Letterpress Project launched a book of writings by adults and children celebrating Dahl's work. 
The book Roald Dahl: The Man Who Believed in Magic is available from Letterpress in paperback form or in a free PDF. My poem 'The Whoopsy-whiffling World of Mr Dahl' is included. 

A Sad Event

On November 7th, we heard of the sad death of the wonderful poet and singer-songwriter, Leonard Cohen. On an online blog, I shared my memories of a long-ago meeting with him. This was published by the BBC in an online article, listing experiences of everyday folk meeting him. You can read the article here.

The article includes a picture of me in the location where I met him. I and my friends used to sunbathe on rocks on the Greek island of Hydra close by to his favourite sunny spot! I'm the shy one in the frock!

Wow - this is almost 40 years ago! When did I get old? Here's another pic - converted by Prisma (more on Prisma later). This shows me sailing to Hydra.