I’ve been referring to my recent endeavours as ‘picture poetry’, just to give this little sub-genre a handle to hold it with. I’m referring to the approach of first getting the image and only after that writing the poem. After it has spoken what it has to say.
My wife Leanne (who is a reliable guide in these matters, generally, suggested that picture poetry might be ok for Bears, but not so much for war. She has suggested ‘spoken image’ as an alternative, so I’m going with that, to see how well it fits over time.
At the same time, I’m interested in unpacking what I mean when I talk about allowing the image to do the talking. Just how does every picture get to tell a story?
Along these lines, I’m intending to put together a few videos – perhaps two from the somme, two from the Voices and two from the Bears books and discuss what elements ‘spoke’ to me. Along the line, I think I may deviate into a little discussion of the concept of empathy and how and why I think it matters for these undertakings. My hope is to be able to use these as tools for discussion with groups – school children or writing groups or . . . anyone who is interested, really.
That’s a long way of introducing the fact that I’ve done a first (experimental) video along these lines, and I’d be delighted to have you take a peek, if you wish.
This first video discusses the image of a young soldier (28 years old when he died), which prompted the poem for pride.
I’ll write this up for my author page at some point, but time is a bit short at the moment.