I didn't post a poem on Wednesday of this week because I knew all my thoughts of poetry would be centred around reading my poem Set in Stone at Jupiter Artland last night, as part of their Inspired to Write competition.
When I found out I'd been shortlisted and invited to read my poem, I felt very honoured, if a little nervous. (A lot nervous...)
The event was held in the ballroom of Bonnington House, which is not usually open to visitors of the art park, but was made available by the owner, Nicky Wilson, who was also a judge in the competition alongside current Poet in Residence, Marjorie Lofti Gill.
Marjorie read some of the poems for shortlisted entrants who were unable to attend (some entries came from as far away as Egypt, Bolivia and America!), while refreshments of chocolate brownies and hot, spiced mulled wine were the perfect accompaniment to the evening.
My poem didn't 'win', but that in no way detracted from my excitement and enjoyment of the evening. In fact, some of the other poems that I heard really resonated with me and moved me and would have been deserving winners in my opinion, ahead of my own poem.
As Marjorie suggested last night, poetry is a very personal, intimate medium in which to convey thoughts, ideas and visions, and so we all left with our own 'winner', or few, in mind.
My poem was inspired by Laura Ford's Weeping Girls,which inspired a number of other entries too. Their haunting lair under the trees is just so evocative.
I particularly enjoyed seeing Nathan Coley's installation 'You Imagine What You Desire' lit up at night, which was in full view from the ballroom during the event.
I tried to get a photograph but only had my phone camera to work with so the illumination of all the bulbs resulted in a flood-lit blur against the black sky. It was just magical to enjoy it while I was there.
Nicky suggested some of the poems would be added to the Jupiter Artland website next to the images and descriptions of the works, and the recording of the evening is apparently going to be broadcast on Australian radio - how fabulous!
With it being a permanent art collection, the different tangents and interpretations of each piece that inspired a story or a poem have created a whole new buzz, and I can't wait to return and experience the wonder of it all again once it reopens in the Spring.