Wednesday, 31 January 2018

Shopping Trip and News

A little sketch.

I have now, hopefully, re-labelled all my poems on this blog to appear under the 'Poem' tag. Further housekeeping will occur over the next week or so and some old posts may disappear. I may also consolidate some things into a separate web page.

A new story series will be posted imminently!

Tuesday, 30 January 2018

Mr Long Nose


Approaching the cafe: a tall, slow amble.
Door opens and enters.
Looks around.

The bin looks tempting.
A quick rummage,
Nothing of interest there.

Some loose change found in pocket
A cup of tea ordered.
Sits, gazing out the window.
Worn, dusty, mud splashed,
Old leather coat and woollen hat and gloves.
New Jeans.

Long, thin nose
Wild beard,
Very very wild.

Pushes up from the chair
Not too sprightly.
Leaves.

Table disinfected.

Wistman's Wood

Went for a walk to Wistman's Wood on Dartmoor on New Year's Eve. This sketch was made a few days after I arrived back but doesn't really capture the twisted and weather beaten character of the trees in one of the countries highest oak woodlands. It was just a quick sketch one lunchtime to go with the following poem.


Post Christmas thunder and heavy rain clouds
Tightly wrapped coats amidst chilled wind
Well trodden path along granite hillside
Sheep: colour washed with blue.

Walkers passed with damp muddy dogs
Across boggy boulder strewn moorland
The distant wood dwarfed by higher conifers
Anticipation of discovery drives me onward.

Centuries old trees, battered and bruised
One of Britains highest oak woods lies
On a bleak clitter strewn hillside
Where no man nor beast would roam.

Stunted and twisted the trees arise
From between close-knit weathered boulders
Mosses, ferns and lichens
Embedded on rain soaked branches.

History has left this wood untouched
But for curious wanderers, witches and druids
The makers of legends and those
Who seek its artistic inspiration.

A fragile habitat - I shall not enter
To clamber over the rocks and gawp
I have nothing to offer in return and
One less intrusion just might be appreciated.

New for 2018

For the past couple of months I have been on quite a journey of exploration as regards the future of my blog. I have looked and tried a few alternative possibilities to the way I worked but, in the end, decided that it worked too well so there was no point in doing something different. So, now I am back again. This time I have linked the blog to matthewslater.org.uk in order to better utilise the domain name and it has had a few design tweaks.

My aim with the change was to continue to present many of the illustrations that I do as part of my personal sketching, but also to present more writing in the form of poems and short stories.

One of my first ideas was to create a newsletter that I could send out very few weeks. The plan was to start creating snippets of a few stories with a particular theme which I would introduce via the blog. However, my mind then switched into overdrive and decided that these ideas were much better consolidated into a book. So yes, I am now thinking about writing a book. A proper book. One that will take a time to research, accumulate, plan and write. I will share more when I am ready to do so. It looks an exciting project.

So, where am I going? Not too sure! I will use the blog to share some of my thoughts as the year progresses, but I will keep my main ideas under wrap and just provide occasional tantalising dips into the creative process.

Matthew