Workshop in conjunction with the Making Waves exhibition at Stade Hall, April 2012


Saturday 21st April
Artist Rose Miller will lead a writing workshop centred on the pieces in the exhibition 'Making Waves'.
2 – 4 pm
Admission free
Venue: Stade Hall


A participant commented:

‘Took part in the workshop - writing our responses to 1 or 2 pieces of art – in the form of a poem, conversation etc. This gave an amazing insight into peoples’ worlds. I was glad I had come.’


Workshop review by Rose Millar:

We had paper, pens, chairs and a couple of hours at our disposal. The aim was to move away from a passive, detached approach to viewing an exhibition and engage with the works through a process of creative dialogue. 

Where to start? We couldn’t tackle it all, so each participant drew up a short list of the three works which had a particular resonance for them, selecting just one after a quick consultation.

First stage: to play the association game, a ‘warm-up’ exercise to get the words flowing. Participants looked closely at the image/object and jotted down everything they thought of while doing this.  Ten minutes later we got together to share results.

Reading something out, even a list of words and phrases creates a physical momentum, a presence which, certainly in this case, activated the next step, a free-style poem. A number of participants took this route, with great success. ‘Sea Scroll’ by Mary Morris inspired several poems in which the words invoked by the layers of transparent fabric seemed to be unfurling in a cascade of images. ‘Tide’ by Carly Ralph inspired a poem in which the minutiae of curious bits and pieces were taken up to form part of the dynamic whole, the grist to anchor the poem in the ephemeral lives we lead.

An alternative follow-up exercise was a dialogue, a task which one participant made ingenious use of for ‘The Temptation of the Impossible’  by Anny Evason. The incongruous idea of a rock and a wave holding a conversation added to the impact and striking originality of the result.


A poem from Rose Miller’s writing class in response to

Mary Morris’ Sea Scroll – Hope Gap to Seven Sisters


On the edge

Waves tickling


Blue.  Enticing

Sparkling Light

Ebb and flow

Suck and draw

Drawing me in

Drawing me down

Drawing me out

Horizons, depths


Me - open to new horizons

Like a bird I let go


At one with the sea


Losing myself

Finding myself

That gawky child






Cry, laugh



The same, but different

Flow with the current

Ebb and flow

Suck and draw

Storm, calm

Ever changing

Me, Life

Remember that



The Temptation of the Impossible by Anny Evason

The Temptation of the Impossible

three studies
mixed media



A poem by Jim Lumsden

Based on Anny Evason's "The Temptation of the Impossible" triptych.

A post-apocalyptic conversation between the "irresistible force" (waves) and the "immovable object" (rocks), in a slightly "Waiting for Godot" style:


Waves: I have come again to you as I have for uncounted ages. Will you yield?

Rocks: I do not change as all else does. You may froth and foam - I am submerged but not subsumed in your chill wetness.

Waves: How much more of your dooming and glooming must I embrace? Why are you so dense? Apart, we are lifeless - together we could be a source of life.

Rocks: Life? That has been tried. It failed in the blink of an eye.

Waves: I can be patient. I'll return tomorrow.

Rocks: I'll be here.


© Jim Lumsden  2012



Tide-turning by

Kendal Eaton


Watching the tide,

it’s a myth that water cleanses.

It filters,


the flotsam of our[ lives,

plays with it, tosses it aside with a mollusc’s

fingers, tickles, trifles with

our interference.


But water has no will

of its own, it is bound

to gravity and pressure, capillary and evaporation

its only regression. Breaking surface

tension is never triumph but defeat, the first weakness

that leads not to relief by giving in,

but more intense crushing

seeks out every subsequent cavity. Gravity’s law,



What we have come to rely on her for,

biding time

to surmount wave after wave,

if we’re lucky, head on,

sometimes side-swiped in a swathe of foment

- every individual has their perfect storm -

capsized and clamouring

tooth and nail for surface again.


She is no lover

vexed, jilted

with tentacles seeping into every crevice

to create fractures and overwhelm,

as if we are buried treasure

to her, some incessant endeavour

to subsume; she’s not clever, much worse

she’s indifferent to our dilemma, no benevolent provider

of earth’s bounty; we rape her by metal grate

and hooks, whatever we can get our claws into

we churn up, grind her once vibrant coral creatures

to dust to protect them.


We dredge our own depths,

consume ourselves ,

paint the surface to impress,

beneath is beneath us, too ugly

compressed, malformed, mutated; we dispossess rather than own

up, why, should we? All heavy objects sink

deprived of air, we think

without a trace, but they are there, hidden

in the deep and the shallows


when tide withdraws to other shores,

revealing skeletons picked,

sieved and scrutinised by fine-tooth

combers, our vile intestines

ravaged, ribcage laid bare for all to scavenge,

trample through; the heart of the vessel

can be heard declared an ingenious structure.

Astonishing! Beautiful.


Having sifted our detritus

the tide turns, deposits the vestiges

of our lives, our mosaic waste

disposable, washed up, things we thought added weight

a transient scar of fragment

resembling nothing of its intended fate,


a tasteless pick-n-mix,

bottle-tops of so many undelivered messages

from no-hopers in a fix, distressed,

out of time, who tricked themselves into thinking

the sensation of drowning sublime.

Subliminal maybe, until

it is too late and the surface

crackles under the wait.


And there we are abandoned

on this threadbare patch of canvass,

to fathom what it was all about

what did it amount to… every tooth and nail

that clung for dear life it would have us believe

were false, were they? It never seems that way on reflection,

but all our lies and truths become fiction,

harnessed in a scent, a sound, an object mass-produced that could be

anyone’s and may well be, soon, a scrap of paper or film

open to variable interpretation, each one with meaning.


We’d learn more watching the sea.

than we do from any lesson throughout our ever-regurgitated

history – how deranged our pursuits

those emperors’ new suits – its immense surface

miniscule in comparison

to the weight of its integrity,

while the purity of our contaminated wrecks remain

stained – unclaimed, exposing


what poor, lazy liars we all are

always waiting for the tide

to change.


© Kendal Eaton 21-04-2012 with thanks to Rose Miller and Carly Ralph’s ‘Tide’ for inspiration.