Alice in Wonderland, Blog, Lewis Carroll, Oxford, Poetry, Uncategorised, Writing

Looking back…

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In the next few weeks I’m taking a break.  In the meantime, I will be revisiting some of my favourite posts and hopefully yours as well.

I will be back to writing  fresh new posts again soon.

In the meantime I’m…

Dreaming of Spring 

Whenever I think of spring it reminds me of visiting the University town of Oxford in England.

Described as the ‘city of dreaming spires’ by poet Matthew Arnold, because of the amazing architecture of the university buildings. 

It’s an inspiring place; author Lewis Carroll wrote his famous novel Alice in Wonderland here in 1862.

The story is based on a girl called Alice who follows a white rabbit into a rabbit hole and arrives in wonderland.

During her adventure she goes to a mad tea party in chapter seven, or more popularly know as the Mad Hatters tea party.

Have you ever imagined what it would be like to fall down a rabbit hole and explore wonderland for yourself? Inspired by the tea party; I’ve written my own short story based on this idea.

Two Versions of an Amazing Dream by Nick 

A strong smell of tarmac rises from the ground. 

“Yes, that blue teapot tastes good, its made from blue chocolate!” 

From a car window a teacup is thrust out,

“Lovely tea dear, one sugar or two?” 

The ground is hazy, full of green, large, grass; it smells fresh.

Food spread over the grass; doughnuts with jam, pies covered in cream and a red jelly cake with a palm tree in the middle.

A recognisable face dressed as a orange bear eating pies. Cream all over his face. A clown face looks directly at her and disappears in clouds of cream. 

“Pies everywhere I go; I can see pies raining from the sky” Cream covers her, she can feel it on her nose.

Jane looks again at a large pillow. She is awake.

***********

As Jane walks along in the park a stranger rushes up to her and says

“Yes that blue china teapot tastes good, you have a similar one to mine, it was made of blue chocolate. All I can say is it tasted good, when can you bring me another to try?”

A car pulls up next to Jane, the window winds down and a passenger passes her a cup of tea.

 “Lovely tea, dear, one sugar or two?”

Jane’s vison blurs, she shuts her eyes, opens them, and notices in front of her a mass of green, huge blades of grass. 

She is laying on the grass now and in front of her is an amazing picnic. Doughnuts oozing with jam, pies covered in cream, and a red jelly cake in the middle decorated with a pineapple. 

Her friend’s face is visible. He seems to have turned into a giant orange bear and he is hungrily tucking into a pie, covering him in cream. Next to him an inflatable clown snatches the cream pie from his hands and hurls it into the air. The clown shouts 

“Pies, Pies everywhere I go, I can see pies raining from the sky” 

The cream lands all over everything. Jane notices a large blob of cream on the end of her nose. She tries to wipe it off with a tissue and finds she can’t.

Jane moves her head and looks down at a large pillow, she is lying in bed and has woken up. What a crazy dream, did I really dream that!

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Alice in Wonderland, Blog, Lewis Carroll, Library, Love, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Poetry, Reading, Rudyard Kipling, Shakespeare, Sonnet, W H Auden, Writing

The Power of Poetry

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Poems really can influence your world…

As January draws to a close I’ve been looking back at poems that have influenced me in some way.  After writing a few of my own poems, I’ve found a new appreciation for great poetry.
A poem can capture so much about the subject with a few words, through the mood or feeling. I want to share some of my thoughts about these with you and perhaps hear your comments.

If… by Rudyard Kipling

Probably one of the most famous of all poems, has to be a favourite; it’s strong, uplifting words are based on a masculine ideal.

Reading it at a time when you are feeling low and not certain of the way forward; can help you feel stronger and find purpose.

Jabberwocky (from Through the Looking-Glass) by Lewis Carroll

You have probably all guessed by now that one of my favourite authors is Lewis Carroll and the classic book Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

On first glance Jabberwocky appears to be written in strange words, but you can get the general sense of the words from their sounds. Although a number of the words have been adopted and are now in the dictionary. Jabberwocky has a enchanting quality about it that’s unusual.

Love’s Philosophy by Percy Bysshe Shelley

As we approach Valentines Day, Love’s Philosophy expresses love in a magical and dream like way. It appears to be more about the fantasy of being in love than reality. Shelley originally wrote it for a young lady he admired. He was obviously smitten by her!

Sonnet 116 by William Shakespeare

A poem by Shakespeare had to be part of my list in some form. In this sonnet, Shakespeare writes a more mature love sonnet describing marriage and includes words used in the marriage service. Sonnet 116 is a favourite poem for couples to choose to recite at a wedding or civil ceremony.

Twelve Songs by W H Auden (Stop all the Clocks)

I’ve always admired this poem it’s a favourite of mine. It’s a love song about two gay men. The dramatic tone and descriptive words are immensely striking. It’s popularity rose when it was recited in the film ‘Four Weddings and a Funeral’; in the funeral service.

What do you think of my selection? What are your favourite poems and why?