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  • Writer's pictureChristopher Jelley

Poetry Pin and Willow Words

Ash, oak and willow herb

Woven flight of swift bird

Smell of green in warmth pervading

Circle songs of birds uplifting

Happy Moment by Gaby Armstrong

National Meadows Day saw a suite of events across the country of which Poetry Pin played its part, as a word and poetry workshop in the Willow Cathedral on Longrun Meadow, Taunton. The Cathedral is slowly becoming Taunton's soft alternative venue, it sits on a flood plain beside the river Tone and through summer months is the place to stop and enjoy the buzz of the meadow and the gentle passing of time. For me the Cathedral is an ideal spot to run a Poetry Pin workshop too, getting passing families to add a few words to the canvas of 'place' and respond with words to the environment and then use the Poetry Pin Engine to geo tag them to the location they are stood.

Those attending or just passing by and curiously drawn in generally don't consider themselves as poets, but when they leave after tagging a few words to the landscape, they feel a little less 'not a poet' if that is at all possible. I am constantly surprised by the ingenuity and creativity of strangers, and it is rare they don't surprise themselves a little too!

Minky Mostly slide slinky not slowly

Two whippets fast darting past fluttering butterflies

Finally tired

Lazy through the towering willow lying on a grassy pillow

In a lattice of shadows the two dogs eventually rest.

Longrun Whippets by Hannah and Jess

There are about two dozen poems tagged to Longrun Meadow now, of which these posted are part of, but I will leave you with this one of my composition which was drawn from a list of plants which have become resident in the meadow as only a few years ago the area was arable farm land. The names of these plants lends to poetry with ease, and so there are a few compositions on this theme.

Wavy Bitter-cress is here

Down by your knees beside the Common Mouse-ear

Or over near the Smooth Hawks-beard

Aside Dandelion and the Crested Dog's-tail

Or was that the Meadow Foxtail

No definitely beside the Ribwort Plantain

But you've got to root and scour through the brush

And careful you don't squash the Bulbous buttercup

Not to be confused with its sibling of course

Its a little sensitive to naming

Miss spelling is rude, inconsiderate and a little shaming

It must be identified right and true

This is the right plant, through and through

But I think I am more convinced as to what it is not

So yes, right here

It's definitely the Bitter-cress we've got

I think

Wavey Bitter-cress by Christopher Jelley

The day was facilitated by Arts Taunton and InspirED - the educational arm of Somerset Arts Works and designed to engage with individuals and families with word and place during National Meadows Day 1st July 2017

More about National Meadows Day

All poems written on the day were also geo-located to the meadow at

and are available to view for free in location they were posted at this web address.

More info about Poetry Pin - get in touch for your own Poetry Pool

More info about Arts Taunton

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