‘From Pen to Wall’: Writing New Work

How do you start to write a new poem? For the ‘Black Country Tales’ exhibition poet Elinor has written a poem in response to an etching by R.S. Chattock. Elinor will give you some insight into her process of writing.

Elinor chose to write a poem in response to Chattock’s etching ‘The Glede Ovens’, which shows an image from the historical Black Country industry.

'The Glede Ovens' by R.S. Chattock

‘The Glede Ovens’ by R.S. Chattock (Dudley Museum and Art Gallery)

Image. The Glede Ovens by R.S. Chattock. (Credits: Dudley Museum and Art Gallery)

Elinor writes about her writing process: ‘I often start the writing process with the use of visual stimuli – for ‘The Glede Ovens’, this was already given to me in the form of Chattock’s etchings. I chose this particular piece as, while I have looked at mining often in my poetry, I have never written about what happens to the coal after it is taken from the ground. I conducted research around glede ovens, and found that they are also known as ‘beehive ovens’ due to their shape. This contrast between the industrial and the pastoral struck up a multitude of ideas, and I set myself on a free writing exercise to see where these ideas might take me. I landed at the set-up of a young boy and his father by imagining what this curious scenery would look and sound like from a child’s perspective.’

Curious what Elinor has written? Here is a preview!

‘The day dawns to the thrum of machines and a workman’s whistle
and you, watching.

A miner’s tub.
A heap of raerker.

I smile when you tell me we are stood in an orchard’

From: ‘The Glede Ovens’ by Elinor Cole

Poet Elinor Cole writing a poem about the Black Country Industry

Poet Elinor writing a poem about the Black Country Industry

Image. (Source: Twitter @NellieFayeCole)

How do you start writing a new poem? Share your tips and tricks!

In celebration of the ‘Black Country Tales’ exhibition, which will open at Dudley Museum and Art Gallery on the 19th of March, Poets’ Corner will give you a unique insight in the process from poetry writing to a public exhibition. Poet Elinor Cole, who will be exhibiting seven of her poems in the ‘Black Country Tales’ exhibition, will share her story with you.