Sometimes I’m inspired to write rather longer pieces than my regular blog posts ...
It’s different than writing a blog - which is largely anecdotal - my stories best fit the description of ‘creative non-fiction’ - based on fact but with a hefty dose of imagination. Literary critic Barbara Lounsberry—in her book, ‘The Art of Fact’ describes it as: "Verifiable subject matter and exhaustive research guarantee the nonfiction side of literary nonfiction; the narrative form and structure disclose the writer's artistry; and finally, its polished language reveals that the goal all along has been literature."
Or as my Sister says - ‘It's telling the story in the writers voice of an actual event. The facts softened with memories and observations woven seamlessly throughout the narrative to make it an enjoyable read.’
My first two Short Stories are semi-historical and are set in South East Cornwall.
In the first I delve into history, myth and legend – in an attempt to answer the question ‘Why is Polperro Blue’. The second is a ghost story based around the Talland Frescoes - of which only one account of their very existence, was ever written.
Intrigued! Then please continue reading ...Read More
Painting Polperro Blue
A short essay tracing the origin(s) of Polperro Blue ... a reworking of the original article - In Search of Polperro Blue - that first appeared in the Journal of the Polperro Family History Society (Spring 2017).
It all started with a question my Sister Viv asked: Why is Polperro Blue - like Why is the Sky Blue - just an idle thought; an ordinary question - what could be exciting in that ...
Yet my quest has taken me on a fantastic journey around the world and to the beginning of time - well almost. I delved deep into the history of blue – that most mystical and magical colour, held in reverence by ancient civilisations.
‘It starts in 1955 with a passage from a book by James Reynolds - celebrated Irish Raconteur, Author, Artist and Traveller - ‘Sovereign Britain’ (1955) ... He wrote then of the Persian Blue seas of Cornwall and the Duck Egg Blue sky ... The old fishing ports, celebrated in songs and innumerable novels of Cornwall, owe a great deal of their allure to the high, narrow gray or whitened stone houses, roofed in cloudy blue slate, their window sashes painted black, hot red, white, or yellow, which appear to march in tightly closed ranks, zigzag up the cliff. If the village is Polperro, its doors and sashes, hand rails, too, will gleam with the intense Polperro Blue, a dye that is found in a mollusc among adjacent rocks …
You can read the full essay here - Painting Polperro Blue
This story is a spin off from ‘Talland Red’’ and was shortlisted to be read at a Halloween Short Story event. It was written for multiple voices - make of it what you will ...
It was if anything, more challenging - a story based around the Talland Frescoes - of which only one account substantiating their very existence, was ever written ...
‘In the early part of October 1849 it was found necessary to take down the wall of the North Aisle, on which were discovered a number of fine frescoes; they consisted of two series, laid one on the other, the first (that nearest the wall) was executed in colours, while the other was traced in black and being on a white ground its figures were displayed in bold relief. Both were much defaced by exposure to heavy rains’.
My quest has taken me on a fantastic journey from Cornwall to Rome; to the City of Jerusalem and the Holy Land; to the birth of Christianity; and to King Arthur and his Knights. A celebration of art in medieval wall paintings in Tudor England and the legends of old Kernow.
You can read the full essay here - The Haunting
Written for the Church community it remains unpublished.
The featured image is another of straw bales on a hillside from an original oil on canvas by Helen White. A classic sight towards the end of the summer – and a favourite subject of hers – light-filled bales laid out in the fields against the backdrop of contrasting patchwork fields.
Here is a link to her Art Web Site. She paints stunning pictures so do take a look ...
Helen is a professional artist mainly working in oils, more recently with digital media. Light is a particular theme. She has other blogs where she writes about health and healing and life experiences.
More stories, tales and yarns, to come ... so please do pop back - I’ll be glad to see you.