UNTAMED A COLLABRATIVE ANTHOLOGY of South West Poets & Visual Artists
An Untamed Preface
This thoughtful, beautiful collection of poems and associated images is, at its heart, about relationships. It explores our relationships with nature, with society, individuals and crucially ourselves. Furthermore, the format of each poem being paired with an image encourages the reader to undertake their own exploration, alongside considering how the narrative and corresponding visual art relate to one another. The presentation of the poem and image in the same field of vision makes considering them as independent entities a daunting task; each immediately affects the other and that link is imprinted in the viewer’s memory.
The poets all have strong associations with the South West of Britain; in that sense they share a contested similarity of geographical living space, though their writing covers differing ground. Each selected poem is an individual response to the idea of being wild, free and untamed. The images have been selected by the poets as representing an essence of the thoughts behind their writing. Some of the images already existed, having been chosen by the poet, others have been made at the poet’s request and in one or two cases, created by one-and-the-same person. In every circumstance poem and image are bonded by a commonality of fundamental ideas about relationships, in many cases abstracted. They invite us to consider how they affect us, change us and aid our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.
Words paint pictures and pictures invite description. So, the reader can choose a starting point: the words or the image. The invitation is to compare and get under the skin of these associations. The book provides an opportunity for the reader to create an experience arising from the confluence of their own thoughts. Untamed is not intended to be a passive experience and it will reward creative input from the reader.
So, in enjoying this book feel free to be creative, go wild, be untamed!
Ric White, 2023
The anthology’s title Untamed was suggested by the origins of Wylde Publications. Its ‘roots’ are in Pat Fleming’s long established concerns for ‘the wild’ – the natural world, the ecology of planet Earth. When Pat was hatching her plans to emigrate to Tasmania in 2022 she gave me a large file containing the portfolio of Wylde and suggested I take over the not-for-profit independent, using it to publish Invocations And Portraits, a new collection of poems by Roger Philip Dennis and myself. It was my intention that the next book should maintain the concept of collaboration, in doing so I put the word Untamed out there to a number of poets whose work to date had caught my imagination. In most cases I did not collect the poems, I collected the poets and thus, their response to the word Untamed. To these writers, I send my appreciation for their enthusiasm and willingness to donate their words. I thank all the artists who donated their visuals trusting in the partnered poetry. Vision is through a glass darkly. These images come in a varied range of prints; some high-resolution, others deliberately low-fi, there is both sharp focus and crazed eyes. We present as intended. This anthology is a collective glimpse into what Dana Littlepage Smith calls the “squawking under skirts”. Read and see both in terms of vision, consider this collection as a beginning without end.
Steve Day, 2023
Poets: Veronica Aaronson, Ian Royce Chamberlain, Steve Day, Hélène Demetriades, Roger Philip Dennis, Liz Diamond, Virginia Griem, Rosie Jackson, Phil Madden, Patrice Naiambania, Jennie Osborne, Tessa Biddington, Alasdair Paterson, Sue Proffitt, Hilary Kneale, Julie-Ann Rowell, James Stallard, Julie Tippetts, Marc Woodward, Don Pearson, Dana Littlepage Smith. Visual Artists: Avenda Burnell Walsh, Ric White, Roger Dennis, Virginia Griem, Jen Zed, Paul Dunmall, Anne Doggett, Don Pearson, Mary Gillett, Shan Roberts, Eliza Jacobs, Egon Schiele, Phil Madden, Paul L Kershaw, Harriet Roberts,Jon Ogborne Rowan Stallard, Hilary Kneale, Sue Proffitt, Susan Spencer, Alexandra Wilson, Sarah Ball, Kushuma Holyoak, Jill Bevan.
poem by Phil Madden & image by Paul L Kershshaw
Invocations And Portraits Roger Philip Dennis & Steve Day published 3rd January 2023
“…there are so many great lines and images that are worth reading over and over. An internal authenticity.” Phil Madden (Wings Take Us, Paths, The Amphibious Place)
“I really admire the work... This book is such a luscious wonderful feast to read and thoroughly enjoy.” Pat Fleming (Thinking Like A Mountain) Available from retail book sellers & via contact with Wylde Publications (see ABOUT)