Dr Niamh On The Plum Tree

Childhood Imagination Sows Seeds of Future Brilliance

Wednesday On The Plum Tree: The Brisbane Connection With Tony Mutton

The Little Prince Espresso

Little Prince Espresso where Tony hosts an open mic event: Poetry Open Words

Drum roll…Dah Dah da Dahhhhhhh! Introducing the one and only Tony Mutton! 

Tony is a wonderful, quirky poet and friend to Plum Tree Books. I hope you enjoy hearing about his perspective on poetry and poets. Thank you, Tony for being our guest this week. You can find Tony and his poetry hanging out on his blog HERE.*****

It’s not just words that make great poetry…

By Tony Mutton

As a late comer to poetry and having written for only four years, I have questioned what it is that has enabled me to stay engaged and progress in the world of poetry.   I read a quote recently – “it’s not just words that make great poetry – its people.   I know some great people in Queensland”.  Oh wait – that was my quote.

Since joining the spoken and performance community in Brisbane 3 years ago, what has impressed me has been the generosity of the people within that community.   I attend practically every event in Brisbane and the poets at these events are very welcoming and encouraging to all people who attend (very much like here at Plum Tree Books).

I look back over a number of years and realise that for me, poetry did not exist.   Poetry was never there, never mainstream entertainment and was, and still can be, a bit of an underground thing.   What has kept it going and will keep it going in the future is the passion of the people involved today and the encouragement that they give to new practitioners of the art, the poets of tomorrow.   If people are not encouraged to explore and experiment with poetry, it may return again to an environment where it is practiced by few.

To illustrate the point, I was recently asked to enter an Australian Bush Poetry competition – “you could enter the novice class – your only a young’n at 56”.   The sad thing is that this is somewhat true – the youngest bush poet that I know is 50, the rest start around 65 and go up from there.   It may be a dying art.

Andrea Gibson and Shane Koyczan are two poets (American and Canadian respectively) that just blow me away.   The feeling, depth and passion in there words can chill me to the bone.

Three of the best here in Brisbane are Eleanor Jackson (http://eleanorjjackson.com/), Scott Sneddon (Darkwing Dubs) and Graham Nunn (Another Lost Shark). 

I have seen Eleanor perform two shows over the past two years – She Stole My Every Rock n Roll with Betsy Turcot (who is amazing) and her recent work exploring the relationship between Sylvia Plath and Ted Hugheswith Doubting Thomas (also amazing).

Darkwing Dubs is a performer/poet who never ceases to amaze me with the depth and breadth of his work – a person who should be on the world stage.

Graham Nunn is a founding member of Speed Poets in Brisbane and is one on my favourite poets.

Ok – so three is now five.

I think that it is here, with these poets, that I have been able to answer to the question I first asked.   How have I been able to remain engaged with the poetry community here in Brisbane; simply through the encouragement that these very people have shown me.   I hope that we are all able to do the same to other young poets (and old) in the future.


About Dr Niamh

When I was a little girl (a very, very long time ago), I used to love learning new, really big words like ‘discombobulate’. As I grew, my love of words grew too, until I loved them so much, I could not stop writing them down. One day, as I was scribbling a particular word, a very peculiar thing happened. The word shouted at me, “Stop! Don’t put me there!” As you can imagine, I was shocked and nearly fell off my chair. When I recovered somewhat, I said to the word, “Could you stop shouting, please? I am not used to it.” Can you guess what happened next? No! I thought not. The word said, “I might be small, but I will misbehave if you do not use me properly. I will not tell the story you would like me to tell. I will say something entirely different!” I dropped my pen. I hoped that by dropping my pen, the word would stop talking. Alas! It did not. It carried on chitterchobbling, even after the ink had dried. I was in a pickle. I could not allow my words to run away with my story, now could I? I don’t know about you, but when this sort of thing happens, there is only one thing left to do if you prefer not to spend your time arguing. “Very well,” said I. “I will do as you ask if you will just be quiet and allow me to concentrate.” Since that day, I have been paying special attention to every word I invite into my stories. After all, a story should say exactly what it means to say and not be led astray. With love from Dr. Niamh, Ph.D in Learning Through The Imagination and Founder of Dr Niamh Children's Books. www.drniamhchildrensbooks.com

27 comments on “Wednesday On The Plum Tree: The Brisbane Connection With Tony Mutton

  1. the secret keeper
    April 24, 2013

    It would be a lost world without poetry. Let us hope there are young poets out there that will keep it alive when we are floating in the mist. I know several young poets of college age who are devoted to poetry and experimenting with new and old forms. Myself, I find experimenting with different styles of Japanese poetry and throwing in my own techniques quite inspiring and a real challenge, an enjoyable one both mentally and emotionally. I try to write in whatever form that suits what I am trying to communicate in as cryptic a fashion as possible. I like mystery in my poetry. That was a great post Tony Mutton. Really enjoyed it. TY Niamh for bringing Tony to join in the Wednesday On The Plum Tree. jk


  2. the secret keeper
    April 24, 2013

    Reblogged this on the secret keeper and commented:
    Wednesday On The Plum Tree: The Brisbane Connection With Tony Mutton. A fantastic poet and when he reads a poem out loud you can’t help but be drawn into the sound and the use of language he creates in his poetry. He tells a fine tale about his experiences with poetry and a lot more on his visit to On The Plum Tree. Do click and travel back to the original site of this post and enjoy and learn from a good person and fine poet. Enjoy the story he has to tell. You will be very satisfied and enjoy yourself at the same time. jk the SK .


  3. Uncle Tree
    April 24, 2013

    Hello, Tony! 🙂 Nice to meet you.
    I think you’re brave to speak aloud.
    A downright good recruiter or two for
    our craft – is what the world needs now!
    Besides love, of course, and peacefully
    spoken poetry, even when it’s time to slam.


  4. Shawn MacKENZIE
    April 24, 2013

    Reblogged this on MacKENZIE's Dragonsnest.


  5. the truth that there is no poetry without people, poets, readers, audience – is often forgotten these days , thanks tony hutton for reminding me of this simple truth by your article and acknowledging unselfishly other contemporary poets, a rarity these days. you set me a good example i treasure and cherish and value.


  6. Pingback: Wednesday On The Plum Tree: The Brisbane Connection With Tony Mutton | BUTTERFLIES OF TIME

  7. DarKarsean
    April 24, 2013

    Reblogged this on darkarsean.


  8. Pingback: Wednesday On The Plum Tree: The Brisbane Connection With Tony Mutton | West Coast Review

  9. DiAnne Ebejer
    April 24, 2013

    Reblogged this on DiAnne's Place II.


  10. DiAnne Ebejer
    April 24, 2013

    Great post Tony! You are so right about the fact that it’s the people behind the words that make for great poetry!


  11. Patricia Tilton
    April 24, 2013

    Beautiful post Tony. I don’t believe poetry is a dying art. I see too many wanna be poets around me. It is the soul speaking. A gift.


    • ontheplumtree
      April 24, 2013

      Yes! It is the soul speaking…It’s a must. like breathing. I am sure that Tony will be delighted with your comment, Patricia. Thank you for dropping by.


    • DarKarsean
      April 24, 2013

      thank you Patricia – it definitely is the soul speaking – we just need to spread the word – so to speak … tony


  12. gnunn
    April 25, 2013

    Thanks for the shout out Tony! Look forward to hearing you do your thing on the SpeedPoets stage again Saturday!


    April 25, 2013

    Thank you Tony and Niamh for this wonderful and honest-from-the-heart post! Shared on my blog too!


    • ontheplumtree
      April 25, 2013

      Thank you so much Butterflies of Time. I would humbly like to invite you to participate n the Wednesday post in a few weeks time.


  14. nativemericangirl
    April 25, 2013

    Niamh…tú are such an amazing gift to the genre of Poetry….y all tú do shows right here…rather it be sus Poetry, Artistry through Poetry etc. Or helping others to permeate the universe with theirs…tú are amazing…This is an amazing blog this week, gracias for sharing…being a poet y one of Plum Tree’s Poets myself…I have a personal front row seat to how tú are working muy hard to keep Poetry in the forefront y usher new blood y talents to the craft y artistry that Poetry is y still can be….gracias, sonrisa….


  15. thiskidreviewsbooks
    April 26, 2013

    This post is very helpful! 😀


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This entry was posted on April 24, 2013 by in Special Projects and tagged , , , , , , , .
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