Dr Niamh On The Plum Tree

Childhood Imagination Sows Seeds of Future Brilliance

The Wednesday Poetry Corner With Linda Ibbotson

I have great pleasure to introduce a newcomer to Plum Tree Books. Linda Ibbotson is a photographer and poet who lives in beautiful County Cork in Ireland. She snaps character ~ whether through her own words or tacitly painted on the often craggy faces of musicians lost in contemplation or playing a tune. She finds beauty in the unusual, the musical, the poetic, the shadow. I find Linda’s work richly textured and visceral ~ a poet and artist of the character image, in search of the nitty, gritty, the truth that makes a thing sparkle and speak its unique message. Find Linda on Facebook. Many thanks Linda for joining us here.

Summer days, and thoughts of Spain are drifting around me…

By Linda Ibbotson

Puerto Lastres , Asturias Spain

Photo By Linda Ibbotson

My mind is wandering from red ochre landscapes of surrealist Dali,  inspiring  Gaudi architecture in Barcelona to heady scents of oranges from Seville…

Gaudi

Gaudi

Perhaps it’s because I am reading my favourite poet Federico Garcia Lorca.

Federico Garcia Lorca.

Federico Garcia Lorca.

Lorca, born in 1898 to an educated family in the Andalucian village of Fuente Vaqueros, whose passion for nature along with influences from traditional Andalusian folk songs were the main sources of his inspiration.. Creativity flowed through his veins. A musician,  poet , dramatist and artist he studied at the University of Granada where he acquired a knowledge of literature, moving on to Residencia de estudiantes in Madrid  he met fellow musicians and writers such as Manuel de Falla.  Salvadore Dali and Juan Jimenez.

His first book of poems with the theme of nature, faith and abandonment was published in 1921 .In 1929 he studied in New York, spent time in Vermont and Cuba.  His poetry collection Poet influenced by the Wall Street crash explored his feelings of alienation and isolation and experimental poetry techniques.

On his return to Spain he continued to write for theatre, and was co director of a theatrical company. Sadly his life was cut short.  In 1936, during the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War. It is thought that he was shot by Nationalist militia.

It is hardly surprising that poets and songwriters such as Leonard Cohen were inspired by his unique style of intertwining music and words. He became known as the gypsy poet publishing a collection of Canciones (Songs) and the well known Romancero Gitano ( Gypsy Ballads). Lorca describes this work as “a carved alter piece” of Andalusia .” A book that hardly expresses visible Andalusia at all but where the hidden Andalusia trembles”

Your preference may be to take a walk in the Garden of the Lunar Grapefruit or paint a canvas with his “Ode to Salvador Dali”….

Dali

Dali

Federica Garcia Lorca is surely a poet whose energy and love for nature and beauty replenish the soul.

I know his words replenish mine.

Ode to Salvador Dali by Federica Garcia Lorca

A  rose in the high garden you desire.
A  wheel in the pure syntax of steel.
The mountain stripped bare of Impressionist fog,
The grays watching over the last balustrades.

The modern painters in their white ateliers
clip the square root’s sterilized flower.
In the waters of the Seine a marble iceberg
chills the windows and scatters the ivy.

Man treads firmly on the cobbled streets.
Crystals hide from the magic of reflections.
The Government has closed the perfume stores.
The machine perpetuates its binary beat.

An absence of forests and screens and brows
roams across the roofs of the old houses.
The air polishes its prism on the sea
and the horizon rises like a great aqueduct.

Soldiers who know no wine and no penumbra
behead the sirens on the seas of lead.
Night, black statue of prudence, holds
the moon’s round mirror in her hand.

A desire for forms and limits overwhelms us.
Here comes the man who sees with a yellow ruler.
Venus is a white still life
and the butterfly collectors run away.

Continued…

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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

25 comments on “The Wednesday Poetry Corner With Linda Ibbotson

  1. Jamie Dedes
    July 17, 2013

    A lovely homage. It’s so easy to love Lorca.

    Like

    • ontheplumtree
      July 17, 2013

      Many thanks Jamie! Maybe we can feature you here in a Wednesday post also?

      Like

  2. Jamie Dedes
    July 17, 2013

    Thank would be lovely. FYI: I posted this on my FB page:
    https://www.facebook.com/jamiededes
    Enjoyed so much.

    Like

  3. a beautiful post linda i just love it :)love lorca too -superlative mix of photography painting and poetry and prose here!

    Like

    • ontheplumtree
      July 17, 2013

      Yes! Ampat, I had fun finding pictures for this post, as Linda mentioned so many great artists.

      Like

  4. ontheplumtree
    July 17, 2013

    Many thanks for the comments Alan.

    Like

  5. the secret keeper
    July 17, 2013

    “Then I realized I had been murdered.
    They looked for me in cafes, cemeteries and churches
    …. but they did not find me.
    They never found me?
    No. They never found me.”

    From “The Fable And Round of the Three Friends”
    Poet in New York [1939] Garcia Lorca

    I learned a great deal about the intimate side of Garcia Lorca through the film “Little Ashes,” where he hung out with his friends Salvador Dali and Luis Bunuel. These three artists of words, paintings and films, are all truly filled with break-through ideas, creative talent and genius. It has been awhile since I last saw this film but I do remember I was drawn to Garcia Lorca’s nature and poetry. And his love for Salvador Dali, was less than politely rejected. To go back in time, and have a view of their moments in time spent together. What magic that must have been. Except in the end, when he was assassinated, it was so devastating. I was so shocked. Why did they have to take him away from this world? He had such a gentleness, yet he was filled with fire and an explosive nature, too, and so much life and words to write ahead of him. Why anyone would want to kill him? Yes, he was an artist who spoke his mind through his poetry and from his quietness he spoke his mind, not trying to conceal his beliefs. His friends tried to quiet him with warnings. They knew the words and people he spoke against would come for him someday. And sadly, they did, in an ambush. They showed Garcia Lorca no mercy. Lost to the world forever, without a grave, no place to mourn his disappearance into death.

    The images you chose Niamh are striking. The Gaudi architecture is like a fantasy, a design I love, as is the Dali painting with the sails of butterflies, always butterflies. He has the same obsession with them as I do. They are such magical creatures. Garcia Lorca, though, his photograph is so beautiful. You found just the right touch to set off this piece, this wonderful tribute to such a creative spirit. Thank you, Linda Ibbotson. Your photograph over the buildings of Spain. If looked at long enough, it appears as a surrealist painting, similar to Dali, of a gathering of butterflies. It is striking. Your choice of the poem ‘The Ode to Salvador Dali’ perfectly sets off who Garcia Lorca was as a poet. His words tumble across the page and their clarity surface more chrystal clear with each reading. Amazing Post. Thank you both for sharing such a Great and gifted Poet with us and the man who is immortalized through his work and life of true honesty, beauty and sadness. Jk the secret keeper

    Like

  6. BUTTERFLIES OF TIME
    July 18, 2013

    A great post wafting me away on a journey into history. Lorca’s awesome poem, the picture shot by Linda, her words and Dali’s painting- all combine to make this Wednesday a creative haven for artists. Thank you Linda for sharing your piece and Niamh-Thank you too for this gem of a blog. Sharing.

    Like

    • ontheplumtree
      July 18, 2013

      Yes! Doesn’t it all have such a nice atmosphere? I just couldn’t resist this painting of Dali. It isn’t one of his more familiar. I love the sails made of butterflies.

      Like

  7. Pingback: The Wednesday Poetry Corner With Linda Ibbotson | BUTTERFLIES OF TIME

  8. Juliette
    July 18, 2013

    Thank you for the lovely post and the nice break in my day it provided! The imagery was wonderful! Looking forward to many more Wednesday posts!

    Like

    • ontheplumtree
      July 18, 2013

      Thank you, Juliette, for the comment and stopping by to say hello!

      Like

  9. Linda Ibbotson
    July 18, 2013

    Thank you all so much for your incredible feedback on what was such a pleasure to research and write.. Niamhs beautifully chosen images greatly enhanced the sense of the avant- garde. scene that Lorca was a part of.

    The Secret Keeper.. I am looking forward to watching the film you drew our attention to .. Little Ashes and intend to check that out.!!.Also to see if I can get it on D V D .

    The photograph of the red roofs was taken in an idyllic small resort in Asturias on the northern coast of Spain. Far , yes from Lorcas homeland but I had such a feeling that it matched the poem so well..

    Like

    • ontheplumtree
      July 18, 2013

      Your photography is gorgeous, Linda: ochre, sienna and terracotta. Can’t beat it!

      Like

  10. parth893
    July 18, 2013

    Wow… This is Great post ❤ , about Spain everything is Awesome 😀 , you write naturally & So Smooth ❤ .

    Like

  11. a beautifully crafted commentary on an incredible artist…reminding us of what true beauty…true poetry…is…many thanks to linda for such a wonderful article…and to niamh/plum tree for this great literary/artistic forum…

    Like

  12. Imen Benyoub
    July 18, 2013

    gorgeous, illuminating and perfumed post about one of my favourite poets..bravo Linda for this article..am dwelling in it..xx

    Like

  13. Marisa Rivera Navarro
    July 19, 2013

    Viva Federico!. I share Lorca´s love and admiration with you. Linda. I was born in Granada too. I very much understand the world of Federico Gacía Lorca. My family have been friends with some Lorca´s relatives. I feel so close to Lorca´s magic world .

    Like

  14. Linda Ibbotson
    July 20, 2013

    Thank you.so much Niamh. .Yes,an artists palette of warm evocative colors to stimulate the creative soul ! This photo was taken from the corner hotel room.I stayed in..I am sure it was the a finest room with a view in Puerto Lastres..

    Thank you Parth893 for reading, and I appreciate your lovely comment .I feel very encouraged by your words..I wondered if you too had visited this beautiful country?

    Jenean, It’s lovely to read your comment. and yes,great credit to Niamh for putting this article together in such an attractive way..Thanks so much Niamh. True beauty, true poetry….Lorca was also an accomplished pianist,and his music inspired his literary works.. He also studied philosophy, letters and the law at the Residencia.. but writing was his first love.

    Imen, I am so delighted you enjoyed reading this article and many thanks for your comment. I too feel I am still in Spain !! It would have been so exciting to have lived amongst those inspiring and innovative voices that reached out beyond conformity..

    Marisa . What a delight to hear your family have been friends with Lorcas relatives! You well know the land that inspired his work, and may even have trodden in his footsteps ! A friend has sent me his Duende to read.. I am enthralled ! Thank you so,much for your personal comment Marisa.

    Like

    • ontheplumtree
      July 20, 2013

      Lovely to have such an appreciative readership here on the plum tree. We are varied, and we love to feature new voices. We are a community of the wonderful and deep appreciators of art in all its forms. Great to have you here, Linda.

      Like

  15. Pingback: Contemplating The Muse | Linda Ibbotson I Poet

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