Helen Grant and the Power of Poetry

Helen Grant

Helen Grant is the VC Gallery’s poet in residence, tasked with running regular workshops on the theme of the Art of Memories.

“I am delighted to be involved in such a worthwhile project,” she told us when we spoke recently via Zoom. “The VC does such good work in Pembrokeshire with service men and women and the wider community, using art as a means of bringing people together and reducing trauma, and isolation.”

Funded by the Armed Forces Covenant Fund, the Art of Memories poetry workshops are encouraging anyone with experience of the armed forces whether in person, or through a friend or relative, to turn their stories into works of art.

Helen said: “As a keen poet I am facilitating regular workshops where people have an opportunity to express their stories in poetry form. Poetry is such a powerful medium, giving voice to a wide range of experiences. This project encourages all ages and ranges of ability, from accomplished poets to those who would just like to have a go in a friendly supportive environment.”

Helen has lived in Pembrokeshire since she was 15, though she spent most of her holidays here as a child. After a spell at Bath Spa to study creative writing and psychology, and then Chicago for some time, her interest in poetry developed into a passion.

“I was inspired in the early days by the Beat generation. People like Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg. They remain firm favourites, but I have found in these challenging times that nature poetry has been a focus. I love the work of Mary Oliver.

“There are so many beautiful places in Pembrokeshire, one cannot fail to be inspired. I am blown away by Bosherston. It is a place that has everything, trees, the pond, sand. It is truly magical.”

Writing about her life and her travels, Helen knows that a poem can come from anywhere. It makes her ideally placed to inspire others to find the poetry within them and around them, and we are delighted to say that Helen has agreed to share some of her poetry with Pembrokeshire.Online. Look out for this treat. Coming soon.

The Art of Memories is an invitation for people to bring their stories of service life, both traumatic and humorous and see them come to life in ways they might not have expected.

The VC Gallery would love to hear from you with stories of action, stories of camaraderie, stories of families left behind. Funny stories, sad stories, and stories of all shades in between. They will eventually be published in a book of poems, which will form part of a Remembrance Tour in locations across Pembrokeshire.

For more information on this and on Helen Grant’s poetry workshops, contact:

The VC  Gallery, 30 High Street, Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire SA61 2DA

Email: admin@thevcgallery.com

Phone: 01437 765873

Kitty Parsons

Kitty has forgotten how long she has been here now but she loves Pembrokeshire for its beauty and it's people. She spends her time searching out stories for pembrokeshire.online, swimming in the sea , drawing and painting as Snorkelfish and eating cake. She says "Pembrokeshire.online has been an opportunity to celebrate this beautiful county and its people. Keep the stories coming. We love to hear from you."

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