Writing prompt-Ireland-voodoo-Derry
© www.anniewrightphotography.com

Recently my photos served as inspiration for the Stromness Writers Group on Orkney where I was having an exhibition. My friend Gill Tennant suggested using my work as writing prompts, and this image of Derry (Northern Ireland) was one of the options on offer. Here is the accompanying poem by the writer and poet Gabrielle Barnby, which I find extraordinarily eloquent:

The Maker

Icons stacked as hubcaps against the wall,

the moonlit images dissemble,

yet a subtle hand is at work

in gilt and wood.


A woman, hair half-covered

nose to nose with her child,

savours breath,

lids lowered,

lips not quite touching.


Her shawl shields the babe from a bright mirrored halo

there is peace in that moment, stillness

in the world of dove and pearl,

of liquid dew

or ice

that holds no pretension to last.


No tint, not one colour or another

for the girlish face with

eyes that look to the horizon.




Leaned at the front, a frieze of two cupids,

a boy that wants and takes,

a stolen kiss.




Behind them, the man who loves and forebears,

and against his profile the wife who holds his foster child

hidden from view, the precious cause

of their peace and joy and fear.

The sanctity of an instant

where in the flowing garment of time

lives join together.


Only in one small scene set in rich brown wood

is the whole family on view.

Time has passed,

breathing, smiling and watching

no longer sharp

knives of joy.


She, the woman, with her hair covered, and the man and the child,

come alive in the maker’s hands,

over and over again,

always with love,

always aglow.


Gabrielle Barnby, Dec 2017 http://gabriellebarnby.com/