Poems of the River

Our Poetry Project has well and truly begun, and this week in Spalding, Lincolnshire our Sense team welcomed Poppy and Laila.

The group began with some games to make human sculptures – boats, televisions and elephants all featured! The project is all about multi-sensory poetry. Where do poems come from? How do we tell stories about the river? How do we share those stories?

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Some of the participants spent the first session trying to teach Laila some sign language, and the group started to build a shared vocabulary with critical words for the project. This is a really important feature of all Sense Arts projects. Words like river, boat, duck, bridge and fish need to be understood by all.

Stories of eel fishing in the Fens started the conversation and preparations began for the next phase of the project working with the 16th century stately home, Ascoughfee Hall, who will be playing an important role in hosting our poems later down the track.


Staff from the museum will be sharing objects from their permanent collection with the group, and the theme of rivers will feature strongly. There’s talk of fishing nets, oars, eel traps and even a few stuffed kingfishers and herons.

I’m always impressed by the incredible creativity the artists we support have. It’s not always simple to imagine how an artform could be made accessible, but the artists we support teach me something new every day.

Stay tuned to watch the project unfurl in Spalding and London!



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