When fact and fiction collide
Weight And Flight
By Angela Stoner
FOR THE cover illustration of her first full poetry collection Weight And Flight, Penzance-based Angela Stoner has chosen to use a photograph by Pat Perry of the wind and rain-carved Nag's Head on St Agnes in the Isles of Scilly. Those who know this striking "giant molar of a stone" will appreciate that in her poem, in which she sees it as "Pegasus", she not only grants it a new life but in exploring its weight and flight also finds just about the perfect title for her collection.
An award-winning poet whose poems reflect her interests in mythology and symbols, not forgetting the Cornish landscape, several of the poems in this collection have appeared in such journals as Poetry Cornwall and Second Light.
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Her Swimming My Way Home was commended in the Poetry on the Lake competition, she was a winner in the Poetry Society's Stanza prize, and in the first Poetry Out Loud competition held recently in the Hall for Cornwall. Also only recently, having been inspired by some of her poems, Penwith-based artist Michele Cowmeadow exhibited the works she had made in an exhibition relating to poetry by women.
Acclaimed as "an explorer of the imagination", she is especially good at assuming the skin of another being, whether human, animal, bird or stone, and of giving it soul. She is so skilled at mixing fact and fiction, aspects of the human condition with those of the animal world, blood and stone if you like, that it is difficult at times deciding where myth or reality either begins or ends.
Not that it matters as the language she uses is approachable, direct and pretension-free. Indeed, there are so many admirable poems among the four dozen in this collection it is impossible to mention them all. Each reader will have his or her favourites; for me they are the moving Dachau, the honest Mouse, the sad Travels With Dad, the confessional Uprooting, and the Goddess Of Penwith, which along with the already mentioned Pegasus, is equally magical.
A must for all poetry lovers, Weight And Flight, by Angela Stoner, published by Oversteps books at £8, is available from bookshops in Penzance and St Ives.
As well as being renowned for her own work, she has read her poems often at festivals, particularly at the St Ives September Festival. Angela is also highly regarded for the support and encouragement she provides for other writers. A firm believer that writing helps one to connect with inner dreams and power, she runs workshops to facilitate this process, two of which are being held shortly. The first in St Ives Library, March 15, for writers wishing to find their own inner power. The second at her home 23, Chapel Street, Penzance, March 27, entitled "The six-minute writer". Both run from 10.30am to 12.30pm, cost per workshop is £6.
For further details call 01736 363146 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org