It has been an intense Summer, I have been involved in lots of different projects and my personal life took a sudden and a sad twist, when I lost a dear friend to cancer. I was devastated at her loss and felt very adrift, but through the ‘Blanket of Poppies’ project, I found solace, comradeship and the wonder of what women can be when brought together.
The Blanket of Poppies is an incredible art and participatory project that has lovingly been brought into the world by the artist Charron Pugsley-Hill, the work is based on the heroine and WW1 nurse, Edith Cavell. Cavell saved over 200 troops whilst she was a nurse in Belgium and a 100 years ago she was executed by firing squad for her actions. Not only was she brave in the face of war, she believed and try to do the right thing and she is a role model to many. Please find out more about her at: https://revdc.wordpress.com/
The blanket is made up of 49 poppies that have been made by women from across the country and there were workshops led by Charron and the felting artist, Eve Marshall and they were just extraordinary. Mostly the women did not know one another but very quickly we were exchanging heartfelt stories about ourselves, praising women, talking about motherhood, nursing and Edith. The workshop I attended was a day or so after my friend had been diagnosed with cancer and through out the day, the women on the workshop and their words comforted me and they gave me space to be quiet and also some excellent advice was given. I just want to say a public thanks to them as they don’t understand what they did and the comfort they gave me, thank you and thanks to Charron for allowing me to be part of that.
The Blanket is a stunning piece of artwork in its own right but with the poignancy of Cavell’s life to inspire it and then knowing that the piece is made with all that sharing, love and all of those women’s voices, makes it simply unique.
My role in the project is to write some poetry to coincide with the work and I have managed to write some pieces that hopefully reflect Cavell’s incredible life and those of the participants in the project too. I will definitely post up a couple of the poems when the revealing of the blanket is done but till then do keep an eye on what the project is up too, please go to Charron’s blog: http://www.charronpugsleyhill.com/
There is a service of commemoration on the 12th of October at 7:00am in Peterborough and please do come along for the actual revealing, here is the facebook event here: https://www.facebook.com/events/968482246544090/
& there are many events that are celebrating Cavell, so please do go along to find out more.
The photo below is some of my poetry being embroidered by the wonderful Karen Tibbett, also as part of the project, its like all my birthdays at once, my poetry in beautiful textile work. Please check out Karen at her website: http://www.tilly-rose.co.uk/ oh and Eve Marshall at her site: http://www.evemarshall.co.uk/shop/