(after Garcilaso de la Vega)
Love offered me a cloth so fine and rich,
with folds so ample, I could not refuse
but sewed myself a habit, stitch by stitch.
I find the garment shrinks with daily use:
its generous measures pucker and draw tight,
I suffocate where once I’d room to spare;
I stretch and strain to free myself, I fight,
yet still the precious fabric will not tear.
Come, show me one who wants to cut these ties –
these homespun tapes we fashion for our lives
to bind ourselves to husbands or to wives –
and I will show you one who’s spinning lies.
Each wears the cloth he wove, though I confess
I wonder if mine’s shroud or wedding dress.
Award-winning poet, writer, translator and entrepreneuse, with a career spanning IT, teaching, design and publishing, Gwyneth specialises in copy writing and transcreation, particularly in the fields of lifestyle, travel and technology.
As joint owner of Tantamount and its companion organisation, authorbranding.co.uk, Gwyneth works with freelance creatives, businesses and educators on projects that draw together the threads of publishing, design, technology and training.
As a writer, she is fascinated by the multi-layered aspects of language revealed through translation and poetry, and her creative writings explore the borderlands between writer and narrator, between translation and creation, and between memoir and invention.
She was Poetry Coordinator and Digital Advisor to the SWWJ, the UK's oldest professional organisation for women writers, for whom she has run workshops and courses in subjects including creative writing, translation, and technology for writers.
The essential poet's toolbox for readers and writers
The course contains more than 20 lectures and over 2 hours of video content. It is especially suited to novice poets and readers, as well as writers of other genres who are interested in expanding their repertoire or in understanding their poetical colleagues.
I developed this course to shine a light on to some of the inner workings of poetry, to enable others to understand and appreciate what poets are doing, and to help them recognise when this is working. Like most things in life, poetry is more fun when you know what's going on: I hope that by taking the course, you, too, can share the fun.
Los vecinos and other animals
Brief essays from the pueblo
The essays of ex-pat life in Los vecinos and other animals have been adapted from articles published in The Reader, an English-language newspaper based in Almería and distributed principally to the large population of British and other foreign nationals based in the Murcia region of Southern Spain.
The column, Outside the Box, which appeared in The Reader between 2009 and 2010, followed the same pattern as the Capital Letters column published for some years in The New Entertainer, with occasional Spanish phrases incorporated into the mainly English texts.
Castles in Spain
This anthology of speculative fiction from ten of Spain’s top genre writers includes hard science fiction, cyberpunk, alternate history, time slip, fantasy and horror.
Gwyneth contributed the translations of El bosque de hielo - The Forest of Ice -by Juan Miguel Aguilera and Mensajero de Dios - God’s Messenger - by Rodolfo Martínez.
Writing in circles. A writers' group handbook
Gwyneth has belonged to many writers’s groups in the UK, in Spain and online, and she realises that no two groups are the same; they do, however, have things in common, and there are lessons to be learned from all of them.
This handbook includes a discussion of points to consider before setting up a new writers’ group, as well as a series of short first-person essays – Group Encounters – based around the meetings of a fictionalised group. In addition, the final section – A Critter’s Companion – includes advice on how to deal with receiving critique, and an essay on how to critique poetry - one of the banes of mixed-genre writing groups.
A poet's dozen
Touching on such topics as poetry structure, form, sound, perspective, narrators, workshops and readings, this collection brings together thirteen brief essays on poetry written by Gwyneth in her capacity as Poetry Coordinator of the SWWJ, for the Society’s in-house magazine “The Woman Writer”, between 2012 and 2015.
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Around the Corner from Hope Street
Around the Corner from Hope Street is a contemporary poetry collection by Gwyneth Box, written in English but set in Spain. Illustrated by the graphic artist Lance Tooks, and seen from the point of view of a single female narrator, the poems deal with themes of love, alienation and isolation, recovery and renewal, as well as demonstrating a keen observation of nature and the simple pleasures of daily life.
Read sequentially, the collection reveals a narrative thread, with the poems progressing chronologically over a period of 15 months. The first poem – "On Breaking Up" – establishes a post-relationship setting, while the early pieces go on to show us a melancholy narrator holding on to talismans and mementoes but determined to keep going. Despite the autumnal atmosphere, even these early poems demonstrate a quirky outlook and a degree of optimism from a narrator whose very nature places her "just around the corner from Hope Street".
iBook for iPad
This enhanced poetry eBook, designed specifically for iPad, includes sound files of the poems read by the author.
If you’d like to know more about the background to Hope Street, download the eBrochure for iPad.
Poems from the Pueblo. Haiku and assorted fragments
Nature and human nature, the natural world and everyday life in a Spanish “pueblo” are the main inspirations behind the thirty-five short poems included in Poems from the Pueblo. Haiku and assorted fragments. Arranged by season, from winter and on through to the following winter, and illustrated with photos by the author, the collection also includes the essay “House of Cards” which describes the process from notebook jotting to finished poem.
At bedtime, white bubbles blossom in the bathroom, taking David on a flight of fancy to a magic world of colors and scents.
A bilingual poetry/picture book in Spanish & English, illustrated by Sonia Sánchez.
Gwyneth has also translated a number of other children's books for Topka. They are all published in bilingual (Spanish/ English) versions and are all available from the Topka website.