A Poem of a Dream of the Woods

New work from wild adventuring in Spinney Wild Woods (South Cambridge)

Poems by Jackie Kay and children from The Spinney Primary School
Illustrations by Elena Arévalo Melville, including trees and monsters by the children
Design concept and editing by Deb Wilenski

As an adult you return to your time in the woods again and again: the dens you made, the promises, the secrets, the friends, pledges, potions…you remember it vividly, if you are lucky, if you still possess the tiny golden key that unlocks the door to your childhood imagination.  Working with the wonderful children of The Spinney took me back there, put the tiny key into my writer’s hand… 
Jackie Kay

For four days in Summer 2015 writer Jackie Kay joined Year 1 and Year 3 from The Spinney Primary School in their wild woods and classrooms.  The invitation was not to give a masterclass in poetry writing, but to explore alongside the children who had been adventuring in the woods already for several weeks with their teachers Emily Garrill and Jenny Ryan, and CCI artist Deb Wilenski.

Year 1 had found places for phrases from Jackie’s poem The world of trees to live in their own woods and when Year 3 found them the following day they were fascinated:  Maybe it’s someone’s dream and they left it in the woods…Maybe it’s a poem of a dream of the woods…

In this new 40 page full colour publication we share Jackie’s poems from the woods and a small selection from the children’s journals.  They are beautifully illustrated by the children’s intricate drawings of trees and monsters, alongside on-site sketches and a new Fantastical Map of Spinney Wild Woods by Elena Arévalo Melville.

A Poem of a Dream of the Woods