I started this blog because I began writing poetry and someone said that’s what poets do. I learned afterwards that most of them don’t do any such thing but by then it was too late!
I write about anything I find interesting, visits to places in and around Brighton, London and sometimes France. I include courses I have attended and a bit of home spun philosophy, posts about my garden or allotment and the people I meet. As I come from a family of puppeteers and like painting and photography there were plenty of pics and even some of my poems.
Some kind people decided to recommend me for the following.
Five years later I am still at it… maybe mine will encourage others to have a go?
A scrap book page of autobiography
I was born in the blitz in London with a cleft palate, had breathing problems and my speech was affected for several years. I lived in Highgate with my parents, grandparents and my younger sister, as the daughter’s of marionette makers and performers, we missed quite a bit of formal schooling. We spent much of our time as a children helping with their shows for private parties and summer seasons in seaside towns.
I once helped my mother write books of plays for Pelham Puppets and had two pieces in one of them of my own! I was always writing bits and pieces, it was a lot easier than speaking and in those post war years none of the grown up’s listened much anyway.
Later in life as an adult I wrote in my spare time and had some modest successes – a piece published in the Sunday Times Magazine – a play called ‘Travelling Nowhere’ performed at the Young Vic – two monologues read on Radio 4 – articles in teaching magazines – short stories in magazines and anthologies, poems in anthologies and Writing Magazine. I am a member of the Society of Women Writers and Journalists.
Another more personal reason for stating this blog was because I needed a new focus. I had been my mother’s carer until she went into hospital for a minor operation and, partly due to mismanagement died. It was just too sad and soon afterwards I gave up the last of my freelance contracts and moved to the South Coast with my long term partner. Please note – if you have problems with hospital care it is well worth contacting PALS the patient advice and liaison service. I wish I had known about them earlier!
Gradually life fell into place again and I signed up for a course in Creative Writing at Sussex University to gain a new lease of life and make some new friends. The poetry module was brilliant and I have not stopped reading, writing and entering poetry comps. since.
Please click on the link that follows to get to latest post
Someone said that poets go in for competitions and I did and got shortlisted, long listed and even won a local competition.
. Someone else said poets put collections together and publish them. I learned afterwards that they do no such thing, they approach small presses and get poems published in prestigious magazines. But it was too late because I had already published not just one, but two collections!
The Puppeteer’s Daughter – a new collection of poetry
Available in City Books 23 WESTERN ROAD, HOVE. TEL: 01273 725306 and the Open Art Cafe in Nevill Road, Rottingdean. On Lulu and Amazon
My second collection of poems explores the complexity of life as the daughter of marionette makers and performers. Howevet it also includes poems about the seaside, artists, allotments and the eccentricities of life.
There are also poems from her residency in Postman’s Park in the City of London, thanks to the Poetry School and the London Parks and Gardens Trust.
Tim Dooley “Ann Perrin is an original. Her memories of a world that is almost completely lost are coloured with wit and a vivid eye for detail. These are poems that resonate long after one has finished reading them.
Ann Some of my poems in this collection are autobiographical, some experimental, some free verse as well as traditional styles.
‘Don’t Throw Away the Daisies’ My first collection of poetry as well as my new collection are both available in City Books 23 WESTERN ROAD, HOVE. TEL: 01273 725306 and the Open Art Cafe in Nevill Road, Rottingdean.
John McCullough ‘Ann’s poetry covers the big topics of love and death with originality. Take for instance the title poem which is full of surprises yet also wonderfully poignant.’
Kiersty Boon says – ‘This collection of poems, fully illustrated by the author, is a wonderful journey from a magical childhood of puppets and seaside towns. The delicacy of the difficult stages of life and memories experienced are offset with humorous anecdotes and magical tales for young and old alike.’
Ann I was very happy that someone who bought this book said reading some of the poems to her mother had prompted the latter to share memories of her own. Several teachers have used ‘The old dry stone wall’ as an example of nature poetry and observation in primary school. I am told the book works on several different levels.
Available in colour at the Open Art Cafe in Rottingdean £18.00
The colour version is in my opinion (I am prejudiced) a work of art!
Above= The West Pier – pen and ink Robin my eldest son as a child oil on paper
Last of the poetry info – I have a blog called Beach Hut Poetry.
We bought the hut twenty five years ago when we had a flat in Hove and they were less trendy. Fishermen kept rods in them and families just had rugs and sandwiches. https://annperrinspoetry.wordpress.com/
Allotment on the Weald
A lucky break in retirement was getting a tiny allotment plot after three years on the waiting list. Basically it was a muddy field with an abandoned pond but it gave us a new lease of life.
Film making – I was a keen amateur film maker. Please click on the following link to view my films
Or maybe simply enjoy this one?
Virginia Woolf’s garden.
‘The Hole in the Wall’ from the sublime to the ridiculous but I am rather fond of this film which is of a picture book for children I once made. The book jumped through several hoops with Oxford University Press years ago but in the end the editor who was interested left and the idea was dropped.
Films associated with our marionettes please click on the following link
Alice in Wonderland – was the first and hardest one to make. It is my favourite and was made a couple of years before my mother died She climbed up into the loft of my house in South London to operate some of the characters in her late 70s. The boat scene in the garden was a labour of love and took forever.
Our puppet circus on youtube
A reconstruction based on our popular puppet circus from the 50s and 60s but sadly without the famous clowns’ repartee which I subsequently found on a reel to reel tape..
A circus was always part of our show which included a strong man and an acrobat on a horse. Sadly some of our marionettes were stolen from our garage in Highgate so I could not include them. Ironically the strong man turned up at an auction alone with some other favourites such as ‘Mademoiselle de Paris’ a few years ago. I hasten to say the seller was completely unaware they had once been ours.
A taste of our circus part of the show our show at Buckingham Palace for a children’s party given by her majesty the Queen in the 50s – please click on the following link
Our dedicated website for marionettes
please click on the link http://www.puppethouse.co.uk/
Our marionette collection has puppets we have made and performed with from 1949. It includes clowns, musicians and characters from extracts of plays we once performed including ‘Alice in Wonderland.’
This Alice appeared in an Ice Show in Morecambe in the 50s. My mother had to learn to skate to be part of it.
Please click on the following for a museum update
https://annperrin.wordpress.com/puppethouse/ for a museum update
In 2013 – As part of their commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the Great War BBC South East filmed the conservation of the marionettes and interviewed me about my family’s role in performing with them in the film ‘Oh What a Lovely War’ on Brighton’s West Pier in the 60’s. We all went to the Duke of York’s Cinema for a special showing of the original film.
In 2015 – There are artifacts and posters from the various films, the car made by Emett, a Chitty Chitty Bang Bang . I know because I have been setting up our contribution with the dedicated and creative Marcus Bagshaw, the curator at the Grange, and had a quick preview of the wonderful things which will be on display.
I have 200 other marionettes going back to the 1950s that have now been conserved, some are characters from the circus, plays etc others are large cabaret marionettes. I have been investigating a gallery or museum for a permanent display.
A film for Self Hypnosis and Positive Health
It has been used many times for relaxation but is also worth trying for pain control and may help as part of managing SAD (seasonal affective disorder) Self Hypnosis for Positive Health – there are two options -you can close your eyes and just listen, or watch the images that I added more recently.
Qualifications As an adult in my late 20s I gained one O’level studying part time. I went on to study for a Teaching Certificate and got a distinction in Art and later gained a BA with the OU. Later working in adult education I studied part-time for an M.Sc in Life Course Development at Birkbeck London University.
Finally I worked freelance as a trainer in ‘Life Course Development’ and retrained again to become a Hypnotherapist and a Master Practitioner in NLP – Neuro Linguistic Programming.
Note – I‘m glad someone said I should write a blog because by 1st September 2016 over 16.000 people will have visited this site. There have been over 50.000 views and I have made contact with people from all over the world.
Someone said poets often link poems to film for youtube, because that is the modern thing to do. I learned afterwards that most of them do no such thing, but by then it was too late!
If you have got this far thank you so much for your patience. Ann