Why poetry film...

Any thoughts of sleeping on the night flight home from New York on 28th June 2008 were thwarted by the woman behind me playing computer games on my headrest. For a while I enviously watched the woman on my right who through sadness or exhaustion remained perfectly still, eyes closed, for the whole journey. To my left Chaucer Cameron was writing –

cool drop from blue through pins of cloud to concrete where heat plays baseball between blocks paint blisters burst from their burgundy coats.

I scanned my photos on the tiny screen of a Canon G5, they were all there: the landing, concrete, baseball, heat, peeling paint. 30,000 feet above sea level, with the lights dimmed, my passion for poetry film began.

In the meeting of words, and images, and sound, there is a formation that can intrinsically be described as a form of poetry itself. In this form of poetry every poetic device can be explored and utilised - rhythm, repetition, metaphor, and so on.


Helen Dewbery

Helen has taught poetry film extensively, in person and online. Her work has appeared internationally at poetry and film festivals, where she has also presented talks and curations. She currently works alongside Nine Arches Press creating poetry films and book trailers with their authors. For seven years she delivered a programme of poetry film events at Poetry Swindon Festival, including events in the community and an outdoor projection. Her video essay ‘In Search of the Perfect Poetry Film’, is a personal journey with a searching quality that resists easy answers or received ideas. She is currently exploring how poetry film is used to express trauma. She has worked on projects which have included the poetry film collection ‘Nothing in the Garden’ and has edited various photography and poetry books.

She is an Associate member of the Royal Photographic Society and approaches poetry film as a contemporary photographic artist, combining still and moving images.

Recipient of four Arts Council England grants to develop writing and poetry film projects.

Films shown at:

  • Bologna in Lettere 2021
  • Athens International Video Poetry Festival 2016, 2019
  • Festival Silêncio in Lisbon 2016
  • Visible Verse Poetry Film Festival in Vancouver, 2015.
  • Sadho Poetry Film Festival, New Delhi, 2015.
  • The Lighthouse Film Poem competition in Poole, 2015.
  • Liberated Words International Poetry Film Festival in 2013 and 2014.
  • Cheltenham Poetry Festival (2013, 2014)
  • Swindon Festival of Poetry (2014, 2015)
  • The University of Gloucestershire (2013, 2014)
  • The Dymock Poets Conference (2015)
  • Film Weston (2014)
  • Bristol Spring Poetry Festival (2015)
  • Writers in the Brewery (2013)
  • The Tivoli (2014)
  • Green Light at Bordeaux Quay in Bristol with Inkling Productions (2016)
  • The Masons Arms London NW10 (2016)
  • The Berkeley Square Poetry Review, Bristol (2016)

Other projects include:
Bath Fringe Festival 2014: Still Points Moving World performance writing exhibition.
Regular solo and group photographic exhibitions at The Gardens Gallery.
Photographs of Nature exhibition at the Everyman Theatre in Cheltenham, 2011.
Nothing in the Garden by Chaucer Cameron and Helen Dewbery, 2014, a poetry and photographic collection.
Co-edited The Museum of Light, 2014, a poetry and photography collaboration.
Co-edited Salt on the Wind: Poetry in Response to Ruth Stone, 2015.

Chaucer Cameron

Chaucer’s poetry has been published in journals, magazines and anthologies. Chaucer is creator of Wild Whispers (2018) an international poetry film project, and regularly curates and presents poetry film at events and festivals.

  • Poetry films screened in UK and internationally.
  • Contributor to Moving Poems: the best poetry videos on the web.
  • Poetry and monologues performed at the Everyman Theatre in Cheltenham.
  • Founder member of Poetry Factory, a critical poetry collective.
  • Poetry film workshop facilitator with Swindon Poetry.
  • MA in Creative writing from University of Gloucestershire.

‘In an Ideal World I’d Not Be Murdered’ can be purchased from the publisher using this link: Against the Grain Press

There will be plenty of books of poetry that grab the headlines and win prizes this year, but none of them will be as important as this one.

Richard Skinner