my poem 해녀 featured on Jose Angel Araguz’s thefridayinfluence

i am over the moon to report that the poet Jose Angel Araguz, author of the beautiful, aphoristic The Book of Flight, has published one of my poems 해녀, alongside photographs by the mythographer, filmmaker & photographer of Joey Rositano, on his blog thefridayinfluence.

you have perhaps read about my admiration of Jose’s work before that he was the first contemporary poet i read who made me see the value in writing from this generation, rather than from this generation with the pulse of another generation long since flat-lined. i would never have placed myself, my experiences of this chanced upon life, into my poetry were it not for reading Jose; so for him to now see value in my work after i have admired his for some time is a wonderful feeling. it is always appreciated when strangers passing through, register with some aspect of my work, but when it is someone you  truly regard as a titan of words then it really is a hallelujah moment.

& to add to this there’s Joey Rositano, who is doing so much important work in the area of Jeju  religion; the fella actually learned the Jeju dialect & has had rare access, which has allowed him to witness, intimately, the traditions of the Jeju people & the 해녀;  an ongoing project of 4-5 years now. Joey has had access to the 해녀 few people get, he has been out in the boat with them whilst they dive, he has been to their rituals & i can only surmise it is because he has won their affections by his efforts to learn their native customs, his efforts to stop the demolition of their village shrines, to ultimately speak with them in a language most surmise only they can know. his documentary on Jeju shamanism is almost complete & promises to be a monumental spectacle; i only hope i can get some time off work to go to the opening. if you want to read more about Joey’s research go to pagansweare.wordpress.com

here are some more photos by Joey for you to feast your eyes on:

17 Comments Add yours

  1. Congratulations! I think its really amazing how one’s life goes. You were born in the middle of England but found a life on the other side of the world in rural Jeju and are now bringing attention to its less well known local traditions across the world. It really is a global village.

    1. sure is, but i am just the conduit, the real work is being done by my pal Joey, i think you’ll really like what he is doing. he is the real deal.

      1. I like how he is bringing attention to the destruction of the shrines, it is important to protect cultural heritage and prevent sacrilege. I’ve followed his blog.

      2. he will become more active with the blogging soon i think, but he is a busy fella. he is trying to get them UNESCO protected i think.

      3. That is good, I think its funny how they are destroying there own heritage while you have probably done more to protect the environment and heritage than they have with your poetry, helping that local Buddhist monk and for running an ecologically sound and tastefully designed inn.

      4. i don’t think i’ve done much, i don’t really know how to do much about the problems that surround us, i just do what i can with what i have to hand, which isn’t much. my major contribution i suppose is that i give up my right to do things so other’s can, to try & set an example that may lead to balance, such as not even learning to drive, not eating meat or processed food, trying to buy local. i looked into buying clothes not made in sweatshops, but it is so difficult. i don’t think it my responsibility to tackle that one. i’d have to order from certain companies & its such a rigmarole. if you were to be completely environmentally friendly, the extremities you would need to go to would leave you with very little room for maneuvering.

      5. I think you should be very proud of what you are doing, for it is actually no small matter. Buddhist texts are full of examples of people who offered a sugar cane or some robes to the Buddha Dharma and reaped heavenly rebirth in return. Your offerings to the monk are no less, and you have all the other virtues to boot.

        I wish we could design all cities to be car free, I feel that just letting anyone command this combination of steel, petrol and high speeds simply isn’t a good long term solution.

      6. it can’t last, it’s going to take some serious innovation & some habit changing policies to come into effect.

      7. I agree, but if man can build planes and fly, I believe when the circumstances push, change will come.

      8. i hope you’re right.

  2. Nice new site design, I like it. Very professional with the new upgraded domain name. I like that there is the picture of the inn. I suggest a dedicated page for the inn and cafe, that is something many will be interested in.

    1. it’s been a long time coming, thanks for noticing. i won’t be making any dedicated pages to the Inn, simply because it is my work, & i’d like to keep it at arms length, with just a brief mention now & then. but thanks for the recommendation. i am working on some photos of my dishes, so maybe next week it’ll be up, for you.

      1. That’s great, I understand the need for work life balance. But the food will be popular I’m sure.

      2. we’ll see. i don’t like food blogs really, not my thing. so i am doing it as a personal favour to you, because you have been kind.

      3. Thank you very much!

  3. Congratulations. Your work should be present WAAYYY more often in the consciousness of people everywhere! 🙂

    1. cheers Daniel. & thank you for your long response that i am yet to respond to, simply because it was something to take note of rather than react with words to. i appreciated the advice, now to try & let it seep into my ongoing method of seeing. i hope WAAYYY more of my work can find homes. we’ll see. but i think i best send more things out. i just enjoy building my blog at the moment.

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