Adrian’s Poem Pics – Part 1

Adrian’s Poem Pics – Part 1

Warning – Viewing this blog edition may cause you to feel emotional.

A huge thank you to all the contributors; photographers, artists and wordsmiths.

Also a thank you in advance for all the future contributors.

Some of the pieces in the first edition below have been published or displayed previously, as the collection has built over time when there has been a drive or a need.

Some were created as gifts; to encourage or console, others when I have been moved by an image or experience. Some were commissions.

(I will have missed some links, so if you are in here send me a link and I will update.)

Romans in Steam by Flavius – Commissioned by the Roman Bath Museum in York, indeed I believe the video version is still on display in this wonderful museum.
(That’s me as a Roman that is – and that’s my Roman given name Flavius Agricola) – Photo by Dave Restless
Note; read straight across – first line being, ‘Let us ever remember as we gather’.

01 flavius

Cat’s Cradle – A commission for an exhibition of Fairy-tale. Fifty groups in New Earswick ‘the Garden Village’ responded. We achieved our aim of promoting the local young people’s drama group play and of creating an on-going exhibition. It still can be seen in the local library.
(If you want to become part of such an amazing theatre group as We Are Theatre let me know…)
(The full exhibition may well be a future blog upon enough requests)

cradle 01

And anyway, what is fairy tale?!?!

King John – Written for the York Angel Festival to celebrate the eight hundredth anniversary of York being declared a city by King John. I read this poem from an ice throne; and so did The Right Honourable Sonia Crisp Lord Mayor of York.

king john

The Be A Gardener poem was written while working on my allotment and I created the art work to accompany it as a birthday present for my Father. Interestingly, I have just found a link to a site which has published it, no idea where they got it.

(the text is easier to read if you click ‘link’ and then ‘read more’)


Bridge of Life – this poem was created from the gathered words of Angela Jones, Tove Gulbrandsen, Georg Hansen and myself.

bridge of life 02

The Only Way – part of a series of poem cards: Adrian’s Epigrams where I sought to keep the wording as short as possible and yet still retain a poetic element. This one of course comes from personal experience.

through card

The Seiðberendr Speaks – Part of a forthcoming story recording created in partnership with Chloe Anderson this is the planned introduction where we hear a transgender Völva gives a message to Ragnar. (Photograph taken in Gudvangen in 2011 by Leif-Arne Furevik)

ragnar on lief

Place of Safety – I made this model for my Mother and upon giving it to her discovered that it is the cottage she holds in her mind; her dream-world cottage. My Grandmother used to tell her that when things were difficult or upsetting there was a place in your mind you could go where you were safe and rested. As a result of this my Mother created a cottage just over the hill where she could go in her thoughts.


My Flowers for Mona – (A memorial I sent to be printed and displayed among the flowers for her) –
From those first days of travelling to be a Viking and in between the times between, the wish to be in touch and understand, she was there and shared and introduced, and inspired, trying always to have me feel included and invited; to be a part – Across a wild and vibrant sea. I hear the song she sent me now inside my heart.


Anoraks – More of a performance poem perhaps, so try and imagine my voice (but even more nerdy)
(words me, art work Ana Maus)


I was so affected by these guys. My words might not be quite what they were about; they just flooded out of me when I heard their drones, chants, beats and song. I cried.
Folket Bartophor Nordavinden

cry to mother

That Pink Dress – Part of the Read All About It project for We Are Theatre where we created stories and postcards (and indeed a full free book). This was part of an impromptu sessions and I was so moved and pleased to find myself in possession of a poem by the magical Janey Stockdale.

pink dress smaller

The Jacobs Well Project – Many thanks to the wonderful Mary Passeri for allowing me to be part of this amazing project where we gathered to share with people who suffered dementia and with their loved ones. There is a whole series and I hope to share them all with you in the near future (With Mary’s final artwork). Here are a few of the poems with Mary’’s on the spot art.

mellow tomorrows
carers pledge
nowhere dear

From Arm of Man – I was moved by this photograph which was part of a series by Tove Gulbrandsen, who sees with the eyes we all should have.
Bjorgvin, Bergen, Norway.
The Marknad


Olav – I hesitated to write this, I hesitated to publish it here; Olav just does what is needed. He doesn’t want this fuss and praise. Perhaps we should all get on with it and be just as great!
(It is worth mentioning, there was a great deal of very dark smoke, the van was small, the bus full of passengers were in great danger, the tunnel was long, rescue services hesitated; Olav didn’t)


Norway – It changes you breath by breath.

norway view

(Photo by Tove Gulbrandsen)



There is a whole load to come…

Poem Pics Part II

Poem for a Freind

or travel or trains – we are into silly short blogs here I think – or films – or My Kinder Joy – or my ghost creation kitYour holiday read – and Easter ChicksIf

Thanksgiving, (This is a bright Friday), made possible by only one word…

Thanksgiving, (This is a bright Friday), made possible by only one word…

By only one man.

Those pilgrims they landed they tried and they struggled. Nothing worked. They really suffered. Nothing grew, all the seasons were wrong. They came down with all of the things that were just like at home but different, different enough to do them real harm. They even tried hunting, but even that was other than they had known. This was a new country where God had made things other than they had believed would be possible. As many laid sick and indeed dying, they gave it one more try. A small band went out looking for game and they met with something totally unexpected. This is the word. This is the message. America (Americas) listen. This is the word. “Welcome.” This is what they heard.

How could that small band of travelling originals know one word of English, “Welcome” but they did so. They cautiously walked towards the struggling settlers and spoke the one word of English they knew “Welcome” all this way from the homeland.

This was the moment which gave the Americas English. This is the reason that as new settlers arrived they heard English. All along the coasts were settlements where it was the language and new arrivals from Germany, Poland, Spain, The Ukraine, from the known world heard and adapted.

This was the word of Squanto.

For that welcoming band (that small ‘nation’) led the poor settlers to another tribe but their own. They took them to a ‘nation’ where Squanto lived.

It was Squanto who took them in, who travelled with them, who settled with them for a while. He taught them how life was different here. They gathered seeds because of him. They learned the lore. The lore of this land the Americas. And they thrived.

In years to come, they would be all along the coast, coastal settlement to coastal settlement; welcoming the new arrivals in English, just like the tribal band before them, “Welcome” “Welcome” “Welcome”

This was the doing of one person, one person on this earth; Squanto.

Many, many years before, other strangers had come, they had come to take, and they took him. Squanto the slave had to work; had to work on an alien vessel, doing alien things. Hard they treated him, and hard he worked. Then came the time that they traded him. To yet another alien vessel, in an alien world, at an alien port.

From there he sailed with this new crew to another world. To a port, as he learned they called them. To the port of London. More beings in one glimpse than he had ever seen in his life.

But he saw his life ahead of him and he jumped ship. He left. He escaped. He survived. He learned the language. English.

Time went by and he had what he needed to know. The ships that landed here could go anywhere. So he asked and he asked, and one of these ships said yes. The captain agreed, yes he was going to the ‘new’ world and yes he would employ him.

All Squanto required in payment was nourishment. Nourishment and hope.

The journey was long. And it was hard.

The shore, at last, was before him. The captain was true to his word. Squanto was free.

He was not bitter. He had learned. And he knew one word more than any other.

Long was his walk, it took him years, but he got down that coast, till he started to recognise where he was…

And was he welcomed, he who had come back from the dead, all these years gone.

As an older wiser man, he taught all around him. The only way to survive in this ‘new’ larger world was to welcome. To welcome.
He taught this word to all who came near him.

And those settlers, all those years onwards were welcome.

All along the coast of the Americas his one true word echoed. “Welcome.” “Welcome.” “Welcome.”


Be thankful and be welcoming.

For this is Thanksgiving.

or travel or trains – we are into silly short blogs here I think – or films – or My Kinder Joy – or my ghost creation kitYour holiday read – and Easter Chicks

Viking Comic Book update – Very Exciting – (but it is still not a blog)

I thought you would like to see the progress in this exciting project so here is an updated version – The final Viking Comic Book is just around the corner…

(Expected launch date – early December)

You may also enjoy New Viking Heaven Discovered

Adrian Spendlow The Blog

header 01(The above is very definitely a draft)

A wonderful progress report.

ask 01will grow 01The birth of the project is covered in my wordpress blog

I have added in pictures done so far, in most cases they are very not the final image or a good copy even. They give a very good idea of how we are progressing.

The end layout will be comic book style and I am researching and seeking guidance to make the space as comic booky as possible.

There has already been a suggestion that I create a banner display to exhibit at woodland festivals.

Artists and contributors will always be credited of course.

Page 1

thor less flash croppedmjolnir 01 text box(Above by Chloe)

ruins text 01Page 2

The below is a fun temporary image from me – utilising anna’s hammer (which will be part of the montage)

m flies on adrian 01mjolnir 02 textJackie of Swanhilda’s Sweets on ebay who does Viking Trade Route jewellery is doing the above.


View original post 270 more words

We Work Together Now

We Work Together Now

The questions of the moment, or the night
My broken heart, doubts, fear; the never sleep
Are nothing to the streets of bereaved
The grieving souls, the little village
Grey post-apocalyptical ruins
Paris streets

I may be broken yet; there is no drone of power above my head
As perverted beings unleash their brain-wash death
Or news-announce their backlash breath
I, for this, at last, am thankful

Not like them, and lucky too
There is a fearful chill though
It is rumbling through
Right through the heart of all, right now
Universal news spatters death at us
And we are one
Are one

Look at your friends list
(The one you searched for Paris friends)
We are of the earth at last
And we are one
Cry tonight, and cry long
Cry long
Resolve as you feel the tears fall
To talk to all you know across the world
And say, we changed tonight, we linked and changed

There is no barrier between
And we are one
We are one
Yes we, at last, are one


Welcome and walk the way of the Vikings

Welcome and walk the way of the Vikings – Seljord Folkehøgskule

AdrianVF-wave cropped

I am about to stand on a platform at York Station and welcome Jeppe, Linnea and their host of Vikings to the land of Jorvik. I look forward to meeting them and to spending time with their crew who have learnt so much.


(Jeppe is second right as we look)

As you have read in the media the
Viking – Live out your dreams course at Seljord Folk High School, Norway
teaches all you need to know to understand how it was to live as a Viking.

course building

You become a Viking in fact, and a main part of the course is to step back in time to walk the way of the North-Men.

leah and eric

This is where I come in. Once I have stood on that platform to welcome the returning kin we will be walking the way of the Viking. The past and the pathways shall come alive.

chloe backart by Chloe Anderson

In cooperation with the Jorvik Viking centre and the spirits of the before I shall step them along the ways of old. We will stand where kings stood, where boats arrived, where heads were lost and where fish was sold.

leah crafts

This is an initial blog. You will hear more as the week goes along. And, this is an initial meeting. You will hear also of plans for the future for visiting Vikings; from re-enactments to re-encookments much is to be experienced in time to come.

viking broth

If the Telemark lake monster doesn’t get them first.


To join the course (or wish you had) click here

Seljord Folkehøgskule might well be surprised when I greet them on the platform, I will not just be greeting them as a Jorvik Viking, or as the Hiberno-Norse who is in my heart but as an active member of Njardar Vikinglag for Gudvangen Viking Valley where I am the Chieftain’s skald.

ade silouhette

I am planning to say, “Som Skald av Njardar Vikinglag i Norge jeg ønsker deg velkommen til det nye landet der vikingene tilhøre” – As the Skald of Njardar Vikinglag in Norway I welcome you to the new country where Vikings belong.


Oh yes; and a few of the York University Medieval Society Vikings are coming along too.


Watch for more news of the way of the Viking.

jorvik viking

You may also enjoy New Viking Heaven Discovered

And my fun travelogue on getting across London

This Just Actually Happened – a poem (of the moment)

This Just Actually Happened
(16.29 Sunday 8th November 2015)

There just was a knock upon my quiet door
I asked his name
I asked no more
He gave advice
Before he left
He said he was The Wanderer


Now try my Haunted House blog

or travel or trains – we are into silly short blogs here I think – or films – or My Kinder Joy – or my ghost creation kitYour holiday read – and Easter Chicks


The image below is just a start on building a word and text selection on the topic of storytelling. I would like you to send me suggestions of what to add. This could be just a picture or a piece of artwork, or an inspirational line or two on the power of story or a reaction to how my storytelling effects you.

Please send me your suggestions to add in here (I will do all the adding text to image part of the job)

blog hallow

Here is a replacement for the above, and the pumpkin pic will reappear with new words soon.

blog hallow 02
best teller

Here is a wonderful piece from Jude Heaton based on my Hobb tales…

(The text is enlarged below)

hobb poster
Text 01
Text 02

Jude’s work in my Comic Book Blog

Plus your contributions…

(read the blog from the very beginning)

You may also enjoy New Viking Heaven Discovered

And much on story on this jam-packed links page