Tag Archives: Caroline Gill poetry

Folding Mirror Recognised as a New Poetry Form

Amazing news for the Folding Mirror poetry form, and all those who have contributed and supported it here and elsewhere.

After Caroline Gill alerted admin to the opportunity, I sent off some details and examples to Lewis Turco, who is considered to be one of the highest authorities on poetry after the publishing of his The Book on Forms, and it subsequently becoming regarded as the book of reference for poetry forms.

I’m very happy to let you know that Lewis Turco has now accepted the Folding Mirror as a new poetry form, and included it’s description and poem examples by Caroline Gill and Claire Knight on his website of new odd and invented forms. The list is in alphabetical order, and the Folding Mirror appears under that name. The website is a gathering place for new forms, and there could be a new book that includes them in the near future.

I hope you enjoy visiting the site, and thanks again to everybody who has made it possible. Have a great weekend!

Caroline Gill Reviews Marc Latham’s Poetry Collection

Caroline Gill, a valued contributor and supporter of this site, has kindly posted a review of my (Marc Latham) collection: ADHD, Bipolarity and Folding Mirrors on her blog Caroline at Coastcard and a shortened version on the sales page for the poetry ebook on Chipmunka.

To use a construction metaphor for the building of the poems: a review from an accomplished and talented poet appreciating my poetry makes all the mental digging, word cementing and structure forming needed for the work worthwhile.

Anybody reading and enjoying it also makes it worthwhile.

Innovative New Folding Mirror Poem by Caroline Gill

Today, we have a new innovative Folding Mirror poem by Caroline Gill, which not only uses knowledge of the colour wheel to produce a mesmerising mirror effect, but also ingeniously contains the first palindromic folding middle line (the letters mirror each other either side of the b in bat).

I’ll let Caroline explain her rationale, and this is followed by the poem and relevant links.

Thanks to Caroline for creating the poem and sharing it with us here on this blog.


I hoped to build on Dr Marc Latham’s ‘Colours‘ poem, in which Marc used different colours to show linked words.


I wanted to combine complementary colours from the colour wheel with mirror imagery.

Seeing Stars at Sunset is intended to feature opposites: black and white; red and green, orange and blue – in addition to secondary colours that can be mixed from the primaries i.e. green (mixed from yellow and blue); orange (mixed from red and yellow), and purple (mixed from red and blue).

I thought that it would be fun to make a ‘concrete poem’ in the shape of a bat with outstretched wings. For maximum impact it needed to be simple and seen at a glance.

For a more pleasing aesthetic effect on the page or screen, I would have liked a better background colour for the words. The word ‘white’ did not show up on white ground, without a pigmented border of some kind.

The pivotal central line is, of course, a ‘palindromic question’, but I don’t think it would have worked with a question mark at each end!

The Poem

Seeing Stars Folding Mirror Poem
Seeing Stars Folding Mirror Poem


Colour Wheel
Water Colour Painting

Caroline Gill’s New Poem: ‘Thalatta, Thalatta’ (‘The sea! the sea!’)

Today we have another accomplished poet on the site: Caroline Gill. Caroline is the representative in Wales for the Petra Kenney Poetry Competition.

Along with Sarah James, Caroline Gill has been very helpful with the evolution of the Folding Mirror form, and I am delighted to present below Caroline’s debut Folding Mirror poem.

First, Caroline introduces her poem and its inspiration, and without further ado, I’ll hand over to her.

Caroline Gill

The Introduction

‘Thalatta, Thalatta’ (‘The sea! the sea!’) is my first attempt at a Folding Mirror poem.

On a clear day I look across the Severn Estuary to Exmoor and the Hartland Light. I am always conscious of the ebb and flow of the tide, so the sea was a natural subject for me to choose for a poem that has two halves.

My title is a transliteration of the Greek exclamation recorded by the Athenian historian and general, Xenophon. The Greek mercenaries supposedly shouted, ‘The sea! the sea!’ – ‘thalatta, thalatta’ (θάλαττα, θάλαττα) – when they fled from King Artaxerxes II, and caught sight of the Black Sea in 401 B.C.

‘Thalatta’, with its double ‘T’ sound, represents the Attic pronunciation as it was recorded by Xenophon. The word can also be rendered with a double ‘s’ – thalassa.

We sometimes visit Tenby, along the coast from my South Wales home, where Paxton’s sea water bath building of 1811 is graced with a Greek inscription from Euripides. The inscription translates as ‘The sea washes away all the ills of men.’

I wanted my middle line of the poem to be pivotal in the sense that it is the hinge of the Folding Mirror poem. It is, of course, a kind of horizontal mirrored line in its own right.

The turning tide in my poem finds its parallel in the continuing round of day and night. Great gulls (which swoop down) are ‘paired’ with small terns (which soar skywards) for contrast.

For interest, see the cover of the Penguin Classic, The Sea, The Sea by Xenophon.
The Poem

‘Thalatta, Thalatta’
(The sea! The sea!)

Waves roll in at my window.
The sun sets:
The sea is my mirror:
My face is the ocean.
Twilight descends:
Great gulls are swooping.
The storm is brewing:

Turn, Tide, Turn

The storm is abating:
Small terns are soaring.
Daylight approaches:
The ocean is my face.
My mirror is the sea:
The dawn breaks:
Waves roll out from my window.

© Caroline Gill 2009