Wood Worms by David Morley


Poem, installation and explanation by David Morley

Video by University of Warwick, UK

This is one of a serious of videos featuring Morley and his Slow Poetry workshop. A University of Warwick newsletter has more on the poetry trail Morley constructed:

Warwick academic and poet Professor David Morley recently contributed over 80 poems to a “slow art” poetry trail in woodland at Bolton Abbey, North Yorkshire. The “slow poems” are written into natural materials to form a woodland trail and will remain there until they naturally fade and disappear.

The slow art trail aims to raise awareness of environmental issues and explore how artists can develop a more sustainable approach to their creative practice. David Morley, Professor of Creative Writing, was inspired by natural features of the estate including an abandoned Christmas tree plantation, the River Strid, and Barden Tower.

His collection includes ankle-high Haikus written into Elm and longer poems written on easels and fabric. The ‘slow poems’ are designed to be contemplated and enjoyed in the natural woodland and landscape of Bolton Abbey.

The project was developed by Chrysalis Arts – an award-winning public art company which works to regenerate communities by creating public artwork that expresses and reinforces local identity and sense of place.


  1. Reply
    Brenda 27 July, 2009

    I think this is fabulous. A poem in stereo while you walk. Steve Reich in a woody poem of branded stakes. The only quibble is that the video moved too quickly for me – I needed some slow shots of the words that are burned, chiseled in the wood. While I realize that the ‘pause’ button works very well, and I used it, and that the video was representing a walk down this path, had I been there in person, I would have stopped to read, to ponder, to wonder.

    • Reply
      Dave Bonta 27 July, 2009

      I agree. It would been nice if the camera had spent a few seconds on each stake. But it’s a great concept. (Check out some of the other videos in the series, too.)

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