‘Centaurs and Rumours’ Whisper 3/3: Transformations Poems (Book 12)

26 Feb


George Braque Metamorphoses

February 2013-March 2014

17 poets, 15 months, creating 1 contemporary reworking of Ovid’s Metamorphoses

See the Transformations Page for more details or the ‘Present Collaborations’ Tab


Poems Inspired by Book 12


Kate Garrett and Eleanor Perry


Rumour’s Kingdom

by Kate Garrett

The hum through the knots
of narrative is palpable
in a chain of red tabloid tops
on a shelf in the corner shop.
The hum runs through the heads
in the queue as you stand waiting
to pay for your pint of milk:

her down the road
him off the telly
a child is missing
their house burned down
adultery robbery assault
someone is guilty
someone’s to blame

And you stop trying to undo
the tangles in the ropes,
let them fall at your feet, ignored.
You smile and nod across the din
of this strip-lit palace, gossip hub,
pushed down into silence.



by Kate Garrett

You can survive battle after battle,
but that first one doesn’t leave you.
The gods try to replace what they’ve
taken away & never manage
a fair trade. If it was in my power
to say this won’t happen again, Neptune,
no man or god will twice penetrate me,
see here, my new-found shield of hate …
but it’s not. It’s in his. A gift.
My only protection: the change from beauty
to beast, the double loss of self;
shards of a girl float in time between us.


house of rumour

by Eleanor Perry


tithe lust to distil a tongue spirant
the hiss and how thus brusht to blather as
ajar ajar the thresh of pressed echo is
pursemouthed, slight synths bankrupted
and whissing lashlung reeds, the brisk
where gristyl-boned thinning topples
upturned, unshelling seethe and murling
swell. O error in ten thousand shapes, a pulp
slow champing clips of birth or bleed slung
threaded there, and gather stragged yes
lessened or listen maybe scuttled somewhere
hollow that the jawbone knows or vowels
clucking pearls for lightless pores where
slit the curve of graze and fine eyelid.

You can find more about Kate and Eleanor here:

Kate Garrett




Eleanor Perry



One Response to “‘Centaurs and Rumours’ Whisper 3/3: Transformations Poems (Book 12)”

  1. Gill O February 26, 2014 at 2:11 pm #

    Poets, I am in awe of you. Quite wonderful pieces. I found “Caeneus” particularly moving and “house of rumour” astonishingly evocative. Experiencing your poems helps make today really good!

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