From Hypermedia To Hardback Poetry

J.R. Carpenter’s poetry collection This is A Picture of Wind began life as a web-based piece of the same name, which won the Opening Up Digital Fiction Competition People’s Choice Award in 2018. Carpenter’s work is concerned with hypermedia, text-based narratives, and the limits of writing, and in the online version of the work she was able to use a web-interface to combine live weather data, maps, and social media posts. Now in the form of a poetry pamphlet, this new media mindset can be seen in pieces like ‘A Year At Sharpham’, which incorporates quotidian observations posted to Twitter over a seven-year period. The lines have a certain snappiness to them which never lets the reader forget how volatile weather is, how its course is totally out of our control, and why that is the very reason it and Carpenter’s poems are beautiful. This is especially true of ‘The Beaufort Poems’. Carpenter’s exploration of the limits of writing here is masterfully done, as the poetic expressions she collects for each level of the Beaufort Scale – which she linked to a live data feed to picture the wind in real time – tell powerful micropoetic stories exclusively about the action of wind without becoming too similar.

I was impressed by Carpenter’s ability to shape the fragments of what she terms “found language” from each source to create poems that seem so personal, but are actually universal in terms of the subject matter. I can hear distinctive voices in each part of the collection, but the uniting voice is undeniably one that Carpenter has made for herself – she isn’t hiding behind other people’s words, but reigniting them. Although metaphor is scarce in this collection, the personification of nature is often reflective of human emotions, especially in ‘A Year at Tottenham’, ‘A Year at Sissinghurst’, and ‘A Year at Sharpham’. Any human action in this collection is motivated by nature, further emphasising that even in the light of destructive storms, nature is revered.

The hardback of This is A Picture of Wind can be purchased from Longbarrow Press for £12 at

Words: Beatrix Livesey-Stephens

Image: JR Carpenter


—— Like what you see? Consider supporting us! ———
You can support our independent feminist arts journalism for as little as $1 per month on Patreon:

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at

Up ↑


The Network for Multidisciplinary Research on Digital Play and Games



Longbarrow Press

Poetry from the Edgelands

The Taylor Trash

Misadventures in Arts Journalism by Amy Taylor


Beauty & Fashion

Ana Hine, Artist's CV

Last Updated 2020

NUJ Training Scotland

Journalism training for the media in Scotland

Get In Her Ears

Promoting and Supporting Women in Music


Harris Education & Recreation Association

Sez Thomasin

words, words, words.

The Feminist Fringe

The Fringe through feminist-tinted glasses

Genevieve B

Uploading my work for the world to see.

Kathryn Briggs

maker of arty comics

Charlotte Farhan Art - Creating Change

Visual Artist, Published Illustrator, Writer, owner / editor of ASLI Magazine, activist to end rape culture and campaigner to end stigma against mental illness. #artsaveslives

Tales of the Maverick Goddess

My Thoughts, My Words, My Sincerity...

Dundee Urban Orchard

Growing in a greenspace near you



%d bloggers like this: