• Poetry

    I write poetry as a process of engaging with my work. As imagery emerges, poems gradually take shape through later reflection. Poems explore the intuitive imagination as it has become revealed through the images and they give the title to their relational art work and print. 











    The short poem for the print 'Womb Hermit' which was inspired by this print image was published in the Edinburgh Printmakers on-line catalogue for the  Deluge Exhibition 2018. The poem, a haiku, makes comment on the algorythms which track and influence our consumer trends. 




    'Womb Hermit'





    Refusing Algorythms' Midwife, Womb Hermit 


    Known Unknowns 

    of Delugaic Being.





    ( Irena Narbutt Copyright 2018).

    The poem 'A Present'  a haiku composed of 3 verses was inspired by my stone lithography print for Edinburgh Printmakers 50th Anniversary 'Paper to Gold' exhibition 2017. The haiku contemplates a celebration of creative life and work and the relationship between imagery and poetic language.




    'A Present ' 


    Leaving words, black ink 

    finds A Present capturing 

    of a breath through stone


    an ancient pond - still 

    sounding invisible, - view 

    such stone clear ringing

    Artist Makes Statement 

    Leaving most words to others 

    Just not this haiku 



    ( Irena Narbutt Copyright 2017 )





  • Excerpts

    • 'Toughy Little Words'(2015)

      "…grisally bits of meat

      difficult to chew over difficult 

      to eat

      ….stringy things


      on a waiting plate.." 

      In 'Toughy Little Words' mulling over the words to use and play with becomes the focus of the piece... 

      ( Irena Narbutt Copyright 2015)


    • From 'Restless Lover at 0.4.33 hours..' (2015)

      "…..I think my arm moves first then my lazee eyes then

      my other arm and the mac that waits so slyly by is on my lap.." 

      In 'Restless Lover at 0.4.33 hours' the poem becomes an exasperated ode wherein words take over in a humourous playful parody of the creative process itself. 

      (Irena Narbutt Copyright 2015) 

    • From 'Cat and Dog'(2015)

      "..a stretched and waking form

      looking over towards 


      the Door 

      a leash in its jaw…." 

      In 'Cat and Dog' the poem compares the two household gods/pets as archetypes of the human imaginative animal mind. 

      (Irena Narbutt Copyright 2015) 

      NB.The above 3 poems do not have relational prints; they were inspired during the process of writing the poem  'mulch earth works in Progress' 

      (Irena Narbutt Copyright 2015)






  • mulch earth works in Progress

    The poem "mulch earth works in Progress" (2015) was printed on the programme of Edinburgh Printmakers Members Winter Exhibition, "Indelible Traces" (Nov-Dec 2015). This concrete poem was inspired by my print image 'Rope, tricks'. Further reflection on the theme of industrial traces was inspired by the Romantic poets, particularly John Clare whose poetry railes against Industrial and rural "progress"; how this affected people uprooted from their livelihoods. One of Clares' main concerns was the ruthless enclosure of commonlands on which the rural poor had traditionally depended to keep themselves from starvation. 

    One constituent material of ropemaking called oakum was what the starving were reduced to eating in desperate circumstances. 

    The onomatopoeiacal and consonant lines 'sticky tar...' echo the sound of a train running on its tracks when these are spoken aloud; they also refer to oakum, and to gum arabic which is used in lithography. These lines form the main cross bar/mast from which ship and poem hang. 

    ( Irena Narbutt Copyright 2015)



All images and poetry copyright of the artist - please contact for permission to share

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