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Digital Subscriptions > Writing Magazine > January 2017 > Poetry workshop: Lure of the lighthouse

Poetry workshop: Lure of the lighthouse

A memorable poem began its life with a haunting phrase, says Alison Chisholm

Sometimes the idea that will become your next poem presents itself to you in a rush of tumbling phrases and images that need to be picked through before any kind of order can emerge. On other occasions one specific part of the poem arrives and tells you how it is to be used. This was the experience of Jill Stanton-Huxton of Buckingham when she wrote The Lighthouse.

Jill was visiting Strumble Head lighthouse in Pembrokeshire when a line insinuated itself into her thoughts and would not let go. She describes: ‘We arrived at dusk when the automatic beacon had just been turned on – it created an eerie atmosphere as the spotlight scanned the coastline and the sea.

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• STAR INTERVIEW WITH LEE CHILD, the multi-million selling creator of the Jack Reacher novels • Writing wisdom from the great Greek thinkers – rules that have stood the test of time • How to make your historical fiction stand out, and top tips on the genre from author Nicola Cornick • Study the short story masters to learn the art of the unreliable narrator • The magazine sleuth - how every magazine tells you exactly what its editor needs

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