Tuesday, 5 January 2021

The Festive Back Room: 12th Night with Carol Jane Wilson

12th Night! Heat up the Wassail! Drink 12 pints of it! At this reflective time of year, just when we are at our weakest, and fattest, here comes Carol Jane Wilson to unleash a skilful and poignant villanelle on us. 

Carol Jane Wilson has written poetry and short stories over many years, whilst pursuing a varied working life, including lock keeping on the Thames, training people working with domestic violence, comedy improv, face painting, life modelling and working with asylum seekers. Born in Oxford, she came on holiday to Ireland in 1991, and forgot to go back.

In 1998, she won the North West Radio short story competition, and has had work published in a variety of places.  Carol is a member of the Hermit Collective in the West of Ireland and performs regularly with them. Over a year ago, she was told she had a few months to live, so she had her coffin made, and painted with whales swimming. It’s still sitting in the garage, as she is too busy living to use it yet..

Here she reads 'Fat Women Dreaming':



Fat women also have their dreams
that fill the sky by night and day,
spinning in beauty, power and grace.

Fragile and delicate as lace,
strong, mysterious, stark and fey,
fat women also have their dreams.

Fettered by flesh, to you it seems,
yet thoughts soar lightly as they may,
spinning in beauty, power and grace.

The eye of the mind dictates us reams
of fire, joy, passion, to sing and say,
fat women also have their dreams.

Ideas are sewn with fairy seams,
fantastic costumes in which to play,
spinning in beauty, power and grace.

Blinkered is he who, righteous, deems
Flesh must weight thoughts, to sluggish lay.
Fat women also have their dreams,
spinning in beauty, power and grace.