Inkspill and octopi

This coming weekend, I will be one of 3 guest writers for an online writing retreat, Inkspill, organised by Nina Lewis. I’ll be adding my own perspective to the mix, along with Charlie Jordan and William Gallagher Want some inspiration for your writing? Take a look:

Nina asked me to send her a biography. You might think I would have one to send ‘off the peg’, but it just doesn’t work like that. Every biog I have ever sent out has been different from all the others. This is partly because there are so many facets to my professional life, and not all of these are relevant at the same time.  I can’t help comparing myself to an octopus.

While you ponder on that idea, here’s an octopus poem I wrote after watching a family eating together in a restaurant.

The feeding of octopi

The octopus family
have tentacles twenty
food is plentiful
all is quiet until
plates are empty

when table quivers
upholstery shivers
as octopus babies
lie on their backs
their tentacles rising

they writhe and wriggle
as octopus mom
and octopus dad
slither and grab
trapped in the middle

© Heather Wastie

Perhaps this poem should have had 8 lines per stanza instead of 5. Anyway the line “trapped in the middle” echoes how I sometimes feel trying to keep track of so many creative tentacles!