Gartholwg Literature Festival


In partnership with Academi, Gartholwg Lifelong Learning Centre conducted its first children’s literature festival from 21 September to 9 October 2009.
Ten English and welsh language schools visited Gartholwg’s theatre to hear Michael Harvey telling traditional multicultural tales with the theme of journey. Michael then visited each school individually to work with the children and create a number of Welsh and English language poems inspired by the traditional tales.
Over 1000 children were involved in the project and schools were encouraged to submit children’s work for a writing competition, the winners of which could form a new writing squad for Rhondda Cynon Taff.

Llanilltud Faerdre Primary School

We are ghostly dust
We slice your voice box
Like the quick twist of a chicken’s neck
In the crooked hands of the hunter’s wife

We are the flying ancient ones
We will churn your stomach
Like the opaque black lake
Reflecting the setting sun

We are your darkest dreams
We will pierce your heart
Like the sunlight creeping to a window
And shimmering on the cracked mirror.
Journey to the Crystal Fountain

Act out your dream

Slowly in the forest
You want to turn around
Your legs and feet are dissolving
It makes you shiver
You are in the story next to them
You do what they do
But they don’t know

Feel the Weight

Their feet are tied
Their legs and feet dissolve
They’re legs can’t move
They’re stuck in a dream
They want to run away but can’t


You’re being pulled gently
And you feel light headed
The tingle of lumpy stuff flying around you
Pins and needles in your belly
You’re being pulled gently
Ants nibbling at your feet
Your legs and feet dissolve
You feel light headed and turn to dust


When I was on the eagle

I saw
Sparkling water swishing around
Dolphins vaulting through the waves
Water smiling against the rocks

I felt
Soft feathers blowing against the palms of my hands
The eagle’s muscles tightening as he flew through the wind
My eyes watering as he flew
And my face crumbling in the hard wind
Below, the gold shimmers on the palace domes