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Wales

creating nature Outdoors vanhounds Wales

snow reels

January 30, 2021

I’ve been really enjoying the Reels function on Instagram recently. Here’s a couple of short clips made of snow-fun-times, soundtracked by Kate Bush’s 50 Words for Snow as I have that on loop every winter until spring. You can find more on my Instagram Reels. View this post on Instagram A post shared by OUTSIDER [Sophie McKeand] (@sophiemckeand_outsider) View this post on Instagram A post shared by OUTSIDER [Sophie McKeand] (@sophiemckeand_outsider) View this post on Instagram A post shared by…

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Cymraeg Cymru nature Wales

Teachings from the Giant

December 17, 2020

Cadair Idris – Idris is a Cymraeg giant and this is his chair. Legend has it if you spend a night on this mountain you return mad or a poet (is there a difference?). I went to the mountain today and he asked, ‘What do you want?’‘I don’t want anything’ I replied.And I’ve felt proud that I’ve spent years cultivating this ‘not wanting’, growing an ability to step outside of the maelstrom of ‘want’ that we can all get sucked…

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dailyconnectionwithnature feature nature poetry Wales water

Naked bodies aren’t offensive (but sexualising them can be…)

November 14, 2020

My body is a prayer to the waterNaked, I return to herThe rain is charismatic in her offeringsI bathe in the full potential of Self.📷 @andyrgarside 💙 In celebration of my body who got me through over 44 years of life in style (most of the time), and giving praise to the waters that birthed me (but not for too long as the Cymraeg waters are cold in November).…

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feature nature slowlivingactivism Wales

On gifting

November 10, 2020

These days I don’t wear makeup. It’s not even been a conscious choice as I still have some rattling around the van somewhere. I think it’s more to do with accepting myself exactly as I am – all the lines & wrinkles, the grey hairs & belly rolls.I also have a huge aversion to Xmas presents. Like massive. I hate the obligatory nature of it forced upon us by our capitalist society. I hate how people get into debt just…

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dailyconnectionwithnature nature Wales

Everyday ceremony

October 28, 2020

Ceremony doesn’t have to be filled with theatrics. The simplest forms will often more than suffice. I woke early this morning feeling the calling of the land – it’s different to my usual need to be outdoors, and I’m learning to follow it, to listen, to accept.So I left on my bike and rode to the hills, rode until legs burned away all the nonsense and self-doubt, rode until I could feel the land and see her voice in my…

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creating poetry Wales

Last gig for a while

July 25, 2020

Hello friends – just a note to let you know of my last gig for a while. It’s on my Instagram Live @sophiemckeand_outsider from 8pm – 8.15pm as part of the Llagollen Fringe Festival. There’s a whole raft of wonderful North Wales artists on this event tonight so check out @llangollenfringe for more details. I’ve loved being part of this festival over the years and this time is no exception. Thanks for dropping by and hope to see you tonight…

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India poetry politics Wales

Black history matters

June 8, 2020

Earlier this year I had a poetry residency at the National Trust’s Chirk Castle in North Wales, with the aim of engaging with the natural environment and the grounds surrounding the castle. It’s the second time I’ve worked on a project there, the first being a few years earlier when I was invited to work with groups of young people from the local school to write poetry in response to the castle. On both occasions I felt a deep need…

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family Wales

Me at 20

April 29, 2020

#MeAt20 has been trending on Instagram so I thought I’d share mine. In this photo my daughter Rhiannon is not even a week old. She was a bit jaundiced and stuck her tongue out for about the first three months. Everything in my life changed when I met her. She’s the best thing that ever happened to me. This is a wierd photo because I’m so happy here, in my dad’s kitchen in Wrexham after getting back from the hospital,…

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nature poetry Wales

On ceremony and trees

April 16, 2020

Continuing in the spirit of opening up some pieces that were previously behind a paywall while we’re all on lockdown… In the summer of 2019 two of our lovely friends, Darren & Aidan, made a commitment to each other witnessed by friends and family from across the globe, including the trees of Bute Park.  I was asked to create a ring ceremony for this and was immediately deeply honoured and terrified as it’s not something I’ve done before. I’ve spent…

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