Reviews

for the Hidden Depths pamphlet

In this striking pamphlet John Hindle brings together poems he wrote inspired by paintings by the artist John Baldwin, both brought together in the exhibition ‘Hidden Depths’ at King Street Studios in Lancaster (King Street Studios and Art Gallery). The poems act in a similar way to the3D glasses provided by the artist, creating a shift in perception, as expressed in the poem ‘Fusion’ –‘shadows captivate depths/morphing into perspective/of dimension and scale’  John Hindle seems to overcome gravity in his poems in response to the paintings, allowing the reader to float in intergalactic space or explore the reaches inside the human frame. In either direction the physical bounds are overwhelmed by a spiritual energy.  Although ‘held back by walls (Surge)’ , this is a world where ‘open space waits in gentle love and kindness’. In one particularly moving poem ‘Coma’, the narrator describes being unable to communicate, in a secret world, while at the same time ‘in the heart of human beings’ through ‘the hopes and prayers for a young boy’. The poems plumb the depths of ‘aloneness’ and by looking inwards find ‘we are all collective/beyond shadows and space’.

Rosemary Drescher

I enjoyed reading John’s poems very much. They reach for the soul and touch the soul. 

Martyn E Hesford

A pamphlet of poems that truly captivated me. It rewards deep introspection. The author delved into an array of topics, ranging from spirituality to corruption, and did so in a way that felt genuine and personal. What I admired most was the author’s ability to tackle weighty issues without resorting to cliches or overly sentimental language. All in all, I found the book to be a powerful and thought-provoking read.

 

Carl Potts

A real delight to read. I enjoyed Johns poetic journey and especially enjoyed the spiritual aspect of the poetry. I can see how Meditating on John Baldwin’s paintings and immersing himself in them really brought out the depths of the poems. Highly recommended.

 

Kathy Berry

John Hindle’s poetry pamphlet covers so many aspects of feeling and perception and is extremely thought-
provoking. The spiritual poems are inspirational and carry much sentiment. It is well worth rereading the poems on a number of occasions in order to tap into all aspects of the meanings contained therein.

Margaret Binks

These collected poems by John P Hindle are both inspired by and a response to original paintings by John Baldwin exhibited at King Street Art Gallery in Lancaster in August 2023. We can see how the poems and paintings connect and correlate, yet still function as creative pieces independent of each other. The ‘Hidden Depths’ exhibition of paintings and poems is still available to view online on King Street Studios website. Yet it is entirely possible to read ‘Hidden Depths’ into the poems themselves as quiet standalone musings and contemplations without seeing the original paintings alongside them. I certainly enjoyed reading them. The spirituality of some poems, in particular ‘Coma’ and ‘Beyond’, show incredible insight by the author and I was simply moved by his concise yet expressive use of language with its great depth open to the possibility of individual interpretation other than what meaning maybe the author himself intended and attributed to his own work. The words on the page are remarkably immersive, and so evocative of meaningful meditations and presence, but also giving a sense of the great unknown. The author has captured the emotional zeitgeist in choosing to end the collection with my personal favourite ‘Millennium Eve’. In this poem I can clearly see how the paintings have also taken the poet back to certain golden champagne party periods of his life that people of a similar age can certainly remember. Yet the poetry is incredibly accessible and anyone can connect to it on many different levels. I am certainly looking forward to the poet’s next collection with keen interest whilst continuing to enjoy reflecting on the extra meanings one can appreciate with every further reading of ‘Hidden Depths’.

 

Mark Keith Holden

 

There is a long standing collaboration between poet and artist which enhances the experience. This is a very mature meditative collection that works individually and in combination with each other. Each poem has been arranged in a way that urges the reader to keep reading as they flow effortlessly one into the next. The reader has been allowed into the poets thoughts, as he contemplates each piece of art he is viewing.

 

Florence Rasmussen

 

It was a joy to read John’s poetry and to see how he connects nature, art, religion and the universe. His work is very thought provoking, relaxing and takes you into a different realm.

Michelle Clayton