Poetically Speaking: Helen Brown

There is something special about introducing a new series and today I have the pleasure of introducing Helen Brown, author of multiple books including a devotional series, Turning Water into Wine, and her latest release, Whispers from on High, a collection of poetry and short stories.

Helen very kindly gave us some of her precious time for the inaugural interview on Poetically Speaking. Please take a look at her books and follow her social media if you resonate with her work.

Helen Brown, Author, Whispers from on High

Helen Brown, Whispers from on High

Tell us a little about yourself

I was born in Mount Isa, the eldest of five children of Salvation Army officers, and lived an almost nomadic life until I was fifteen years of age. However, I discovered books as a preteen and read a lot, well into the night and occasionally all night. Two stories that captured my imagination were “Anne of Green Gables” and Little Women”.

Just like the heroines in these stories I wanted to write. A learning disability, which was not corrected until I was in my thirties, meant that schooling was a real struggle. It also meant that my dream seemed to be a distant mirage.

The struggles of raising five children and being a wife to a shearer/farmer in a small town taught me a lot about life and the grace of God. During this time, I completed my teaching degree and worked many casual jobs in order to ensure that the farm was viable. Today, I still live on the farm in the Northern Tablelands of New South Wales.

What kind of poetry do you write and how would you describe your work as a writer to a stranger?

I consider my poetry to be unconventional, I always had trouble following poetry rules at school. I would describe my work as inspirational, encouraging and challenging in a non-threatening way.

Poetry has the power to transform society and wake us from our slumber. It enlivens us and challenges us to think about the world as it has been and as it could be. What is the power of poetry to you?

For me it has been a way to work through the emotional issues in my life.

Who was the first poet you read that inspired you to write your own poetry and why?

Writing my own poetry came completely out of the blue. It was an answer to a prayer to connect with a lady who was going through a very tough time. I didn’t even realise that she wrote poetry as well until after I’d written my first poem.

Your poetry has a unique and warm feel to it. What inspired this particular piece?

I was inspired to write this poem for Mother’s Day, after a particularly difficult year. My mother had been spending a lot of time with me on the phone, trying to encourage me to stay the race of life. Her wisdom and encouragement was very much appreciated during this time.

A Special Gift

Before time began
God decided,
That I needed
A very special gift.

That special gift was:
A teacher,
A counsellor,
And my very best friend.

And best of all,
That gift,
Came wrapped in a package,
Labelled ‘Mother’

A Special Gift by Helen Brown. (c) 2020 Helen Brown. All rights reserved.

If you could tell our readers one thing that you have learned along your journey, what would it be?

Don’t be afraid to try something new, if it fails, there will be some good come from it, even if you don’t see it until much later. If you don’t try, you might have missed out on something really special. Either way you learn something.

If there was one thing you could share about being a poet in the 21st Century, what would it be?

It’s a time with a rich source of material and the world needs positive input more than ever.

What is your current work in progress or your latest release and what it is about?

My latest poetry release was Whispers from on High. It also includes some short stories that I needed somewhere to go.

I’m also revising previously published devotional books.

Well that’s it for the very first Poetically Speaking: Voices of the 21st Century interview series. Thanks again to Helen for being brave and sharing her story and her thoughts.

Where to find Helen online

Official Website: The Helen Brown Collection
Helen’s Blog: Helen Brown’s Blog
Facebook: HelenBrownCollection

You can also find Helen’s poetry on her beautiful cards here.

Do you have a poetic story to share? We’d love to hear from you.

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