Ruth’s daily commute is poetry in motion!

Ruth with her poetry book. Picture: Karen Elliott.
Ruth with her poetry book. Picture: Karen Elliott.

THE morning commute to work on a packed train can leave most of us with a sense of dread.

But not for Ruth Midgley... who so moved by the experience she decided to write a book of POEMS about it!

Ruth makes the daily rail trip from her home in Sheffield to Swinton, where she works as manager of the Swinton Lock Activity Centre.

The 10-mile journey inspired her to pen 12 poems, which have now been published in a booklet called Day Return to Swinton.

Ruth said: “The poems were written throughout 2005, reflecting both the changing seasons and the changing industrial landscape on my journey from Sheffield to Swinton.”

She added that she sees them as observations on the South Yorkshire poet Ebenezer Elliot’s 19th-Century dream of what the coming of the railways would mean and the way dreams were shattered by the loss of South Yorkshire’s steel industry.

Six years after completing the suite of poems, she asked Adrian Wynn to make a photographic response to the journey she had taken.

Adrian said: “I have tried to respond to the poems, in terms of the themes they explore, and in the moods they describe rather than illustrate them directly but some of the imagery is shared”.

The photographs follow the poems in observing how the industrial past is remembered, what has been gained, what has been lost and what persists.

Copies of the booklet can be bought for £4.50 from Swinton Lock Activity Centre.

Call them on 01709 578778.

An exhibition of the photographs and poems can also be seen at Swinton Community Library until Friday, April 29.