Valerie Gillies


The Spring Teller is an ever-evolving project. I have recorded over a hundred different wells and springs in my notebook, with digital photographs and sound recordings too, making a real archive and gazetteer. At each of these places I record the voice of the spring with its own sonic signature. I continue to walk to new springs.

Poetry from this source is as wide-ranging in its verse-forms as the sound of the wells. It is original in the sense that it comes from the fons et origo, the fount and origin of things.

Cartographer Mick Ashworth has produced a new poetic map for the book: people may want to find their own way to these locations. In my creative writing workshops I pass on the skills to encourage people to set out on their own quest.

How to rescue old wells? Quote a poem from the book, then local people will take an interest in their own well, adopt it and keep an eye on it.


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