To be a poet one needs the six P’s – the pencil, the paper, the perception, the passion, the persistence and the unshakable persuasion that the poem is in fact possible and attainable. - Grace Perry

Monday, May 30, 2016

Inspiring through poetry: An article in the Southern Highalnds News

Penny Bell wrote this fabulous article about me for the Southern Highlands News.

POET and high school teacher Rhiannon Hall says that her initial love of poetry began with her father reading poetry to her as a child.

He also writes poetry, which no doubt set a good example, but Rhiannon's path to finding her voice was not as straight as perhaps her father may have wanted.

Teenage depression made her take a detour.

She hated high school and dropped out in year 10.

"I needed freedom to find my own way," she said.

And find her own way she has.

After leaving school, she moved to Moss Vale, supporting herself working in hospitality.

By 22, she tired of the long hours and physical work, and enrolled in an Arts Degree at University of Wollongong, Southern Highlands Campus in Moss Vale.

"Having a Uni around the corner made it possible to juggle everything and the staff there were so encouraging," she said.

Once she found her confidence there was no stopping her, and she went on to do an honours degree and a Diploma of Education at the Wollongong university campus.

These days she is so busy teaching the next generation how to write that she finds it difficult to find the opportunity to write herself.

"I always have ideas for a poem in my mind but it is not until I can find a quiet space that I can concentrate on the image and express it," she said.

Despite the competition for her time, she still manages to run an annual event called 'Little Mountain Readings', held in November at Sturt Gallery, Mittagong.

Last year she organised Peter Lach-Newinsky and Lorne Johnson, both established poets from Bundanoon, to be guests at the event.

This year she hopes to have her Dad, Phillip Hall, as guest poet.

- Penny Bell

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