Poetry goes beyond the asylum walls

Electric Palace Sign
Electric Palace Sign

TALENTED Hastings poet and writer Andrea Samuelson takes a moving journey into her family’s past when she presents her reading Cradle Song at the Electric Palace cinema on Sunday, October 20.

It is 1906. A 24-year-old woman is admitted to a mental asylum in Sweden. Her child is told she is dead, and she is forgotten.

A century later, her great granddaughter sets out to search for the truth.

This is the basis for Cradle Song.

Andrea’s poetry reading will be accompanied by images by Melita Dennett and a short film by Swedish film maker Johanna Bernhardson.

Commenting on her work, Andrea said: “Cradle Song is a collection of poems based on the story of a forgotten woman, confined to an asylum for most of her adult life, buried in an unmarked grave, unmourned by her children.

The parallels between our lives were very strange and that formed the basis of the book. The poems are both an expression of my own experience and an attempt to speak on behalf of someone long silenced.

Andrea is a founding member of the Illiterati writing group, which have presented a number of reading events in the town in recent years.

Tickets for the reading are £4, which include tea, coffee and cake. The Electric Palace is situated in High Street, in the Old Town.