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bbp author

Helen Bowie

Helen Bowie is a writer, performer and charity worker, based in London. Their work explores themes of politics, patriarchy and pathology, through a lense of playfulness and purpose. Helen has performed interactive theatre at festivals through the UK, been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, and is editor-in-chief of Tattiezine, a potato themed litmag. You can find more of Helen’s writing and rambling at www.twitter.com/helensulis and www.linktr.ee/helensulisbowie.

INTRO to WORD/PLAY

Games and word puzzles have always fascinated me; what are poems if not fancy word puzzles, and what are puzzles if not deconstructed poetry? 

This collection contains playable puzzles, and you are invited and encouraged to interact with each piece in any way you feel inspired to. Each piece is presented first as a blank slate, for the reader to interpret and play, followed by the poet’s interpretation of the pieces in the form of ‘completed’ puzzles. 

PREVIEW OF WORD/PLAY

Words of praise for WORD/PLAY




"It is perhaps true that a throw of the dice never abolishes chance; nor, however, is there much chance to begin with in the 'games' of contemporary society. The cards are stacked against the vast majority of us, the dice are weighted, and the house always wins. Yet Helen Bowie's masterful collection 'Word//Play' does not ask us to resign ourselves to following the rules and hoping for the best. Rather, the games assembled here expose the stratagems and lay bare the weaknesses of the social formations inherent in entrenched language. Bowie's games unfold like so many maps, and with each line we draw, and with each puzzle we solve, we explore terrain where power is reversed, the emperor's clothes fade away, and the dice of language are thrown anew."

- Sascha Engel, founding editor of Strukturriss


"This collection is not poetry, but a playground. Helen invites readers to experience language in an interactive way that elevates words from static to sensational. Word-play engages in the most exciting way of presenting poetry, one which bridges the gap between reader and writer and encourages its audience to engage with the themes from the inside."

- Leia Butler edits Full House and adores creativity. 


"The structural chaos of WORD//PLAY is an indisputable cathartic experience. Bowie’s fascination for de/&/reconstruction judiciously modulates the indomitable pasts and fatidic futures altogether – the author’s playful compositions take us on a journey deep inside our emotional heritages and, eventually, leave space for our own salvation."

- Aggie Lemm, editor of Anamorphosis Magazine

A note from the poet: 

Games and word puzzles have always fascinated me; what are poems if not fancy word puzzles, and what are puzzles if not deconstructed poetry? 

This collection contains playable puzzles, and you are invited and encouraged to interact with each piece in any way you feel inspired to. Each piece is presented first as a blank slate, for the reader to interpret and play, followed by the poet’s interpretation of the pieces in the form of ‘completed’ puzzles. 

Books are made to be read and puzzles are made to be played, get silly with it, let your imagination run wild, be bold, be brave, be beautiful.