Poetry Notes and Jottings contains poems written by Martin Porter, together with background notes to support the poems and occasional generalities. The header image was taken at Pinnacles National Park, WA, in 2005.
Martin Porter was born and brought up in St Helier, Jersey. He started writing verse while in primary school and developed a love of poetry during his secondary school years. His interest in science took him overseas to study at the Universities of London (Queen Mary College) and Leeds, where he pursued his interest in astronomy, eventually specialising in ultra-high energy cosmic radiation.
He returned to his old school, Hautlieu, in Jersey to teach physics in the science department for 19 years before illness led to his resignation. During this time he contributed poems to the occasional school publication “High Places”. After a six month break he returned to working life, becoming the IT trainer at Jersey Health and Social Services. On leaving Jersey, he spent six months in St Heliers, Auckland before moving to the winterless North of New Zealand and settling in Whangarei, where he also worked as an IT trainer.
Together with Linda Rose Parkes and Alan Jones, Martin is a founder and continuing member of a lasting and innominate writing group in Jersey, the informal group “Take Flight, Whangarei”, meeting in Whangarei, New Zealand and currently leads two writing workshops in Whangarei. An occasional blogger, performer and experienced lecturer, he writes regularly and has even been published on rare occasions, recently being included in Wavelengths, an anthology of Channel Island poetry and Live Lines in Auckland, New Zealand. He has been a prize winner in several of the Jersey Evening Post annual writers’ competitions and won the poetry prize in the Channel Islands Writers Competition in 2005.
Martin’s writing is often informed by his scientific background. He takes delight in the similarities between poetry and scientific expression, where sophisticated concepts can be condensed and expressed with elegance. Occasionally he even writes on a scientific topic. He enjoys reading across a wide range of subjects and authors. Ted Hughes, T S Eliot, Herman Hesse, Alan Garner, Michael Leunig and the Book of Common Prayer are current favourites among many others.
Martin is an extensive listener of popular music and the spoken word, tunes into BBC radio and takes great enjoyment from old and new episodes of “I’m Sorry, I Haven’t a Clue”. Occasionally he will visit an exhibition, theatre or opera house, and recalls performances of Sophocle’s three Theban plays performed in one day at the RSC, Shostakovich’s “Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk” at the Bastille and David Hockney’s exhibition ”A Bigger Picture” at the Royal Academy of Arts as notable highlights. He also took great delight at viewing the total solar eclipse from the Great Barrier Reef in 2012.