if you came tapping at the window (Ali Whitelock)

Verity La New, Slot Machine

Artist’s Statement

I was in Scotland a few years ago when my father died unexpectedly. That night a thick fog descended. When I went to bed I was suddenly (weirdly and very irrationally) worried my father might appear through the fog. This video was filmed by my photographer/ musician brother Andy Whitelock on a windy winter’s night in Scotland and I voice recorded my poem in Australia. How wonderful to be able to collaborate on projects from different corners of the world. The poem was originally published in the print edition of The Moth Magazine


Ali Whitelock is a Scottish poet and writer living on the south coast of Sydney with her French chain smoking husband. Her debut poetry collection, ‘and my heart crumples like a coke can’ was published in 2018 by Wakefield Press, Adelaide, with a forthcoming UK edition by Polygon, Edinburgh in 2020. Her second collection, ‘the lactic acid in the calves of your despair’ will be published by Wakefield Press in December 2019 and her memoir, ‘Poking seaweed with a stick and running away from the smell’ was launched to critical acclaim in Australia and the UK in 2009. Her poems have appeared in many magazines and journals including, The Moth Magazine, The American Journal of Poetry, The Glasgow Review of Books, The Tahoma Literary Review. You can read more about Ali right here www.aliwhitelock.com.