“It happened in Hampshire,” a new play by Andoverian playwright Roy Chatfield.

The team that brought Andover ‘And Now We Tell Our Tale’ are returning to the Lights. Roy Chatfield’s new play  ‘It Happened In Hampshire’ will be staged there with a professional cast on Tuesday 5 February 2019.  It will also be visiting local schools.

Roy Chatfield

Roy Chatfield

It Happened In Hampshire’ is an irreverent romp through Hampshire’s past, incorporating music, rap and audience participation. Highlights include

  • Alfred defeating the Danes in The Great Wessex Bake Off
  • The Story of Edgar and Elfrida, as told by Jane Austen
  • A very civil Civil War.
  • Supernurse V the grime army
  • A starring role for an Iceberg
  • The secret of Spitfire modification XXX

The show is family friendly and you can book at The Lights.

 

 

(photo courtesy Nicky Harris)

(photo courtesy Nicky Harris)

To provide you with plenty of airport lounge reading we’ve saved up two Echos for your delectation:

 

 

Poetika Echo 56 – 20 June 2018
Brought to you by Alison Craig 

Theme UN Declaration of Human Rights, 1948
Hosted by John Bruce

Nicky Michelle Harris gave us a precis of the Declaration and its 30 articles, then read the stunning poem by Maya Angelou, I Rise:
Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I’ll rise.

Then WH Auden’s Refugee Blues:
Dreamed I saw a building with a thousand floors,
A thousand windows and a thousand doors;
Not one of them was ours, my dear, not one of them was ours.

Ria reflected on migrant refugees in dire marine straits: Your legs buckle like a tired horse …. And – packed like sardines: Is all this water one long cemetery? Perhaps the sea is the only place that will take you.
Then from Rupi Kaur, a love letter to the world: I will carry you to freedom.

John B:  written after the Peterloo massacre in Manchester:
Ye who suffer woes untold
With folded arms and steady eye
Rise like lions after slumber …
Ye are many, they are few.

Vic described getting caught in front of an English Defence League march – the police evacuated them through a shop.
I’m a judge, I’m a jury
I’ve already found you guilty, don’t you know.
You’ve already lost the trial.
But the problem is …
You’re the judge, you’re the jury
And it seems I have lost the trial.

David R read W H Auden’s The Shield of Achilles 1952
    
Tianna read Disrespect:
I’ll put on my big girl smile
While your demon children demand toys
We haven’t got.
Lying in bed wishing I was anyone but me
… Too rich to live in, too poor to move out
This is my fifteen minutes to dream
Of a better life.
… My rights which you apparently don’t receive
With your badge and your hat.

Susie talked of the human right to speak out, the human right to be looked after, and how they surprised the children to whom she taught the UN Declaration.
Then she read us a poem about the mixed blessing of owning the dream swimming pool:
Day by day it eyed me reproachfully: come and swim!
…But it’s raining!
That shouldn’t stop you – I’m wet already!
… Some dreams are over-rated.

Susie’s eldest daughter Amber lives in Madrid. Her friend lives in Tehran. They go to visit her.
Bright juices, ancient pastries,
Tehran so polluted.
Friends from Madrid, so different here.
Her lively girlfriend from Madrid submissive, almost fauning.
… Child-like, compliant, trammelled, returning to value the openness of her life in the west, counting her freedoms
.
Train solutions:
You’ll have to believe in it – it’s just so ingenious.

Edwin read a poem about refugees ‘crawling from the ocean …
Darling could you rub my back with suntan lotion?’

Nicky again, saying she was so nervous she was imagining us all naked!
Describing how fascism is on the rise again, she read her poem Filling Your Boots:
Neoliberalism Trumps Egalitarianism
Fascism is the new fashion darling
There’s only so many times you can eat your own shit
Before you die of your own poison
They’re eating from their own Brexit exit
Love, peace and altruism always flies higher
Humanity always wins.

Then a quick vote to decide July’s theme. Sex and sexuality won over Summer, and Innocence!

John B read his poem complicit – things happen because people let them.

Kyra
How do you let someone know
Your vulnerability has become your personality
Love … the kind you feel in your soul, your gut
…Still fumbling for the right words
The kind that make your bones crack
… You can’t carry all this weight on your shoulders.

Anna, on behalf of her friend Pete
Voyage
The windows are open but closed
As she sets sail with him
… Smudging the beads of moisture
Along her lip
… Seals stacked up on the shore
And your hair is like a hairnet to catch the sun
.

Ross gave us Byron’s suggested epitaph for Lord Castlereagh:
Posterity will ne’er survey
a Nobler grave than this:
Here lie the bones of Castlereagh:
Stop, traveller, and p—– !

Mark Jackwood
A country needs a resource
We’ve fallen back on artists
Surely we have enough misery
To produce a crop of those?

Alison read Carol Ann Duffy’s Last Post:
There’s coffee in the square,
warm French bread
and all those thousands dead
are shaking dried mud from their hair
and queuing up for home. Freshly alive,
a lad plays Tipperary to the crowd, released
from History; the glistening, healthy horses fit for heroes, kings.
You lean against a wall,
your several million lives still possible
and crammed with love, work, children, talent, English beer, good food.
You see the poet tuck away his pocket-book and smile.
If poetry could truly tell it backwards,
then it would.

Tim
The opening – first chapter of the Koran
Refugee man of Syria
You stake out our fear of your crescent-shaped moon
In the name of God the Compassionate
Just you being here
Opens the Other in us.

Cat read a poem about how our opinions are manipulated.
Traffic light system we know like the back of our hand.
As we sit on the M4 in a traffic jam
Discussing the price of ham
.

Mike read 3 sonnets
Using pain as an argument
To fix your reasoning
… Make them see you
When they look in the mirror
Right is the thing that everyone has wrong
When they try to take away
Not a right they have
But a wrong they choose to do
Since it is true, whatever they may say,
We are a whole
And suffer as one.
I scrape orange peel on my cereal
And click a card to someone in goal.
Teach me to use what little power I have

To save the less lucky from prison and grave.

Anna’s Words and Soldiers
Drifting down the empty street
Flooding into dead men’s feet.
To a friend
I know they told you no
I know they said you’re wrong
One day we’ll dance away
And not listen to a word they say.

Ian’s poem on protest:
Why are humans obsessed
With owning the best?
… Dare to protest.
… The words like bullets from a gun.
Silence allows the haters to win.

Ria’s Cat’s Cradle
Basking in those days
When the heat went misty then clear.
Then a poem about a wedding in India.
… The endless hall
Of force-feeding feast and the famine.

Vic sang Lost in Translation:
I thank God I am a citizen of heaven.

Ross read the Wandering Jews, first read ‘when Syrians started washing up on shores …  the scientific detachment better known as indifference.’

Nicky again – for Connie and Sheila
You’ll be lucky in love
If your head rules your heart
But do the right thing
And wear a condom!

And what her mother used to say …

And that concluded Poetika 56

Poetika Echo 57 – 18th July 2018
A vague reminiscence by John Bruce 

Theme: Sex, Sexuality and Gender
Hosted by Ria Rylatt-Chandaman

I haven’t done one of these in a while and it’s a privilege to bring you a taste of our July meeting:

It was myself that started by mentioning the George Herbert talk on 7th August – details here http://www.georgeherbert.org.uk/about/2018_programme.html 

Alison was the first to read with her first ever sonnet, Elan Vitale (now featured on poetika.org.uk – if you want to feature your works here please get in touch). Following her velvet stallion’s back, Grace lived a whole life in less than two months (you fucking whore) and David banged on about ships in the night, somewhere between the belly and the brain…

After kissing your shoulder, kissing your thighs, Edwin was holding your boobs, Tianna told her story of self-discovery, and said ‘No’. Kira told us about a girl who has flowers blooming in her ribcage, and Nicky pointed out that sex was more trouble than it’s worth.

Cat and Mike reminded us of the Colourful Adventures of Merciful Grace (Sat 4th August details here), before I (that’s me – John!) started apart and moaned about Monet and Ria gasped like wasps and bees (and bruised easily, like an ego).

Ian started our second half by talking about sex, baby, then Mike explained he’d rather receive a gift than possess. Anna, a sexy lady, was feeling confident, before Ross warned us that when life becomes subhuman, subhumans come alive…

Peter reflected that the wind and water were as soft as milk, before Nicky returned, asking if we wrote from our own sexuality. For Grace, the day she stopped loving him was no different from any other day, and David R had a second chance to warn us your kiss stings sharp and sweet.

Tiana stretched each syllable within an inch of its life before Cat dreamt of dog days that will burn and burn (topical!). Kira whispered how quietly the earth will mention your name, then it was Game On for Ria.

This was a fabulous Poetika with some really strong poems – a new wave of attendees has invigorated our existing members – everyone – keep up the good work!!

We have a break in August and will be back on Wednesday 19th September – meanwhile we’re looking for suggestions for our September theme/prompt – if you have any ideas, please reply to this newsletter or comment on Facebook.

Have a great summer!

The Colourful Adventures of Merciful Grace travels to Southampton

How are you? Doing okay, FAB! I have got my first ever comedy show at The Art House on Saturday the 4th at 7.30. We are saying a donation of £5.00 which is going to The Art House. It’s The colourful Adventures of Merciful Grace, part pantomime, part dad jokes, and some poetry honest. If you’d like to come along book here https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/the-colourful-adventures-of-merciful-grace-art-house-fundraiser-4th-august-tickets-48273563528

This is my go at a steampunk pantomime AND it even has a pirate. We’re going to hold a competition so you can win yourself a steampunk parrot, called Albert Ross. Yes not really a parrot, but you did smile for a moment didn’t you.

For more detail check out my Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/CatRandle/

Let’s look after The Art House the way its been looking after us.
Hugs Cat Randle (aka Merciful Grace the Mechanical Maid)

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POETIKA 57 – Sex, Sexuality & Gender

When we asked you to decide on this month’s theme, we were mildly surprised that last month’s audience were unanimously in favour of SEX…

OK that’s a great soundbite, but the real topic – sex, sexuality and gender – is a perfect prompt for a range of work and styles –  the world we know is created by ourselves, and we are created by… sex, sexuality and gender… so the world is your oyster for inspiration.

So bring along your new work or previous work on this theme – or any theme – and we’ll be delighted to hear your contributions as sexy or prudish as you like – we’re artists, so no holds barred!

Because of the theme we’ve chosen our sexiest member, Ria to host – so come along on Wednesday 18th July, 7.30 for 7.45, upstairs at The Pheasant, Salt lane, Salisbury. We ask a contribution of £2-3pp please towards expenses.

As usual we welcome everyone who wants to read or sing their own work or that of others as well as those people who prefer only to listen.
Poetika header

Not written by a member, but a sweet poem by e.e. cummings

xvii.

Lady,i will touch you with my mind.
Touch you and touch and touch
until you give
me suddenly a smile,shyly obscene

(lady i will
touch you with my mind.)Touch
you,that is all,

lightly and you utterly will become
with infinite ease

the poem which i do not write.

All the best, Ria, Nicky, John and Dave

Open Word in Wiltshire Friday 13th of July Poets day and Art Exhibition

Open Word in Wiltshire Friday 13th of July Poets day and Art Exhibition

Open Words is holding a day and night long event in Burbage Village Hall, 60 Eastcourt Rd, Burbage, Malborough SN8 3AJ

The Poets Gala Cafe in the Village Hall (8.30 am -5.00pm) Your favourite poets will be running the Cafe, with a special programme of events during the day for all to enjoy. All day in the cafe David Robinson and Deborah Robinson will have their artwork on display to enjoy and buy.

10.00 am Audio Visual Poetry with David Robinson
David Robinson 
will entertain and delight our senses with his audio-visual poetry. A big hit in Open Word 2016 and are delighted to have him in the hall

Boundary Stone from MoonTree Gallery http://www.moontree.org.uk/davids-landscapes.html

Boundary Stone from MoonTree Gallery http://www.moontree.org.uk/davids-landscapes.html

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10.30 Stories for Adults
Mike Rogers is our storyteller. If you are a mum with toddlers, he can take requests. Mike runs several storytelling clubs around South East England and is Storyteller-in-residence for Test Valley Arts foundation “Talk About” festival.

 11.00 am Comic Poetry Appreciation Club

Rat Candle (aka Cat Randle) will introduce you to the difference between funny poems and bad ones. She will be introducing a new comic poem style, “The Punnit” Fresh from 2017’s ‘SO: To Speak,’ Southampton’s Festival of Words
2.00pm Poetry Workshop
David’s workshop caters for all levels whether you are a complete beginner, intermediate or seasoned poet, there’s something for everyone.
Dave reading from one of his books.

Dave reading from one of his books.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3.30 Children’s play The Colourful Adventures of Merciful Grace
A colourful adventure of a mechanical maid who wants to bring her robot friend a present “Of the best blue paint “and the mishaps and creatures she meets along the way. A wonderful mix of humour and costumes straight from their sucessful debut at Andover Rocks Festival.

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Gala Cafe stops serving at 5 pm to get ready for the evening’s entertainment and reopens at 7 pm

7 pm Open Mic for Poets

. Come and perform your poetry workshop poems. Our guest poet is David Robinson. This will give you the opportunity to see his audio-visual poetry if you missed it in the morning.

Part Two (Adults Only): 8.30pm A Grown Up version of “The Colourful Adventures of Merciful Grace.” Bob the evil man-bot wants Merciful Grace the mechanical maid to stay longer than 59 seconds exactly, and he has a plan. How long will it take Merciful Grace to work out what’s going on?

Open Word logo Stockbridge

Open Word logo Stockbridge

Billed as Horrible Histories meets Monty Python, the poetry show is an anarchic steampunk romp through time and space. Filled with all the naughty bits we had to cut out of the children’s version. FREE ENTRY. We’ll be passing the bucket around and donations will go to Big Up Words to support and promote local writers and poets

 

 

Open Word Burbage Gala Weekpage 2Evening

Christmas present with a difference! Last days to fund 10 Little Astronauts

This year we supported Damon Wakes unbound book 10 Little Astronauts. He is literally days away from completing his goal and we need ALL your help. Please tweet, share, instagram, post and buy gift cards to help him reach 100% funding.

This is what Damon is saying

Last Chance to Support Ten Little Astronauts

It’s the eleventh hour. Aragorn is making his “It is not this day” speech. The rebels are approaching the Death Star. Neville Longbottom has destroyed the final horcrux and Harry Potter is preparing to battle Lord Voldemort. I’m not familiar with Twilight, but I’m sure there’s some confrontation between Heartthrob McSparklepants and a bad guy of some kind.

The point is, there are just days left to fund Ten Little Astronauts. At 63%, it’s the bulk of the way there and it has a solid chance of reaching its target, but only if the people who want that to happen make it happen.

At this point, you’re either behind the book or you’re not: there’s no time left to “get around to it.” 213 people (at current count) have pledged for a copy of their own. Countless more have shared it, told their friends about it, and generally helped it along in less direct ways. If it’s not your kind of thing, I get it. If you can’t afford to chip in for a copy right now, I definitely get it. But if you’d like to help my career as an author all the same, doing something – anything – to spread the word about it before that Christmas deadline would make a spectacular difference to the book’s chances of success at absolutely no cost to you.

For the benefit of anybody who’s coming across this for the first time (possibly having been pointed here by a friend):

Ten Little Astronauts is a sci-fi murder mystery novella based on Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None. It takes the basic premise of that popular classic – ten people trapped together with the knowledge that one of them is a murderer – but shifts it into interstellar space.

The book is being published by Unbound, who crowdfund all their titles. This means that readers pledge for – essentially pre-order – a copy, and potentially extra rewards if they choose to contribute more to the funding of the book. Those pledges are what cover the cost of designing, editing and printing the thing. Ten Little Astronauts already has enough support to make it into print – other books that were accepted onto less ambitious lists have funded with less than half the number of readers behind them – but if it reaches 100% of its goal by Christmas, the paperback will be of higher quality and it’ll be distributed by Penguin Random House. Obviously, this would be a massive boost and help ensure the book has the best possible chance of success once it’s printed and out there.

For the benefit of anybody who wants to get some cool stuff:

There are rewards for supporting Ten Little Astronauts beyond getting a copy of the book itself, and even beyond the extras available to people who choose to contribute more than the minimum. Anybody who pledges, no matter the amount, will get:

People who pledge soon may get:

  • A place in a prize draw. When the book reaches 225 supporters, I’ll be sending a signed copy of Myths, Monsters, Mutations to one of those first 225 supporters at random. If we reach 250, I’ll most likely be doing much the same thing.
  • A badge. If Ten Little Astronauts reaches 100 Paperback pledges by the end of Monday 18th, I’ll be sending out a Ten Little Astronauts badge with every single paperback. We’re already (currently) at 83, so there’s a very good chance we’ll get to 100: the real question is whether enough people will share it around for that to happen before Monday.

Over 200 people have taken Ten Little Astronauts well over halfway to its target. It’s up to you to help take it those last few steps. If it sounds like your kind of book and you’d like a copy for yourself, please put in a pledge to get one, and invite your friends to do the same. If it’s not your cup of tea and/or you can’t afford to pledge for yourself, please share this post. The audience for this book is out there: the only challenge is reaching them in time.

200 supporters qive away as Damon L Wakes reaches 50% of his croud funding

Ten Little Astronauts, the Christie-inspired sci-fi murder mystery by Damon L. Wakes, is approaching 200 supporters on Unbound. To celebrate, he’ll be sending a signed paperback copy of Unearthly Sleuths to one of those first 200 at random

Unearthly Sleuths is an anthology of speculative detective fiction by JayHenge Publishing. It includes two stories by Damon himself—lighthearted steampunk “The Card” and the significantly more sinister “Noise on The Wire”—as well as many more by a wide variety of other authors.

Unearthly sleuths an out of this world anthology

Unearthly sleuths an out of this world anthology

You’ll have to be quick if you want to be in with a chance of winning this book, though: 196 of those 200 places are already taken, meaning that there are just four still up for grabs! To put in a pledge for yourself, simply follow this link. As well as a chance of winning Unearthly Sleuths, you’ll get your very own copy of Ten Little Astronauts, have your name recorded in the back of every edition of the book. If the book reaches its funding target by Christmas, it’ll be distributed into bookshops through Penguin Random House, and you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that you were one of the people who helped make it all happen.

Poetika are calling for poetry submissions for 2 different poetry festivals.

Salisbury Fringe Festival and Salisbury Literary Festival are both calling for poetry submissions.

 Poetika at the Salisbury Fringe: Call for Dramatic Poetry (closing date 30/9/2017)

Salisbury Fringe – the established festival of cutting-edge drama by local writers performed in a variety of informal venues during the first weekend in October. Poetika’s mission at the Fringe is to bring poetry to the drama. Poetika are seeking works of ‘dramatic poetry’ for the event, where they will be performed by professional actors.

Submissions close on  Saturday 30th September. E to email your pieces (5 mins max) to drama@poetika.org.uk .

To find out more about the Salisbury Fringe follow this link http://salisburyfringe.co.uk/

City of Poems’ (Salisbury Literary Festival ): Call for Poems about Salisbury (closing date 30/9/2017)

New this year- The Salisbury Literary Festival is  taking place over the last weekend of October it will be a feast of readings, talks and workshops, celebrating the best in literature by writers with a local connection and some from further afield.

Poetika has an event – City of Poems – as part of the festival, where in addition to presenting some of the best known poems written about the city, Poetika will be reading a selection of works specially written for the Festival by local people. Send Poetika Salisbury poems (max 5 mins) to be read at the event. Poetika is also creating a pamphlet of chosen poetry which will be on sale at the event and at other venues in town (all sale proceeds going to Poetika’s adopted charity, Childrens Chance).

You have until midnight on Saturday 30th September to email your pieces (5 mins max) to city@poetika.org.uk.

More about the Salisbury Literary Festival here: http://salisburyliteraryfestival.co.uk/