The Poetika Echo 46 – The Worst One Yet!!

he Poetika Echo 46: The Worst One Yet!!
(hosted by John Bruce, Echo brought to you this month by Ian Chorlton)

Wow, so many people, our biggest crowd since records began (ed: not quite), 32 listeners, writers, poets, musicians, presenters and drinkers, all climbed the wrought iron steps of the Cloisters pub to attend this month’s Poetika.

John was tonight’s host, fresh from seeing Mr Corbyn at Tolpuddle Martyrs Festival. He introduced Edwin with his self-suggested controversial Corbyn Brexit poem. Good to start with a bit of politics. Before he began he made sure all the exits were clear and reminded everyone that he was a pensioner wearing glasses. He need not have worried, Poetika is all about diversity and tolerance unless you’re praising Theresa May!

Mike informed us that the British poet Edward Thomas died 100 years ago and he is dedicating tonight’s trio of sonnets to him. (There are six in total which can all be found on his blog). Edward wrote a poem about Adlestrop, a now defunct station in a tiny Gloucestershire village where he once stopped and wrote a poem about peacefulness just before war broke it. The same Great War which took his life in 1917. Mike’s first sonnet was a response to this poem. our fears do not create chance beauty but destroy. That halt was scheduled – if you like, intended – But not, let’s hope, the way his journey ended.

Battlefields explores why wars occur and the futility of it, War came, and was not brought, by what men did or thought,

Sarah’s debut performance at Poetika began with two poems about an ex. Before they split, then after. Before; Past mask of disguise, heart beats faster at every breath, I fell like a comet, high and happy. After; saint and sinner, must keep going, who knew the ending? Life is a gift we must cherish.

Vic with his guitar played a sing-along ditty entitled ‘I don’t care about Doctor Who.’ There is nothing you can’t be, but I doubt the eldest will teach PE.’ Then we all joined in with every chorus.

Syd hit us with an amusing rap born on the mean streets of Romsey, about his greatest failing, self-promotion. So continuing with the crowd participation half the room chanted self, self, self, and the other half, promotion! Hotter than a sheep, cooler than a goat. Bestselling author, isn’t no lie, been nominated for noble prize, I’m the hardest rapper since 50 cent.

Ian added shade to light with a multi-layered story about the murky world of selling of arms in Yemen during war and famine. but life in London is ignoring the activities in the dessert, and the search for a criminal.

David, a free-range farm kid (from Friday Street near Eastbourne) turned poet and artist told us about coincidences. His poem was about how he went back to find the farm. Perhaps you should never go back. Hedgerows where rabbits lived, landmarks, the borders of my world. Stamping bull, sweaty men in shorts sleeves, all gone.

Now for our special guest this evening, winner of a string of slams, it’s Stewart Taylor, the world’s worst poet. He began with a poem loosely about Isadora Duncan the mother of contemporary dance. This lead into an ode to the working classes. How wonderful they are, salt of the earth, until the end of the poem, not so fond of the dirt, I despise the working classes, cheap lager from plastic glasses, I think I might be one of them as well!!

Southampton is famous for Ikea, Salisbury has a Cathedral with the Magna Carta (Big Chart). The first pops stars, King John and the Barons, beat Cliff Richard to the top, as he was on a religious tour! So we journeyed down and got our kicks from the not so famous A36.

A more sombre poem followed about WWI, daddy what did you do in the war, she watches as he turns away, some things you cannot say to a child. Then no to plastic bags just because they are wrong. The last poem was all about the out doing of the doer. No matter what you do or say, always remember someone did it before you; quicker, slicker, sweeter and cheaper, but don’t let that put you off.

THE INTERVAL.

Randomly throughout the first half, John came up with this great idea based on the theme of ‘worst’ that every act could state what they were worst at. However, it was so random I did not write everyone’s down. So to ensure no one is left out, here is a worst of everyone montage. I am worst at; sticking to principles, keeping my opinions to myself, self-promotion, writing short poems, cooking, running, naming German sausages and arriving on time (that was Derek’s).

How did we pack so much into the first half? I fear Poetika 46 is bursting at the seams and will surly overrun, and all the better for it, so off we go again, more music, more thoughtfulness, more laughter and of course more poetry?

Adam opens Act 2 with a song about the underbelly of Southampton. Many divides in the town, everyone wears their crown. Stranded on the borderline. Little shits outside smashing up my garden fence, do they think I stay inside and not take offence, baseball bat by the door….in the city.

And now James and Alfredo the Wonder DogBusy with my business, no time to write a song, two cups of coffee, straight back to bed, blurry day, not much sleep last night, busy writing lyrics to the sound track of my life. Perhaps a message about procrastination, the muse may never come, we must grab it and make things happen!!

Then a poem of love, mellow like Green sleeves and Scarborough fair, a four-leaf clover will bring you luck and a song of love.

Cat, with a cheeky poem about Stewart Taylor, the best part about Stewart Taylor is Stewart Taylor’s wife.

Peter’s debut, 3 poems written in 38 degrees’ heat on a train. Sea 1 and Sea 2 for his 5-year-old son. I stood with you 100 years ago, blue month of August. Then the third ‘when it came.’ A ghost by the river, it came just before dawn when the wind picked up, crept in, climbed up into my bed.

Another debutante, Ria, two poems about Wiltshire and India. Butterflies fallen to golden feathered wheat, still in this moment dedicated to me. Colours. India full of diversity but still troubled by the stark realities of a divisive caste system. Day for perfection, Disney princess bride, we are the decorated women, the ways of colour clash, then part. 

Papa Webb returns for more cheeky ditties. On a dark and stormy night, a wizard met a witch. If God was a man and created man in his own image, he must have has some self-awareness issues.
Then a limerick about Fairy tale balls, choppers and whoppers and tears.

Junior Papa Webb, Nick took to the stage. Normally a song writer but happy to try his hand at poetry in a song lyric style. Right where I don’t Belong. I tie myself to a firework, space here I come, I stare t my phone and wonder why no one calls.

Oh well, last day on earth, what can I say, rob this town, pull its pants down, arrest me, take me, I don’t agree, and shoot them down, oh well, oh well, oh well.

Anna, another Poetika first, her poem is a tribute to her tutor Lynn who helped her with her dyslexia. Hated Oreo’s as a child, just too wild, hated all things English until I met you.

Derek returned, self-confessed, late again, but always worth the wait. Derek, good at telling bad jokes. Especially if the stakes are high! (or should that be steaks?). His poem was about an art installation with the words ‘I love you’ in 311 languages. Wall of Love (Mr soppy or ode to his girlfriend). 311 words to say I love you, 311 ways to mislead, misinform, misdirect. A little cynicism slipping into this love poem. Another about a trip to Disney Land Paris, from steamboat Willie to photo opportunity, a shop, all the punters taken for another ride. A second helping of possible cynicism creeping in.

Roya made her first appearance and read a fascinating piece of flash fiction. Marie Antoinette is helping her flat mates move. But keeps producing pillows but achieves little else much to the frustration of the others. Then Mark appears with two full sized antlers. Marie Antoinette doesn’t understand.

POWER CUT, the lights go out…..no wait, it’s all part of the finale drama, welcome to the stage our even more special guest, J Arthur Prufrock.

He complains that he has been misnamed in the local press. But, ‘before I read this poem’ we, the audience get instructions on the form of the poem, the history, how to react to certain parts, especially stanza 71, 74, 75 and 129. So, as he is about to treat us to sixty minutes of artistic and poetic genius he is rudely interrupted by John. Time check, Poetika has burst at the seams, we are running wild crazily beyond 9.30, even more outrageously heading to 10 and beyond, unknown territory. ‘I can’t do anything shorter, but I can do something concise.’ With that, he launches into the final delight poem of the evening.

So as the evening ends and our extra-large audience queue to exit the building there is still time for some final announcement.

No Poetika next month, the gasps of shock reverberate around the Cloisters. Summer break. But wait, it’s not all bad news, Poetika will return on Wednesday 20th September, everyone has two whole months to write new material or rehash old ones. Then October will be a special month, an early Sunday Poetika for the Salisbury Fringe, usual fare on Wed 19th then again at the end of the month for the inaugural Salisbury Literary Festival.

And finally, Deborah and David Robinson have their latest art on display from July 21st until August the 3rd. Well worth a visit, I was there on Friday night enjoying nibbles and wine watch the apocalyptic rain in the safe surroundings of the Hayloft, Wick Lane, Christchurch.

Ian

And finally finally – have a great summer break from all at Poetika.Poeticka on holiday 2017

Open Word July 24th Very enjoyable

“Very enjoyable”, “excellent standard of poets” and “a great atmosphere” was the feedback we received from our audience. They loved the inclusiveness of our event.

Open Word is held at The Grosvenor, in the beautiful town of Stockbridge, Hampshire. The Open Word Café runs from 1.30pm – 4.00pm, every 4th Sunday of the month

It was a reading of two halves.Cat Randle performed  the sacrificial poem and played with the audience while educating them about technology with The purple fantastic feels like elastic spangled and plastic ray gun.

Rosey our poet from Mencap, read her power point poem called Taxi. When she talked about taxi’s she couldn’t get into we saw taxi’s in a very different way.

Mike Rogers proved he didn’t need the microphone. We loved his retelling of Greek myths. He took the theme of families and re-created a gripping story . My favourite lines were “Blood is thicker than water. Do you have to shed it to find out.”

Mike Rogers and his fabulous hat

Mike Rogers and his fabulous hat

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

David Robinson included us in his artistic process. He’s found a picture for his poem Genesis. His familial look at Adam and Eve’s first year away from the garden.  He also took us to the time of protest in 60’s London and how it impacted his hitchhiking home. “It was yesterday, it was years ago,”

David Robinson at Genesis

David Robinson at Genesis

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

David Hubble An embarrassment guide to the Chinese was a well constructed clever list poem. A fabulous reply to Boris Johnson’s comment about what the Chinese contributed to culture. Quite a lot if you carefully listen to David. Cat was taken with his poem about cats regrets. Finally,  Michael Gove was the subject of David’s bile as his poem insulted him in beautiful Shakespearian-style language.

David Hubble sharing satire when politicians speak without thinking

David Hubble sharing satire when politicians speak without thinking

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Caro Reeves was greeting with an introduction about 5 lovely things Cat appreciated about her. Her Bird watching in Waitrose comparing the current  hoi-poloi to birds of prey. Her  poem Grand found an inspiration in nature was about being taken down a peg or two. “If you’re unique you’re not alone.” Her poem  in praise of fracking was a hymn for any eco-warrior and a wake-up call. Her set finished with Great moths reminding us of why we need our countryside2016-07-24 14.02.42

 

 

 

 

 

Syd Meats introduced himself as an ego warrior which explained his tee shirt and how this movement was created to help uphold people’s self-esteem. He read 4 poems in the first half The penultimate question version 1. His witty post-Brexit poem was short and a crowd pleaser. He read one of my favourite environmental poems, reminiscent of Edward Lear in its absurdity and swift in its brevity; If. His 4th poem I must not took us from cradle to grave through one man’s life defined by what he must not do.

Syd Meats helping us up hold our self esteem

Syd Meats helping us uphold our self-esteem

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Charlotte Sherwood was able to fit us in before she moves west. Charlotte is a lyrical poet who helps us appreciate nature in its grand and intimate moments. Her first poem line  “know you have been and remember.” was very comforting. She then took us to The Ham on New Year’s day which is a place in Tewksbury and we walked with her family in the cold. Her final poem Remember had some lovely twists of word play which ensorcel us in her idyll spell.

Charlotte Sherwood weaving a wonderful word picture

Charlotte Sherwood weaving a wonderful word picture

We ask for feedback at the end of each session and we were asked if the guest poets and musicians could play in the first and second half.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Guest poet, Duncan Green after introducing one of his signature poems, Why create used his first half to take us on a journey into the world of early fatherhood. He examined the father’s relationship with a child in his poems Gravity,Reveal and I’m Father Christmas. He subtly captured the emotional roller coaster of early parenthood. In the second half, he explored Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. He experimented with slam and non-slam rhythms varying pace which helped us take on all the intricate concepts inside his writing.The second set is still young. Once completely learnt by heart, he will edit the poems into an even more powerful offering. He is a capable philosopher poet and this cycle is an excellent exploration of Maslow’s pyramid.

Duncan Green promising not to drop his inner child

Duncan Green sharing the wonder of a small baby

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Les Kazoos D’Amour. We questioned was it love of kazoos or kazoo love. We fell in love with Matt and Janet’s energy, stage banter and wonderful choice of energetic, wistful, uplifting, catchy, funny songs. Their own particular verve and personal spin lift these show tunes, songs, ditties, old and new and give them a snazzy jazzy life.  I particularly loved Ivor Cutlers; Go and sit upon the grass.This is the magic of Les Kazoos D’Amour, their sets are like being greeted by a long lost friend who is happy to see us again. We finished off their second set with a song medley involving a lot of 60’s songs and Jeremy Corbyn. I love them and they deliver joy, fun and a darn fine sing along.

Kazoo D'Amour with they wonderful banter

Kazoos D’Amour with their  wonderful banter

 

 

Lesley Scott put the ‘oh’ in ode at The Art House

We’re fond of Lesley Scott . She was spotted at Moving Voices and the team of Syd Meats and  Cat Randle encouraged her to come to The Teapoets Collective. In our small supportive venue Lesley flourished. We were so proud of her when she competed in SO:Speak Slam at The Dancing Man on October 31st. Now she has her very first support gig. We here at Big Up Words are letting out a whoop whoop of encouragement that our Teapoet brethren are doing SO WELL
This is her event in her own words
Come and see Lesley’s Virgin Slot?!  Ummm, sorry that may give you the wrong idea.  I’m the girl whose car had sex (without my permission), who divulges the seedy undercover world of pensioners ( you’d be surprised at what they get up to!), the inside story of office meetings and all those characters you will recognise If you’ve ever suffered such a meeting, ducks (well, why not?! ), finding love in Asda and more.  I put the “oh!” in ode and the fun in “function”!  So come to my function and support my opening slot at on the 5th March 2016 at The Art House and then watch Rob Gee perform afterwards!
Lesley Scott wows audiences with her humour at her first slam

Lesley Scott wows audiences with her humour at her first slam

What’s new in the Nanowrimo universe?

HI there, this is the Nanowrimo newsletter. If you’d like help with your novel, Hampshire scribblers are a writing group affiliated with Nanowrimo and we meet in Andover library every second Saturday. We are meeting there this Sat from 1 so come along and find out all about novel writing.

Happy New Year from NaNoWriMo HQ!

The start of a new year is the perfect time to dust off that manuscript, flex those fingers, and resolve to make this your Year of Creativity.*

To help keep your imagination on track in 2016, follow our handy Map to the Year:

The "Now What?" Months

The “Now What?” Months (January and February)

Recommit to your NaNo-novel! Sign our official Revision Promise and then get started on revising and editing the novel you drafted in November.

Take advantage of our sponsor offers and—if you won NaNo in 2015—our winner goodies before they expire!

Attend one or all of the webinars and tweet-chats we have lined up:

  • Tweet-chat: #NaNoNewLeaf Tweet-chat with the agents of New Leaf Literary. Wednesday, February 17, 1 PM PT (Your Time Zone)

Partake in Pitchapalooza! Pitch your book to the Book Doctors in 250 words or less by February 29. One winner will receive an introduction to an agent or publisher appropriate for their manuscript! more info

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Camp NaNo Prep (March)

Begin prepping for your Camp NaNoWriMo writing project. And be sure to check out our always-helpful Writing Resources.

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Camp NaNoWriMo (April)

Grab your suntan lotion and garden spade—it’s time to get your hands dirty! During Camp NaNoWriMo you can:

  • Complete a writing project (novel, script, memoir, anything you want to write!) in a month.
  • Set your own word-count goal and track your progress.
  • Build community through “cabin” writing groups and forums.
Revise and Recharge

Revise and Recharge (May)

Want to continue refining that writing project you started during Camp? Need some inspiration to recharge your creative batteries? Now’s the time! Plus, follow our blog on Tumblr for some help and company.

Camp Logo

Camp NaNo Season, Cycle Two (June – August)

Camp NaNoWriMo returns in July for a second round; our year of creativity is flying by!  As you prepare, write, and revise the writing project of your choice, don’t forget to:

  • Track HQ goings-on (and possibly get some NaNo 2016 sneak peeks) on Instagram.

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NaNo Prep (September – October)

You’ve worked hard over the past eight months: you’ve built stamina, strengthened creativity, and explored the depths of your imagination.

Now, join us for NaNo Prep season. Use these two months to rev up your November novel so you’re ready to go on Day 1.

NaNo Logo

NaNoWriMo (November)

Say goodbye to procrastination and hello to National Novel Writing Month. This is sure to be your best NaNo yet. A couple of pro tips:

Now What

Now What? (December)

Your year of creativity is coming to a close. But fear not, another is just ahead.

Resolutions can be hard to stick to, but we’re here to support you along the way. Can’t wait to spend this year of creativity with you, Wrimo.

Heading to the gym to do some typing exercises (that’s what happens there, right?),

Rebecca Stern
Director of Programs

*Commit to your year of creativity with a recurring monthly donation. It’s an investment in the power of your story, and a regular reminder, all in one!

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What is The Night of Writing Dangerously?

Our poster you'll sign on the night

Our poster you’ll sign on the night

The Night of Writing Dangerously is a cross between a raucous dinner party and a write-a-thon. Bring your glad rags and your lap tops to Lunar Hare and we’ll provide food and a drink to help you write the night away. We’ve also got some fun party games for your 15 min stretch times. This is a Hampshire Scribblers event to raise funds for the young writers program.

This Saturday from 2-3.30pm at Andover Library we’ll be continuing our novel preparation and Cat Randle will be going over some ways you can fund raise money to attend The Night of Writing Dangerously and other fun events we’ll be putting on during National Novel Writing month.

And we’ll have the Travelling Bookstall ready for you as well.

Nanowrimo sheild

What’s coming up in winter! Part 1

We’ve got a fun year coming for Big Up Words. We’ll need you to come and play of course. First thing is

National Novel Writing Month

Nanowrimo sheild

Some of you may have heard of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) but for those of you that haven’t, here’s the low down. NaNoWriMo is a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to creative writing! Writers begin on November 1st and work towards the incredible goal of writing a 50,000 word novel by 11.59pm on November 30th.

The Hampshire Scriber’s writing sessions are all on Saturdays in Andover Library from 14:00 – 15:30 and each has a unique theme:

  • October 17thPlanning or Pantsing what will I write about?
  • October 24th – How to attend the Night of Writing Dangerously
  • October 31st – Official NaNoWriMo Kick Off Party! (Halloween themed!)
  • November 7th – Blanket Fort Building
  • November 14th – Steampunk/Fantasy themed afternoon
  • November 21st – #Writefit
  • November 28th – Teddy Bear Picnic
  • December 5th – Thank God We Made It (TGWMI) Party! (Crowns and stars theme!)

All ages are welcome! Beth Hanson is now Hamshire’s ML. Our job is to prove we’ve got enough keen novelist to create Hampshire as its own part of the Nanowrimo verse. So Big Up Words will be helping Beth run fun FREE workshops in Andover library over from October 17th until December 5th. We’ll also be fundraising, our goal is £1,500 via sponsored writers and business sponsorship.

How can you help? Grab a sponsor and write a novel, help us fund raise or come along and help us help the novelist reach their goals.

See you all in October!

 

Vote for the Andover Poetry Cafe

Yes its definitely back and we will definitely have a years worth of dates BUT which weekend do you want? 1st weekend of the month or the 2nd? We thought we could arrange our schedule around what you want.

If you pick the first weekend, that means next January the first cafe will be at the end of the Christmas period. If you pick the 2nd weekend, then any poet who comes from out of town will be able to come to our cafe on the Saturday and go to Romsey Teapoets on the Sunday. Decisions, decisions. Leave your vote in the comments section, or our Facebook page and we will announce the dates on October 2nd at our National Poetry Day open mic.

Vote 1) for 1st week and 2) for 2nd week. Choose wisely.