The Mole Valley Poets/The Poetry Society Stanza Group ran an enjoyable Poetry in the Community event at the Star Pub, Dorking on September 27th, 2011. There were readings, creative activities, and lively chat in a hospitable atmosphere where the acoustics were good, the audience joined in and poetry flowed from pen to paper to stage. Congratulations to Kevin Connelly who won the loudest applause prize for his list poem (see below). Our thanks to landlord Ian for hosting us once again; we hope to see you there in 2012.
A rather dented Walker’s shortbread tin
That makes a rattley noise. Contained within
a deck of cards, complete but for the hearts
a model Messerschmitt with missing parts
three football cards signed by Nobby Stiles
a V and I that once were scrabble tiles
nine Chinese checkers, seven pawns from chess
a Barbie doll, sans head, and missing dress
one childhood, only slightly damaged.
©Kevin C Connolly 27-09-11
Our links with the community continued in October as part of the Mole Valley Arts Alive Festival. Tamar Yoseloff was our Sofa Poet on the 10th; we were back in the front room of the hospitable Lincoln Arms with pens, paper and the anticipation of writing by request on an unknown topic. Tamy eased us into the poetry mode with work from her new collection The City with Horns and her thoughts on narrative in poetry. She spoke of the challenge of this when writing very short poems, about the need to capture archetypes, to suggest and the use of symbolism. We were also introduced to the idea of writing poetry that begins with a flashforward: so good to have a suggestion for an approach to writing a poem that borrows from another genre. From this, and our imaginations and experiences, we wrote and shared our first drafts –it’s amazing how strong these can be and we listened to many examples around the table. The evening finished with more of Tamy’s poems, including some of those linked to the work of Jackson Pollack. Thank you, Tamy, for an inspiring evening.
On October 27th members of MVP participated in an evening of poetry, dramas and short stories in the Mezz Bar, Leatherhead Theatre, organised by Trevor Danby. Poets read from their own work, others read their short stories and poems from the English canon were performed by two guest actors. In between, we all become part of the scene for three one act plays. A great way to enjoy local talent ... let’s hope this initiative continues.
Finally, on the 31st, as the last Arts Alive event, Mole Valley Poets hosted an open mic event, again in the Lincoln Arms. Our Poetry Pub has become a mix of music and poetry and we welcomed a guitar duo with a repertoire of 60’s music that remains contemporary. It was also an evening to celebrate the publication of the new MVP anthology Seen and Not Heard and to hear some of the poems it contains and from visiting poets, who had travelled from near and far to join us. We heard a melange of poetry: long performance pieces, personal work about family and travel, many with the unplanned theme of the sea! Thank you to everyone who read, played and listened.