Tag Archives: Caldmore Community Gardens

Poetry Wrap 5 (A Brief Introduction on Exhaustion)

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A Brief Introduction on Exhaustion

June has started as busy as expected, both in terms of work and poetry. As I don’t work/earn over the summer I have to take on some extra work before the end of term – thus slipping the writing/working balance out of favour.

What I am trying to do, let me correct myself, what I was trying to do was maintain the writing schedule despite lacking ‘free’ time. For the past two days I have worked (yesterday was a 16 hour day) and then had a 2 hour sleep (starting with a few poems from Philip Larkin) when I have come home. Tonight this sadly means I am missing Mouth & Music as I feel my eyes are permanently glazed and driving would not be advisable. Instead I am sitting on the sofa writing this and will spend some time on the editing pile, possibly literally – asleep on top of a massive pile of paper!

lanegan 009 And an early night.

Poetry Wrap 5

Worcestershire Poet Laureate Competition

At the beginning of June the voting poll for Worcester Poet Laureate competition was closed. Our poems are still on the website, the shortlist has been revealed. This year the six competing finalists are (in no particular order);

Tony Shadforth
Heather Wastie
Suz Winspear
Damon Lord
Betti Moretti
Nina Lewis

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http://worcslitfest.co.uk/worcestershire-poet-laureate-competition-2015/

Caldmore Community Garden Workshop with David Calcutt

caldmore ccg_logoThis weekend sees Caldmore Carnival and the poets from the workshops are performing a collaborative poem, edited by David Calcutt and made from snippets of our workshop poems, lines we are most proud of/moved by. It is a strong piece and works well with various voices. I was lucky enough to have a part to read in rehearsals. Sadly I can’t make the event in the garden on the 13th as I will be working my last session, this academic year, for Writing West Midlands.

The workshop provided us with an opportunity for prose writing. I now have the scaffold of a short story/flash fiction about the garden or perhaps some raw material for a poem.

It was great seeing everyone again, I missed the last workshop as some man drove into my car and it was off the road getting fixed. I look forward to the next few, August will see the end of this project and David’s residency in the garden. It has been lovely being involved and has left me with happy memories and some decent poems. Always a plus point!

 

Stirchley Speaks – The P Café with Jess Davies

I met Jess through 52, a shy, retiring young poet, a fledging ready to spread her wings. Well she’s done that!

Stirchley Speaks was the first night of a monthly poetry event run by Jess at the P Café! What an amazing opening event she had, no less than 3 former Birmingham Poet Laureates; Spoz, Joanne Skelt and Jan Watts. She had people travelling from Swindon and Malvern to be there, she brought together poets from different genres, the Poetry Bites crowd was well presented as was the young, level up, beat poets of the now. Most importantly she brought poetry to the outer city, to Stirchley and was paid back loyally by a great local crowd of supporters and some NEW talent!

It was an incredible unfurling of a young poet’s vision and was an extremely adrenaline packed (and actually packed) gig!

I had lots of positive comments about the poem I shared (although it is my favourite poem) it is always good to hear how it touches others. To the point of getting them to feel like writing again (job done).

Here are some great photographs shot by Murdock Ramone Media, to try and bring a little Stirchley to the Blog.

The venue itself has been highly rated in reviews of Stirchley Speaks. The P Café boasts a fabulous drinks menu as well as truffles, muffins cakes and bakes.

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Behind the camera there was standing room only and some people listened from through the opening in the café!

I have written a longer review of this event in a separate blog post LINK TO FOLLOW.

 

Permission to Speak at The Scary Canary with Robert Francis

Robert Francis booked Brenda Read-Brown and Peter Williams to headline this month’s Permission to Speak. There were some new faces to the event, venue and the stage – which is always a bonus. Rob made the decision to make this event FREE and move it to Thursday evening – one step closer to the weekend. I hope the success of this event continues to grow. People of STOURBRIDGE – GO TO THE NEXT ONE!

permission junePeter treated us to sets in the 1st & 2nd half, Brenda delighted the audience with her wit – I thoroughly enjoyed watching audiences reactions. There were plenty of people there who hadn’t discovered Brenda Read-Brown, as with most people who have caught her set, they are now hooked!

Plenty of open mic talent and all round a great night on my favourite stage of them all, (it’s made from old school desks)!

 

Spoken Word at The Ort with Debbie Aldous

1 birm ortI was glad to be able to catch up with Tessa Lowe on Friday and miss the tennis for The Ort – the tennis was postponed for playing the next day. It was a great night of Spoken Word and Music. I saw lots of familiar faces and lots of new – a particular highlight for me was the improvisation set with David Rees-Jones. Plenty of open mic action, it all is, no headliners here.

I shall not make the next one as it is the 10th July and I am one of TEN poets performing on the QUIET COMPERE Tour! QC

 A Cluster of Poets at Cannon Hill Park MAC (Midlands Art Centre)

Before the weekend I was invited to take part in a poetry event at Cannon Hill Park, thanks go to Jasmine Gardosi and Tony Fox for organising it.

We performed in the Pop Up Storytellers Tent to a mixed crowd, some of the cutest kids. We were all fumbling through our poetry when we realised how young the audience was, we managed it though and had a great time in the process.

Here are some photos to give you a flavour.

MAC With Frankie Ryan, Tony Fox, Syrac Citam, Timothy Scotson, Callum Bate and Nina Lewis at Cannon Hill Park.

MAC T Scotson  MAC Carys Timothy Scotson & Carys Jones MAC Farhan Farhan MAC Graham Langley, Catriona Heatherington, Rich Scott, Cath Edwards and Jenna Catton at Cannon Hill Park. The Storytellers

This is how Storytellers fall ^^^^

and the poets? Well, they fall like this –

MAC Callum Bate, Frankie Ryan, Nina Lewis, Jasmine Gardosi and Timothy Scotson.

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^  ‘Jazz hands’!

Farhan, Callum Bate, Ryan Murray – now Frankie – now Frankie Ryan, Nina Lewis, Jasmine Gardosi & Timothy Scotson

 

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I loved the PINK Storytelling chair, it matched my new (worn for the 1st time) shoes! This pop up poetry event was a great way to end a full on week of poetry.

Celebrating World Poetry Day

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I spent the day performing in Walsall, first at Southcart Books and later at Caldmore Gardens.

southcart books Folly-and-Gray-Southcart-Books-Feature-Photo-420x352 The last time I performed here was Small Business Saturday, this time Scott and Amy had organised a group of Poets to read to mark World Poetry Day.

sc scott and amy world poetry day sc books world poetry day sc books2 world poetry day It was a great event and I always love browsing in bookshops. I bought 2 poetry books last time I was here, I bought 2 books this time too.

Then I hotfooted over to Caldmore Gardens to read with David Calcutt (Poet in Residence) and Janet Jenkins at the Open Day. Making my Poetry Day complete.

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Caldmore Community Garden Workshop with Poet in Residence David Calcutt

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caldmore ccg_logoI was lucky enough to make the final workshop at Caldmore Community Gardens on the 9th December, it was great to see Janet and Jimmy again and we had fun writing poetry about a particular area in the garden, we then worked together, playing with what we had written. It resulted in several promising group poems, it is now David Calcutt’s job to mesh our words together into a final poem.

Rather excitedly this poem will then be written into a path for the public to enjoy as they walk up to the wild garden.

I cannot wait to see the final product, work is planned for sometime in the New Year.

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The Final Week of October – Writing, Workshops and Halloween Poetry

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Half Term – much needed, much anticipated – and then I go and fill my entire week up with writing!

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Monday – Writing Day

Tuesday – Writing & Workshop AM, Writing & Editing PM

Wednesday – Writing, Proof reading, Submitting & Working AM Drummonds 42 PM

Thursday – Writing & Workshop AM, Mostly Halloween The Ort PM

Friday – Job Application & Work AM, Word Up PM

A weekend off writing to catch up with sleep and spend some time with Mr G and my family.

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I started the week on a high after the successful INKSPILL weekend and chained myself to the laptop to finish my writing project. I also found out about a workshop happening in Stratford-Upon-Avon run by Angela France and booked myself a place on it.

I spent all of Monday and Tuesday morning writing and editing, both days started at 7:30/8AM (early for me) and certainly earlier than I had planned – but I was up and had a lot to do. Monday was an 11hr write and Tuesday night was a late one. I decided to leave my final proof reading for Wednesday morning when I was more awake.

caldmore david-portrait-1 David Calcutt who has been Writer in Residence at Caldmore Community Gardens in Walsall offered a series of Free Writing Workshops. I couldn’t attend the first one as I was working, I realised just before the weekend that I could make the 2nd one as it is half term. Considering it is my week off I packed a lot of writing work in and have only just started to rest for a few days. caldmore ccg_logo

I am so glad I made the effort to go to Wild Fire – it was great meeting new writing folk and was an inspiring morning/afternoon, I took lots of photos and scribbled notes and plan to do something with them next week. I did have a problem navigating my way there – but now I know where it is I attend to visit next Sunday for a reading around the Bonfire and go to the next workshop in late November. The plan for that one is to write group poetry which will then be placed in the garden. I love that sort of thing!

I chained myself back to the desk after arriving home to finish my project.

Wednesday I finished my writing and submitted it – getting my brain back for the first time in weeks. I had planned to write for another few submissions, but missed the deadlines. My brain was tired and I have still tutored this week so there really hasn’t been any spare time until, today. Plus some of the submissions were competitions and I didn’t have the money to pay, due to overspending on Halloween!

I spent the afternoon shopping for Halloween Fancy Dress, a lot of my Dressing Up stuff is still not accessible, stored away- I decided I didn’t need to spend much and would find it less stressful to buy new rather than clamber round in the spare room trying to find the right box. As I type that line it seems ridiculous – but when I say this room is full of boxes, sadly I mean it literally!

Anyway I popped to the £1 shop (I call it the 10 Bob shop – as I always spend at least a tenner in there)! I picked up a wig, packs of makeup, black nail polish, liquid eye liner, some tattoo sleeves, a pair of tights and some wings (which I didn’t use in the end). You guessed it – I spent £10! The best part was seeing my nephews in there and having some fun with them as they excitedly showed me all their Halloween bits.

By the time I made it home, I trawled the internet for several hours for fancy dress ideas and only just had time to get ready for a night Poeting in Worcester.

I performed at Drummonds 42 (Andrew Owens) it was a fantastically spooky night and there were some incredibly confident performances – I think dressing up releases the inhibitions. I loved every minute of this, my first Halloween event. I went as a spidery woman, after spending more money than sense on Halloween bits, I decided to at least make costumes up from what I already have in my wardrobe!

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I had planned to write a job application when I got home, but it was late and I was tired.

On Thursday morning I treated myself to a mini -Lie in with a book and then headed off to Stratford, to get a bit lost for the 2nd time this week. I love Angela France’s poetry and I admire her too, she lectures at university so I knew her workshop would be great – it was. We wrote using form in the morning – a Décima, in the afternoon we wrote about Place. We also read and discussed poetry about Place, chosen by Angela. Angela france Angela France Performing at – Poetry Lounge in The Sitting Room

It was a day of inspiring conversation and I enjoyed every minute! Even made it to the RSC (Royal Shakespeare Company) to drink coffee in the Theatre’s Café at lunchtime. I also saw Connie, Cathy and Jenna from my Stanza group.

My afternoon plans got changed as I was sent to look for a pumpkin. This is the 1st year we haven’t grown our own to use! This pumpkin hunt was a bad idea as several of the Stratford supermarkets I went to also had Halloween SALES!

This time I went a bit mad… I had already seen on the website a floral headband which was perfect for Friday’s costume. Unfortunately that was at the back of the store and at the front was the SALE! I just had to buy a few other headbands to make Halloween Poetry Costumes easy next year! I also saw a wig with plaits – perfect for the ragdoll and when I picked up the flowers saw an ace skeleton bracelet (also perfect for the Friday costume). No pumpkins though!

I made it home with just enough time to get ready for my 2nd evening reading Halloween Poetry at Mostly Halloween at The Ort with David Rees-Jones, it is usually a comedy night but for Halloween he had various acts, music, stories, improv, a quiz and me Poeting. I dressed as a Rag Doll

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It was a thoroughly entertaining evening and I was treated to a 10minute set, which included 3 Witch poems I wrote at the Stratford Workshop.

 

Friday I spent the morning writing a job application and working and then chased about for Pumpkins. I had my first break, before starting to apply white face base for my fancy dress at the REAL Halloween Night event of Word Up. A incredibly simple idea that took a lot of time to execute (not a gore joke), as well as taking several hours to apply I practically used up all the WHITE cream base!

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I could have bought the Poetry Pamphlet and bottle of wine given as the prize – rather than spending money accessorising this look, but practically everyone had dressed up and Ddotti had decorated the whole place for Halloween, so I do not regret the effort and driving into the city looking like this was an experience. There were some great performances and it was FUN!

I will NOT buy any extra Halloween bits, probably EVER, plus next year I won’t need the hours of internet research as I have plenty of costume ideas and the outfits! I could have dressed the same for all 3 nights but as I didn’t dress up last year I was making up for it.

My plan before next year is to gather all the fancy dress bits together and NOT buy anything more. I have enough for a lifetime!

Since last night I have been relaxing, planning writing for next week and catching my breath. It has been one of the best Half Term holidays ever!