The Bell Jar: Jo Bell's blog

"She lives the poetry she cannot write" – Wilde

Lamb’s tails and caribou

Work, fun, work, fun, that’s all there bloody is these days. Thank God for this sign or I might not have got to London in one piece.

Gosh! Helpful stuff

Gosh! Helpful stuff

Between jolly important meetings about National Poetry Day, I squeezed in a visit to boater friend Ruth. We went to hear readers including Daljit Nagra at an Arvon Foundation fundraiser. Daljit gets better and his voice stronger – and the new Kings Place arts centre behind Kings Cross is a wonderful venue.


Back in Macclesfield, Ronnie’s Bar is smaller but friendlier. E-zine The Loop hosted an evening of film-watching, wine and chip butties. Perfect! They know that to enliven the cultural community and generate new audiences, you don’t need five years of earnest event planning and strategy documents. Why, no: just put a lot of arty types in a room with some beer. They talk to one another and things happen. I’m back at Ronnie’s in Duke’s Court next Tuesday (27th) for their open mike. Come along after 9.30pm for a glimpse of new material from Fourpenny Circus. Or if you’re in Manchester go to No Point in Not Being Friends, the badly named but well planned open mike for writers.


I got down to planning workshops and writing presentations, and we had a day at Action Transport Theatre in rehearsals. Our little circus is progressing much faster than Bunch of Fives did. We are pushing our modest talents as far as we can. Director Kevin continues, with a short exercise here, an incisive comment there and the odd plastic caribou, to make us perform better all the time. We think.


Saintly chums Hannah, Heather and a Patient Husband found time for another remedial tax-return class. While they sorted out my life into columns and rows, I was told to cook dinner to keep me out of the way. I finished the week with a workshop at Pickford’s House Museum in Derby, writing from their collection of silk objects with a group of superbly willing and  capable poets. As I drove home it was TILL LIGHT at 5pm – woo! and I saw a tree laden with lambs’ tails (what my mum calls the dangly hazel blossoms). Oh thank God, winter is coming to an end…


This entry was posted on January 25, 2009 by in Writing exercises.
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