The Bell Jar: Jo Bell's blog

"She lives the poetry she cannot write" – Wilde

You ain’t seen me, right?

Poeting in Cumbria

I’m not here, right? I know it looks as if I am, but I’m not. I’m in a field in Cumbria, getting rained on. The Kendal Calling Festival is on, and I’m poeting there with esteemed colleagues like Tony Walsh and Mike Garry – so this blog comes to you by witchcraaaaft. Anyway, I’ll be on a stage somewhere looking a bit like this.

Like this, but with waders on

Otherwise it has been a week of necessary paperwork: completing a report on our poetry roadshow Fourpenny Circus for the Arts Council, sorting out bits and bobs for National Poetry Day, exchanging emails with various people about our writing project Bugged and meeting up with a splendid new mentee in Derbyshire.

We still have two weeks to go on Bugged, but we’re turning our thoughts to how our book might look and which of the creative gems we have collected could go into it. The project seems to be getting all sorts of writers to write in all sorts of new ways and I’m no exception – I wrote a short story for the first time in my life and thoroughly enjoyed it.

My Companion Stone is in situ and I still haven’t seen it, but thanks to Ann Atkinson I can show you some photos of it going into place. If you are anywhere near the National Trust’s Longshaw Estate in Derbyshire then stick your head inside the main gate. The stone is settling in, and getting to know its eighteenth-century companion. Hopefully the stone and its short poem will outlive me, and I will at least leave one small fingerprint on the Peak District.

Here at the Macclesfield Home for the Unusual, we have been watching with interest as our feudal landlord tries to construct a  dry dock built within a historic canal arm. It is a very wet dock at the moment, and the process of getting it dry seems to be more challenging than Kev had anticipated. Every day a new piece of plant arrives. Every day the heaps of mud in the car park grow larger. Every day the plant stops at about lunchtime as they work out why the water is getting in again. Hey ho. It’s enough to make you want to hide away altogether….


This entry was posted on July 30, 2010 by in Readings and writings.
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