<Deleted User> (5593)

Stockport October 2010

October's meeting was an exceptional affair, offering an even greater range of poetic experiences than usual. Politics reared its head, for instance. However, there is a rich tradition of political poetry (Pope, Shelley, Pound) so no complaints there.

Nigel regaled us with wonderful poems about water and autumn, and a gritty piece about the GEC strike in the mid-eighties, in which he participated. Andy hit us with another political piece about the conservative cuts on invalidity benefits, then followed it up with an atmospheric poem about stumbling through a dark rail tunnel which was strongly reminiscent of Wilfred Owen's Dulce Et Decorum Est. All very topical for Meshach and Sheridan, who are possibly watching their respective young futures gurgle down the plughole of heartless Conservatism (not so heartless that it can't spare billions in foreign aid for 'deprived' countries with space programs and nuclear weapons, though. But I digress).

Dorinda blitzed us with pieces both visionary and humorous, wrought with her usual verve and panache. How writing in pencil has amplified her output! Chris took us on several elegant poetic excursions, evoking silken swans on leaf-strewn, mist-wreathed lakes. Meshach enriched us with several poems about the sensual aspects of water, and an amusing piece about his peptic problems. Sheridan also impressed us with some fine water pieces and a lyrical meditation on the horror and futility of human existence. John offered an English sonnet on the spiritual horizons offered by October, and a Zen Buddhist meditation on the need to be/act/think like water.

Liam, a new member, recalled several excellent poems from his vast memory-vault and treated the group to a pithy exposition of existentialist philosophy. All very interesting! I have some problems with existentialism, not least the fact that essence partially precedes existence. Just think how readily all humans learn language for instance, which no animal can. All this, of course, did not diminish the grandeur of his verse one jot.

And the theme for November's meeting? With the days darkening, we opted for the broad theme of 'a poem to make you laugh'. Appropriate enough, really, given the prevalence of dark thoughts and feelings at this time of year.

john f keane
Mon, 18 Oct 2010 02:37 pm
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