So The Blue Stocking Poetry Jam was AMAZING!
We had Australian poets Rhyll McMaster, Elizabeth Mora, Eden Riley, and myself (reading for Tricia Dearborn, who unfortunately was sick on the night). These ladies have great blogs/websites which you can explore - just click on their names to read some of their work.
Many people commented on our particularly strong open-mic section, which had a lovely mix of new and experienced female poets. There was some serious talent, and a very generous and supportive spirit, in the room.
It was a fun and intense experience being both MC for the evening and stand-in poetry reader. (No photos of me unfortunately, I was too busy taking them!) However I enjoyed it immensely, and will probably do it again some time, when I've recovered. :-)
I'm going to leave you with one of Tricia's wonderful poems, which I read out on the night to some musical backing. It's from her latest collection The Ringing World, which you can purchase here. I highly recommend buying one - I did!
She reconsiders life on the run
Sadness always knew where to find me, though I kept on giving it false addresses, and moved house when it got too close. It discovered my silent number. Tired of its voice on the answering machine, I disconnected the phone.
I took to leaving the lights off so sadness couldn’t tell when I was at home. I didn’t put music on. I moved around as little as possible in case it had sonar. I wasn’t sure how it was tracking me.
It got so that it was hard to go out. I’d be standing in the supermarket choosing a brand of shampoo and sadness would touch my elbow. I’d realise in the cinema as the lights went down that sadness had the seat next to me.
Eventually I saved up and had my fingerprints removed and my face reconstructed by a plastic surgeon so sadness wouldn’t recognise me, even if we bumped into each other on the street.
The day sadness saw me and knew me in my new face and hands I realised it was going to take a heart transplant to shake this thing. The excitement of living like a get-away driver was beginning to pall.
I decided to reclaim my face, my actual address. I know that sadness will choose inconvenient times to visit, arriving as I’m getting dressed to go out, or at 2 am, or while I’m watching my favourite show on TV.
But it doesn’t unpack its suitcase all over my bedroom, or drink all the milk, or run up a three-figure phone bill calling long-distance, or expect to stay for months like an English backpacker.
And now I don’t have to avert my gaze when sadness catches my eye, or block my ears when it knocks at the door. Now I say, Is it you, sadness? Come in, come in, it’s been a while.