Category Archives: Poetry

Meeting of Jan. 28th 2020. Eleanor Farjeon and Walter de la Mare

Seventeen people attended this meeting and Ruth Smith provided the two poets’ biographies before we got down to the business (and pleasure) of reading a selection of their poems.

It is always hard to judge which poet members will turn to most but in this instance 16 of Eleanor Farjeon’s poems were read and 18 of Walter de la Mare’s. A comment was made that Eleanor Farjeon’s poems read better than expected and Anne Stooke was praised for her rendition of ‘Mrs. Malone’.

Eleanor Farjeon

Eleanor Farjeon

Our note-taker wrote down a quotation from Walter de la Mare about his poems, saying that if any of them had the good fortune to give a fraction of the pleasure in the reading that they gave in writing it will be the author’s reward

Meeting of Jan. 14th 2020. Open Choice

Fifteen people attended this meeting and came ready with two poems each, the second being a shorter one for the last part of the meeting. Sometimes members take the opportunity to read from a favourite poet but just as often it may be something they’ve come across recently. Poems from different eras and nations were read, one written by one member but read by another as there is a bar on reading our own work. This is especially the case as we have a Writers’ Group for sharing of our own poems. Here is the list for this meeting.

Reader                                     Poem                                                Title Poet

Ann Barlow                        Hymn to Birds                                Kei Miller
Members of the Public                   Nick Ashby

Diane Chorley                     Go and open the door                    Miroslav Holub
Sometimes                               Sheenagh Pugh

Liz Maliphant                       A poem for Epiphany                John Heath Stubbs
Th New Year’s Gift                      Robert Herrick

Foster Murphy                      The Race                                      Fiona Moore
The Sceptic                                    Robert Service

Christine Pope             The Peace Of Wild Things                 Wendell Berry
Day after Boxing Day                        Paul Cookson

Adele Radelat                 The Frog in the Swimming Pool      Deborah Gregor
The Duck                                                Ogden Nash

Mavis Robinson                    from ‘Sabbath’                               Wendell Berry
Recitative by Death                         W.H. Auden

Loraine Saacks                      Mayflower Matrons No. 7          Andrew Creasey
Hope                                            Frederick von Schiller

Ruth Smith                            A Portable Paradise                     Roger Robinson
Squirrel heights                                Peter Daniels

Anne Stewart             Answer to a verse by Mr. A. Pope         Countess Ann of Winchelsea
The Rudiments of Musical Knowledge             Jane Sharp

Anne Stooke                   Washing Day Monday morning 1966                  Dawn Bauling
Late Love                                                             Jackie Kay

Nola Turner                     Jam Market                                                    Diana Sanders
Triolet for a sycamore                                      Ruth Kelsey

Paul Norris                       On the Death of my first Daughter                     Ben Jonson
On the Death of my first Son

Michael Bobbs                   The Garden                                                    Andrew Marvell
A little East of Jordan                                            Emily Dickinson

Christina Webster                           The Caterpillar                                  Guillame Apollinaire
A Woman Writer doing her Washing             Anna Swirszczynsk

Meeting Of September 10th 2019

talking

 

Ann Barlow           A Dream                                            Bandi (anonymous)
Common Grounds                             Kathleen Gallagher

Diane Chorley     A Song of Wandering Aengus          W.B. Yeats
Friends                                                 Elizabeth Jennings

Jean Ellis               The Horses                                          Edwin Muir
September Evening                              John Burnside

Monica King       The Stethoscope                                  Dannie Abse
These are the Hands                          Michael Rosen

Jan Ottley           Gardener                                                Robert Graves
The Lonely Letters                                W.H. Auden

Christine Pope  Consumer Complaint                        C. Marjorie Smith
The Royal Opera House                      Michael Shan

Mavis Robinson    Corinna’s Going A-Maying            Robert Herrick
Caged Birds                                     India Russell

Loraine Saacks     From ‘ September 1st. 1939’           W. H. Auden
Advice For Winston                         Tom Merrill

Ruth Smith             Thank You for Waiting                  Simon Armitage
The Steps                                           Liz Berry

Anne Stewart          The Memory Hall                           Meryn Williams
After Sonnet 64 Shakespeare       Jean Watkins

Anne Stooke            A Hillpost in India J.                        Milton Hayes
Eternity                                            William Blake

Nola Turner             Forefathers                                 Edmund Blunden
King Lear Act 4 Sc. 6                  W. Shakespeare

Foster Murphy       Rain                                               Edward Thomas
A Marriage                                    R S Thomas

Michael Bobb         Christabel                                      Samuel Coleridge
The Bards                                      Walter de la Mare

Christina              On a cellar, apples and poets           Anna Friley
My Ear Atends To You                     Maria Tsvetaeva

May 2019 Meetings

Meeting of 7th. May − Paradox

Prior to the meeting this appeared to be a daunting task but the twelve members who attended were equal to it. A poem by Veronica Tamending was actually called ‘The Paradox.’ There were two poems by John Donne, one of which was also called ‘The Paradox’ and the comment was made that sonnets, by their nature, end or sometimes even begin with paradox.

During the course of the afternoon, W. B. Yeats rubbed shoulders with Grace Nichols and Raymond Carver with Wilfred Owen. Alexander Pope came into his own, as did TS Eliot.

Meeting of 24th. May – Commonwealth Poets from UK and Abroad

For this meeting we were joined by Wendy Williams and another member of the Dulwich Library Poetry Group with whom we exchange visits. There was of course quite a spread of offerings with Australia being represented by Les Murray and Clive James, Canada by Margaret Atwood and New Zealand by Katherine Mansfield together with poems by Vikram Seth, Fred D’Aguir, Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Roger Robinson and Jean Binta Breeze among others from different parts of the Commonwealth.

 

 

Starting The Summer Term April 23rd 2019

We started the Summer Term on April 23rd. with an Open Choice Session. It had not escaped members that this was St. George’s Day and was also the supposed birthday of William Shakespeare. In several cases a member’s choice of poem reflected this.

But first a fascinating account from Anne Stewart of the Hindu Epic Mahabharata and its modern retelling by Carole Satyamurti who adapted iambic pentameter to re-narrate this remarkable poem in all its complexity, displaying a real feeling for it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

March Meetings 2019

AGM 12th. March 2019.

This was attended by fifteen members with three apologies for absence. Despite having to say goodbye to members who have moved or are in the process of moving, the SPC still has a steady and loyal core of members. We hope for the return of Lesley McLetchie when her medical difficulties have been resolved.

Our Treasurer, Jane Knight, announced another sound and uncomplicated year for our finances and our Membership Secretary, Christine Pope, gave out a questionnaire for members’ response with ideas for attracting new members. We have recently gained one new full member and two associates but it would be nice to have more.

Isabel Turvey was thanked for undertaking the duties of Secretary both of the writers’ and readers’ groups. It is only increased work hours that have made it difficult for Isabel to continue in these roles.

Following the main meeting, members read one short poem each.

Meeting of March 26th.

The topic of this meeting was The Seven Deadly Sins. Lust was the sin that figured most in the poems that were chosen, followed by Wrath, Avarice, Envy, Gluttony and Sloth which was celebrated (if that’s the word) in only one poem.

February Meetings 2019

Meeting of 12th. Feb. Meetings and Encounters

This was a fertile subject although surprisingly no-one read any poems by Wordsworth. Browning’s ‘Meeting At Night ‘ was read and Thomas Hardy’s ‘At The Drapers’ while there were two poems by Wendell Berry. George Macbeth had what might have been his first airing at one of our meetings.

Our guest, Christina Webster, read ‘Meeting You At An Underground Station’ by Gillian Allnutt. and Elizabeth Bishop was represented by ‘Manners For A child in 1918.’ It is always good to have a mixture of old and new.

Meeting of 26th. Feb.

This meeting was preceded by a talk from Angela Brodie who, together with Caroline Vero, provides a venue for both local and established poets to read and be enjoyed. At present Angela and Caroline are taking a break as the The Gipsy Tavern needs the space for preparing and serving food.

It is hoped that ‘Beyond Words’ will continue in another venue as it has been so stimulating and friendly with some of the best modern poets coming to read from their work. Four members of the SPC have attended ‘Beyond Words’ events regularly and will be very pleased to see its return.

Angela is a poet in her own right and also talked about the writing of ‘Salt Music,’ a sequence of poems she has written about the Hull trawling community, reading some excerpts so we could get a flavour of her work. ‘Salt Music’ has been read here and in Hull itself and has also been put to music by Steve Halliwell from ‘Little Machine,’

During the rest of the meeting members read poems by H W Longfellow, Edgar Allen Poe and Walt Whitman with Longfellow dominating the afternoon. There was one poem by Edgar Allen Poe, two by Walt Whitman and Anne Stewart treated us to a poem by Peter Veale which was an answer to ‘The Raven’ by Poe.