I must try updating this place more often. I've come to the end of term, but I still seem to have lots of work to do, and the possibility of more work to investigate (it never gets any easier; but anyone out there needs a poet/workshop leader for their writing group/course, send me a message.)
I did another workshop with the drugs/alcohol rehabilitation unit recently, something I can't help but enjoy enourmously. There's something about working with people who have no personal interest in the literary world, especially the poetry wars, that is remarkably refreshing. They always come up with something remarkable, not for its literary sophistication, but for its openness and honesty. Is it good literature? Who cares?
It does me good to remember where it all comes from: not from some desire to be famous, to be published by the "right" publisher, but to seek some kind of truth about your life. In today's post-modernist world, that word truth is a problem; but I'm not refering to some big grand narrative truth about God or Fate or capitalist hegemony, but the little truths about who we are when we strip away the labels ("mainstream", "school of quietude", "traditional", "modernist", "avant garde", "post-avant," all that stuff.) It's about being human - not with a big "H" but a little "h" - that's why I like working with these men and women who are trying to better themselves, to get back to families and to do their best for their children.
Last Trof Open mike of the year last night too; where I met a guy called Dave from South Africa, who plays a funky kind of guitar and writes poetry. John Calvert and his Yamaha was in good form too. I like that place too, though the DJ played too much prog for my liking. On Thursday, I hope to go to "how many days before Christmas" at the Horse and Hounds on Shude Hill.