It only seems yesterday since the last ‘Last Wednesday’ open mic, but here it was again in
September large as life and twice as natural at Chaplin’s Bar in Hawkins Street. A long line-up of readers and performers: Sandra Harris with a short story, Ann Tannem with (among others) a poem called ‘Not Linguistic Gymnastics’ and one referencing Beatles songs which, being a great Beatles fan, I liked a lot. Hugh Dillon gave himself a first open mic outing and did very well with (among others) a clever poem on the phrase ‘OK’. Steve Conway read a piece about the time he was very innocent about ‘girls’. (Ah, them were the days, Steve)… Raven turned up to give his usual outstanding (and astounding) scriptless performance, followed by Ross Hattaway who continues to instruct us about husband killing.
Roger Hudson has a book out and read some from it and Dave Rock did one set in Japan. Inez Dillon read a series of Haiku, informing us en route that haiku should be read twice. I hadn’t heard this before but it sure stands to reason, given how short and delicate they are: often they’re gone before you can focus on them. So, thanks, Inez! Hope to see others follow your practice.
Jim Rooney, Bob Shakeshaft , Oran Ryan and Helen Dempsey kept things on the boil and then Paul Hendricks gave some really good story excerpts. Ray Connealy was uup then with a brief short story and then Phil (surname gone from my memory, sorry Phil): great poems (‘I’m going south, but only south of the city…’). I’ve lost track of the great stuff on display tonight here in Chaplin’s, but Vincent Edward Manda and Damien Clarke stay in my mind. For own part, I was on rather late and had just time to squeeze in one of my own favourites ‘On the Westlake at Hang Zhou, China, Where Poetry is Gained in Translation’ from my collection ‘And Suddenly the Sun Again’. The poem attempts to give the lie to that old chestnut to the effect that ‘poetry is what is lost in translation’ (WH Auden?), as regards the Chinese language anyway.The way they name their places is simply stunningly beautiful.
Yet again thanks to our indefatigable MC for the evening, Declan McLoughlin. (That’s the word George Galloway used to describe Saddam Hussein. Oh well..).