Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Things I've done in the last week

This week has been incredibly busy! I performed at the penultimate Utter! poetry show, down in London last Tuesday; co-hosted another lovely Fen Speak open mic night in Wisbech on Wednesday; and did a support set for the Attila the Stockbroker and Future of Music gig in Norwich on Saturday.

We've also just finalised the cover designs for a new pamphlet of poetry, which will hopefully be printed before Christmas. And I've been writing some new poems too!

On top of all that, we've launched this year's Fenland Poet Laureate competition. So, if you're a budding poet living in the Fens, write us a poem and you could be in with a chance of being crowned* Fenland Poet Laureate 2015! (For eligibility criteria and information on how to enter, check out the Atelier East website.)

So yeah. Apologies for the gap in blog posts over the last few weeks - I've just been a bit busy. Normal service will resume on Sunday.

Photo courtesy of @thedecibelkid

*PS There is no crown. 'Tis but a metaphor.  There is a trophy though - so get writing those Fenland poems!

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Practising Pantoums

Today I had a few hours to spare, so I thought I'd challenge myself to write some pantoums.

To save you having to look it up: a pantoum is one of many poetic forms that use a structure of repeating lines. Ideally, the meaning of the repeated lines in a pantoum change as the poem progresses, and writers can use puns, punctuation, and changes in context to affect this transition.

As for the structure of the repeating lines? Well, the second and fourth lines of each stanza are repeated as the first and third lines of the next. You can continue this pattern for as long as you like, but the final stanza must include the third and first lines of the first stanza as its second and final lines respectively.

I've made it sound much more complicated than it actually is!

In fact, the best way to understand it is to see one. So, here's my first attempt. This one doesn't include an puns or double meanings, but I'm still pretty new to this, and I might need a little more practice. Still, I'm pretty happy with the placement of the lines and the rhyme scheme too. Let me know what you think!   

How Your Laptop Really Feels:

He loves you. Well, that's no surprise:
You turn him on each day and night.
You let him perch upon your thighs.
He bathes you in admiring light.

You turn him on each day and night,
And, tenderly, you tap his keys.
He bathes you in admiring light
And sings to you in binary.

And. tenderly, you tap his keys.
You let him perch upon your thighs
And sing to you in binary.
He loves you. Well, that's no surprise.