Minutes of the meeting at La Rosa Hotel on Thursday 4 October 2018.

Present: AdeleJonathan, Mike, LouiseJennyIan (chair).

ApologiesRoyPip, Graham.

Topic: Members’ work-in-progress.


Under the heading of matters arising, Ian invited Jenny to describe her latest performance of Robert Devereux, Earl of Essex, in Leeds. Jenny said the show went off well, but getting there was frightful, thanks to the wild traffic in Leeds’s confusing layout plus uncertainty as to the venue’s whereabouts. The venue itself was a beautiful building: the last of the old subscription libraries in England.

There will be no more performances now until the spring of 2019.

Louise — read a new passage from her “work memoir” about life in a hospital radiology department, provisionally entitled Breathe In. She described some of the bizarre and memorable characters who staffed the department with varying degrees of professionality and success, including the scourge of a boss who stank the office out for two decades, and the retiring radiologist who tried to check out a violent poison as the only remedy for a spot from his precious suede shoes.

Jenny — read two touching poems:

Little Prince and the Rose
Superficially an account of a man planting a Damask rose, it is homage to Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, famed not only for The Little Prince of the poem’s title, but also Wind, Sand and Stars, his account of surviving a plane-crash in the desert.

End of an Era
on the growth of the phone number of her family home, to which she had listened from early childhood as it grew from 3 to 6 digits, only to vanish forever on giving up the line at her mother’s death.

Adele proposed End of an Era for Poem Of The Week: carried nem-con. 

Adele — brought scripts for Scene 6 of her play. Three months have elapsed since Ray’s shattering revelation to his daughter Sandra of a past affair. Estranged friends Carly (Jenny) and Sandra (Adele) try to make it up in a fragile way. But new revelations are about to emerge.

Jonathan — read an untitled poem contemplating and questioning the Arthurian legends: the “matter of England”.

Ian [Anitra’s Petition] — Anitra and Supreme Councillor Dolpou Zvezda have boarded the ice-world Oberon under duress, just before it detaches from lunar orbit on its way to Mars. While Dolpou is away protesting to the captain about their abduction and threatening all manner of consequences, Anitra wanders off to explore the opulent city of Marsgrav which fills one of the two pods of Oberon. She discovers a ice-palace at the lowest level, an evocation of HC Andersen’s “Mirror of Understanding” in The Snow Queen. There she sees skaters dancing above the stars on a transparent ice floor, actually the outer wall of the vessel. Anitra meets up again with her Uncle Peter relaxing over a drink with his new colleague, the surgeon Mr Sullivan. All three discuss the circumstances of their “kidnap” into the thralldom of an 8 month luxury cruise. (See: Anitra—the last passage read-out aloud.)

The meeting finished at 1:45 PM.