I think it would be fair to say that everyone looks forward to Ro’s workshops. He regularly manages a combination of quirkiness and simplicity that motivates us to produce good work, and last night was no exception. The premise was one word: Ghosts, ie write a ghost story, true or false, funny or sad, creepy or reassuring. And so, enthusiastically, we did.
We began with a true story. OK, it was mine, and I swear it really was true, of a haunting seen through the eyes of a child as a seemingly normal happening over a period of years. This was followed by a somewhat surreal one full of poetic nods (ghost and roast, for instance!), mysteriously changing shapes under bed clothes, clanging bed springs and failed torch batteries.
Then a more serious attempt. Remember those ceramic poppies round the Tower of London in 2014? And the rumour that they threw up shadows of the fallen soldiers they were representing on the walls of the tower? Well, this tale transferred those mysterious shades on to a family photo of long fallen warriors. It was quite a shock to find out that it hadn’t actually happened!
Then there was clever exploration of the nature of ghostliness and a fascinating comparison with ghost prints, this made by an artist, also a tale of ghostly love, lost and found, and another involving a church haunting and exorcism. Inventiveness erupted round the table, poems and prose, fables and fripperies, all vastly entertaining. And I must mention the wonderful duologue between Alf and Doris, life time socialists, horrified to hear news of a friend. What had she done ? ‘ Goes Tory’, exclaims Doris. Don’t get it? Come on, concentrate! I look forward to hearing more from Alf and Doris.
Big thanks to Ro, and to you all, what a fun evening again.
Next Monday Tesco again, a reading week, Optional theme The Bubble(s).
See you there. Sally