Consequences, Cricket, & Rhyme
“Nah, it’s not poetry unless it rhymes. Not in my book.”
So said Jez*, a new participant to the drop in writing sessions. (And, until 20 minutes before the end of the session, the only attendee.) He could not be persuaded otherwise. So, we continued with my original session plan: creating character, and a brief story, using the game consequences.
For those not familiar with ‘Consequences’, it’s an old ‘parlour’ game which the Surrealists embraced in the early 20th century (see also, the “exquisite corpse”). My version involved a piece of paper folded over where the participants both wrote something down (see below) and drew a picture of what they thought the character would look like or wear.
My version for today focussed on the following, with drawing instructions in brackets:
Here’s the class example.
Here’s one of the characters we came up with. (Jez enjoyed these so we did a few!)
After Jez had had a fag break, and I enjoyed another brew, we did another exercise. The next writing task was to free write using a word, or phrase, as a prompt. This is where my butchered magazines came into use! Jez wrote a story about being homeless, and about how Freddy Flintoff was going to get battered in his first fight.
I then asked Jez what he thought about Freddy and he talked at length about Flintoff’s cricket career. I admitted that I didn’t understand cricket. (I really don’t, I’ve always associated it as a ‘posh sport with a funky theme tune.’.) For the next fifteen minutes, using pens, paper and swearing, Jez has educated me in the ways of cricket. I now know the difference between Test and 20/20, and how the scoring works. Previously, three men have attempted to explain cricket to me and failed. Go Jez!
To end the session, we did a bit of poetry. This is where Jez’s mate Mickey joined us. Jez wrote a Xmas poem, whereas Mickey wrote this:
“In town, down town,
down Oldham street
and the many people I meet
all traipsing on tired feet.
On this winter’s day
going home to heat.
But just think
of the people you meet
not all in homes with heat,
many just living on the streets.
Cold and hungry
with oh! So tired feet.”
I think you’ll agree with me that Mickey’s poem is rather ace.
Next week we’re turning the little room in the café into a press office. Bring on the journalism!
* Same drill: names have been changed to protect participants from identification.