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You have written a lyric you want to try out. Maybe you just want to celebrate a favourite, or read from a first edition found on a shelf. You can recite a soliloquy, or share a poetic passage in prose. Only one rule: don’t go on for more than five minutes.

COMPULSION impelled us last week, beginning with a passage from D. H. Lawrence’s ‘Sun’, then the original ‘Richard Cory’ recited with care by Oliver. Bearded Terry wandered in off the street to sing in resonant tenor ‘The Fields of Athenry’, then young Charley amused us with Robert Herrick’s saucy ‘The Vine’. Colleen, true begetter of the evening’s theme, read a stunning piece of prose about urban ennui, and Barney moved us with poem about the pathos of glory days passed. Philip conjured the obsessive smoker of Svevo’s Confessions of Zeno; Jenna performed her dramatic ‘Marlene, Marlene, Marlene’; Kelly countered tribulations of youth with a Simone de Beauvoir lamentation on age. Shackleton’s struggle surfaced in Emanuele’s sonnet and a Whitmanesque answer to self-pity in parts of Seki’s unfinished new poem. We ended with music, as we do often, and it began to be clear that an apt theme for next week might well reflect the exuberance overall: VITALITY.

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