Weeks 5-7: 29 July-18 August

Poet on holiday. The words ‘poet’ and ‘holiday’ in the same sentence might be seen as a dubious proposition. A poet often doesn’t have two cents to rub together, let alone the capacity to save them up to any great effect. Harsh? I accept the likelihood that poetry will ┬ánever afford me holidays – that is what my ‘other’ job is for. I am a realist. (At least when not day-dreaming or writing poetry.)

the start of a communal poem. where will it go?

Anyhow. Before putting down the pen and swanning off to warmer climes, I set a new challenge to the coffee worshippers who frequent The Bean Barn: write a communal poem. I left a single line on the whiteboard in the cafe to start it off (without any idea of where it might go): ‘Your brittle edges…’ Then I invited the good folks of Ballarat to add one line each. That’s the only rule – one line. I thought it’d be interesting to see what came of those edges in three weeks’ time.

A quote for you, by Robert Graves:

“There’s no money in poetry, but then there’s no poetry in money either.”

Week 3: 15-21 July

Yes, yes, I know. It is half way through August and I’m only now posting July. Let’s just say I was distracted a while.

So. For Week 3 I couldn’t resist another Banjo Patterson treat, so chose my favourite part of ‘The Man From Ironbark’ to chop up.┬áReassembled offerings were fewer this week from the coffee-worshippers at The Bean Barn. Perhaps the task was trickier, or not as exciting as last week’s segment ‘The Triantiwontigongolope’ (let’s face it, who wouldn’t prefer to head back to pre-adult when things were so much less complicated?). Maybe the particularly bleak Ballarat winter made it simply too cold to venture out. If you haven’t had the pleasure of hearing the full poem read by someone who really knows how to deliver their lines, then put it at the top of your must-do list. Preferably they’ll also be dressed the part, and have a full beard, crazy eyes and have a flair for wild gesticulation…

Congratulations to Catherine for her speedy and correct entry. Get thee to the BB for your free coffee and good luck in the prize draw! Thanks to other hopefuls Hayley, Matt and Georgie for your submissions, but you’ll have to be quicker than that to win.

ab patterson