May and June meetings 2013

May’s meeting was enlivened by a rare and welcome appearance from Charles  Johnson, who generously brought a couple of large boxes of poetry anthologies, collections and writing guides, lugged them up the steep stairs and invited the company to take home any that took their fancy. I suggested that a “bring and take” bookstall should become a feature of our meetings. I should like a chance to read some of the books that were adopted by other people! It would be nice, too, to relieve the congestion on my own bookshelves.

Charles is the editor of Obsessed with Pipework and invites submissions to this adventurous publication. Have a look at the magazine on the Poetry Library’s archive. Have a look at Charles’s page under “The Poets’ Pages” (just above the cherry-plum blossom on this page). And do send me something with which to start a page for you.

Although some of the familiar faces were missing, it was a pleasure to welcome four newcomers to the Fountain group: Claire, Chris, Izzy and Carolyn. For a bank holiday, an attendance of 23 was very good. Poems ranged from brief and witty to long and Chaucerian and from topical to historical, and included one poem for two voices and two or three so moving that they ended in a brief, stunned silence.

Our next meeting will be on 3rd June, same time, same place. All welcome, whether readers or listeners. The theme, for those who like to have one, will be the writing process … to mark Jane’s last appearance as chairperson and guiding spirit, encouraging muse and all-round Good Egg.

In future, volunteer members will occupy the Chair for one month at a time – thanks to Rachael and Jo for offering to do this. It will be the chairperson’s privilege to suggest a theme for his or her month, or to set no theme.

Latest news. Charles Johnson writes: I just heard from my friend Meredith (one half of the editorial team at Flarestack Poets, the successor ‘firm’ to my old Flarestack Publishing’s pamphlet programme) that they are trying this year for the first time a submission “window”, from now until the end of June, for pamphlet collection manuscripts. I wondered if this might be of interest to some of the Fountain group. Details can be found at

See also the Faber New Poets Scheme here.

This post was written by Ama.


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