We’re not in love

Last night we went to a poetry reading event organised by Seren in the Chapter Arts Centre in Canton. There’s an event every first Thursday of the month but this is the first one we’ve been to. We didn’t read ‘cos we wanted to suss it out first. We figured if it was going to be all deep, obscure poetry then our comic poem about speed dating would be as unwelcome as a corpse at a wedding. It was very friendly and relaxed and we wish now we had read. Our mate Neil was there and he was going to read. Naturally, in true Raven style, we got ourselves noticed. And not in a good way. If first impressions count then we’re screwed. The lack of decent drinks at the bar (Smirnoff Ice and Red Bull) led us to buy orange juice. Should’ve known then it’d be a disaster. We’ve never been to a social occasion where they haven’t had Smirnoff Ice. We had it for our book launch in Waterstones and our reading in the Poets Corner pub. Cat shook each bottle before opening them and didn’t see the barmaid loosening the lid on the fourth bottle. You guessed it, as she shook the bottle with a ferver only matched by Grand Prix winners with their champagne, the lid flew off and beautiful orange rain descended on the floor, the bar, our mum and Cat. This was made worse by the loud “Crap!” uttered by Cat. In a tiny room with quite a few people already there, this really wasn’t how we wanted our introduction to the poetry scene to go so now everyone’s memory of us is stained orange. Cat’s had a bad week. On Tuesday her laces and boots got caught together resulting in her landing splat on her face. She went down like a felled tree. Did her still injured knee the world of good, though the ducks did gather round their fallen comrade to offer suggestions, or laugh. They’re not used to seeing one of their mummies sprawled face down in the dirt.

Back to the poetry. There were two published poets reading. Have to admit, can’t remember their names. The first guy did quite deep poems and you know our opinion on them. An arse numbingly fifteen minutes later, the second guy got up. He was much better. His poems were lighter, funnier and his talking in between was funny. Then there was a ten minute break before open mic night. Actually enjoyed most of the poems. There were a few deep ones but the majority were quite light hearted and funny. Neil’s were the best and we’re not just saying that. His poem ‘Goodbye my love’ was absolutely hilarious and we were still laughing by the time he started reading his third poem. We’re still laughing now. Got some very strange looks going round Sainsbury’s. Another good poem was by Amy, think she was the poetry editor. It was about the rules passengers must obey on a train. The best line was about hurling a wet teabag at snogging couples. Who hasn’t rued the moment when there’s an annoying person around and you never have a wet teabag to hand? Like when someone holds you up in a supermarket queue when you’re dying to talk to your favourite cashier then because the jackass in front is taking so long, you’re moved to a different checkout, denied your chance of talking to aforementioned favourite cashier. (Happened to us today.) If we’d wanted to go to an empty checkout, we wouldn’t be queuing at this one! Might have to start carrying some wet teabags. There was another line about puking in a handbag, at which point Lynx and our mum poked Cat. But don’t worry, it wasn’t after a drunken night out, it was after her knee op and it was a choice between opening the door and puking on the road in the middle of a traffic jam, to the disgust of the other drivers, or puke into a handbag. Don’t worry, we emptied it first. There’s another event May sixth and we plan to read at that one. We’ll do ‘Dating By Numbers’ which we did at the Square event and maybe two others, one funny, one not. That’s election day. Should we mention our hatred of David Cameron when we’re up the front? Maybe we’ll save it ’til after the stand ovation dies down and we’ve finished crowd surfing safely. Being dumped on our heads by Tory supporters wouldn’t be the best end to the evening. Oh wait, they’d hunt us instead.

Following on the back of ‘The Eden Project’ being rejected we’ve sent it to Fantasy Magazine, an online magazine. Their response time is seven days, so talons crossed. We’ve also sent off two love poems to Writing Magazine. We’re determined to get something published in there one day. Maybe when the judge is no longer the judge. He does seem to enjoy twee, cosy stories. Even when the theme is ghost or crime stories! Twee doesn’t belong in these categories! Blood, gore and humour people! It’s the way forwards. The future’s bright, the future’s bloody. Our poems are ‘Night Dancers’ about lust and passion, which we are seriously lacking at the moment and ‘Eternal Love’. For those who remember us mentioning we had ‘Wedded Bliss’ published and then read at Square, ‘Wedded Bliss’ ‘Eternal Love’ and a third one ‘Til Death Us Do Part’ are trilogy poems. They’re all about marriage and share the same first two, middle two and end lines. Whereas ‘Wedded Bliss’ is about the funny side of marriage, ‘Eternal Love’ is about long lasting love into old age and ‘Til Death Us Do Part’ is about domestic violence. It’s a laugh us doing love poetry, having never been in love and not even sure love actually exists. Maybe one day we’ll be proved wrong. Or maybe we’ll die cynical bitter spinsters, found face down in a bowl of ice cream and partially eaten by our cats. Partially eaten because cynical, bitter spinsters can’t taste very nice. We’re not joking about the cats. Our female cat, if we don’t wake to feed her, bites our toes. If our toes aren’t sticking out the end of our quilts, she reaches under the quilts to find some flesh with her claws. If we’ve succeeded in cocooning ourselves, she bites or claws our faces. That’s if we don’t wake from being asleep. Imagine the damage she’ll inflict if we don’t wake from the eternal sleep.

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