Exhibition 2022

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Writing

Pamula Furness
Gary Huskisson
Tony Roberts
Susan Waters
Susan Wilson

Five members of the FPAA’s poetry group have each submitted two examples of their work

Pamula Furness

I wrote Legion when I realised that I am a little different from other people – a fact that was confirmed when I understood more about ADHD.  I now know why I am the way I am, and other ADHD-ers have recently voiced their recognition of the sentiments within the poem, when I posted it to an online group

The Crown was written after many moons of soul-searching after emerging from abusive relationships.  This has been a long journey, which began after realising I had been born to, and groomed by, a narcissistic, and worse, paedophile.  This poem is my victory song!

Legion

Legion
I’m an amalgamation, Of all the folk I’ve known,
A habit here, a gesture there, A word, a smile, a nod.
Surface illustrations, From faces through my life,
Decorate emotions, Impressions running rife,
How deep DO they go though, These adopted traits,
Do they affect my reasoning, The way that I behave?
And if they’re so deep-rooted, Would I recognise the signs,
That separate the influences, From feelings I call mine?
I fear that I’ve forgotten me, Left lonely far behind,
In some long-distant innocence, Grown dark and cold with time,
Outside this self-made edifice, Of gleanings from existence,
Built to keep me safe from harm, They’ve only kept my distance.

The Crown

The Crown
Timid little minnow, hiding in the dark
Not wanting to be noticed by any passing shark,
Keeping eyes downcast, ensuring there’s no sign,
Of anybody lying low, no need for them to shine
A light into the deep abyss, spot her frightened face,
They’ll only try to pull her out from her tiny little space.
They’ll hunt her down for sure, she knows, to have their bit of fun,
Knowing that she can’t escape, there’s just nowhere to run,
But time still passes even though sometimes it’s way too slow,
And tiny little minnow, she survives and starts to grow,
Until the very walls that once had held her in,
Are broken, gaping open by her own strengthened skin,
What magic is this? To break down such walls?
Her indomitable Spirit with its siren calls,
Has awakened the Warrior inside her at last,
And with righteous indignation pinned to her mast,
She steamrolls those who would keep her down,
Then calmly and regally, she claims her Crown

Gary Huskisson

Douglas Huskisson is Straight Outta of The Fens
With ditches to the left and dykes to right
A trained storyteller and a professional apple crumble eater.
A renowned and published poet who is intent on initiating change to the into the injustice in the world by “Saying IT louder”
His mantra to life is “The tongue has the power of life and death.” (Proverbs 18:21).

Here the written piece offered by “The little black boy from the fens” has served up lines from previous poems between April 2021 to August 2021 as the masks come down, as it speaks his unspoken words when the masks come down.
At the end of day he is still little black fen boy all day and all night.

Where did all..?

Where Did All..?
The lonely Simple
Lady
Gets off the bus
Walks to therapy
Is it pension day?
She thinks her family have forgotten her birthday
Batteries not working in controls
Looking at blank screen.
Did she have a nice day?
Nobody knows
It’s getting dark outside
Still in July
Summertime
She thinks it’s dark outside
Closing curtains while the sun is still out
She goes to sleep in the chair
Watching a blank screen

She gets off the bus
Walks to therapy
Is it pension day?
Lady thinks her family have forgotten her birthday –
Or was that yesterday?

When I put my head above the altar to do the right thing

When I put my head above the altar and do the right thing
You can see the insides of my heart and soul
For the vultures and the pinstripe players
Feeding on.
Scavenging
Their five-a-day,
Pecking away at my spirit my resolve
My consumed soul
Leaving my blood to boil and my skin to crawl.

All that is left on side plate is not my reward in heaven, where life is green and the air is set free
All that is left is my depression

This is my decision
Better than following the crowd and doing nothing,
Giving hate and beginning and end.
I own this depression not their oppression.
I will take your hand, so we will climb
Climb
Every mountain
We shall make bridges across the rushing waters
No longer we will be fodder sent to the slaughter.
No longer we will be fed to the slaughter
You can see the breadcrumbs sprinkle into the water.

Tony Roberts

The chapel referred to in the poem Little Gidding is St. John’s Church,  Little Gidding. The location was visited three times  by King Charles I, the last being 2nd May 1646 – the year following his defeat at the battle of Naseby. T.S. Eliot makes reference to this in the first part of his poem ‘Little Gidding’:

“It would be the same if you came at the end of the journey,
If you came at night like a broken king,
If you came by day not knowing what you came for. …”

Little Gidding

Little Gidding
I sit in Little Gidding Chapel,
Another broken king.
Yet may not from the ashes of a broken king
The Wounded Healer emerge?

Before I Sleep

Before I Sleep
The deep peace
Which passeth all understanding:
To me it has not come.

Yet from time to time
There are half-glimpses;
Enough to sow the seeds of hope.

Susan Waters

A Time to Dance celebrates the 600th anniversary of Chichele College and Bede House, Higham Ferrers.

A Time to Dance

A Time to Dance
They found the last bee-bole in Winter,
Three, behind the curtaining green –
Some six hundred years since
Hammers hollowed hives inside the College walls,
The Bedesmen’s sweet harvest
A court for a Queen.

Time passes.
Church bells chime each quarter hour
And slowly, centuries move.
Another page turns in the long history
Into our time to dance.
A time for counting blessings
As the Town Hall flag flaps
Yellow and blue.

Listen. A hum of crowds gathering:
Pimms and picnics, laughter,
Chairs creak and blankets spread
Softly over Duchy land.
The brass band’s polished music
Lifts in celebration
Around and away and above
The settlement on the hill.

Granddaughter - for Daisy

Granddaughter – for Daisy
If I could still time
Dear twelve day’s old
Resting in my hoop of loving
Close and deep in dreaming

Yet you are trying out your body for size

Velvet skin
Petal breath

Already shoulders shrug and stretch
Towards growth as you should

Long limbs practise steps
Holding hands with the past
Like a paper chain

A small foot kicks and a bell rings
Carrying blessings with its sounding

Your head lifts up in curiosity
Bright eyes slowly searching
Left and right.

Susan Wilson

Chapel Six Marshes 31st May is about memory and triggers to memory.
Pyaar Mein Phansaayar
means ‘framed in love’ and is about coming to terms with loss and difficult things.

Chapel Six Marches 31st May

Chapel Six Marshes 31st May

a late Winter wind picks up
flurries across the marsh
jealous of May’s bounty
it throws her petals down
in a frou-frou of ballet skirts
they gather at the edge of the path
catch in the early thistles
become indistinguishable
from pale pink tulle
it floats around
the confetti of a Spring wedding

thoughts turn to other weddings
a bouquet of frangipani
heavy with perfume
waxy jasmine to fasten up hair
the sunlight on the Indian Ocean
and hands bound together
with sacred twine

the thread bends time
twists it into the present
and allows memory to deepen

Pyaar Mein Phansaayar

Pyaar Mein Phansaayar
India is a faded memory now
captured in the bedspread
handstitched in Rajasthan
the rug in the hallway
that we never meant to buy
sometimes I wind up the tuk-tuk
let it spin across the floor
relive those hair-raising journeys
I still have the blessing threads
tied around my wrist
securing me to reality
then there are the elephants
all about the house
a remembrance of elephants
I think of the time
we stopped for petrol
when two came lumbering
into the garage
ears painted in pink mandalas
ready for a festival
sometimes I take out the photographs
look at the changes
dip in my toes to test the water
for tears or smiles
come Winter I twist on a pashmina
bathe in its softness
try to catch the scent of patchouli
or make masala chai
to warm my inner self
sip it slowly breathe in its fumes

they lied when they said
time is a great healer
Mother Ganges just gets wider
so wide

maybe I will never touch
the other side again

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