POETRY IN MOTION WITH STANZA
By Sally Bengtsson / 2008-09-21 16:06:24
Stanza Mar Menor's first meeting, last Wednesday morning, was a hive of enthusiasm and interesting characters.
The eight newcomers consisted of a range of nationalities although all were English speakers. Incidentally, Spanish speakers are more than welcome to attend the meetings, which will be bilingual in this case. The range of backgrounds; a sculptor, a writer and performance poet, an inventor/ writer of children's books/ cofounder of Help Mar Menor, a businesswoman, poets, would be writers, to name but a few, meant the meeting was fun-filled and enjoyable.
The meeting kicked off with a word of welcome from the cofounders, David Urion and Neil McNeil. The idea of forming some kind of group of writers in the Mar Menor area grew out of the needs of a small group of writers and poets Neil has been working with over the last two years. The writing group started to visit the Alicante branch of Stanza, the only other Stanza group in Spain, which is run by Christopher North, at the Annexe of University Alicant, in Benissa, near Javea.
There are more than twenty Stanza groups in England. There is a Stanza group
in Switzerland, Scotland, Italy, France, and India at present.
In the meetings each member reads their own work in progress, and then receives comments and feedback from the other people present. It is proposed that this is done every other meeting in San Javier. They also plan to ask all members to select a poem by a contemporary poet, to read in the meetings. It could be a poem that inspired, challenged or moved you. This will expose all the members to a huge range of styles of writing, which can only be beneficial. As Christopher North commented, "The more poetry you read the better your own poetry will become."
Stanza is a branch of the Poetry Society in the UK, which will be a hundred years old next year. Early discussions with Bancaja have indicated their willingness to consider supporting Stanza Mar Menor's activities, providing it becomes registered. The support of Bancaja should allow the group to consider activities such as visits to other writing groups; invitations to guest writers; and the sponsorship of a few special writing events, perhaps like competitions with prizes.
The first workshop activity is to write a poem about a seahorse, which is the symbol of the group. These first drafts are to be taken along to the second meeting, which will take place on Wednesday October 1st at 10am in the Civic Centre, Parque Almansa, San Javier. Meetings will be held here fortnightly. So get pen and paper out and get writing. It is planned that finished poems will be taken to Fundacion Cluster in San Pedro, to assist in publicising their campaign to save the Mar Menor sea horse population.
For further information on Stanza Mar Menor call David on 699845800 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Anyone who missed the first meeting is more than welcome to join the group on October 1st.