Do you remember the good old days, when Ekphrasis used to be a straight-up workshopping/critique group? None of these fancy special guests, none of these extra events, no official and unofficial meetings. Just ordinary reading and critique. Sigh. Those were the long, lazy days of our bygone youth.
Anyway, all that to say: We were all delighted and excited by our special guests, but we missed the solid four hours of workshop-and-critique. So in June we got back to it.
Abigail McB started us out with a poem called “Pagan Summer” and a brilliant discussion of the history of poetry in English. We had a lively discussion of the past, present, and future of verse, wondering what can be done that’s innovative. How can we go somewhere where no one has gone before? What do you think? What is the future of poetry in English?
Later Abby read a fable called “The Lion & the Hyena.” This and her poem were both published in the Minnemingo Review, the literary magazine of Messiah College. Both of her pieces are perfect, brilliant little works of serious literature, even while being light and occasionally funny.
Earl P read another a selection from the “Jotori Chronicles,” a fantasy with elves, dwarves, and dryads, continuing where he left off last month.
Then Besty G performed two monologues she is preparing for an upcoming audition. Her comical piece is “Mabel” from An Ideal Husband by Oscar Wilde, and her serious piece is Joan’s defense from Joan of Arc by George Bernard Shaw.
Marian also shared a monologue, but this is one she has written. It was an interesting perspective on the “single girl” archetype. It also involved eating ice cream, which prompted us to request Marian’s classic “sexy eating” routine, based on this little gem: Fine Dining with Tom Jones.
Speaking of movies, Jeff H played a classic movie of his, entitled Thr3e Rounds. It was the first draft edition, and he hopes to remake it. It’s a neatly-structured tale of three daily encounters and the little girl who wins the day.
Andrew MacD read us lyrics from two songs that are intended to be part of a concept album entitled The Men Behind the Mask. It’s a profound exploration of a dark psychological journey.
And Richard B read a selection from “The Reunion,” in which characters meet inside a ruined church and have a lively debate.