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Wendy Cope at the festival
Posted by: Linda (---.lns3-c7.dsl.pol.co.uk)
Date: July 13, 2005 05:56PM

I told you a few weeks ago that I was going to a poetry reading by Wendy Cope at Lichfield festival. Well, it was this afternoon.

She came over very well, her primary school teacher experience has given her a fluency in dealing with a live audience but not so much as to leave her talking down to adults. She read poems, there was a break for tea and cakes, more poems and a question and answer session. She even managed to remain pleasant while signing copies of her books. (I know it's really her job, but she must have done it so often that it must become tedious for her especially in this heat and humidity.)

She read "A policeman's lot" about Ted Hughes. She has only recently begun to use this one again. Ted Hughes apparently liked it, but she felt it wasn't suitable after his death. She now feels that sufficient time has passed for it to be revived.

With "Bloody men" she also gave us the questions from a school text book which uses it. She thought that "How do the men approaching her "flash their indicators"?" a somewhat risky question.

"At 3a.m." is so straightforward she doesn't see how dance students can find problems with it. She had received a request from a student for help in understanding it for the dance exam, but does not think that students should be encouraged to contact authors for analysis of their work.

"Kindness to animals" did not make it into the anthology for which it was commissioned (WWF didn't think it was quite appropriate for their cause.)

I mentioned your existance and she sends her best wishes.

I had a very good afternoon.


Re: Wendy Cope at the festival
Posted by: ilza (---.user.veloxzone.com.br)
Date: July 13, 2005 06:31PM

that must have been a lovely day !

she turns (or turned) 60 this year, right ?
here is a favorite :

Two Cures for Love

Don't see him. Don't phone or write a letter.
The easy way: get to know him better.
...
sorry for editing, but I have to add more :

Triolet
by Wendy Cope

I used to think all poets were Byronic
Mad, bad and dangerous to know.
And then I met a few. Yes it's ironic
I used to think all poets were Byronic.
They're mostly wicked as a ginless tonic
And wild as pension plans. Not long ago
I used to think all poets were Byronic
Mad, bad and dangerous to know.
...

Asked about her work, Cope asserted,
"I dislike the term 'light verse' because it is used
as a way of dismissing poets who allow humor into their work.
I believe that a humorous poem can also be 'serious';
deeply felt and saying something that matters."


Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 07/13/2005 06:34PM by ilza.


Re: Wendy Cope at the festival
Posted by: Linda (---.lns3-c7.dsl.pol.co.uk)
Date: July 13, 2005 06:50PM

She wasn't admitting to her age. And her birth date isn't part of the brief biography on the back of her books.


Re: Wendy Cope at the festival
Posted by: Pam Adams (---.bus.csupomona.edu)
Date: July 13, 2005 08:45PM

I wondered myself how those students could be having difficulty-

pam


an aside . . .
Posted by: ilza (---.user.veloxzone.com.br)
Date: July 13, 2005 09:00PM

... found now ...
born July 21, 1945


Re: Wendy Cope at the festival
Posted by: Desi (Moderator)
Date: July 14, 2005 08:38AM

Maybe we can send her an emule birthday next week ... Anyone has her email address?

Thanks for your report Linda. Very nice.


Re: Wendy Cope at the festival
Posted by: Hugh Clary (---.att.net)
Date: July 14, 2005 11:27AM

What was that punning poem on WC's name? I think the last line was something like 'so does Wendy Cope", with a pun on the word cope.


Re: Wendy Cope at the festival
Posted by: Linda (---.lns3-c7.dsl.pol.co.uk)
Date: July 14, 2005 12:32PM

Bit I forgot.

Someone asked if poems were better read aloud. She didn't answer the question as asked. She thought that for many performance poets the performance was more important than the poem, so that the audience would enjoy the evening but not remember a thing of what they'd heard. She thought that it was important for a reader to be able the gain as much from reading a poem from a book in the quiet of their own home as from hearing it read by someone else, but the printed work of some performance poets read as rubbish.


Re: Wendy Cope at the festival
Posted by: Pam Adams (---.bus.csupomona.edu)
Date: July 14, 2005 06:04PM

That sounds like a good definition for the difference between songs and poems- do they make sense on the printed page?

pam




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