neal pike not quite final draft

30 Jun

i think it still needs a lot of tweeking but ive re wrote alot of this
feedback welcome on do i need to add more stanzas
is it sharp enogh?
what needs taking out

intro to be either played over the pa or by someone with a mic backstage
coconuts start of green, become old and dry
like our character slouched over his coconut stall

I’ve been here
in this stall, it was my father’s
he died bless him
its now mine
been mine
Since 83
the end of august
when the sun slows down ,stumbles forwards
and autumn is just a clock tick away

They didn’t know wha
this strange hairy thing that is neither
nut nor fruit was back then
I was once tall like a coconut tree
now im bent frail knackered
rain as softend my husk
sun as dried the the milk inside my sshel

ive passed these young coconuts
where milk hurricanes inside
to arrogant young
green coconuts

with aching ,trembling fingers

who drop there shoulders at me
heads in the floor
as they follow a line towards ,growing up
that is not there
I throw knowing smiles to my
customers like 2 pence coins
they just throw them back
when I was young
red stripe drooped
from my fingers
tree stump joints, in my gaping mouth
making the sky smell like
like battery acid but sweeter

I was someone that pulled on the
branches of my older generation
there eyes sank towards me
in shame at
my youthful wrongdoings

as I hung dangerously ,heavy with milk above the crowd
coconuts in my hand having a good time
till my father threw a coconut
shaped like a stall in my direction

these eyes have opened up to the sights of
hungover eyes who stumble towards me
for a shot of milk to make lively
their brains again

I just wish coconuts worked on me

Bree SST9 3rd Draft

30 Jun

Sorry for the lateness…had 2 hours on Sunday evening after moving house to work on this draft – it was not the most productive writing session. Feel that I’ve made a lot more progress since then but still have quite a bit to do. There are sections in bold where I have made notes to indicate where I am going with it

Mainly just looking for any general feedback, particularly regarding clarity and flow. I finish work tomorrow night at 9pm so I will give feedback to as many people as possible then, before I hit the sack



{Projected onto a screen}

[Headline from August 8 2014] ‘Alcohol ban at Nottingham Caribbean Carnival over safety fears’

[Headline from August 12 2014] ‘£2 entry fee for Nottingham Caribbean Carnival’

[Headline from August 17 2014] ‘£2 entry fee scrapped now there is no main act’


Master has stripped us clean

Of everything we own

Trying to break the links to our home


But our memories are as strong

As the chains that bound us to this ship

Sailing towards the Caribbean sea


We are sold to a man

Who has failed in his own land

An army deserter, cast out by his family, for the shame –

Sent to oversee slaves on their sugar plantation

He has ideas about his station

But his deficiencies are wrapped up

In the whip he carries everywhere

Whilst the perennial sun watches us become

Another commodity to share


The English – they like their tea

With a little sweetness and subjugation stirred in

And so, we cut the cane. We crush the cane

He cuts our skin and crushes us with lashes

If we ever dare complain


I have seen people burnt to ashes

Heads bashed in with blunt edges of axes

Strung up, cut down and fed to dogs

For the most minor of infractions


Even in the worst of times…[This section will be about the human spirit and their capacity to adapt to horrendous conditions and how slaves in particular used music as a way of connecting with each other and as an act of defiance – resisting conformity to another culture]


Every year there is Carnival

But not for us…

Master took my drums from me

So I steal pans from the Master’s kitchen

To make drum beats

And I take to the makeshift stage

In our slave space

[I’m going to describe some of the music here and would like to have some steel pan music in the background]


The next day, the Master conceals his defeat

Behind the fake swagger of a man

Who is emboldened by the rum he swigs

We are made to eat the master’s leftovers for the week

From a trough, like pigs


As the days go by

I see the Master’s wealth multiply

While new mothers desperately decide

Whether to give their newborns up to infanticide –

Or have them endure this life


[A section here leading up to the abolition of slavery]


We made carnival a celebration of freedom

Dancing to create memories

Through the space left between

Us and our family trees

[Would like to have some carnival music in the background]


Master still tries to steal music from us

But he can’t find rhythms in the steel pans

That we once stole from him

{Projected onto a screen}

[Headline from August 8 2014] ‘Alcohol ban at Nottingham Caribbean Carnival over safety fears’

[Headline from August 12 2014] ‘£2 entry fee for Nottingham Caribbean Carnival’

[Headline from August 17 2014] ‘£2 entry fee scrapped now there is no main act’


It’s Nottingham Carnival 2014

Wining and gyrating have been replaced

with whining and berating

The only voices heard

are the people arguing over a £2 entrance fee.

Leave your bitterness in the queue please


Master will always try to shut us down

But every year is a chance to express a culture

We fought so hard to keep

I won’t forget why we are here

Ingrid Mclaren. Studio Show 2nd Draft

30 Jun


We were the lost ones,

the saviour had already ascended back through the clouds

about 27 minutes ago according to my watch.

I heard some of the people who thought they didn’t deserve

this fate wailing, watering the dust in this empty car park

trying to tell God they had been exceptional.//

I looked up, bang on half past,

God was back carrying an old Volvo.

He said to us I am bringing a few more of these

so you guys can drive to heaven.

The Guinness punch and the jerk chicken

will probably be gone by the time you guys get there

but I’ll leave the Waltzers and the Ferris Wheel.

Good Luck because the fire and brimstone

will be coming down soon.//

He disappeared into sky

I never thought God could look so small.

I guess that’s why he usually ascends through low clouds.

It was unorganised, people were sprinting

I didn’t even realise that I was tearing

through this last pizza slice situation as well.//

I clambered into the car but people wouldn’t stop

though the car was now impregnated with 18 ecstatic souls.

When the doors were finally shut, there were three in the front

including the driver, ten in the back, people on laps and in foetal positions

settled between feet: faces squashed against windows. Four in the boot

and one person angel garment knuckle gripping onto the bonnet.

The driver looked back at us, giggling as she raced off.//

The idea of heaven had never been appealing to me

Sabbaths had always been the bane of my week,

now God was saying there was Guinness punch!?

I hadn’t been paying attention

to the road but when I looked up the trees were bending

their branches and making a flat road and

the ones in front leapt higher straight out of the concrete.//

It was only interesting for a couple of seconds

then I decided that sleeping would feel like clean bedding right now.

I looked at the people around me,

realised that the person to my right was so attractive

that I forgot how to speak and when I remembered,

my words were like Bambi on ice.

I said something about whether they minded if I leaned

on them while I slept because I’m always really conscious

about touching people unless it’s really necessary and it seldom is.

It was fine, it usually is.//

I dreamt that sky was made of jigsaw pieces.

They would float down on command: take you anywhere you wanted.

I jumped up, asked the driver how she knew where she was going.

She told me we’ll be in the forecourt in a minute.

She hadn’t answered my question.

I started counting to sixty.//

By the time I got to 45 just like in my dream a piece of the sky

big enough for the car dropped, landing directly in front of us.

The driver instantly put the hand break on as we parked. We shot

into the sky. I lost count.

It felt like less than 15 seconds before I heard music

and I was hurtled back to my childhood.

The Temptations as thick as porridge in the air.//

Everything was dark but the road was a shimmering like moonlit water.

I looked around and the women were in batty riders

and the men in string vests and gold chains.

Everyone just looked around so confused

not saying a word until the driver broke the silence by saying.

Jesus Christ I have good skin. We all checked ourselves

out and agreed that we all had amazing skin.

The driver chuckled as we drove into the gates

Exactly as God said, the Ferris wheel and the Walters

were still up and the 18 of us danced.

Dancing wouldn’t exist after us.

Debris Stevenson – SST9 Auditorium 3rd Draft & Tech Wishlist

29 Jun grime

Hello All, Sorry I am a day late – Charlotte is on holiday at the moment (we love your Charlotte!) and we are all feeling the burn of being without her efficiency! But I have come a long way in a day I think… So I have now confirmed the producer I am working with on this poem/track, and I am going to use two of his songs back to back: It will be Twelve Thirsy and then Club Rum from this EP. Tech Wish List  I have really scaled my ideas down…  I am really worried about being heard over the music and making sure I have a suitable mic/s and that the levels are right. I will 100% need a monitor to hear myself I think and I may end up professional recording some of this to take the preassure of this but it would be good to talk to tech about how we navigate this. -I think I basically might need some chairs, cool lighting and people but beyond that I want to keep it simple. A lapel mic or very good handheld and stand would be best. Feedback Questions

  • Is the story clearer now?
  • How does it make you feel?
  • What does it make you think about?
  • Are there any jarring lines/words/sections?
  • Not sure about the title?

Current Length: 4-5min

Human Farm 

1 bar intro track 1 (Twelve Thirsty)


Commuters journey;

wrappers, papers, rats and goodbye naps.

Commuters journey;

Brompton bikes, fights, scenic cites.


Commuters journey;

ticket fines, keypads distract minds.

Commuters journeys;

wheelchairs navigate human freight.


It’s only a reservation –

trying to feed them both from her seat –

no other space to wheel their feet.

Have we made life so neat?

A reservation…


–1 bar pause–


Lady sits with bags, baby just blinks

his eyes don’t collide either side, he just squints,

her hands hook pits, her hands look strong,

but skin splits // like her bags later on.

Sittin’ here, two seats apart on the train,

staring into tray through her baby like rain.


And I’m sittin’ here thinking

human farm, human farm,

human farm. Sittin’ here.

                                    Hey, we’re sittin’ here

yes sorry sitting here,

yes please sorry, sorry,

sorry sittin’ here

our seat yes we’re sittin’ here.


I wanna say –

                                    She’s just sittin’ here, saying nuthin’, watch

                                                      Plenty other seats on the train, cotch!


Clock down isle wheelchairs (three) –

sticklers claiming seats

now elders with priority.

Awkward, I pretend I don’t see –


She’s showing hurt:

sweat-patches by the mile.

No one questions bags,

why she’s alone

lady over there

offers hands as a home.

Ladies’ shone she cares,

others’ head phones blare –


Commuters journey,

suited kindly other offers cover

commuters journey,

Tesco bags pram past stags,

commuters journey,

adjacent // stacks of fragile patience,

commuters journey,

Pain? Baby’s crying canes.


Only a reservation

Finally, she was just about to eat.

Only a reservation,

before a clique of work colleagues meet,

                                    Oh our a reservation?

Eyes with a touch more grief?


Now I’m sitting here

thinking human farm,

human farm, human farm,

I’m just sittin here.

Hey, I’m sitting just here

Yes, sorry we’re sitting here,

yes us, sorry – sitting here.

Our seats, yes, we’re sitting here.


fade into next track (Club Rum)


Two bars of new track


Crying silent, tears are itchy, rolling down her neck.

Strangers offering hands, but baby screeches, what the heck?

Ladies champers-table, Marks & Spensers – what next?

No longer sittin’ here. Standin’ in isle getting’ vexed.


Commuters journey;

bougie bitches don’t get deserts.

Commuters journey;

mums travel lonely carry slums.

Commuters journey;

bust, we need strangers’ we trust.

Commuters journey –

dust, no tracks without rust.


1 bar pause.


Only a reservation,

others assist with muggy buggy.

Only a reservation,

champers ladies ignore her like a druggie.

Only a reservation,

I wish I could say I was doing less harm,


whilst I’m sitting here


human farm,


human farm,

human farm

human farm

human farm,

human farm

human farm


Thinking here –

I’m just sittin’ here

sitting here thinking human farm.

I’m just sittin’ here

sitttin’ here



Fade out track.

Afrah Yafai: Draft 3

29 Jun

So I’ve spent time pretty much rewriting for SST9 because the poem wasn’t working. I’ve come up with this instead.


She tightens the crimson tie around her neck

and squeezes confidence into her blazer pocket

dreading the 12.30 bell to signal lunch time by herself.

But she leaves her bedroom as somebody else,

sewing on a mask to hide her distress

and refuses to take it off until she is alone.



She returns home.

Floating through the hall like she’s on display.

No stammers, stumbles or anything less than a smile.


But through the crack of her bedroom door, I saw her chest rise and fall.

The chubby hands wiping at her eyes,

smudging tears into her face so they blended in with her features.

No one would ask any questions at the dinner table.

We are four years a part but in that moment, time was insignificant.


I asked her if she was okay.

‘Fine’ was the automatic response.

But my mum told me what the other girls had said

and she swore the words didn’t torment her when I know that they did.

I’d always considered us opposites,

but I swear I could see each broken piece of myself moulded into her replies.


I’ve been there.

Tiptoed along the borders of my personality because I was never sure of who I wanted to be.

And I can see how she battles with her conscience

trying to find the simplest route to integrate herself into adulthood

and the carnival that follows.


It’s all too familiar.

She is familiar.


I remember being 15.

I used to say that bra size reflected grades to justify that being small was okay,

So the other girls could keep their D’s and E’s

whilst I held onto those A’s.

And she tells me that C cups are unacceptable.


I’ve never told her that I was a little bit jealous.


I am 19 and when I look down,

I see belly button before I see cleavage

and that is something that I’ve just had to deal with.


And now she walks through a minefield of stares, and bleeds onto her shirt,

using a blazer that promotes cohesion to disguise the cuts.


But the stitched up holes leave marks that time does not care for

so even syllables of kindness find a way to ricochet within her thoughts,

in the same way they slowly burnt holes in my own,

as though every compliment was drenched in petrol,

and exploded every time fire was thrown at me,

at her.

And they never intended warm words to drive scars into our chests

but the inferno tongues of adolescence tore her open,

they tore me open,

and saw a bruised heart

forcing smiles into a body that saw ugly scribbled over the mirror every time.


And masks…

They hide smudged eyeliner and dried mascara.

But no mask will ever conceal the magic painted beneath her eyelids,

And although I’m still searching for comfort somewhere between my limbs,

not sure I’ll ever make peace with my reflection,

I pull every part of myself together to tell her that she will be okay,

And one day, her mirror will show the face of someone she can grow to love.


But nothing will guard her from moments that will haunt her.

I can only hold her when shivers pierce her spine,

and to collect the tears that no one caught for me.

I’ll trap each drop in a mason jar,

and promise to show her that beauty can be found in the roots of her shame.


She wears a mask for protection.

But an untold tale is written in her eyes.

It’s a story I know a little too well.

Portaloo Poem: Draft 3 (Katie)

29 Jun

Intended to be staged in the auditorium with a sort of Portaloo tardis, as described in my first draft post. If you happen to have a Portaloo knocking around that you can give/lend to a worthy cause, do let me know! Also, I could really do with some feedback!

I am the Portaloo

Let me transport you

Back to that sodden field in Somerset in 2005

Paddling in a pool of creamed sewage

As you glance down and realise

That you might just be

Today’s lucky 1000th customer

Whose bonus ball breaks free from the container

And you know all too well

That mixture on the seat

Isn’t quite the chocolate Angel Delight that it half looks like

And you wish that you could go back to those nights

Of cheap desserts and 7 o’clock bedtimes

When you couldn’t even have dreamt

Of a stench like this

You try to hold your breath

For the entire duration

But that only means you have to gasp

And take it all at once

Like bitter medicine

Allowing potent particles to penetrate your airwaves

As though a drunken giant skunk has farted in your mouth

Like drowning in soiled underpants

Like Hell spat out a piece of itself upon you

I am the Portaloo

I am the home of *Noise 1 (1, 2, 3)*

I am the home of *Noise 2 (1, 2, 3)*

I am the home of *Noise 3 (1, 2, 3)*

I am the home of *Noise 4 (1, 2, ‘Eurgh’ becomes 3)* Eurgh! What’s that?

That, is a rarefied species of faeces

Birthed in the unique event of defecation

Produced only in the bleak situation

In which a teenage stomach churns a combination of;

Sapphire impregnated vodka

Seven luke-warm shots of hot magenta past their sell by date

Corner shop cider with a trail of saliva

The share of a brittle burger bought between friends only because of the hot guy at the stall

Before one undignified, knicker-flashing fall

And the magic fungi made magic by the fact that they’ve dried out a lot in the five weeks since Ashley bought them in ASDA.

The mustard sludge solidified

Like a pungent panna cotta

Inside frothy amber moat

A stagnant brew

A sickly stew

An incoming tide at the feet of you

Defends the fortress of unearthly poo

That boasts the barely recognisable flag

Of a crumpled fiver

Not yet mourned by the man

Who after drinking his entire monthly wage

Still held it through

10 more acts on the Pyramid stage

Then held both hands

In both back pockets

When eventually his muscles could relax

The guy after clocked it in a flash

But knew it wasn’t worth it

Liaurie RAMSEY third draft

29 Jun

My pulse quickens as I stand before the doors.
Am I ready?
Can I face the versions of me left behind?
How do you know when ur ready?
To face the truth of who you were who you are and will be?

I walk this pilgrimage to find out who I am. To clear away the doubt and frustration.
I need to reaffirm who I am.
It seems everyone has an opinion
An contradictory assumption
that alienates me from myself

I begin this wandering through time

A child stands before me, what future can I promise her? Where will her journey take her. Children are the promise of a future.
What will we teach them?
What fears will we install?
Will we only speak the truth
or fill their heads with fantasy and magic. Shield them from the world
we no they just come apart of?
The child before me smiles in ignorance of the difference that marks her as different
Her days are full of family gatherings and love music and food. She dances to the music of celebration.

A young girl walks beside me
She says
In this world of light and dark how do you find your way to the light?
Can you trust your own heart?
Do we choose the path we take
Or is it just part of something planned?
She doesn’t like who she is head full of taunts she believes to be true
I remember these years of my life

A young women walk slightly ahead of me. She sings a song softy
Although I can’t hear the words
the melody feels my head
And tells me
We often live our lives observing our selfs through broken mirrors
We give them power to define us
We observe these distortions as a truth
Never understanding it’s a creation of another’s mind.
We watch our lives past through fun house mirrors viewing ourselves shaped to the creators design.
A mirror starts as glass. Glass is created by sand. So with the changing tide wash away the sand destroy the mirror and creamy your own
I look through my own mirror now
And smile at the truth reflected back

As I look back at these versions of me
My confusion dissolves
and leaves behind beautiful crystals
We don’t have to convince anyone
Of who we are
I no longer shed tears
For those who are committed to misunderstanding me

I exhale and exit the house of mirrors


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