Tag Archives: family

Beccy SST11 draft 2

29 May

Bit nervous about posting this. I rewrote the poem after Ioney’s  workshop on Friday and I’ve added a kind’ve weird script/monologue thing at the top because it’s just this idea I had to kind of make the poem part of that. Anyway, part of me thinks it’s massively pretentious and silly and I should just stick to doing a poem. If you agree please can you break it to me gently 😉 Other feedback I want is; does the poem work alone as well? Which do you prefer poem alone/poem as part of thing.

Approx running time 2-3 mins

To the frightened (What I know about outer space)

Two siblings in the back of a car.
Sibling 1 Makes rocket launching noises
Sibling 1: And we have lift off! And the Galaxy Voyager 95 sets its course for Mars —
Sib2: Saturn
Sib1: — sets its course for Mars…
Current me: I mean, now I know that even if you could be bothered to send a rocket that far, you couldn’t actually land it on Saturn – it’s all gas. But it looked kind of pink in the pictures and it had rings, so it was my favourite.
Sib1: And the voyager is getting higher and higher, due to reach Mars in two hours. But what’s this? The rocket passes through a meteor shower and has to make a series of sudden turns –
Sib2: Look! I can get us through them –

Sib1:  – disaster! An enourmous meteor hits the Voyager! It’s on fire! It’s plummeting!

Sib2: But we can save it!

Sib1: No, we can’t. You should have left the controls alone.


(Me on my own)  Space travel is scary. The idea of crashing all that way terrified me, but then, so did crashing in a train or a car… not a bike, though. I hurtled myself down all the biggest hills like I wasn’t afraid of falling off, which is good, because I frequently did. But, somewhere between the ages of five and twenty-five, the idea of falling has become unbearable.



You will graze your knees. The stinging is worth

the moment of flight, though. Seeing your earth

from space, while your brother grabs the controls

weaves through sharp meteors and black holes –

which you totally could have handled – you

realise you’re small. That you could plunge into

the dark matter soup and not be counted

or missed. Knowing your meteor showers are

your parents traffic jams and just-caught swear

words when someone cuts them up, could make you

give up, step away from the console. Don’t.

Graze your knees for the moment of flight. It

doesn’t have to get a hundred likes, or

win a nobel prize – these wings are yours.



Gliding – Anne’s second draft for SST9

15 Jun

When I was a kid I used to play dressing-up.

I was usually a gypsy

in a full skirt pulled over jeans

legs rolled up.

A lot of dancing went on

arm waving

flinging myself from side to side.

We had this big box full of old clothes and hats and pieces of cloth.

One day I pulled out a raggedy brown thing,

all screwed up,

tossed it aside,

but my mum said,

“wait, this raggedy thing used to be a two-piece suit,

straight skirt, peplum jacket,

a ¾ sleeve with tiny button detail at the cuff.

This shabby paint-water rag used to be red wool/silk mix with a slight boucle.

I sewed it from a Butterick pattern when I was 19.

When your grandad saw it, he made me take it off,

said I had to dye it brown.

So I did.

It’s a certain kind of girl wears red, after all.

But this raggedy thing is why I keep this box of clothes

for you to play dress up until you find out who you are.”

On car journeys we would sing

and play I spy.

Once I spied swans and no one believed me,

flying over the motorway as huge as gliding jets.

They seem magnified, and out of scale with us below.

A reminder that nature belongs more than we do,

with our outlandish modes of transportation.

Them flying ‘as the crow’

and us having to follow roads.

I’m sick of following roads

and paths trodden by other people,

in sensible shoes.

Remember the ugly duckling? Maybe that’s me.

Not saying I was ever ugly, obviously!

But somehow I was plain and brown

and maybe a little bit raggedy too.

And now?

Well, look at me!

I’m a swan!

Mind you, white was never really my colour.

And swans mate for life, don’t they?

The less said about that the better.

So do lobsters, mate for life I mean.

I think I prefer their natural hue,

you know, before they get boiled?

That speckledy blue.

Pink is less becoming for a lobster,

or a woman, let’s be honest.

Pink is for all those prissy girls.

I hate prissy girls,

I never wanted to be one of them.

But being me has taken many guises

fitting in and then rebelling turn by turn

leaving me unsure of which is costume which is casual.

So why has it taken me till now?

Why have I looked to a bunch of tawdry queens to point the way?

Envied their attempts at indulging their alter-egos

and neglected mine?

Watched as they pass for women, better than I ever could.

Here’s to all the boys, and girls who’ve been told they can’t go out dressed like that and do it anyway!

Here’s to my mum and her dressing-up box,

encouraging me to do what she had never been allowed to do.

Although, “try not to be too obvious,”

may have served to hold me back.

Maybe obvious is exactly the look I should have gone for all these years.

I mean, I’m an open book in every other way but dress.

Why did I suppress myself?

To avoid the stares?

Now it’s stares that fuel me

and looking like this

I can glide as good as any swan

all grace and power above the surface

hiding all the mechanics down below.

But still don’t try to second-guess me

this could be costume,

this could be real

you’ll never know.

Unless I decide to do a big reveal.

What kind of girl does that make me now?

SST8 – BeaBop – Final Edit – The Ngwa Evolution

15 Feb

The Ngwa Evolution

Hands scrunching, grinding.

Air mating flour, eggs, milk

Into a cookery experiment

That flew splats across the kitchen,

Painting aprons with

I told you


I want to have a go.

Nan’s pencilled frown forms


On her lips

Halting the boys before their rich

Batter is worked too hard

And turns into rubber.

Reminding her that the perfection she had sought

From the daughter,


Who had bore these boys,

Had rebelled from the pressure

Of transferring eggs to flour,

Just so.

Had never really backfired.

Instead her daughter took same said ingredients

And mixed a new-style recipe –

Created a stubborn revolution

Fought battles against her in order to

Set a new sunrise

Plastered over age old recipes

Written in the same sky


Somehow the three boys sense how

Nan had never baked with her daughter

And they coat her hands with lumps of love

Melting those rigid solids

Into a sweet ever-flowing

Alchemy of


Which keeps her back straight

Yet reborns her features

Into an upturned rainbow


As she watches her grandsons turn questioning eyes,

Flicking from one generation to the other

Of women who smile at their new shoots,

Three boys

Daring for freedom,

Licking fingers

Covered with stories,

Revealing their kindness

She whispers,


Debris Stevenson – SST8 Headline Show Idea

13 Dec

The idea

A few months ago my brother was flung face first off of my other brothers fixed gear bike. He was found unconscious at the roadside, my Mum (who was completely unaware he was in the country at the time) was called by the police to pick him up and take him to the hospital. He ultimately lost 4 teeth and had to retrain himself to eat in a variety of humorous ways.

I already have a first draft, using this incident to explore the anecdotal natural of my relationship with my family, my brothers and accidence. The theme of food will really be a small element of the piece as the humour of eating with 4 teeth missing becomes a way of desecrating me and my family from the terror of a road accident.

Where am I? 

I have a super long first draft which I have 2 lots of feedback I need to get implementing – so a first draft coming soon!

The Performance

I have been writing a lot with the page at the forefront of my mind over the years – I want this piece to be the opposite – there will be a real focus on performance, acting and story telling mimicking how my family used to tell me stories growing up.

Well I hope you like the sound of it!


Mouthy Family Fest…

8 Jul

SST7 Family Festival copy

Mama Cocoa

28 Sep

My mummy was a chocolate tree

She was tall in spirit

And as vibrant as a seasoned cocoa pod.

She taught me everything

yet always said that she knew not a thing.

Her hair long and wiry grew from a head full of

stories of giants that fell from Mandela’s chocolate beanstalk

that he melted with the  heat of an African sun

She whispered Ethiopian music that travelled down her trunk in waves

as Ge’ez scripts played out in octaves

reaching down into roots which planted her firmly into dark red and dark soil.


When she laughed all of Mothere Nature

would ripple in it’s smoothness

When she told me off

Chips of roasted cocoa would hurt my heart


I knew when she was sad ‘cos  her arms

would hold me far away enough for me not to

catch the chocolate milk drops from her eyes


Sometimes she went to that milky place inside herself

As void as a white space with cumulo-nimbus clouds for protection

As if on holiday, there wa no reaching her.

Her eyes would not blink.

Her voice would not lilt.

Her arms would flop like the rag doll she had never possessed as a child.


When she returned she would explain that

She needed these times

To sit and reconcile

The white and the dark, the milk against the stark

Reality of not being able to uproot herself and make herself fly.

So I made a camera from memories

and loo roll stuck to a toothpaste box

I took a photo of mum and me and placed it gently near her roots.

Something to take  with you when you go away again, I said

Something to remember me by.

She replied, “When you dream of cocoa,

your chocolate tree will always remember its roots.

Birds will flock within its canopy.

And tell her tales of how to fly”.


by BeaBop

Any comments would be welcome.

I have a trilogy going on in my head with The Chocolate Tree, Mama Cocoa and another.

Much to refine, but the challenge is to see how it could be performed – if at all.