Poetry, community and creativity at Abbey

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Have you ever been to a free creative writing session at Abbey Community Centre? It’s one of our all-ages activities at Abbey and we’ve had people from age 23 to 73 attend! It’s also for all abilities. Some of our attendees studied English at university while some have never written much at all before.  We hold them (usually) every third Thursday of the month in the Garden Room which has a lovely quiet atmosphere with inspirational proximity to nature.

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Each session has a theme chosen by the group members. We read a couple of poems or extracts written about the theme and use them as a springboard for our own ideas. All of the poems tend to provoke lively discussion and we have lots of laughs along the way.

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This month our theme was ‘coming-of-age’ – all things adolescence and growing up. Definitely an interesting one! We had a funny letter by Derek to his 16 year old self (‘you should practice the piano more… there’s hope for you yet’), a reflection from Tony about how your outlook changes as you grow older, and a poem by Maria about a whole family of imaginary friends.

Here’s everyone concentrating hard…

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It’s funny how the poems we read provide such deep talking points. We don’t really know each other outside of the group (though as the months go on the regulars can often be found having a cuppa after class!) but end up talking about everything – our childhoods, beliefs, relationships and thoughts about how society has changed over our lifetimes. Today Marjorie joked that we should start charging for psychotherapy as that’s what the group provides!

So why not come along to our December session on the 14th? As well as some December-appropriate poems (guess what the theme is?) we’re going to have a few festive snacks and drinks to get us in the Christmas spirit.

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