Way back in the late 60's and early 70's I spent a lot of time in smoke filled rooms at the back of bars or in the upstairs of various public houses. Dingy walls, dim light, the buzz of converstaion and the soft strains of music as someone plucked the strings on their guitar; but never the less a crowd of folks of many ages all collecting together for just one thing. ...
To hear the words . . . . . the words of wisdom, ignorance, joy, despair, longing . . . . . . life!!
Clutching bits of paper or well thumbed books we each, patiently awaited our turn to throw our words out there for the gathering to hear.
Many years have passed since that time and the poet in me with all that youthful eagerness to share my thoughts was put aside. 'That me' was locked up and the key was thrown away.
But now, at last, the doors have been thrown open once more. Slowly at first, edging out one step at a time, I began to venture forth. Less than 2 years ago I attended a writing retreat and repeated it just twelve months later. More and more I have found myself drawn - pulled into writing once again.
And then, on Sunday, it was as though I had entered a time warp as I entered the upstairs room in 'The Baum', nervously clutching my notebook. Someone indicated a seat and placed a drink before me and a voice was saying... "Welcome" and "Will you read?" . . . before I knew it I heard myself say "Yes" . . . and the rest is history - or is it the future?
The only difference between then and now - apart from 40 years - was the absence of the smoke!!