5th May 2016, Greenhill Cottage Gallery, Brokerswood Road, Southwick, BA14 9PR
It was lovely to see so many Words & Ears regulars at The Greenhill Cottage Gallery on Thursday, and to meet lots of new 'poetry people' for what was a relaxed and friendly 'extra' W&E event. Our guest poet Cristina Newton's fiercely empathetic thread which wove through both her poetry and the hondo flamenco songs she performed for us struck a chord with the capacity audience, who responded with some superb open mic contributions of their own. As someone in the audience - who hadn't been to a Words & Ears event before - so tellingly observed: "I thought they were just ordinary people in the audience, but they're not, they're all stars!". Quite. In that setting, which was showcasing work by Liz Watts, Jane Eaton and Judy Lanteigne for Cloth Road Arts week, it was particularly fitting to think about Cristina's observation that "art is about going beyond ourselves," and she took us way beyond our own experience - everywhere from the mind of a doe in the forest, where "anxious leaves suck air and spit it out", to the Atacama desert and the miner trapped "half a mile down the driest place on earth", where time "drills holes in a man that it fills with dross".
A powerful evening of poetry at a great venue - we hope to be back there later in the year, but in the meantime, do please drop in if you're passing - the gallery's open 10-5 Thursday-Monday, and there's always a free cup of coffee and some great art by local and international artists waiting for you to enjoy. www.greenhillcottagegallery.com