My decision to hand over Programme Coordinator responsibilities will, forever, rankle. Tasked as I was with catering necessities and dressing room decor, however, the impossibility of monitoring the minutiae of performers was beyond even my legendary capabilities. Yet my regrets remain manifold. The Poetry Evening was well attended, it is true, resulting in sufficient takings to bolster the flagging coffers of the Church’s bank account. Frittering away money on the Vicar’s penchant for organic bread must not be tolerated when superior collecting receptacles are needed. I will mention my priorities during our next impromptu morning coffee Tuesday hence at ten o’clock. Indeed, I might even promote the idea of the Embroidery Guild taking on the task of creating velvet pouches: rectangular ones to encourage banknotes and round ones for coinage, the latter for those unfortunate members of the congregation whose generosity is lacking.
Another positive result of the event was the take up of flyers for my Tippet Tying Instruction. A number, I noticed, drifted into the wastepaper basket though, judging by the sartorial inelegance evident during the evening, I am confident of the need for accessory management.
Nevertheless such misdemeanours are comparatively peripheral. My original suggestion of a Poetry Evening encompassed honouring the delights of Walter De La Mare and William Wordsworth. I should have known better when a local youth tendered his organisational skills. It seems his offer to source poets was no more than literary hijacking.
With an appearance more gypsy than gent, the long haired man I had witnessed loitering outside the Village Hall and whom I was considering reporting to the local constabulary if not for being sidetracked by wilting canapés (hardly surprising given the kitchen staff’s inattention to sunlit surfaces) appeared on stage and, with excessive verve, delivered the most racy language I have ever encountered. Equally shocking was the audience’s enthusiastic response. There was but one saving grace: many attendees I failed to recognise, having clearly journeyed from neighbouring estates (not the landed variety).
Hourly tisanes of peppermint tea throughout the event neutralised my trauma. Performance poetry is a medium to which I had never previously been exposed; I will ensure that I never am again.