A Very Special Houseplant – By Andrew Bell

Some months ago, I took over the care of an anthurium or flamingo flower, an exotic house plant which is a native of the tropical climates of South America. It came as a gift to my wife, but very soon, I took a liking to it.
I love its generous display of shiny, waxlike pointy leaves and the flowers, which consist of beautiful salmon pink bracts or blooms; and, sitting on top, a vertical spike of tiny flowers that begin with a whitish colour, but then slowly change to a pleasing limey green.

I also keep a small family of spider plants that all came from the very first plant we had which, for many years, held pride of place on a small table in the hall, by the front door. Spider plants are much less needy but, with just a little TLC are just as pleasing to the eye as the more exotic plants.

Right now, this flamingo flower has no companions. Trying to discover how to give it the care it needs: maintaining the right balance of warmth, moisture, feed and light is still a bit of a challenge, but I know from experience with the spider plants, that, in time, this knowledge will arise by simply taking a few moments to give the plant my undivided attention.

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Crowd by Chris South

(Based on ‘I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud’ by William Wordsworth)

I wandered lonely in a crowd
That drifted by like whirls of smoke
When all at once within its shroud
A voice I heard and thus it spoke…
“Beside yourself and ill at ease,
clutching straws on human seas?” Continue reading

Tonight’s the night!

All the write pieces cover imageYes, it’s time to put on make-up, it’s time to light the lights*…  The official launch of our anthology is just a few hours away, so we’re all busy rehearsing and preparing.  I do hope you’ll be able to join us for this celebration of the talented Retford Writers.  The launch will take place in Retford Library, at 6:00 p.m. this evening (9th May 2019).  The writers will be reading excerpts from some of their contributions, and there will be a chance to chat, buy copies of the book, and enjoy some celebratory drinks and nibbles. Do come along, and of course, if you are an aspiring Retford Writer join our group and maybe your piece will be published in the next anthology!

* thanks to the muppets for the quote!!

All the Write Pieces

All the write pieces cover imageWe are all getting very excited about the upcoming launch of our super dooper anthology which is taking place this Thursday (9th May, 2019) 18:00 at Retford Library.

To give you a taster of the contents, members will be reading some of their contributions to the publication, and there will be time for a chat, some celebratory drinks and of course, to buy a copy (or two!) of the book.

It’s our first joint publication, so a very special occasion for Retford Writers.  Hope to see you there!

‘I Remember’ by Pete Brammer

I remember what they said,
At the outbreak of the war,
‘It will be all over come Christmas’
Yet I can recall with such horror,
How our lads were slaughtered,
Thousands and thousands, en mass.

I remember signing on, with workmates,
All eager to do our bit.
“Your country needs you.” old Kitchener said.
I remember we proudly marched through town,
People cheered, waving Union flags,
For they could not envisage, most would end up dead.

I remember the years in sludgy trenches,
As we struggled, to keep our sanity,
Suffering trench foot, fleas and mites,
Waiting for the shout, “Over the top.”
With the accompanying shrilled whistles,
Instantly obeying, we set off to fight.

I remember too, mustard gas clouds,
Drifting across ‘No Man’s Land’
Donning the life saving gas masks,
As shells whistled over our heads,
All wondering where they would land,
To be followed, by deafening blasts.

I remember the mud, changing colour,
As it clung to out boots and putties,
A nerve tingling scarlet red,
Skin and bone flying everywhere,
With life blood from innocent lads,
Some wounded, but most of them dead.

I remember thinking, about my wife,
Upset, to be missing my child,
You see, I had walked away from the conflict,
Now I stand before the firing squad,
Their rifles, pointing at my heart,

Please God, forgive me…

Leave by Rachel Hilton

They had only been together for a matter of weeks when Cecil asked if Hayley would accompany him on a visit to his parents.  He wanted to introduce her to them and thought it would be a good idea to go for a weekend.  She wasn’t so enthusiastic and told him so.

“It’s too soon, we need to know each other better before we meet each other’s parents.”

“Nonsense, you’ll like my parents and they’ll like you.  They are so easy to get along with.”

He kept on and on at her and eventually she relented.  She didn’t want to go, it was more to shut him up than anything. Continue reading

WRITING by Pete Brammer

Encouraging acrostic from Pete

WRITING
Words make sentences, a jewel,
R? The 3 R’s, so confusing at school.
Ink we had in ink wells.
Thesaurus gives alternate words.
Index what you have written.
Nouns are living things like kittens.
Grammar a system of writing rules.

So Retford Writers, just stay cool!