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Worth Fighting For: The Rehearsal

I've taken part in two writing/performing workshops run by Link Up Arts at Salisbury Arts Centre, as mentioned in my last-but-one blog.

As a result and by way of follow up, I was invited to take part in Salisbury Arts Centre's Homegrown Performance showcase event this coming Wednesday 1st July. We had our first rehearsal this week; it seemed to go well. I wasn't nervous then, but I am now, and I will be on the day.

The showcase consists of the Homegrown exhibition as well as taster performances of dance, new writing and film arising from Salisbury Arts Centre workshops, on the theme of 'Worth Fighting For'? 

I doubt anyone will like my poems but I don't mind. I'm just pleased to have been given an opportunity to do stuff with other creative disabled people.

Performing takes me out of my normal (dis)comfort zone and puts me into another more interesting one.

I'll be reading three short poems, all with a disability rights theme. Here's one (a flarf poem) I won't be doing:

Bill is not dead yet
Terrified by Falconer
I would bring in Bill
who’s not dead yet
if living is better
forget about ageing
in the paradox of place
they may not be able to keep him
in a landmark case.

Posted by Deborah Caulfield, 26 June 2015

Last modified by Colin Hambrook, 26 June 2015

I'm all wrong. Or is it just a bad poem?

When depression hits, I can't go out or speak to anyone. It's a moment by moment existence. I have no energy. I want to sleep (but don't). I make myself do basic chores. That's all there is. And food.

This time (today) I decided to write and draw (fuck work) something, attempt to represent or express my state ('mood' it's called nowadays, which sounds OK). I don't smoke and I can't afford to drink alcohol (anyway it's a depressant) though I love the taste.

There's no cure for fear, no remedy for failure and no antidote to stupidity.

Thinking is less of a problem since I learned mindfulness. But the body never forgets and never stops feeling.

For when the numbers don't add up, it's no use lying your way out of the problem. It comes back tenfold (I'm told) and hurts times hundred (that I do know).

So I wrote this poem and made that picture.


I'm all wrong
words in search
of melody and rhyme
I'm all wrong
out of tune
step and time
I'm all wrong
in bad shape
body and mind
I'm all wrong
well below par
something missing
I'm all wrong
totally failed
a big mistake
I'm all wrong
can't be put right
like this poem

Posted by Deborah Caulfield, 9 June 2015

Last modified by Deborah Caulfield, 9 June 2015

Our Tales Unveiled: Worth writing and fighting for

Over the last three months I did three Our Tales Unveiled workshops at Salisbury Arts Centre. These began with an excellent performance earlier involving Penny Pepper and Liz Porter. Penny's a writer; Liz is a story teller and singer.

In Liz's workshop I reluctantly 'performed' a story about Clara who crochets a lot. This was based on someone I know (not me). I haven't asked 'Clara' if I can use her words so am uneasy about going public until I have her permission.

Penny gave us writing exercises on the theme of 'Worth Fighting For'. We picked post-it notes at random. Mine had the word 'freedom' written on it.

I started writing by means of mind maps. Penny said it's a good idea sometimes to write in opposites.

I quickly wrote this (unfinished) poem. It's based in part on my childhood experience (11 years) of institutionalisation in a hospital/school (Chailey Heritage).


the world is not about me
it gets on fine without me
doesn't know me
doesn't need me
doesn't miss me
in this place where
I can't see my face though
I know I'm here I think
I'm here though
I can't be sure
to test my case I send my
on a wild
chase in time
to race
like Blake's angel striding
among the stars from heaven
to Mars over
sea and mountain and desert
and forest to find
out where
is where
to know what
is out there to see who


Posted by Deborah Caulfield, 7 June 2015

Last modified by Deborah Caulfield, 9 June 2015