Monday, June 29, 2015

Poetry Reading – Jun 26, 2015

We had ten readers, including a new reader Shoba Cherian, for this monsoon session of poetry. Appropriately two readers chose to celebrate with rain poems.

Pamela, Kavita, Shoba, Talitha

We noted some landmarks. June was the 750th birth anniversary of Dante Alighieri, author of the Divine Comedy and other works. Vikram Seth has come out with a collection, Summer Requiem, of poems he has been writing over the past couple of decades.
Joe, KumKum, Gopa, Ankush, Priya

We are now dues paying members at KRG (annual subscription of Rs 300) since the Cochin Yacht Club has decided to charge us for holding meetings in their Library.

Kavita, Shoba, Talitha

Thommo, our ever-adventurous evergreen member will be setting out in July for a six-month drive across 40 countries. Final arrangements with sponsors and obtaining customs documents (Carnet de Passages en Douane) are afoot.

Thommo, Pamela

Pamela brought a cake to celebrate her birthday on June 27. Along with birthday wishes sung for her, KumKum distributed chocolates as a token of her joyous visit to her children and grandchildren in USA.

KumKum, Gopa, Ankush, Priya

Here are we all at the end of the session:

Joe, Shoba, Kavita, Talitha, KumKum, Thommo, Priya, Gopa, Ankush, Pamela

Sunday, May 3, 2015

The Diary of a Nobody by George and Weedon Grossmith – May 1, 2015

The First Edition of 1892 by Arrowsmith Press

Forced to go off-base as a result of uncertainty we availed of Thommo's hospitality at his home where nine of us and a guest fitted snugly. As a bonus KumKum provided the readers with zesty salmon sandwiches; Pamela brought us Carmelo chocolates and Geetha served nimbu pani.

CJ, Gopa, Priya

The refreshments were necessary to accompany the readings which are full of references to Kinahan, port, champagne, and whiskey, moderately consumed throughout the Cummings and Gowings in the brief novel.

KumKum, Preeti, Pamela

Our anticipation of enjoying the humour was well rewarded. We did not merely 'roar' with laughter at the droll narrations in the book, but enhanced the situations by describing some of our own, supplied by Sunil and Priya in response to the episode of the obstreperous spoiled child, Master Percy.

Thommo, Sunil

It is a wonder, as Thommo pointed out, that a century and a quarter after publication the book remains in print, and its humour about late-Victorian middle-class London is still accessible to us in Kochi (barring some topical references). One reason may be that the archetypes in the novel continue to exist in a different form in modern India. 

The group at the end (Preeti had to leave early):

(standing) Thommo, Sunil, Joe, CJ 
(seated) Priya, Pamela, KumKum, Gopa

Monday, April 20, 2015

Poetry Reading – Apr 16, 2015

It was an exceptionally well-attended reading. From Milton to Bukowski is a wide range in poets and the sheer wonder of articulating their words excited the eleven readers present.
Pamela, Talitha, Sunil, KumKum & Priya

We had a new reader, Govind Sethunath, come by to try out our group. He chose safety and read a couple of well-known poems of Shelley which we enjoyed – one was Ozymandias, the first poem ever that Priya read in our group, as she recalled.

Priya, Govind, Zakia, Thommo, CJ, Ankush, & Pamela

CJ's appearance provoked some wide-eyed amazement. So much has he reduced in girth from constant distance running in Hyderabad (his present posting) around Hussain Sagar lake, that he has had to acquire a new wardrobe. But his impish wit continues to surprise us, as it did in the choice of poem and poet – the incorrigible Charles Bukowski.

KumKum & Priya

We are glad to have Ankush back; he docked at Kochi port only an hour before our meeting and raced here on his bicycle from his present posting aboard INS Kesari (pennant L15), a tank and troop landing ship.

INS Kesari, the vessel on board which Ankush resides

Here we are at the end of the reading, wrapped in Wreathèd Smiles

Joe, KumKum, Talitha, Priya, Thommo, Pamela, Zakia, CJ, Govind, Sunil, Ankush