Ellen

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12 July 2017 Entry: "Hung"

I ended my last diary entry with these words - 8th of May and who knows what may happen?
Well, now we know. Or do we?
A hung parliament? when things are hanging they dangle and twist, prey to every little breeze. Nothing strong or stable about it, and no clear direction.
As says Shakespeare Henry VI part 1
‘Hung be the heavens with black, yield day to night!’
But that is to give way to negativity and hopelessness. Change always shifts folk out of their comfort zones, before they know what good may be round the corner. Of all the strange events in our current political circumstances the one clear message is that we cannot anticipate the outcome.
So, we carry on writing and going to literary festivals or having holidays.
My Building Worlds workshop at Penzance Litfest was well attended - I had a lovely book-lined room in old Morrab Library, a private collection like the Lit and Phil, with big windows onto a subtropical garden. Of my 13 participants, one was a man and one an 11-year-old boy whose mother had asked his headmaster for the day off to attend, because he was a keen writer. To the Head’s credit he agreed and Nathan wrote a dramatic action-filled opening scene for his world of dragons and forests.
I also attended a workshop, led by Stella Duffy, Impro for Writers. She had us all up on our feet, talking, working in pairs and then writing. She got us to draw a huge cross on our page before we began to write, insisting that by crossing it out beforehand, it took away the pressure to make it ‘perfect’ - we pre-empted it being ‘rubbish’. She leapt about, stood on chairs, wrote on flip charts, flung her arms in the air, swearing and pointing to folk at random, asking questions. Hugely energetic and fun, but also inspiring.
I spent a hot afternoon at the Jubilee Pool, filled with sea water and pleasantly cool and salty, then afterwards I took the Literary Tour of Penzance in the golden haze of early evening and learnt all sorts of fascinating facts. We began at The Acorn, a venue that was the hub and box office for all the Lit Fest events, opposite the old Penzance Registrar’s Building where Dylan Thomas and Caitlin got married. They honeymooned and got drunk at The Ship Inn in Mousehole, the site of my first alcoholic experience. I never looked back.
The full quote of the Shakespeare speech is this, finish it how you like:
Hung be the heavens with black, yield day to night!
Comets, importing change of times and states,
Brandish your crystal tresses in the sky,
And with them scourge the bad revolting stars
That have consented unto …

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