This week, as a St Valentine’s day treat, our resident droll John McLean amused us all with his plethora of peculiar poetry on the theme of LOVE. Arruff! Confusingly at all began like a cross between a geography lesson and a spelling bee with lots of H.O.L.L.A.N.D.’s and I.T.A.L.Y.’s and N.O.R.W.I.C.H.’s. Though I confess I’d never heard of a place called S.W.A.L.K. ???? Hmmmmm maybe they thought dogs can’t spell? Arruff!

Anyway John assured us all that a little innuendo goes a long way. So by that measure we all travelled pretty far that night, I can tell you. Sorry John but you did also say sarcasm is the lowest form of wit and I do spend most of my time under the table. Arruff.

Aside from delighting us all by reading out selected poems from his extensive archive, John also gave us a few exercises to do. We started off by scribbling a few humorous lines from our courting days. This resulted in tales of Saturday nights, train journeys, meeting the prospective in-laws and Digby’s girlfriend! WHAT!, WHERE!, WHO! Arruff!

There was also useful advice on writing humorous verse.

  • Keep it simple.

  • Have a point of view/opinion to express.

  • Never moralise.

  • And don’t give the end away.

After an extended tea (due to much lively discussion) the evening was finished off by everyone selecting one of their favourite authors and saying a few words about why these writers meant so much to them.