Tuesday, 11 August 2015

old photos and Helen

I often seem to do random summer pre holiday blog and here is one!
I popped into Marjorie and Zoe's a few weeks ago and saw these - forgive the poor quality - i rushed out to get the Shallal ipad to quickly record them on.
So on this board recently discarded by the John Daniel Centre are archive photos for early Shallal!
A young Zoe Wilton in purple, Linda Williamson and Mary Derrington - both moved away to live out of the area. Paul Gosling who died some years ago and was an amazing performer. 
I still remember a friend being moved to tears as Paul improvised outside Truro Cathedral. 
We had a small area to perform in but Paul took his solo, with guitarist Charlie Heykoop, and danced the whole cobbled area, gesturing up gracefully to the spires!

Photo from an exhibition at Treliske Hospital about activities for older people, with Marjorie and Zoe.
I love it and had never seen it before....it's behind glass so forgive the reflections etc.

Between these 2 photos many things happened......
Helen Thompson joined us and was an extraordinary and wonderful contributor and performer within Shallal. I have been putting off writing about her as she died some months ago now in Spain, quite quickly from cancer, and her ashes will be spread over the land she lived on and loved at the end of October.
You would need a good trilogy to do justice to Helen's life and one of our favourite family memories of her was her long and totally absorbing stories, which you were not allowed to cut short, she would follow you out the room to finish them or keep the flow!
She was a multi talented artist and also her life was her art. I remember a poem by heart, i have a collage and a painting by her - two of my favourites. I have a textile fish made from Jamie Brown's design in a frame on the wall above my desk, she made props for Midnight Feast, she took over our costume for years. She was a warm, good and entertaining friend and i cannot do justice to her. In the last years she lived in Spain.
I have photos i need to find of her.

A poem from Helen, which she performed and i still remember.

Down came the arrows that were dancing as they flew.
Down comes the curtain to obliterate the view.
I'm showing off again and (yet) the panic has set in
and all my endless chatter is just adding to the din,
you're leaving me.
I'm saying you're not the only one and others care for me, as i for them and you're just one
while me i'm dancing free.
What crap!
And now you're gone.

Midnight Feast, which the poem was performed in, with Helen seated on the floor 'feeding grapes' to Paul.
Roger Pinsent wrote the music for us and Shelley who is on the right comes back to Cornwall to visit tomorrow.

Recent poem she sent me.
I Hear There are Some

I hear there are some
Who don’t think of the past
As behind them
And the future as ahead
As we do.

For them it’s the other way around.

The past they can see
So that’s what they face (poor things)
And the future they can’t, 
See, it’s hidden.
So that’s what’s behind them.

I used to point forward and cry: Look!
There are the answers,
All of them,
There, and there, and there! See?

Now I lift my chin and roll my eyes
Up and back over my old shoulder and sigh:
And there are the questions;
All of them

I’ve yet to ask.

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