Tuesday, 3 April 2012

'Freeing the Poet's Voice' at Cove Park with Kristin Linklater, Day 1

A morning of voice visualisation and organ-jiggling. We unbuttoned each others' spines and stacked them up again. We experienced antigravity. We sighed a lot. We struggled to leave our mouths hanging open. Setting us the task of plucking our muscles from our bones, Kristin gave me a savage nip in the shoulder-muscle, and was not abashed when tears squirted out of my eyes. In fact I'm always glad to be enabled to cry. I'm interested in this notion of tension and unhappiness getting salted away in our muscles, and the possibility of releasing it physically. If we learnt to make ourselves cry like this in a convenient hour once a week, what might we revert to?

Further questions arising (related and unrelated to today's two 3 hour workshops):

- where does the voice come from?
- if I could free up the physical voice, what might happen to my writing?
- what might be the social effects of freeing the physical voice?
- what might be the effects on my teaching?
- what would happen if school-bairns did these exercises before I asked them to write?
- is a smile always an expression of tribal fear?
- is friendliness always an act of submission?
- could I stand up and teach for three hours like this, without experiencing any self-doubt at the confusion or suspicion of the participants?
- will I see a submarine this week, passing up or down the loch to/from Coulport?
- could I stand up and teach for three hours without projecting my own tension and fear?
- why have I broken out in spots? I blame readership development. It puts me in the path of more chocolate.

I'm grateful to Creative Scotland for Professional Development funding that allowed me to attend this course!

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