The Second Post – John Cooper Clarke Homage

Well maybe this blog business isn’t taking off quite as fast as intended, but what would you expect from a writers’ group.  We’ll get round to it in good time.

In the meantime I shall use this blogspace to get rid of some stuff that has been lying around in my inbox since November 2013.  Every year we run two all-day workshops at St Deiniols (aka Gladstone Library) at Hawarden in North Wales.  All the sessions are led by members of the group and we always have great fun and surprise ourselves with the quality and quantity of words produced on the day.

And every time we say that we must collect together the writings for posterity… and every time we have said it we fail to do it.

As I too have failed… until now!

The verses below were produced by members on the back of a session I gave last year.  This was shamelessly copied from a session by Luke Wright at the Chester Literary Festival in which he used the model of John Cooper Clarke’s Are You The Business to help the assembled students to write a poem in the AAAX form.

At the moment I have the following offerings from Liz Leech and Tom Ireland….


Did Cameron stand his ground,
Were George’s tax cut dodges ever found,
Will the coalition find common ground,
Are you the business?

Will David Bellamy find his bug,
And Bill Oddy’s binoculars spy a dove,
Do Falconers always wear a glove,
Are you the business?

Will Paxman ever keep his beard,
Was Hitler’s moustache ever feared,
Are hirsute men really weird,
Are you the business?

Is Gladstone’s Library full of books
Do they have to exclude crooks
Has Food for Thought got enough cooks
Are YOU the business

Is the Library chapel a lovely place
Full of calming God-given space
To think of slowing down life’s pace
Are YOU the business

Are Vale Royal Writers a clever lot
When they meet at the Blue Cap and share a pot
Of poems and prose they’ve craftily wrot
Are THEY the business


I’m sure I had more contributions and I must have written one myself, so if I ever find them and if I can edit this post then I’ll add them in later…