Saturday, 12 August 2017

The Flamingo's Beak

The Flamingo’s Beak

and other stories

Visual Stories Project

Newark Library


A walnut tree drops green-husked nuts on the pavement outside Newark Library and squirrels busily chew their way into those tender centres. I wonder if any get a chance to ripen fully before our summer ends - or the squirrels take them all, but that is another story

We had enough stories of our own inside the library on Monday 7th August. New stories: not written into books or spoken onto disc, just stories growing over the afternoon, adding faces and feathers, settling into written words for some, staying fluid and shifting and verbal for others.

Koala mask and story-card
We heard about the sunlight and shadows that painted stripes on the zebra and the tiger that was hunting her. We met the koala reduced to wearing a furry grey onsie when the parrots stole his colourful feathers. There was a flamingo who dipped her beak in an inkwell and has been black-tipped ever since (but who makes some pocket-money writing postcards for all the other animals who can’t). Then there was the beautiful alicorn, adventurous mice, a cat, an owl, a dolphin and a seal.
My fellow artist in this workshop was Jessica Kemp who was getting the mask-making going. More of Jess' work can be viewed here

Goyle of Notre Dame
Goyle perched on his pedestal, his deep red eyes observing the world below. The chattering people were like ants - chittering constantly. Sometimes there was destruction but Goyle knew he was safe on the top of Notre Dame. As he padded along the stone columns and was about to lift his wings when he heard a crow.

“Dead things! Everything I eat, everything humans eat are dead things!”

Curiously, Goyle asked, “What about chocolate?”

The crow jumped up, “Eek! Ya scared me, son, but I will answer your question. Chocolate is dead coco beans like bread is dead wheat!”

When Goyle told his family they were so shocked they all turned to stone! So next time you scare your friends, make sure you do not scare them like the crow.

My apologies to the young man who wrote Goyle's Story: I didn't catch your name! if you see this post, let me know and I'll add it. Well done! What a neat, vivid tale.

This was my last workshop for the Visual Stories project but there are more library sessions (in Nottinghamshire) to come during the holidays. Visit the website here to find out where and when

To see about some of our other adventures in this project, visit this post:  As black as two top hats
The Unicat's Garden
an elegant Alicorn

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