Liverpool Poets – Newcastle Playhouse 14th May 1984

I first came across the Liverpool Poets Roger McGough, Brian Patten and the late Adrian Henri when I was at University and a friend loaned me their book The Mersey Sound. I loved the poems in it especially Without You and  Love is…

So when I discovered that they were appearing in Newcastle as part of a literary festival I wanted to go and see them. It was a great night with the three of them taking turns to read poems and occasionally doing combined efforts. The one that stuck in my mind was a performance of Roger McGough’s poem Forty Love which is about a middle aged couple playing Tennis. the two on the outside recited a word each as if it were the ball being hit by the players. the word Tennis was split in two with a long pause as if the ball had been lobbed. The poet in the middle said nothing, his head going backwards and forwards as if he was the umpire, until they got to the word Net which he shouted!

Afterwards they were selling books and signing autographs in the foyer – I bought a book by Brian Patten which I got him to sign and got the other two to sign my tickets. I wish I’d taken my copy of The Mersey Sound and got them to sign that!