Whispering those sweet somethings
“Then love knew it was called love.
And when I lifted my eyes to your name,
suddenly your heart showed me my way”
— Pablo Neruda
Love as Neruda so beautifully articulates was was very much in the air at the Cowichan Writer’s Group’s romance-themed open mike night at the Old Firehouse Wine Bar last week.
“It was very much the idea behind Love Actually,” explained Cheryl Baudin, a member of the writer’s group since its inception, citing the hit 2003 British romantic comedy. “It was clear with our member’s pieces there’s love of all kinds.”
Members of the group, which was created by Cowichan writer and publisher Eliza Hemingway, poured their hearts out with excerpts from novels and short stories and even sang classic love songs at the event organized with wine bar owner Jeff Downie.
“We thought it would be nice to have a romantic theme with Valentine’s Day just around the corner,” explained Baudin last week. “For writers, whether you’re a poet, singer, songwriter, write short stories or a novel, romance is often a common theme.
“And as writer’s we draw on our personal experiences, so we’re bound to have some element of our own personal life that comes in to make it more real for other people,” Baudin said.
“The beauty of open mike is it gives the opportunity to share something that’s personal to you in hopes to strike a chord with others.”
Chemainus writer Carol Anne Lawry chose a more paternal love piece to share during the open mike night.
“The piece I read was probably not your usual ‘romance,’ a little dark, to say the least,” she explained. “Essentially, I sketched two disintegrating relationships, a couple with and a couple without children. The childless male is watching the other man’s children and, therefore, the mother is watched as well,” she added of her piece Waves.
“I think we often read of women envious of another woman’s children, but not often of men coveting another man’s children.
“I am fond of presenting views that make us rethink our assumptions,” she said.
The author of Journey, Lawry loves the “wealth of information, perspective, expertise, and skills shared” being a member of Cowichan’s group.
As does member Ron Rosewood.
Rosewood could be Cowichan’s romance aficionado.
Having two romance-themed books, Melissa’s Wish List and the more recent Postdated Romance, under his belt, and also being an active member of the Vancouver Island Romance Chapter of the Writers of America, means Rosewood is not shy one bit about sharing his work with others.
“It doesn’t really bother me at all,” he said, noting writer’s must have thick skin for criticism that comes when writing hits the air and streets.
Rosewood sang classic tug-at-the-heart-strings tunes, Frank Sinatra’s My Way and Elvis Presleys’ Are you Lonesome Tonight last week.
Baudin sang as well and read excerpts from the group’s published short story collection Kissed on a Boat.
The group meets every first and third Wednesday of the month at 6 p.m. at the Cowichan Library and welcome new members with open arms.
For more information on the Cowichan Writer’s Group, go here