Black History Month

September 15, 2009


Thursday 20 October, 3 -4 pm

Multicultural Family History

Begin to trace your family history online.


Friday 30 October, 11 – 11.45

The power of verse: half-term poetry tour

Session with Sandra Agard

Professional performers Sandra Agard and Coda Quashile will bring poetry to life for family audience as, between them, they take in all Lewisham`s libraries in a whistlestop tour.


Thuesday 27 October, 2.30 – 3.30pm

Musical mayhem (ages 8-11)

Create your own musical instruments to capture the sound and rhythm of Black History Month.


Creative Writing Group

September 15, 2009

Wednesday 7th October 11.00 – 1.00

Join the Age Concern Creative Writing Group for a morning of poetry and music.

The Door

July 21, 2009

Having read a poem called The Door by Miroslav Holub, the group were asked to write a poem describing what they might see if they were to open their door. Here is what Marguerite Cato wrote:

 I opened my door to my garden

And was faced with a wonderful sight

For the plant which entwined round my trellis

Had burst into bloom overnight.

The buds which had nestled in secret

Had suddenly burst into bloom,

The beautiful pink and cream blossoms

Were so numerous, there scarcely seemed room.


This physical vision of beauty

Will sadly be short, although sweet,

And then another year must pass

Before this scene repeats.

But it will remain in memory,

Fill the dawn of another such day,

When I open the door to my garden

To see the beautiful flowers in May.


I opened my door in my memory

And am once again young and alive

To the joys of exploring the universe,

Discovering how other folk thrive.

Then I’m suddenly transported to Venice

And in front of St Marks and the square;

I hear musical strains from an orchestra

Which is outside a restaurant there.


Then I’m dancing alone in that great empty space

To the sounds of a beautiful waltz –

A waiter appears – he bows with such grace,

We step forward – continue the dance.

When the music is finished he thanks me and smiles

Then he leaves me the way that he came;

And I? Well, I slowly come back down to earth

Before I return to my friends.


Marguerite – May 2009

A New Zealand Rainbow and Sammy

June 18, 2009

Two more poems from Torridon Writers. Malcolm’s was inspired by a recent journey to New Zealand. Joyce’s poem, Sammy, is about a tortoise who was owned by her close friend and fellow member of the writing group, Joy Caley. Sadly, Joy died in May this year. But, as the poem explains, Sammy has found a new home.


A New Zealand Rainbow

 There I stood in driving rain

With my umbrella up again.

Then all of a sudden it did stop,

Not a single drip did drop.


There astride on the shingle shore

Stood an arch, like an open door.

Shone bright colours of blues to gold:

What pleasure to behold.


There it stood just yards away,

All I could hear is what the Irish say:

“Get a shovel and dig you must,

To gain that well earned daily crust.”


If you are quick, as said of old,

A well-deserved big pot of gold.

Before a shovel I could find

It had moved just off the shore line.


On the lake it now stood

Arching like a glowing hood.

If I could swim and deeply dive,

But my big fear is would I survive?


As it withdrew much further away

It seemed to brighten everyone’s day.

When it landed on the distant shore

It started to fade, then was seen no more.

 Malcolm Goodwin




 Sammy the tortoise lives in Joy’s garden:

He is intimate with each flower, fern,

Bush and blade of grass. It is his jungle.

Sammy must be fifty years or more and

Spends his time striding up and down the lawn

Eating the buttercups and daisies.

In autumn he is tucked away in a box

Filled with straw which goes into the shed

Until the arrival of warm weather.

Last year he disappeared, so when the time

Came for his winter sleep he was nowhere

To be found. Such anguish!

Could he have been stolen or had he dug

Himself a warm home for the winter?

This was the first year he had slept out.

One couldn’t help but feel worried since this

Winter was especially cold, frosty and icy.

Joy said Sammy would not appear before

Easter and, sure enough, on Good Friday

He came marching down the lawn; it was such

A relief and a joyous moment. Viv popped

Him into a bowl with a covering of grass

And took him to visit Joy. She was delighted!

Soon Sammy will be going to another garden.

I wonder how he will feel about that.

No doubt he will soon make it his jungle.

 Joyce Robson

Relatively Speaking and Knock for a Cup of Tea

April 30, 2009

Two more poems from Torridon Writers: a rhyming poem from the King of the Absurd, Terry Thompson, and a gentle poem on a serious subject from Lucreta La Pierre.



Relatively Speaking


I will tell you about a relative

Who in fact was quite negative.

My story of course is inventive,

I hope you will find it intuitive.


Uncle Tom was a great relation,

A stalwart of the British nation.

At first there was no indication

Of Uncle Tom’s weird creation.


The creation was a magic jacket,

The man was a genius at placket.

He hope to earn him quite a packet,

He ended up inside a strait-jacket.


You may think it was his demise

But he gave the family quite a surprise

When before their very eyes

Were trousers of an enormous size.


Alas, another creation quite unproductive,

The inmates within were quite destructive

Although the ladies were quite seductive

They really were being too obstructive.


Poor Uncle Tom was by now really skint,

No longer could he do another stint,

His saddened eyes no longer had that glint

And the words he muttered you could not print.


No longer could he his blessings count,

His bank account showed no amount,

The bills, alas, began to surmount,

So a happy ending you can discount.


Terry—March 2009





Knock for a Cup of Tea


A knock on the entrance,

That’s all it takes

To avoid my ache.


Do make a move and

Knock on my door

As I yearn to hear a voice

Or even see a face.


I am frail, lonely and confused, too;

I awake to the knock of the postman on my flap

But all I need is for you to come in for tea and cakes

Or even for a handshake.


I gaze through the window frame,


As I wave to a passer-by

Wishing it would last.


It’s bright and sunny outside

But dark on the inside;

But all I want is a friendly face

To bring a smile into my place.


An entry into my gate:

That’s all it takes.


Lucreta – Dec 2008





What I want to be when I grow up

April 6, 2009

Ok, I was a great stand up comedian

Where the venue is brilliant and bright,

Where the audience is like a sea.


Ok, when I take my stand

Smiling faces I would see,

Scent of perfume floating on the stage

Hitting me like glasses of cane rum,

Doubling and trebling my words.


Ok, why I really wanted to be a comedian

Is to expose the grit underneath the carpet,

Is to let people forget depression,

Forget about all the bad clouds,

Let people laugh, stamp their feet

            and weep.


Who would listen to my gritty jokes?


Ok, mothers, fathers, grandparents

            from every walk of life.

Wherever I go they would follow

For my jokes are like a puff of smoke.


How would I tell my jokes?


Ok, I would talk about my Uncle

Who ran off and leave his pants behind.


I would talk about my Aunt

Who ran a mile in her birthday clothes

And became the talk of the town.


I would talk about how my Grand who

Paid hundreds of pounds for her dentures

Wear them in her pocket instead.


I’ll have the audience crying and asking for more:

It’s never to late for a shower of rain

Said the men of olden days.


Joy Swaby


April 6, 2009

I  cannot remember when I was given my first Teddy Bear; he was always there as long as I can remember. He was  fairly standard as teddy bears go with golden brown fur, buttons for eyes & nose with black stitching for his mouth.   He stood about 15” tall.


He was named by my parents very imaginatively as Teddy. He might not have been anything special to look at but he was my Teddy. Where I went he went and I wouldn’t and couldn’t go to sleep without him beside me. When the time came to move on and away from cuddly toys Teddy didn’t drop out of the frame.


We lived in a council house without central heating and electric blankets were not around. During cold winter spells the way to keep warm in bed was to add more and more blankets. The problem, or at least my problem, was that there was always a gap down my back to let in the cold.


Teddy plugged that hole beautifully.


I didn’t have the courage to take him with me when I joined the RAF for my National Service but he was conscripted back into service when I was

demobbed. He did his duty until I got married when three in a bed was

unacceptable; however he wasn’t left behind but was transported in a

cardboard box to the marital home.


After a while he re-emerged and sat in a corner of our bedroom for quite a few years until we moved home. Again he was packed in a box and came with us and sat in the corner of our new bedroom.


By this time we had three sons who thought it odd that their dad had a teddy bear when they had already discarded theirs. From time to time he went missing for days at a time and would mysteriously re-appear, usually looking the worse for wear.


I could never prove it but I had a feeling that he was pegged onto the washing line by his ears and used as target practice. A possible confirmation of this was when he re-appeared with one ear missing. Three angelic faces denied any knowledge of having any part in this amputation.


One day Teddy was not there and never returned, much to everyone’s total surprise, but then my sons have always been good actors.


I still mourn for Teddy who I assume was “missing in action presumed killed”. I didn’t even have a telegram to help closure on this sad event.



John Roberts

The Bridge School of English

March 13, 2009

Over the last two weeks staff members from Torridon Road Library have visited The Bridge School of English to promote the use of libraries in Lewisham.  The school is situated in Hither Green and offers both morning and evening classes.  For more information on the school visit



March 13, 2009

Torridon Road Library have on display a range of books that offer you ways to save money during the credit cruch. 

We also have folders displayed around the library that has online resources for jobseekers, redundancy, housing finance, personal finance, debt advice and heating and insulation.



Only I

March 5, 2009

The writing group were asked to write something using only the vowel ‘i’. No other vowels were allowed. Here is how Foqia Hayee met the challenge:


Only I


I miss spring:

Singing birds,

Birds in flight, finch, siskins, swifts, pipits.

I miss spring:

Kids dipping sticks in rills.

I miss spring:

Girls spinning in frills.

I miss spring:

Picnics with grill fish dish ‘n chips.

I miss spring:

Hiking in British hills.

I miss spring:

Smiling with whistling winds.

I miss spring:

Fish swimming with living things.

I miss spring:

Spring brings kind bliss.

I miss spring:

Skipping in high spirits.

I miss spring:

First light in sky with tiny pink tint.

I miss spring:

Dim light, wind whistling, swirling, sighing.

I miss spring:

Find writing inspiring in spring.

I miss spring:

Sipping drink with dignity in Mill Hill.