Chill Pill Christmas special at Deptford Market…


Deptford market it an amazing place with an authentically local feel about it that is too often missing at more trendy boutique style markets. This is a real place for real people. Also, you can get anything you want. Anything. And almost always at a wildly reasonable price. One stallholder told me he had been working there for 32 years and the man’s patter was so on point I could believe he was three decades deep in the game.

“if you can’t see what you’re looking for, just ask. I’m looking for your money, and so far I can’t see it”

A recent addition to the market has been young marketers, trainee traders if you like, supported by a council development programme. On the Saturday we were there (9th December) the young traders were housed in a little market on the square. As part of the overall aim of the project to bring more people to the market (crucially in a way that supports what is already there) Chill Pill were invited to collaborate with site specific theatre director Peader Kirk in order to provide some Christmas entertainment. We thought that the best way to do this would be to fit in with the existing market, and see what happened if we tried to run a stall ourselves! As you can see it was decorated ‘tastefully’, although we did have a few people enquiring after the trees rather than our poems…


On arrival we got chatting to the young traders; about their wares, what inspired them to get started, their creative processes, business so far etc – The four of us chill pill poets (me, Raymond Antrobus, Deanna Rodger, and Adam Kammerling) then wrote little ‘instant’ poems about each stall-holder individually, before belting these out with a few of our own pieces over the PA. The marketers were really happy to have their stalls written about and promoted in this unusual way, as for young newcomers vocally attracting custom can be a daunting thing to go about.


Apart from these sporadic performances over the PA (at which we also read some of our favourite ‘seasonal’ poems by other authors) we also tried to bring a bit of poetry to those stall holders and bargain hunters who weren’t naturally passing our way. Our strategy was two fold:

  1. Wandering with ‘the poetry stocking’, from which people could pull titles of Christmas poems, which we would then read to them. Check out Adam doing his thing below. These guys offered us a quid when we were done. Despite us reading them a pretty bleak (although brilliant) poem called ‘snow’ by Vladimir Holan
  2. Photobucket

  3. Chatting to stallholders and punters, and asking for their own Christmas moments or memories, or alternatively their wishes for themselves or others for this years festivities. We noted these contributions down on Christmas labels and hung them from our trees, before Ray compiled a beautiful little crowd sourced Christmas poem from the results.


The final service we offered was an idea I pinched from Poetry Takeaway which I saw at Latitiude – where people could come up and ask to have a poem written for them, about anything they wanted – again the turn around for these was mega quick but this video of Adam reading his to the young woman who requested is evidence of what can be achieved in five minutes!

All in all it was a cracking day, and definitely considering trying to get a plot for another stall in the future! Below you will find the text for my pieces for the marketers… Enjoy!

Dr. Denim
A battered leather suitcase
Full of old jeans, but
Everything is in here
Un-pick and re-stitch
Zips, hems, pockets
Make ties, bags, wallets
Make anything you want
Made to order, man’s on it.
Dr. Denim, if you’re passing the stall
Pop your head in, certified swag
What d’you reckon?!


Niamh’s preserves
Niamh went from jewellery to jam.
24 carat cake jam.
sticky fingers in the workshop,
berry red splatters on the worktop
roasted red pepper and peach,
each deep flavour worked on and brought through…
Compliment your cheese with a chutney,
have it with a brie or a cheese that’s more crumbly
Perfect for a feed if you’re hungry
Deep in the fridge late night with the munchies
Branstons? What?!
Yeah that’s a brand that you’ve seen and heard
And so it may seem absurd,
but you’re much better off with one of Niamh’s preserves!


Chill Pill @ The Albany

Chill Pill @ The Albany
Thursday, September 27, 2012
7:30pm - All Ages Buy Tickets
Douglas Way
Deptford, London, UK SE8 4AG
Other Info
We asked what you thought. You said you loved the friendly atmosphere, the variety of poets, the open mic, the rappers that we've had down. BUT you were definitely not happy with the quality of jelly beans provided. You demanded better.
We listened. We thought long and hard. We visited countless sweet shops. And have returned with the goods. Chill pill is back for autumn with our two best line ups yet! Get involved!

Soweto Kinch
Sabrina Mahfouz
Jive Poetic

Curated by Mr Gee (host of Radio 4's Bespoken Word and Rhyme and Reason), Raymond Antrobus, Deanna Rodger, Simon Mole and Kim-Leng Hills, Chill Pill is a laid-back poetry night where up-and-coming poets share the stage with some of the finest spoken word acts in the UK. Plus, we'll be mixing it up with tightly spun tales inspired by today's headlines, the ever-popular Classics Corner and plenty of banter to boot.

Whether you're a spoken word enthusiast, emerging poet or just curious, come with a sense of humour and leave your expectations at the door.

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Keats House Poets Present…

Keats House Poets Present...
Sunday, September 9, 2012
2:00pm - All Ages Buy Tickets
Keats House, Keats Grove
Hampstead, London, UK NW3 2RR
Other Info
The Keats House Poets present:
A chilled out Sunday afternoon of (FREE) poetry and spoken word...

and a (FREE) amazing film!!

With performances from:
Raymond Antrobus
Simon Mole
Deanna Rodger
Kaamil Ahmed

The Albany Young Poets

As well as a screening of hit documentary WE ARE POETS, which as a special treat will be followed by a Q & A with the director! Boom!

Where: Keats House, Keats Grove, London. NW3 2RR.
Nearest tube: Hamstead Heath.

What: Keats House Poets are back, launching our autumn season with this bumper package of free poetry goodness!

The event will start promptly at 2pm, and due to the film screening, open mic slots may be limited so best to arrive early for the chance to perform at this prestigious venue!

The film screening will begin at 3.30pm, and the event as a whole will be done by about 5.30/6 pm

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Sunday, July 29, 2012
6:30pm - All Ages Buy Tickets
The Last Refuge (map)
Bussey Building
Peckham Rye, LONDON SE15 3SN
Other Info
shout, whisper or sing…a fresh new night of spoken word and performance poetry’

Bringing the best names in spoken word to South London with a programme of the most exciting and talented acts on the scene right now.

Hosted by Lettie Mckie come and join us too see an eclectic mix of featured acts and open mic.

£4 in advance or on the door.
To book tickets in advance go to

Our smashing line up:

//Emma Jones
Teacher by day, uproarious spoken word performer by night, Emma Jones is a seasoned regular on the poetry scene, she recently appeared on Channel 4’s Random Acts for Bang Said the Gun and has just performed at Meadowlands festival. Effortlessly creating multiple characters on stage her style is captivating and funny. She weaves heartfelt stories from real life that manage to be both cynical and charming. A clever, witty and laugh out loud hilarious performer.

//Simon Mole
Simon Mole is the first of two poets to grace our stage from the fantastic chill pill who host awesome poetry nights regularly across London. A popular poet, mc and writer Simon has recently had his own solo show at The Albany in Deptford. His work is uplifting and lyrical. He combines a laid back performance style with poetry that is rich in detail and rhythm, packing a punch with poignant images that everybody can relate to.

//Raymond Antrobus
Our second Chill Pill representative of the evening Raymond is another hugely successful poet on the scene. He is also a coach for Shake the Dust (national poetry slam for young people) and member of one of London’s most highly praised collectives A Poem in between People. Raymond’s poems are powerfully delivered, he combines surreal and everyday images, meandering descriptions, with witty one liners to create unforgettable thought provoking poetry.

//Open Mic
For all those secret scribblers, covert creators and sneaky scribes bring your poems out of the woodwork and onto our stage! If you’ve never done open mic before this is the perfect place to try, a relaxed, fun event with no pressure and a chance to receive friendly feedback afterwards. If you’re a seasoned pro or a complete beginner you are welcome to sign up for limited places by emailing

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