‘The Sherry Adventure’ – Poem by Aly

When we get to the other side I will go on a Sherry adventure with Hassan and Claire.

I have planned a route – a mini festival to take over a weekend,

Sherry and Tapas in every port as we play Russian roulette with gout.

Come join us for the whole, part, or tail of this exploit.

We will start genteenly, discussing fragrance, mellowness and hue.

Is it dry and strong, or heavy and sweet? Or just extremely indifferent? 

On to the middle part, eyes slightly blurred, words sometimes stumbling

But everything absolutely to the point and remarkable in context and depth of meaning

At this point we will know more than the bodegas who produced this amber fluid.

And now the final part of the experience in which we forget to eat and lose our notes.

Everyone is our friend – they just don’t know it yet, our teeth are on edge with sugar overdoses

And kebab cravings outdo the joy of the warmth of food we had before.

When we get to the other side I will go on a Sherry adventure with Hassan and Claire.

Until then I will reread the map and add to our plans

Sherry and Tapas in every port as we play Russian roulette with gout.

Aly Smith Feb.’21

Dedicated to Claire and Hassan my fellow port and sherry enthusiasts and two most beautiful humans.

Bring On The Bez

And now Bez is on the internet 

Helping us to shape up.

Famed for shaking maracas whilst dancing ecstatically 

He is now our 2021 vision of hope

The last thing left in Pandora’s box.

Can we send in The Bez to sort the virus out now?

To shake away the mutations?

To follow Boris about his business

Rattling maracas at him when he refuses to ensure adequate PPE

Or feed children,or allows Rees Mogg out of his coffin.

Like the ghost of Jacob Marley sent to reform Scrooge 

He could follow Pritti about 

Pointing his musical implements at her when she slags off refugees

And shouts at her staff

While he makes her find each of the lost 400,000 crime records.

When Hancock pretends to cry 

The Bez could rattle in his ears until he sobs

And learns what tears are

And actually laments, realising that as Health Secretary 

He is paid to look after the nation’s health.

The Bez could recruit Witty to his cause

Twisting Chris’s melon while they talk so hip.

Gyrating around the podium 

Challenging the misquotes and lies

Through the power of dance. 

So you carry on Bez.

You be that shining light through this vitriolic virus.

You be our mascot

Whilst we get ready to buzz with you.

Let’s bring on The Bez.

Aly Smith  Jan. ‘21

Lock Down Three – Blog by Aly. Art by Mick.

And here we go again. Lockdown part three. I am finding it harder to get motivated, creative, eat well, exercise and, to be honest, get out of bed before lunchtime. I appreciate this is due partly to the awful weather and the ongoing sadness in the country and the world. Not much else to say really. Keep going……

Artwork – ‘Lockdown III’ by Mick Smith. Oil on canvas 30″ x 30″. Available to purchase via http://www.streetartinitiative.co.uk

A Forest – Blog by Aly

A Forest, oil on canvas, 39″ x 39″. In the collection of Viv Aves.

Inspired by The Cure’s song of the same name and an homage to Gustav Klimt A Forest is a large piece I created expressing the feelings of being lost and how a manic mind feels it is running and running and running and running…. and running and running and running….

Suddenly I stop – But I know it’s too late
I’m lost in a forest
All alone
The girl was never there
It’s always the same
I’m running towards nothing
(Again and again and again and again) And Again.

Written by Lol Tolhurst, Michael Dempsey, Robert Smith & Simon Gallup

Create It With Chicago

Due to Covid we have been unable to be out and about delivering workshops so we have made a few videos for the fabulous young people who go to the John Boste Youth Centre in Walker. Art packs for 50 children and the artists time were funded by The Biscuit Factory Foundation – this is the third video, feel free to join in and ‘Create It With Chicago’ . Let us see your work. #createitwithchicago Also be gentle with us this is our first attempt at film making, we have no idea how to edit so just did loads on zoom and picked the best!

The art packs and the Artist’s Time were kindly funded by The Biscuit Factory Foundation.