Voices Israel, as a registered non-profit association, has a wonderfully official Constitution full of all the phrases that lawyers love and poets typically could do without (if we were allowed to). Anyone who enjoys reading fine print is invited to email our Secretary who will send you a copy by email.
When Voices Israel originally launched, many years ago, our members Wendy and David Blumfield lovingly created a less daunting Constitution. It wouldn't pass muster with the Registrar of Associations but it's part of our history. So, with minimal changes to bring the information up to date, here it is:
The task of the Acting Chairman
Is to prepare a Constitution
Of the Voices Poets' Society
For the proceeds of this Institution.
The group meets once a month -
On a Tuesday, 7:30 at night,
Poets travel from far and wide
With their poems, to give delight.
To give due attention to every effort
Each poet may read no more than two.
Critique should be fairly given, and remember
That many words can be replaced by few.
There are poets who are softly spoken
And their voices can hardly be heard,
But their opinions are equally of value
And we should pay attention to each word.
The language of Voices is English -
Not Latin, French, Hebrew or Greek;
In critique and discussion, one day each month
It is only English we speak.
For poets who've travelled from far and wide
We serve hot tea and something sweet,
Without clattering cups, or crunching of crumbs:
Serving of victuals should be discreet.
A membership fee is paid every year
And for that we make no apology:
It pays for some quality workshops
And the annual world-famous Anthology.
One evening a month of poetry good cheer,
Some laughter, some tears and even some groans;
And there's one more thing to remember:
Turn off those telephones!