May 11th is the launch of the latest issue of Word Addict here in Prague at Studio Savec.
The title of this issue is 'BREATHE' and the theme -
Inner peace; having achieved peace of mind; struggling to achieve peace of mind; hating this hippie mumbo jumbo.
You can find more details here…(clickpic)
I am very proud to have a piece which we be included in their wonderful literary/poetry magazine for poets and revolutionaries from all over infinity's bits. Big thanks to Jaromir Lelek, founder of the mag and a wizard wordsmith to boot.
I won’t include the poem they will publish in this blog but I will share some things below which I have been reading recently at Poetry open mics in Prague for the pleasure of your eyes and brain noodles.
A man carrying a large bunch of flowers
A disaster waiting to happen
I see you carrying the big bouquet upright like that
Afraid of bumping into anyone in the street or in the crowds on the bus
And you've been told that that's not the way to hold them
That you can hold them upside down by your side
But no, all stiff you look,
trying your very hardest not to damage the flower heads,
Lose any petals or bend the stalks
This awkward, tricky balancing act is as humorous as it is difficult to watch
I assume you made it home safe or to the restaurant or wherever it is you were taking them
And I'll bet they went down well
They looked quite expensive
But your balancing act has just begun
You must keep on winning the heart you won
Hold her upright and do not run
Never dangle her casually by your side
There's no such thing as a a sturdy bride
So carry her upright like that
And never let her see how much it costs.
The Song of Rowland
The king of this empty apartment I am
So frankly my dearest I don't give a damn
If you never darken these towels again
A home is a home and a man is a man
From my balcony I watch you sprint to the tram
The room still stunned by your dramatic door slam
My bow and my arrow are pointed at you
You missed the tram and you're still in view
You're smoking now for something to do
You said you'd quit - lied about that too
The neighbour’s dog is doing a poo
The neighbour's not even picked it up!
My heart is sure and my aim is true
You drop the ciggy and fall to your side
The bow is silent and easy to hide
The ambulance people quickly arrive
I'm not sorry you left or sorry you died
The circle of blood sticky and wide
The King of this empty apartment I am
And a bit of a murderer since you fucked Sam.
Rules for Poetry Readings.
1) Never ask the audience a direct question. This is poetry, not stand up.
2) Always speak up
3) Never speak down
4) Try to visualise the audience fully clothed
5) Don't flatter yourself. It is impossible to speak over people's heads with your words at a poetry meet. There is a 14'' invisible net above everyone's crown and they gather up everything.
6) Print your words so you can see them in the moody light of your venues. Or memorise the words. Don't read from your phone. One text, whatsapp or a call can ruin your bit. Plus you look like a tit.
7) We are but...
Gurning shit machines
Self analysing reprobates
8) Do not accuse your audience of anything. You do NOT know them.
9) Do not waste anyone's fucking time.
10) Give the audience at the very least one thing to take home, even if it's only a kick in the arse.
11) Remember some poems are meant to be read in a book, quietly and alone.
For the poems you must mull. Cull.
12) Don't forget to say something profound at least twice even if your poem is fuelled by anti-profundity.
13) Remember to listen to yourself in relation to the response you conjure. Most of your magic tricks cannot be concealed by slight of mouth. Your audience are eagle third-eyed experts. Remember your wand is the size of a house. Wave it ever so gently.
14) No intros longer than 10 words
15) No intros at all is better than a 10 words or less intro. That's what titles were invented for.
16) Plan what you will read BEFORE you stand up. You are not entering a freestyle rap battle. Unless you are entering a freestyle rap battle. You agonised over this stuff. Your words deserve fair warning.
17) Carry on Poet - If your nerves were not strong enough to stop you from coming tonight, to stop you from reading, then the butterflies have failed at their job, haven't they? You win. You may carry on, poet.
18) poetry means never having to say you're sorry.
19) Go towards the precipice and withdraw Go towards the precipice and withdraw. Tease us. Then go over the edge or cease your childish thrusting.
20) don't forget to listen to the people who read before and after you.
21) Never pontificate without gifts, a gun or a good amount of irony.
22) look up every now and again and remember who you are reading to. And don't forget to NOT talk to them. As tempting as it may seem and As lovely as they may look.
If there are feelings in the poem
Read it like an actor
Communication and sympathy
Are a contributing factor
If you read your poem
like you couldn't give a shit
Then What the hell d'you expect
Others to do with it
This is all about Finding your own tone
Don't read someone else's pome
Copy other poets - Get a clue
Until your poems sound like you
If you speak like you write
Or write like you speak
You will either come on too strong
Or you'll come off too weak
If you read like you're reading
T.S.Elliot or Dylan Thomas
Make the first line count
Or keep it from us
If you read like you're reading
Pam Ayres, Craig Charles or Willy
You better make sure that the last line
Is proFOUNDLYly silly
Wear something cool
So at least if you blow it
The staff at the bar
Will think you're a poet
I hate standing here
Like a big nervous Nelly
I'd rather be home
Watching the telly
But I lift myself up
And drag myself down
To the open Mic poetry
The other side of town
Where I can show off
All that I know
In the hope that one day
I might go pro
And be paid for the shit
That goes on in my mind
Or at least get a girl
And be paid in kind
You gotta show up
Or else how could you guess
If your mind is on track
Or a horrible mess
And listen to see
If the poet's around you
Share the same thoughts
And are poised to astound you
I hate standing here
So why do I do it?
Why abandon the couch
And put myself through it?
I think it's because
When I'm watching TV
I am constantly thinking
That could be me
When I open a book
And a bottle of wine
I can't help but think
Those words could be mine
But why I ask
Should anyone care
If I do something
And decide to share?
Well if you don't do
And you give in to fear
There'll be some other joker
Standing up here
And I know you know
Just as well as I do
You only really like them
If they think like you
So shy or not
Pick up your feet
There are no signs
On this three way street
Say what you say
There's no one to beat
There's poetry in
The jaws of defeat.
The jaws of success
Ain't nearly as forgiving
Be Happy you're an amateur
And really fucking living
I am committed to making this blog as snappy, fun, experimental and accessible as I can. If any of what I post, paint, paste or print resonates with you, please forward to friends and colleagues with wild abandon!