24 Hour Poetry Event London 28th Nov
William Blake's birthday 28th Nov sees an experimental 24 Hour Poetry Spectacular, celebrating the life and work of William Blake and also contemporary alternative poets following in his footsteps.
This living exhibition of Blakean and Radical poetry will be held as part of a Private Party in Hoxton Square, running from 10pm Friday 28th Nov till 10pm Saturday 29th Nov
24 Hours of continuous performance in the main room featuring Niall Mc Devitt, John Crow, Paradox, Spacegirl, Interferrence, Yap, Enricco, Sedek Vulcan, Peter Pan, and a host of London's top fringe performers.
With Space Girls Poetry Salon - Participatory Poetry and Open Mike
Visiondans' Magic Carpet Ride - Improvisational Area (Voice and Music)
Midday Saturday Poets and Dropouts Drop In - Open Mike for Poetz
Chill Space and Acoustic Music Area
'Bardic Rite' at Blake's Grave (around Sunset Saturday)
+ Psychedelic Blakean Video Show, Dancers and Art Exhibition.
Donation £5 (for 24 hours) Venue - 32 Hoxton Sq (Old St Tube)
Also raising money for medicine, food and communications centre for
the victims of the Bolivian uprising. £1 optional donation.
What about those fringe performers (e.g. poets)? I mean, what's the difference between, say, Sedek Vulcan and, say, Andrew Motion? Is it that one is a poor but free artist and the other is a commercialised producer of marketable verse? Or is the difference in ideology?
I would say it was a matter of consciousness, one is 'awake'
the other is 'asleep' but thats just my 'ideology'. Of course my 'ideological' notions have progressed closer to reality than most ;)
I know several poor, 'free' artists who I would call 'asleep' and would like to think that some 'commercial' poets are secretly 'awake' and cleverly introducing 'viral' ideas into the marketplace. Though I suspect they are extremely rare even if they were to exist.
'Awake' for me means unrestrained by convention, dogmatic ideology, tunnel realities, 'programs' and either-or logic (something very true of Blake), people attempting to grasp reality in its unmediated whole. Ideology (as conceptual scheme) is probably unavoidable to a certain extent, though not as unavoidable as the pomo enthusiasts of the 80's would have us believe. But ideology as 'my truth' has been superceeded by 'my expressible perspective(s)' on an inexpressible absolute, for many of us.
Of course I'm not claiming the poetz would claim this of themselves, but as a mere cultural analyst and 'social engineer' I can produce a positive critique. ;)
Thanks for a well-informed reply. But:
Does being 'awake' or 'asleep' have any bearing on literary talent? The reason I'm asking this is because alternative poetry seems to me to be reluctant to operate in terms of talent or lack thereof. Isn't fringe poetry opposition for the sake of opposition, and, as such, a social rather than literary phenomenon (and a sort of 'convention' in its own right)?
Sorry just got back from post poetry marathon holiday! Happy New Year.
In answer to your question I think being 'awake' obviously enhances talent, a sleepy driver is a bad driver, even if he has 'talent', but of course an awake driver is much better, but may not have that much talent. Its the same with poets I suspect.
Though if poetry is about perception and expression then obviously being 'awake', or aware of reality, is going to be an advantage in perception, in fact they will be the same thing. Being 'asleep', or having a false consiousness, would not be a valuable form of perception I suggest .
Expression is obviously where literary or theatrical talent comes in. I may have moments of lucidity myself but I have little literary talent (as yet), so this is why I organise events rather than write or perform at the moment. But we made sure all our performers in the main room were the most talented and passionate available. The air was thick with talent.
The public open mike and the space for visiting poets was in another area, where the quality was variable. But the agenda here was not literary excellence but self expression and experimentation.
I think the performance in the main area was some of the best performance poetry I've heard for many years, and this was the general consensus of those there on the night.
In conclusion I would suggest that good poetry is defined by perception, passion and expression. Literary talent is of import to the later, and so necessary but not sufficient.
What would be interesting in the passionless reading of a work of great literary expertese that recounts someones delusions or petty preoccupations? Sounds like a well written shopping list might fulfill this criteria?
I'll now post a link to the review of the event.
REVIEW OF THIS EVENT