February Alchemy, 2017

Just got back from the February Alchemy poetry reading, and it was a pretty good one, for the most part.
It was at a new place, and I really liked the venue, because the room where the reading was was separated from the bar. That’s one thing I didn’t like about the Napa Bar. Back when we used to have the readings in their cellar, it was great, but when they moved it upstairs (I suspect because people weren’t buying enough beer, that was quite a shlep up and down the steps, down to the sklep), it got to be kind of obnoxious, people in the back room talking, sometimes even competing music, and just the noises from behind the bar.
Also, it’s like right in the center, just off Old Town Square, so you really can’t get more centrally located than that.
I hope they continue it there, but I’m not the one with any say in that, so we’ll see.
It does seem kind of strange to me that when you change the location, it seems you get an entirely different crowd. Maybe it was just the people who turned out to see the featured reader, who’d recently completed a couple of translations. I don’t know, I suppose they are interesting works of literature, but I come out to hear (and perform) poetry, and excerpts from novels generally don’t move me much.
There were a few new people who were pretty good, one guy did a rap routine which was at least impressive, and the girl who I’ve seen at two or three of the readings now, the slam poet, was there and raging. There was a dog present, and he was barking at her routine and nobody else’s, so give her points for that.
The diffusion of the Prague poetry scene continues, as she’s now organizing a reading at A Maze in Tchaiovna, which I’ll go to because I like her and I like the place and there were two poems I didn’t get to read tonight due to over-adherence to the rules, and then there’s also the one at Soma Bar and the one at Zizkovsiska.
It’s good to have a lot of venues, but it strikes me as odd that they all have different performers, and different audiences. Do we all not like each other, or what?


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