March Alchemy

Just got back from a poetry reading, the Alchemy series at the ACT performance space in Vršovice, and it was the best one I’ve been to in I can’t remember.

The crowd wasn’t huge, but it  more or less filled the room.  There was nobody sitting on the stairs or standing against the walls or anything, it was just comfortably full, and about half the people present were intent on  performing, which is about average.

The featured performer, Neil McCarthy, did a bunch of poems he’d written from around the world, so  it was a bit of a travelogue and all.  Now, a lot of poets tend to waffle on a lot and tell you everything that they’re trying to say in the poem so by the time it comes to the poem you’re already bored, which is why I sometimes go to  the opposite extreme and just plow in with no introduction, but he had about the perfect mix, his introductions to the poems were as funny as the poems themselves.  So, the stage was set.

Jim was there, a reminder of the old Beef Stew days, and he went way over the time limit reading out of his novel but it was kind of comical, he was totally deliberately ignoring the time limit.  It was a good tale, though, of arson, violence and guns.  There were a couple of singers who both had really nice voices, one was upbeat, one was sad.  Then there was a guy who calls himself Watersprout which seems like a bit of poetic pretense but he totally pulls it off, this is the 2nd time I’ve seen him and he’s got the gestures and he’s got the flow and it seemed he had something to say, it was all about the -ologies and the -isms and being open to new ideas, I think.  I was wowed  by the performance, any way.

My poems, part of a series of short poems I’m doing now with a particular unifying gimmick, went over well.  So well, I wrote a new one on the tram on the way  home.  I  love it when that happens.


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