Saturday, 27 June 2009

Note to self: BREATHE!


There are situations which require such notes: Agreeing to read one's poems in public is one of them. I'd put my name down simply because the opportunity came my way - I wouldn't have dared search it out. It felt like a mad and sweaty thing to start with but when the day arrived it just felt right. A beginners' event at the local library, with a small and eager audience - such a gentle start.
There's something strange, for a visual artist, about being present with one's work and not just letting it stand in/speak for you. But as with a piece of art a poem only comes full circle when it's out in the world.
As I read it took a little while to find and trust my voice, to let myself be guided by the poems' sounds and rhythms, away from fears about failing, falling short (and being heckled - are there poetic hecklers?), but once I got there I didn't want to stop.
The days after: Fatigue loomed like an ugly ogre and with grey felt hands smothered everything. Everything. It seemed almost impossible that this was me too, this exhausted uncoordinated bundle of flesh and bones and frazzled brains. Slowly emerging again, as you can see.
I had a little toe out in the world!!!

Image: Bittersweets (wrapped poems)

7 comments:

Lesley said...

I have a friend who is a film maker. She can sit in the darkness of the venue when her films are screened and choose not to be in public view if she wishes! Didn't Yoko Ono recite works inside a black bag once? Why are we as visual artists often so spooked by face to face encounters? Seems to me you might actually enjoy these performances at some point. Take heart!

Roxana said...

i am so happy for you! that you did it and enjoyed it: a 'gentle start' is all that one could wish for, at least this is what i imagine. i also love your bittersweets wrapped poems.

redredday said...

sweet :]. Marjojo. yes! for courage and a bigger YES! for enjoying it! i'm glad that you let out your moult poems to the world too...i love them.

Kruse said...

When we took your MOULT poems to the Book Fair people loved them and loved unwrapping and reading them, or buying and saving to give as a gift - giving your words as a way of showing love. And there can be no more wonderful reward for an artist than that.
I'm sorry that you struggle physically, but your talent is huge and appreciated and loved. It may not feel it, on the days when you struggle so, but yours IS a life well lived because you give to the world. Which we are all grateful for.

Cathy Cullis said...

I am really pleased to read that you have had this opportunity.... I remember being so very afraid of reading aloud and don't find it easy at all, it certainly is not easy, even if encouraged to 'trust the words'... I am enjoying your poetry x

Uschi said...

Marjojo, hello!!
And hurray to your toe in the world!
Your poems are still literally full of secrets for me, because reading poems in a foreign language is a skill....

I have a friend who is a professional singer.....opera, classic...this music. Each time, she's got a concert she's down for about two weeks before the concert, fearing, her voice could leave her or she could get a cold.....and after the concert she needs a good time to recover...but her toes also want to walk out into the world again and again...
Her body is her instrument....
And she struggles...too.

It's so easy for us...others...who so *snip* manage to be unconscious in perceiving our physical body.

I relate very much to Kruses answer!!

Cally said...

Hi M, Cally here. I just visited my blog, first time since around April I think. But I saw another comment from you and gather you never got my April email. How sad, it was the first and only blogger email I did this year. If I can work out whose machine I used I may still have a copy and can try sending it again. Perhaps I was using an out of date email address for you? I'll double check with your blog profile page and try to do in next few weeks. Cally xxx