Be Spoken Word report & news roundup 23/6

Posted: June 23, 2012 by Peter J in news, poetry
Tags: , , ,

The Red River Poets (Abi Wyatt, Craig Taylor-Broad and Duncan Yeates – more poetry from them soon on CL blog) are @ Heartlands, Pool, tomorrow, Sunday 24th, 12 noon – 1:30 in the afternoon, delivering varied poetry in varied style. Should be atmospheric, but they deserve a setting slightly less atmospheric, in a meteorological sense, than at their brave stand last time :-). Last time they clearly put in a lot of effort and came up with some really nice fun ideas to go along with the high quality poetry. Please support them if you can.


The 3rd Be Spoken Word in Jak Stringer’s series at the Farmers Arms, Causewayhead, Penzance was on Wednesday 20th. She previously organised the award winning Dirty Sunday music events for a string of local hardcore bands: Mutant Lion, Monolithian, Dead Poets, As We Sink, Bangers, Crocus, Kingdom and more. Not so much moshing monsters this time. See here some videos from previous Be Spoken Word events (these videos were filmed & edited by Chris Trevena and Jake Matthews – let us know if you object :-)) :

Jak Stringer
Abi Wyatt
The Surgeons
The Surgeons again, this time with with Ray Mears Is Lost (see below)
Colin Stringer

This particular Be Spoken Word was not, I think, filmed (could be wrong on that :-)). Here follows a partial rundown on proceedings.

Jak Stringer herself opened proceedings with a poem (I think it was a poem ;-)) which produced a kind of split-screen effect by blank verse, with 1870 High Chaparral on the box on one side | while living in a 1970 pub, on the other side. A strange, fugue-y sort of piece, cosy and unsettling at the same time.

Duncan Yeates followed with the puzzling but reliably challenging Small Work of Questionable Worth and John Rylands Library, questioning partitions physical and mental between the now and the then. With Abi Wyatt, Duncan is due to read at Penzance Litfest – more news on RRP blog and Cornish Lit soon.

On the eve of the longest day (although the rain had been henting down all evening), Abi Wyatt, the other Red River collective Poet performing, debuted the auspicious Solstice, redolent of nature and knowledge, myth and mankind, before the gentler but still foreboding satire of Two Pillars.

Mike & Pete Kliskey of (oft-featured at Farmers Arms) 3-piece The Surgeons (minus bassist Jimmy Jewell) amid their Back Home local tour – at Bristol last weekend, week before that Morecambe, week before that Manchester . . . and at Litfest in a month’s time . . . would otherwise have done an acoustic set but delivered the lyrics pure spoken word style . . . a bold move well-received by the crowd. Their opening piece was Ray Mears is Lost, (see video above) written during the 2008 crisis when the Masters of The Universe were beginning to look more like the Chuckle Brothers, followed by the energetically expressed You’re a Tuss, prompting an aside on the etymology and likely Penwith origins of tuss.

If a poet comes offstage not needing a shower, they’ve not done their job properly – Pete Kliskey

Martin Wood of Mousehole braved pre-stage nerves to confidently set out a visual St Clement’s Isle, inspired by easterly storms clashing by night in Mounts Bay.

Duncan Yeates then returned to the mic with Ancestry, which touches down with wry and clear humour at Perranzabuloe, followed by the punchy Styles Make Fights from Lallocropia 2.

Colin Stringer’s Reigned Off – written that very afternoon after being rained off from a tennis match – was next, combining a forthright and fun response to jubilee excess with a neat aabccb x3 rhyme which flew off the page really well. I misheard Colin’s name and only eventually 2+2’d to realise that he was Mr Stringer, hence his poetic prowess then became fractionally less astounding :-).

Before, being a committed part-timer, I sloped off to catch my train, Jak S invited discussion during the break of prawns on prozac, and what could be next. What was next in the evening I, alas, missed. Such a discursion was typical of the evening’s freewheeling, off-the-wall air – limerick competitions and word games for the audience, some barmy football-themed quotes (but not too many) made it a fun, stimulating and yet relaxing literary evening that I’d recommend. 🙂

Like I say, I missed the second part of Be Spoken Word #3 – if anyone please could fill in more details, or has video or audio to post here, comment or email me and I’ll get this article up-to-date.


Don’t have much more news this weekend, bit clip again in a way, just that this week there was a seminar on Books & Print at Tremough featuring React – there’s a deadline for this project in October 2012, for more details click here. Hopefully we’ll be covering possibilities of this in future and in more detail on Cornish Lit blog 🙂 Cheers yow, have a goooood weekend.

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