On Friday, I turned up at the wrong venue for The Bedroom Philosopher, but I did manage to go to Laura Smith’s poetry gig at Caffe Sospeso. When I first heard that Sospeso was in Hawthorn, I got excited. Hawthorn, Camberwell, and Canterbury make up most of Melbourne’s private-school belt; most poets stay clear of such suburbs, preferring to ‘grunge it’ in the inner north and south. Unfortunately, I live in the east, and driving to Northcote or Fitzroy gets old after a couple of trips. Caffe Sospeso is the closest poetry gathering to home and I’m hoping to patronise it many more times.
I came late to the gig, so the only feature poet I got to see was Susan Fealy. I remember hearing Susan’s ‘Horse Lattitudes’ at the Verandah 23 launch; I hadn’t liked the poem during that reading, but Susan performed it well last Friday. I also enjoyed her poem about an elderly woman; I wish I could recall the name of it, but work and wine have turned me senile. Apologies to Susan!
With very little persuasion from Laura, I got up and performed ‘Red Den Beauty’ (published in Harvest) for the open mic. Compared with Read You Bastards, I was much more relaxed for this reading (it helps when there’s at least one friend in the audience). My poem won compliments from a couple of punters; I can see why performance appeals so much to some writers.
Caffe Sospeso runs their poetry night monthly, and the next gig’s happening early November. Details of the when and how will be posted up closer to the date.