Poetry Fridays: Power Dynamics

No power drills in sight last night, but I did get to dine on performance poetry and spaghetti at Hawthorn’s Caffe Sospeso. As mentioned in an earlier post, Laura Smith organises monthly poetry nights at Sospeso, and it’s a chillaxing way to cap off the working week. This month was MC-ed by Melissa Delaney and featured guest readings from Vera Di Campli San Vito and Melbourne Cafe Poet Andy Jackson.

Vera pioneered ‘pick a poem out of the magic vessel/hat/thing’, where the audience would pick out titles from a red hat and the performer would read the corresponding poem, and during the second half of the evening, Andy continued with her Dadaist arrangement.

Open mic was short and sweet. My favourites included Michael Reynolds’ tautologist poem, and a narrative detailing the intimacies of the dental chair from a poet whose name I failed to catch*. There was a particularly memorable performance from an older lady called Josephine: she read a beautiful piece inspired by All Souls Day and then sang a capella. A couple of pedestrians walked past during her stint and stared at her back, probably wondering what this woman in canary yellow was doing; they missed out on the opportunity to marvel at the way her lips wrapped around the foreign phonetics of her song ‘Mamma Blues’. 

I also read ‘Husband and Wife Before Dinner’, something I wrote a few years back. Being the first time I had performed anything from memory, I blanked halfway through the piece but still managed to score a Readings gift voucher, which will be put to good use. I also met some artistic types from TINA ’09. who READ MY BLOG and consequently deserve an exclamation party!!!!! Here’s a doodle they left on a napkin:

Napkin doodles left behind @ Power Dynamics (6/11/09)

Napkin doodles @ Power Dynamics (6/11/09)

I’m not sure when the next Caffe Sospeso night will be, but details will be posted by yours truly some time in late November/early December.

*UPDATE: Since writing this post, I’ve been informed that his name is Maurice Mcnamara. 🙂


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