26 Feb 2013, 8:49am
Memes or Quizzes Photos Poets

Our Poetry World

Poetry and lenses are other ways to see the familiar.

my collection of lenses

My office (now in 2 colors of green) is reassembled in a new furniture arrangement. I have a few display shelves. Up on the shelf, a magnifying glass, a souvenir from a town in Italy. A glass ball from Ottawa. Some Quartz that has travelled with us thru 4 or 5 homes. A vase that was a gift from neighbours a few houses back. A stereoscope gift from friends. A Buddha and his ball. There’s a postcard made by Michele Provost, and a framed garment label because it’s a nice font and I find the salvaging of it absurd and appropriate both. There’s poetry in everything.

A few lenses make the world into insect-vision.  (Warning, do this often and you can dream with the perspective of a fly on the wall.) One is from NYC, one from a writers festival event and for the last one I’ve forgotten its origin. I’ve manipulated text with them, like this:


or this:

john donne under the lens
John Donne, examined.

For Our World Tuesday a peek at some poetry events. I like ones that talk about poetry, get into details and do Q&A.

Barry McKinnon

Barry McKinnon gave a poetics talk at the previous VERSeFest. I love how it is the picks from nearly a dozen reading series around town under one roof in one week.

I like the festival for also presenting new-to-me poets. I go to everything that I can, whether I’ve heard of the person or not. It amazes me how many hundreds or thousands of poets there are out there with lifetime achievement, mentoring, whole lives that guided others that aren’t on my radar at all.

This time, along with local poets, there are poetic talks  and readings from poets from coast to coast of Canada, from the Netherlands, Australia and Ireland.

Phil Hall
Phil Hall, Pura López-Colomé and Philip Levine at last year’s summit panel at VERSeFest had some lively interaction that was fun to hear.

It gives a different perspective than hearing a poem alone. You can see the person and the intentions differently when you have a person’s voice and body language, interactions. It’s interesting. Some are witty, some earnest, some smooth, some awkward. It is a different speech act to roll over words for years than speaking off the cuff.

I’m offering custom-written acrostic poems as part of the VERSeFest perk possibility for the fundraiser yesterday. There’s 5 days remaining on the fundraising. (The festival starts on March 12th.)

Quotable Noteable: “You can’t build a reputation on what you’re going to do.” ~ Henry Ford

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