Tuesday, March 26, 2013


I don't know why I spelled the title differently. Maybe some unconscious need to question whether I really am back or whether I'm still stuck in my head. Maybe I'm trying to be really really really clever. Maybe I wish I was Baraka from Mortal Kombat and I'm pretty sure his nickname would be Bak. If I was Baraka I would want people to call me Bak like, "Hey, my friends call me Bak..."

That is if Bara- sorry... Bak has friends anyway...

I've been fucking depressed lately. The previous posts have eluded to it without me wanting to admit it to myself I think.

"Fuck this shit" was the main theme.

I guess it's important to remember that all this juggling has been for something, and I finally remembered that, at the Bellingen Poetry Slam last Saturday night in the Northern(ish) NSW hinterland.

Sometimes you need a win. In fact, being so unsure as to my purpose in all this mess of performing to (on average) 20 people and getting paid maybe a hundred bucks a month for poetry had left me a bit in-my-own-head.
So I finally realised why I do this shit.
Not for the win.
For the audience you fools.
The simple joy of performing to a great audience.

Do you know how beautiful it is to rock a crowd of 200+ people in a small town?
It's bliss.
To not have to deal with intense questions as to your purpose in this community? Why your ideals are wrong? How you could dare enter a slam, don't you have any ethics?
Gee it was nice to just perform for the joy of it.

Something I shouldn't forget.

And to be honest, something YOU shouldn't forget either.
Love your community of artists for what they bring.
The way we all play with creativity.
There is a lot to gain from everyone.

And hey, some people drive me nuts, of course they do I'm only human, but when I think about it, it's always been because of their conduct outside of the poems. Basically people being arse-holes are just... y'know, arse-holes...
Yet the poetry matters most.
I can't say I'm gonna support Ultimate Douchebag McDoodleDick.
But good on 'im for persevering.

There are a few great events coming up for Brisbane's Anywhere Theatre Festival in the Poetry section.

Like MaXimal!

Check em out. Support performers giving it their all in spaces not usually associated with performing.
Give em a great audience.

I've been lucky enough to be invited to Fringe India at the end of the year, so I will be getting my jets on and going back to the land of the sacred hindu cow to perform.

And mid-year I will be taking a small crew of Brisbane poets with me to Sydney, Canberra, Armidale, and possibly even Melbourne to showcase what Brisbane poets can do. Hopefully we'll get a great audience.

It's all just for the love of performing.
Honestly you cynical fucks.
Yeah we push shit up hill most of the time because poets are FUCKING CRAZY people with a lot of issues to sort out. Mental health central!!!! So you may not get a run some places, because in some places the poetry is less important than the egos and self-conscious personalities within.

But hey, we'll keep trying, and maybe we can remind others what it's all about:

The joy of being on stage with a great audience. That's all.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

reverse culture shock

Starting to feel normal again after my trip and totally looking forward to JamJar Poetry Slam this Sunday.
I've managed to lock in someone who I haven't seen in a while Kaitlyn Plyley, who I met at the Aus National Poetry Slam finals a few years back and have seen at a QLD final as well but otherwise has been very quiet. So quiet that when she told me she was at last month's Jam Jar Poetry Slam hosted by Adam Hadley, I was stoked to know she was not only performing but living in Brisbane.

I've had a talk to some friends who made me realised there is such a thing as a "reverse culture shock" so to speak. Strange huh? But yesterday and today I have been feeling good. Still missing the monkeys. But otherwise loving the sound of kookaburras and magpies in the morning.
I am slowly but surely sifting through the poems from my trip and editing them.
I'm looking forward to heading down to Bellingen next weekend the 22 March for a few performances on the Friday as well as having another go at the slam title.
Although I'm quite cynical about slam, from running them for the nearly 2 years, as well as numerous comps, I still miss competing. So it's nice to head down to Bello every year and just have a bit of fun away from the city hype that comes from the ego fest here.

Here's another poem from my trip.

Rooftop yoga, eagles
gotta eat,
swoop down,
swoop into the pose and
breathe out.
Your soul is from the
sun, body’s
gotta eat,
swoop up,
chin to knees and
swoop through god.
Baby meditation, eyes
gotta eat,
blind and off balance,
swoop through,
Swoop stars into your heart.
Now watch, can you do
gotta eat.
Swoop through
the wallet,
swoop up and
breathe out.


Sunday, March 10, 2013

Back to normal (?)

ultimate cool picture
I've been in India for the past month with a little stop over in Kuala Lumpur either side. There's been a bit of a reframing of the mind in light of massive adventures. I've been looking forward to coming back though, mainly because I'm excited about the next couple of months' worth of performances.
One of the most interesting developments in India, as far as my writing goes, was my incessant diary keeping in poetry form. I managed to write every day about everything possible. It's not something I usually do but was a great incentive to just keep writing. There's something that happens to your writing when you're not doing it for any reason other than yourself. The difference between writing for performance and just writing is huge. To not have that stress or pressure of needing it to be something to showcase is liberating and I think paved the way for some really nice, different work.

Ironically I am now planning on showcasing this collection within the next few weeks, I'll keep you posted on where this might be.

It's exciting to know that, while I've been away, the Queensland Poetry Festival committee has been deliberating over the applications for this year's festival. I can safely say it's looking to be a hugely diverse line-up for the weekend. QPF has really shown itself to be one of the most engaging and diverse festivals in Australia, showcasing poets from a variety of styles and really shining a light on the amazing poets in QLD, nationally and internationally.

I've also had the pleasure of getting two shows into the Anywhere Theatre Festival happening in mid May. MaXimal will be a solo venture and Mixtape is a collaboration between myself and my partner Angela. Both shows will be different and exciting. Crazy. Better get working huh?

For now, expect a funtimes JamJar Poetry Slam on March 17.

Here's a poem from my trip. Keep writing.


We bob up and down amidst
the crowd as if
buoys at sea.
Moving with the current of
silhouettes and limbs.
We find the stall with
the most people.
Bob up and down again,
waiting for food like
hungry seals.
I think I've got food poisoning.
The chicken was suspiciously
We analyse every movement
of our stomach.
Feel it
bob up and down.
A little message in a bottle.