Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Finding my Inner Performer at the Poetry Center

I'm spending the next two mornings in Poetry Out Loud training at the University of Arizona Poetry Center. Yea!

Today we spent time sharing teaching ideas, and Sarah Kortemeier led us through several simple and useful exercises to promote proper use of breath, physical relaxation and comfort, and a sense of community where we can all get over ourselves a little bit in order to serve the poem.

We spent time familiarizing ourselves with our poems (mine is "Ecology" by Jack Collom) and working on memorization.  We also had a bit of time to think about the lesson idea we will share tomorrow.

Tomorrow, after (I'm really hoping!!) some hard-core performance work and feedback, we will recite our poems on video, which will be shared online.  Yikes.  If I would have known that it might have motivated me to eat a little more carefully this summer.  I am not at the height of my physical confidence. However, if you'd like to witness our performance, it is at 12:30 at the Poetry Center.

I've got some studying to do tonight... I know about half the poem.  I wonder if the ellipticizer at the gym is conducive to poetry memorization.  I'll let you know.

Here's some further reading for me by Collom, in Exquisite Corpse:

Here's the poem... I am completely swallowed by the poem when I read it.  I love its rolling, lengthy sentences, his use of sound, and how the interconnectedness of the words themselves creates its own ecology of language, which underscores the idea of our unavoidable place in the natural ecologies of the planet.  I also like the spiritual overtones of the ending.  I'm sure I don't have this poem "all figured out," whatever that means.  Anyway...


By Jack Collom
Surrounded by bone, surrounded by cells,
by rings, by rings of hell, by hair, surrounded by
air-is-a-thing, surrounded by silhouette, by honey-wet bees, yet
by skeletons of trees, surrounded by actual, yes, for practical
purposes, people, surrounded by surreal
popcorn, surrounded by the reborn: Surrender in the center
to surroundings. O surrender forever, never
end her, let her blend around, surrender to the surroundings that
surround the tender endo-surrender, that
tumble through the tumbling to that blue that
curls around the crumbling, to that, the blue that
rumbles under the sun bounding the pearl that
we walk on, talk on; we can chalk that
up to experience, sensing the brown here that’s
blue now, a drop of water surrounding a cow that’s
black & white, the warbling Blackburnian twitter that’s
machining midnight orange in the light that’s
glittering in the light green visible wind. That’s
the ticket to the tunnel through the thicket that’s
a cricket’s funnel of music to correct & pick it out
from under the wing that whirls up over & out.

Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

1 comment:

  1. Addendum: I have received the DVD of our performances in the mail. I am too chicken-shit to watch it. Maybe after I relax with a margarita one night. :)


I appreciate your response: