It has been a privilege to be part of it. Tears in the Fence Poetry Festival gathered this year a multitude of diverse and poignant poetic voices and discourses. With a challenging theme – The Politics of Engagement. This created an opportunity for new paths of poetic inquiry as well as an opportunity to explore the concept of art / poetry as a dynamic and potent channel engaged within, not removed from, the current socio-political issues.
This is a snapshot from a conversation I had with the festival organiser, David Caddy. A conversation which looked, briefly, at the tridimensional concept of a poet as a:
- ‘curse’ (placed in an uncomfortable position, with the duty to observe the reality and to reflect its imperfections),
- ‘marathon runner’ in search for a ‘language – house’; the complex relationship, and, to some extent, conflict, between a language and the poetic identity revealed by bilingualism,
- ‘subversive weapon’ (the inevitable duty and responsibility of an artist to challenge complacency, to question authority and to, finally, place himself/herself at the heart of what one defines the transformative power of change).
With many thanks to David Caddy and ‘Tears on the Fence’ group and magazine.
And so many other thanks to so many discovered friends: Valerie Bridge, Morag Kiziewicz, Gerald Killingworth, Peter J. King, Charlie Wilkinson, Steve Spence, Melisande Fitzsimons, Clive Gresswell, Aidan Semmens, Norman Jope, Mike Duggan, John Philips, Jo Waterworth, Camilla Nelson, Ric Hool, Sarah Alice, Nancy Gaffield, Anna Powney, Mandy Pannett and so many others.
Look forward to a bright future.
Another midnight storm washes away the cold poetry
born at the top floor.
I balance my whole weight
on long words;
frozen stones on my tongue.
I count the mistakes god has done with me,
just to pass the time.
The violent rain hid a blind dog
inside my very bone.
Here, upstairs, both of us in the same body,
awake and hungry,
©Maria Stadnicka, MMXVII
published in ‘Stride’ magazine, available here
I live in a round house across the road
and every day I wave the invisible white flag
just to distract you from writing so many letters.
Other times, all I do is stare at your reflected image,
bent over the desk,
thinking whether your back is broken,
having to bear so many words.
You do not lift your eyes up,
never see anything but yourself.
The only time you stand up and walk to the door
is to refill the glass with sand.
You do not receive news from the outside world
you do not know we live in times of peace now.
©Maria Stadnicka 2017
For more information about Andrew Keenan’s work, check https://www.andrewkeenanphotography.com/
It is a great privilege to be a guest at ‘Tears in the Fence’ poetry festival this year. 15th-17th September 2017.
I will be reading from my latest collection Imperfect and discuss the relationship between journalism and censorship as well as the role of the poetic discourse within the current socio-political climate.
This year’s Festival weekend will be at The White Horse and Village Hall, Stourpaine and The Festival’s theme is the politics of engagement.
Further details and programme to follow.
Thank you David Caddy and ‘Tears in the Fence’ Festival and I am looking forward to it.
Pentru cititorii in limba romana, saptamana aceasta a sosit cu o surpriza minunata. O pagina de poezie publicata in LitArt publicatie lunara de cultura, tiparita la Tg. Mures, sub egida onorifica a filialei locale a Uniunii Scriitorilor.
Multumiri redactorului-sef Adrian Armand Giurgea si echipei redactionale pentru promovarea valorilor culturale romanesti.
Pentru mine are o semnificatie speciala. 14 ani de cand am publicat ultima oara in Romania. 14 ani lungi, foarte lungi, de absenta si de dor. Editia tiparita este distribuita in Romania si poate fi accesata electronic in format pdf aici:
For Romanian readers, this week arrives with a beautiful surprise. Nine poems published in LitArt, Tg. Mures, Romania, under the Romanian Writers Association patronage. Gracious thanks to the editor-in-chief Adrian Armand Giurgea as well as the whole editorial team for the great work you are doing in promoting the cultural values of our generation, in Romania and abroad.
This has a particular significance for me, as it marks 14 years since the publication of my last poem written in Romanian. 14 long years.
The magazine is available in print and online, downloadable here:
Photograph: @Georgiana Calinescu-Barber