‘Seeds of War’ for a Nation of Slaves

 

Photograph: Performance Peter J. King

A moving and chilling reflection, last night at Pembroke College, Oxford University – ‘Seeds of War’ hosted by Peter J. King. An inspiring evening with performances by Adnan al-Sayegh, Jenny Lewis, Peter J. King, Jenyth Worsley, Matthias Dilling, with piano setting by composer Janet Davey.

Photograph: Performance – Jenny Lewis and Adnan al-Sayegh with piano composition – Janet Davey

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If we have been at war for thousands of years,

still,

barehanded,

catching bullets

now,

in these meat-eating days,

it is the pain which, finally,

makes us free, not words.

The silent joy of those who know

how very few

will make it through

a death sentence.

 

Photograph: Janet Davey and Peter J. King

 

Thank you for inviting me!

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In conversation with David Caddy

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.