NoPoWriMo: Days 6 & 7 – Two-Act Show (with added brackets)

First, apologies for the lack of an update yesterday – I was not able to get to a computer. However, it means there’s more to talk about today – swings and roundabouts eh?

Indeed, playful attributes abound in this post. Over the past couple of days I have been covering a fringe theatre event for radio (I mentioned the launch night in my last post). The launch night was as much an extravangant piece of theatre as the plays themselvesa, with a themed table for each play, a live band, some operatic singing and even “surprise” performace concerning a suicidal clown.

By happy coincidence, one of my prompts was “The Circus and the Clown”. It’s an interesting subject, ranging from artifical happiness to the perversion of children, weighing entertainment and sinister-ism (for want of a better term) in equal measure. It also marked the first time in quite a while that I attempted the sort comic-bitter-surrealism that seems to be prevalent in british poetry these days (or just the issue of the Ambit that I happen to be reading). It is a style that I have frequently admired but never quite been to been able to replicate, like trying to get to grips with a difficult form. However, I think I have made a reasonable effort, at least with the first half anyway. The things that can be done with cotton candy…

Once we got to the plays proper, it was the first one watched that inspired the next poem. Called ‘One-Act Play’ (brilliantly, confusingly or just pretentiously is a matter of opinion) it was critical deconstruction at its must literal and acerbic. Whether it can be enjoyed or not depends on what light you are willing to view it in (and how many of the numerous references you can work out).  For myself, I enjoyed it and saw it as the piece of self-entertaining intellectual comedy it was written as, and was able to enjoy it as such. It also inspired me to do just that for myself, and thus the resulting poem was an attempted deconstruction, and toying with, the word ‘Word’. Thoroughly pretentious, and slightly gangster-sounding when you roll it around on your tongue. I signed up to write these poems, but I can do them anyway I like, so self-indulgence suits me just fine.


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