Part 1: NYDC BLUES: How I Tried To Escape The Sick World Of Poetry

The rules were that you had to give your name and occupation before reciting your first poem. Naturally, I tried to evade this unnecessary formality which to me seemed akin to a rooftop sniper announcing his name and address before firing upon the crowd below. But before I could begin they started yelling, “What’s your name?”

I looked around the room. It was jammed full of people.

“José,” I answered with some difficulty.

“What do you do?” they shouted.

That was a even tougher question. I didn’t have a job, and for me to declare that I was a writer at this point would be presumptuous on my part. I thought about it for a second, then said, “I’m an alcoholic. What the hell are you?”

I hadn’t had a drink in weeks, but here I was—shitfaced and hostile, staring out into a crowd of poetry addicts at some place in Washington called The 15 Minutes Club. I’d fallen off the wagon in a horrible way, but it wasn’t because I was drinking. It was because I was reading poetry.
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A massive mix, focusing heavily on themes and subject matter so often so severely lacking in Canadian literature. Indeed, a condemnation on the current state and status of Canlit: it’s writers, publishers, and critics. A mix that reveals the full extent of what is creatively possible to the transgressive, urban post-realist writer. Truly, truly exceptional works.

Transgressive, discursive, tracks concerned with the struggles of hard edged urban living, alternative lifestyles, deviant culture – presented in their most raw and unpretentious form: music, fiction, poetry, monologues. We are the stories we tell. Yet another avenue for risky, dangerous writing: off the page. For far too long, and far too often literary recitals have been a literary crap shoot, depending on the preparedness and the oratory skills of the reader. At last, the technology has reached the level where individual authors, poets, and fiction writers can produce their own audio works to promote their printed counterparts. As editor, I welcome any and all such audio works for inclusion in the ongoing series of Urban Graffiti Mixes.

Andreas Maria Jacobs is an artist, writer and editor born in The Netherlands in 1956. Urbanity is a main motif for the transmedial art which he produces. AMJ defines “transmedial art as any art trying to escape the traditional boundaries normally applied to specific art fields such as painting, dance, performance and the like. For me the art genre I work in is best described by ‘painting’.”

AMJ confesses that inspiration for his work comes both from his own experiences and the world surrounding him:

“In the sense that the separation between ‘me’ and the ‘other’ is always a problematic one and I use my work as a means to investigate this problematic duality. Inspiring philosophers who influenced my works are among others Jacob Boehme (a Renaissance thinker and Shoemaker), Spinoza (Dutch Renaissance Freethinker), Vladimir Solovyov (Russian 19th century Mystic) and the whole bunch of modern philosophers ranging from Karl Marx and Oswald Spengler to Deleuze and Pierre Bourdieu.

I cannot make a distinction between my ‘head’ and my ‘life’, my ‘head’ is my ‘life’ and my ‘life’ is my ‘head’, so what’s in my head is also in my life and vice versa.”

My head is my life and my life is my head.’ ~ Interview with Suze Hupkes, Yeditepe University Instanbul / Hogeschool Utrecht

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Shag Carpet Action
by Matthew Firth
Publisher: Anvil Press
Price: $18.00 paper
ISBN: 978-1-89753-584-4

One of the major difficulties of writing transgressive, post-realist urban fiction in Canada is how that writing, by and large, is received by reviewers. Largely lacking the critical wherewithal to appropriately interpret transgressive, post-realist urban fiction, reviewers simply regurgitate publisher press releases — often verbatim — then proceed to act as spoilers by giving up what the book is about, story by story, along with a few pithy interpretations.

Matthew Firth, born and raised in Hamilton, Ontario, and now living in Ottawa where he works by day for a national trade union has experienced these haphazard literary reviews ever since the publication of his first three collections of transgressive, post-realist short stories: Fresh Meat (Rush Hour Revisions, 1997), Can You Take Me There, Now? (Alley Cat Editions, 2001), and Suburban Pornography and Other Stories (Anvil Press, 2006).
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Faultlines-XVI copyright by Devin McCawley

Having made one of their rare collective decisions, the travelers opted to stop for a brief respite at a rest stop along the autobahn. They parked between two large trucks, adjacent to a weathered cement picnic table. From the back of the Volvo station wagon, Francine produced a wicker basket and placed it squarely in the middle of the cement table, on which could be seen various stains and residues from previous roadside picnickers. From the basket Francine took out a block of Dutch cheese, a half-loaf of dark German bread, and a dusty, cobwebbed, vintage bottle of Coca Cola. The others looked on in various states of road-weary ambiguity and ambivalence.

From the autobahn came the sudden sound of screeching rubber, metal impacting against metal, and breaking glass. In the spirit of the prevailing ambiguity and ambivalence, Ralf stood up and half-heartedly began to slice the cheese. Nearby in the grass lay the usual empty beer cans, crumpled cigarette packs, and used condoms, all waiting for someone to include them in some redundantly mundane and boring poem.
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Transgressive, discursive, tracks concerned with the struggles of hard edged urban living, alternative lifestyles, deviant culture – presented in their most raw and unpretentious form: music, fiction, poetry, monologues. We are the stories we tell. Yet another avenue for risky, dangerous writing: off the page. For far too long, and far too often literary recitals have been a literary crap shoot, depending on the preparedness and the oratory skills of the reader. At last, the technology has reached the level where individual authors, poets, and fiction writers can produce their own audio works to promote their printed counterparts. As editor, I welcome any and all such audio works for inclusion in the ongoing series of Urban Graffiti Mixes.

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The editor generously thanks bart plantenga for his contribution of several rare, hard to find tracks in this mix.

Amsterdam performance artist, Diva AnAmontAnA, performs as part of the Mighty Aphrodite Variety Show at The Comedy Theater Nes as vaudeville burlesque comes to Amsterdam. What makes Diva AnAmontAnA’s performance so intriguing is how she combines vaudeville burlesque with traditional elements of Japanese Noh theatre. The result is purely delicious!

Eddie Woods writes poetry the way he lives life, intensely. Experience informs his art, and vice versa. Passion, raw edges, nothing left out. Sex, love, politics…coupled with an unrelenting drive towards awareness, the need to understand what universal reality is all about. The Irish poet Ewart Milne said of the poem “Mary,” following its publication in Peter Mortimer‘s Iron magazine [Issue 43, Tyne & Wear, England]: “It’s very powerful, strong and fearless, and it troubles the hell out of me!…It reminds me somehow of the brothel scene in Ulysses.” “My words are like bullets…Plus I have enough ammunition to wipe out as much opposition as will ever come up against me. And every bullet will hit the mark, because I am a good shot.” From the telephone prose-poem “Bloody Mary.” If, indeed, Eddie Woods’ words are bullets, then his poem “Mary” enters the listener’s ears like a wordbomb, exploding inside the mind, and reverberates down the spine like electroshocks from the brain’s pleasure centre. Introduced by the Amsterdam performance artist AnAmontAnA at Salon dAdA on May 1st, 2011 (in the above video), Eddie Woods describes AnA’s Salon “as pure Dada. Usually laced with clear sexual overtones and occasional nudity. You’ll find acts calling themselves The Sugar Sluts, et cetera.”
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Just about anyone familiar with underground, avant-garde music over the last 30 years is bound to be familiar with the name ANT-BEE, aka Billy James, a North Carolina native and Berklee College of Music graduate who first came to prominence in the late 1980s when signed to the notorious Los Angeles record label, Voxx/Bomp.

Rumoured about for quite some time among long-time fans, ANT-BEE’s Electronic Church Muzik is James’ mini-opus, his homage to the late sixties, early seventies psychedelic freak scene.
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Transgressive, discursive, tracks concerned with the struggles of hard edged urban living, alternative lifestyles, deviant culture – presented in their most raw and unpretentious form: music, fiction, poetry, monologues. We are the stories we tell. Yet another avenue for risky, dangerous writing: off the page. For far too long, and far too often literary recitals have been a literary crap shoot, depending on the preparedness and the oratory skills of the reader. At last, the technology has reached the level where individual authors, poets, and fiction writers can produce their own audio works to promote their printed counterparts. As editor, I welcome any and all such audio works for inclusion in the ongoing series of Urban Graffiti Mixes.

Vodpod videos no longer available.