Sunday, July 3 @ 4:00pm
The Owl and Cat Theatre
34 Swan St Melbourne
Has an Open Mic?
The Owl & Cat Readings are hosted by the colourfully dressed Santo Cazzati and the colourfully spoken Anthony O’Sullivan on the first Sunday of the month at the Owl & Cat Theatre in Richmond, featuring an open mic and two featured poets, the latest poetry gig to grace the east side of the city is a blend of both hosts and their former gigs, House of Bricks and The Spinning Room, featuring some of the best poets in this fine city.
Sam Ferrante is a poet, editor, facilitator, and writer born on Long Island, college-fed in Western New York and Paris, and then poetically raised in Buffalo, NY, Ireland, and Australia. A former member of the Pure Ink Poetry team in Buffalo and a regular competitor in Dublin’s Slam Sunday, Sam is now a Co-Creative Producer at Melbourne-based Slamalamadingdong. She is also Editor-in-Chief for online magazine, CrowdInk, and a regular attendee of as many poetry events as she can cram into a week. Her debut book of poetry, Pick Me Up got rave reviews from her Mom.
Andy Jackson’s poetry collection, ‘Among the Regulars’ was shortlisted for the 2011 Kenneth Slessor Prize. A new short collection, ‘the thin bridge’ won the Whitmore Press Manuscript Prize and was published in 2014. His latest book is ‘Immune Systems’ (Transit Lounge, 2015). He has performed across Australia, in India, the USA and Ireland, and he writes about the poetry of unusual bodies at amongtheregulars.wordpress.com
A night for the poetic sweepings of the inner north to degenerate into vitriol and confusion. And rise into revelation, liberating confession and poetic wisps of the sublime. A feast of clashing waters. All in a cozy artsy pup. No features, no list, no limits. Just put your hand up and come on up. Is your piece not really ready? It is for this gig. None of us know what will happen on the night, yet 100% of people performing spoken word here for the first time in their lives have survived so far, and often return for more.
In its 5th year, the Arts Queensland XYZ Prize for Innovation in Spoken Word is Australia’s only national arts award that recognises the growing field of spoken word and is named after the former 2010 Arts Queensland Poet in Residence, Emily XYZ, who left a deep impression on many of today’s Queensland spoken word artists. It is open to applicants Australia-wide.
This year, the winner of The 2019 XYZ Prize is Fable Goldsmith and the highest placed QLD entry is Rae White.
Home – Fable Goldsmith
I kiss her first.I wait I hold my breath, in this moment reciprocation means everythingI do not know if I can take another breath without it.I draw breath as she kisses me back I take her in, Holding on to each breathAs If I have only ever breathedunderwater,
How light she feels,How she fills the empty spaceinside my chest,How she navigates her way into my veins,turns question to meaning, meaning to answer.I surrender.my body to hersnaked and honest, tremblingThis is the first time I am not afraid. The first time another body has become a safe space.
We find each other in the dark,as our hands reachwe find ourselves in each othernavigating new worlds under bed sheets.
She tells memy body is a poemshe will never get tired of readinga trailshe will never tire of taking She tells me homeis where we both stand.
Years pass, Every time I touch her feels like the first time, I still catch my breath from her kissesHer skin is always new
Years pass, I kiss her firstShe stallsHolds her breath,hands trembling as if holding a trigger she just can’t bring herself to pull
BangHer honesty becomes a rain of bulletsand I the only target
She tells me her heart is needy,never full
she tells meher hands are travellers,that have wandered from my touch.
She tells me her mouth is hungr
Rania, I remember seeing you and your fellow artists in the very first performance of Bukjeh at the Immigration Museum. I understand that the show has been developed since and performed at various venues and festivals. A ‘bukjeh’ is a bag or sack that a refugee carries throughout their journey, containing all of their belongings that can be carried. What was in your bukjeh?
My memories mostly. I was an 11-year-old at the time that I arrived in Australia. I couldn’t bring my cabbage patch doll, but I would have loved to. I brought as many of the objects and treasured possessions that inhabited my 11-year-old world as I could.
What was it like for you at that age, arriving in a new place?
It was a shock! I was astonished at how quiet it was here. Back then, all the stores closed at 5pm and on weekends. In Egypt, everything was open until midnight, so you would hear cars beeping late into the night and constant human activity. Most people lived in flats and you could hear the sounds and conversations of your neighbours. If you opened the window, you could hear a couple’s argument. I would open the window the next day to hear the sequel to the argument from the day before.
Like watching a soap opera or a radio play?
I used to call it Streets FM – you learn a lot!
What did you see and hear and learn?
I often heard women manipulating their men, actually! Egyptian women are very smart about getting what they want. I used to say that I was never going to get married.
What were your first impression of the new language and the landscape you found yourself in?
It was greener. The shapes of the leaves were different. Here the leaves were long, not wide. In Egypt we had a lot of palm trees, mulberry and fruit trees. It really was desert and the trees were largely not native. Many of the tree trunks in Australia were smooth and grey, not brown with thick bark. I had never see