Poetic Preface: John Englezos

Ahead of the launch of If the world were turned upside down, we chat to John Englezos.

Can you think of a moment that was probably a dead give away you’d become a poet?

Not really. I think storytelling has always been something I’ve enjoyed, in reading, speaking, listening and performing so it was only a matter of time.

How’d you discover spoken word?

I photographed Joel McKerrow’s book launch, then went to his writing workshop and was invited to Slamalamadingdong after to see some poets do their thing. That was 2013, fell quickly in love with the community and the rest is history.

If you only had one poetry book to take with you in the bunker when the end of the world comes, what would it be?

Just one?? Couldn’t I build a shelf in the bunker?

Through The Lover’s Window by Cameron Semmens.

As much care has gone into the pages themselves as the words written. It’s just a really beautifully prepared book.

When you write a brand new poem that you just have to read, which open mic do you first think to take it to?

Bar Oussou for the laid back and welcoming crowd.

Which legend of the Melbourne poetry scene do you wanna become when you grow up?

Rowan White, for his profound words, his intentional living and his love for everyone.

What’s one spoken word artist or performing poet you wish more people knew about. Do you have a favourite poem or video of them?

Brendan Bonsack. This man never fails to amaze me, the moments he describes distilled with his choice words.

“a rough guide”

What are you working on now?

I’m working on putting together a really special night for my book launch in March.

I’m working on a couple of other creative projects to hopefully release later this year.

And just generally, trying to take better care of myself and others.

John Englezos will launch his book, If The World Were Upside Down on March 3 at CityChurh.Melbourne.

Annie Solah