Thursday, September 24, 2009

Please rectify immediately

Music cliches I dislike
Folk music that fades in with wafty synthesiser chords.

Fake and exaggerated accents by wistful pop-rock singers.

Sad piano music used whenever a tabloid reporter does a story about a kid dying of cancer.

Dramatic romantic symphonies that conclude by playing the same two chords 100 times.

Performance poetry cliches which, also, I dislike
Readings where every line ends with an upwards intonation.

Poets waving their hands around like conjurors when reading.

Deliberately dreamy voices.

Readings where the poet lingers slowly over every. single. word. In spite of the fact that the poem would definitely be better if read in a normal conversational tone.


TimT said...

I suspect if Dylan Thomas ever came along to the Dan O'Connell and gave a reading I'd grumble quietly over my beer at his overacting. Yes, I'm a grump.

Armagnac Daddy said...

If it's good enough though I can handle any level of cliche.

The Daffodils is still one of my favourite poems. I know. I don't care.

TimT said...

Ah yes. I have a rather vulgar version of that daffodils poem planned for Babble Slam next Wednesday night, Bar Open. Come along if you want to see your dreams horribly, horribly shattered!

Armagnac Daddy said...

Damn, if I could get out, i'd love to see it.

I actually had an 'exchange of notes' with a girl at uni where she sent me some of her favourite lines (the last stanza, basically), and I wrote rhyming couplets in between the lines. I recall a couple along the lines of

Oft when on my couch I lie
Trying to catch a glimpse of thigh
In vacant or in pensive mood
Thinking something rather rude
etc etc

I think I might have impressed her but, due to the vicissitudes of life and my own poor judgement (I was in the process of courting a far less erudite acquaintance of hers) this potential literary tryst remained a fleeting thought on the back of a momentary flaring of poetic licencse,

Tim said...

Tim, you need to read Nicholson Baker's new novel The Anthologist. It's all about poetry and I reckon you'd enjoy it.

Blandwagon said...

Readings where every line ends with an upwards intonation.

Bogan chicks do poetry?

TimT said...

Sounds hilarious 'gnac. If you entered with that, you'd probably make it into the finals. The theme for the slam this month is, er, not particularly family friendly though.

Thanks for the recommendation Tim, I googled for reviews and it sounds great.

It's a puzzling speech affectation Blanders, but I don't think it has anything to do with economic class. Some poets seem to have an idea that poetry when read aloud should be different to normal speech - exaggerated, or cultivated, or just more artificial. Fair enough - there are worse ways to write/read poems. Trouble is, when poets affect an artifical or cultivated tone when reading something out, they can unconsciously slip into some very old habits - eg, the upward intonation at the end of sentences. (I'm sure I have equally irritating speech habits.)

TimT said...

Slight correction: babble slam's on Wednesday next week, Bar Open, Brunswick St, Fitzroy. I'd look like a right patsy if I showed up this week.

Email: timhtrain - at -

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