Sunday, 27 November 2011

by the thread of my blood

photo taken by Simon Max Bannister at the Mary Fitzgerald Square, Newtown, Johannesburg

by the thread of my blood
I hang for my life

some say blood is a saviour
some say it is a river
some say it is a curse
some say it is too real
some say it is passion
some say it is a gift
some say it is the invitation to the dance
some say it is collective remembrance
some say it is the tide of our bodies
it smells like birth
it tastes like broken stone
it incites killing
it invites healing
it brings together like compassion
it commands life
it inspires love
and it demands nothing but flow,
this sacred river of life

Saturday, 26 November 2011

mag ek...

die gedig van e.e. cummings may i feel said he het in my kop gespring toe my ouers 'n woordwisseling gehad het. hier is my vrye verwerking van die toneel (EN die cummings gedig):

kan jy 'n klim-raam vir
my grenadilla-plant maak sê sy
verseker sê hy
is jy seker? sê sy

o ja sê hy
jy is 'n skat sê sy
sê net hoe groot sê hy
so breed en so hoog sê sy

nou maar toe sê hy
dit lyk nie onmoontlik nie
haai dit maak my hart so bly sê sy
niemand anders kan dit doen soos jy

nee! wat maak jy nou? sê sy
ek pas die kalkulasies so bietjie aan sê hy
maar dis nie hoe ek dit wou he sê sy
hou jou bek sê hy

my grenadilla gaan skeef groei sê sy
moenie so stres sê hy
ek gaan iemand anders se hulp kry sê sy
jy waag dit nie sê hy

nou dan doen wat ek sê sê sy
gaan vlieg in jou moer sê hy
ek gaan jou nooit weer vra sê sy
nou maar toe, ek loop nou maar sê hy

ag nee, kom terug sê sy
maar dan los my uit sê hy
onthou so hoog en so breed sê sy
ek gaan die grenadilla se nek omdraai sê hy

try dit net, en ek draai JOU nek om sê sy

die oorspronklike gedig van e.e. cummings:

may i feel said he

may i feel said he
(i'll squeal said she
just once said he)
it's fun said she

(may i touch said he
how much said she
a lot said he)
why not said she

(let's go said he
not too far said she
what's too far said he
where you are said she)

may i stay said he
(which way said she
like this said he
if you kiss said she

may i move said he
is it love said she)
if you're willing said he
(but you're killing said she

but it's life said he
but your wife said she
now said he)
ow said she

(tiptop said he
don't stop said she
oh no said he)
go slow said she

(cccome? said he
ummm said she)
you're divine! said he
(you are Mine said she)


Thursday, 24 November 2011

FIRE

(photo editing by Simon Max Bannister)

This is the second part of the Sculpture/Performance poetry piece I conceived and performed earlier this year in Johannesburg with sculptor Coenie Strydom, Life Vitrified / Klei Verewig. I later performed an adapted version of the work at the AfrikaBurn festival in the Tankwa Karoo.

It was performed and originally written in Afrikaans - a much more fiery language than English! Here follows the English translation. The Afrikaans follows thereafter.

II FIRE     

my clay body is devoured by a tornado of flame
i am called to this new burning clan
at the point where i want to melt and dissolve
a mighty flame of vitrification shoots through my veins
and i know, i can withstand the searing pain
with this body that have stood by me through
the flaming years

ah, the excitement that i will soon be stepping outside fire
so that i can pour meaning into the world
with this fired skin

the fire will burn and scorch me, torment and purge me
it will even attempt to extinguish me
yes, the flames will hit me, chew me and try to swallow me alive
it will pull the last tears from my eyes

stand strong!
let the flames come, let it bend and buckle me
let it make me scream
soon it will let my soul glow from within
and let my skin glow from without
the heat waves will keep on growing,
but i will resist, i will fight
have faith in my strength, in my hardiness
like a piece of leather the flame will twist and turn me
so that the flaming power can be lead through
and completely free my cellular potential

have you ever seen, have you ever felt  -
flame can not hold
flame can not cling
it glides flightily, mercurially over skin
even carries the face of a creature from hell
yes, he can burn, but he can not imprison
he can never estrange me from this wonder-earth
burn i will in its flaming path
but free i will stand, free!

so i have learnt to lap up fire with my own tongue
to chew and swallow it so as to ignite my own fire from within
look, the flutter flickering of flame looks just like
the flutter of tongue
sounds just like the flicker of tongue
at home is tongue in flame
it plays along in this burning game

the flame lashes around my limbs
wants to break my skeleton from its seams
i become like wood that fire greedily gorges
so that you there in the far dark corners will know:
this is one smoking and glistening struggle
that will soon spit my body out into pure sculpture

II VUUR

my klei-lyf word verswelg deur ‘n tornado van vlam
word ek geroep tot hierdie nuwe brandende stam
op die punt waar ek wil smelt en verteer
skiet ‘n magtige vlam van gehardheid deur my  are
en weet ek, ek kan die skroeiende pyn ontbeer
met hierdie lyf wat getrou saam met my staan deur
die vlammende jare

ah, die opwinding dat ek binnekort buite vuur gaan trap
en betekenis met hierdie aangevuurde kliplaag in my
wêreld gaan tap

die vuur sal my brand, sal my skroei, folter en naai
dit sal selfs poog om my nek om te draai
ja, die vlamme sal my kap, kou en
lewend insluk
die laaste trane uit my oë pluk

hou uit! staan vas!
kom wat wou, laat hy my loei
laat hy my skroei
binnekort sal hy my gees van binne
en my vel van buite rooiwarm laat gloei
die hittegolwe sal bly groei,
maar ek sal aanhou baklei en stoei
hê geloof in my standvastigheid, in my dikvelligheid
soos ‘n stuk leer sal vlam my brei
om die vlamme-krag deur te lei
en so my sellulêre potensiaal toet en taal te bevry

het jy al gesien, het jy al gevoel –
vlam kan nie vashou
vlam kan nie vasklou
hy glip, gly vlugtig, kwiksilwerig oor vel
dra selfs die aangesig van ‘n kreatuur uit hel
ja, hy kan brand, maar hy kan nie gevangene neem
sal my nooit van van hierdie wonder-aarde kan vervreem
brand sal ek in sy vlammende baan
maar vry sal ek bly staan

so het ek geleer om vuur met my eie tong op te lek
te kou en maag toe te sluk om so my eie Vuur op te wek
kyk, die fladder flonkering van vlam lyk nes
die fladder van tong
klink nes die flonker van tong
tuis is tong in vlam
dit hoort so graag aan hierdie brandende stam

met sweepslae krul die vuur om my ledemate
wil my skelet breek uit haar nate
word ek soos hout wat vuur gulsig vreet
dat julle daar in die doer donker vertes sal weet:
hierdie is een rokende en glinsterende gewroeg
wat my liggaam spoedig tot suiwer beeld gaan uitspoeg

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Voices in Song

Voices in song

let the voices of the world
be fire in our souls
let the voices of the world
be water in our mouths
let it sing into the agelessness of time
and make us believe we are beauty
we are sun we are river
we are stone we are air
we are that which gives us life

let the voices of the world
teach us to feel
to burn
to flow
to be utterly alive

let our voices rise
like the flame rises
like the tide rises

we are life
we are elemental
we are voices that sing
that weep
we are voices that
come alive
as soon as
breath is born

the vast space begs to be filled
with that sweeping line of voice
that colours space with that wondrous harmony
that is so strongly at home in our soul

let the voices vibrate
let the voices cascade through our souls
and let us live livelier than ever before

let the voices break through the forests
break through the ocean
let fish and bird hear we can
resonate with song just as they can do

i want to be there where the soul sings
because of this life’s blessedness
let us give love through our voices
let us share this voice we have had from birth

silence is blessed
yet singing is more so
it is a resonating of the soul
a baptizing within that vibration that gives life
to our hearts and minds

the voice moves like flame
searching for air and when it is released
it gushes forth like a new spring
the voice of fire
the voice of river
let it not be silenced
let it sound
let it burn
let it flow

we can sing
we want to sing
we need to sing

if we raise our voices, let it be in song



Thursday, 22 September 2011

In die grond en blom skyn die hoop

Hier die gedig wat ek spesiaal vir die FLORHA! vertoning in die Baxter Teater, Rondebosch, Kaapstad geskryf en opgevoer het >> die foto's is tydens die opvoering geneem >>


In die grond en blom skyn die hoop

En so het sy opgestaan uit die blomme-velde,
'n besete vrou gevul met drome van die aarde se diepe waters
so doen sy haar daaglikse pligte met grond onder haar naels,
borduur sy die lande aan een met die stingels van blomme
sy is alleen, net sy en haar tien vingers,
soms van haar kop af, maar altyd geheg aan haar hart en haar blomtuin
sy is deels vrou, deels aarde, deels blom

hoor hoe haar stem deur die blom-woude breek!
kyk hoe sy haar menswees bevry
deur met grond en blom liefde te maak
in grond en blom skyn die hoop
wat nog by ons mense spook

sy het vele sonkoper velde ontdek langs die kusste
het hul gevul met voetspore vol ryp wense
die dou lek sy vroeg-oggend van die lelie-blare
vee haar wange met die sagte son wat deur die struike breek
sing sy alomheen die liedere wat resonant oor die vlaktes aanrol
'n vrou soos hierdie mag nie stil bly!

hoor hoe haar stem deur die blom-woude breek!
kyk hoe sy haar menswees bevry
deur met grond en blom liefde te maak
in grond en blom skyn die hoop
wat nog by ons mense spook

dit is daar waar sy wil wees
daar waar blomme vry, wild en helder kan bloei
waar grond diep gegtrap kan word
waar groen, geel, oranje, pers en rooi
rys uit modder en 'n nuwe wêreld aanbreek
ja, dit is daar waar sy wil wees
daar waar haar siel saam resoneer met die seismiese aardskuiwings
wat tril met die geboorte van elke nuwe blom
daar waar grond haar die ritme van wind en water leer
haar leer hoe om haar vel ten volle te voel
soos wat net 'n blom kan voel
blom sing haar lyf uit elke hoek en porie
tril die vrugbaarheid regdeur haar voetsole
trap sy versigtig want blomtyd is 'n vlugtige en delikate seisoen
en tog dans sy diep, hard en vinnig omdat blomtyd uitbundig en grensloos is

hoor hoe haar stem deur die blom-woude breek!
kyk hoe sy haar menswees bevry
deur met grond en blom liefde te maak
in grond en blom skyn die hoop
wat nog by ons mense spook

grond is bly om te voel hoe diep vrou haar spoor trap
blom is bly om te sien hoe passievol sy deur die vreugde van kleur stap
sy druk haar lippe en bors ferm teen die aarde
voel die vibrasie van die magtige minerale groei
wat stoot en rys deur wortel en blaar
hoe lank het sy vir hierdie blomtyd gewag!
nóú is dit hier en blom sy saam met een helse vrugbare krag

Sunday, 4 September 2011

kabaret-poe''sie

kabaret-poe''sie - geskryf en voorgedra deur Lara by Lara Kirsten 1

kabaret-poësie

ek soek poësie
met rooi lippe
verse met bebeende visnetsykouse
wat sexy oormekaar kruis
digkuns met lang, swart
oogwimpers wat ritmies
die metrum oop en toe knip

ek soek poësie
met rooi lippe
en rasper keel wat
die woorde fyn sny
en bloedrooi op die
vloer laat spat

kabaret-poësie

wat smeulend die heupe uitdu
die kleinste beweging tot
‘n magiese oomblik laat lei

poësie wat been en arm
in ‘n paar-dans laat
knoop en rol
en stoot in en uit mekaar

ek wil nie grys poësie praat
geen kombuis-poësie
geen hang-tiet gediggies
uit my mond laat hang nie

geen boekrak-poësie
geen korset-en-pruik-poësie
geen pinkie-in-die-lug en
tuit-mondjie-poësie

slegs poësie wat met silhoeëttiese borspunte
die lug in fyn sinsuele stukke sny

toon
enkel
kuit
kniekop
dy
heup
vinger
pols
arm
elmboog
skouer
nek
ken
lip

skaduwee en lig speel op
vou en vel

mmm, ek kan ook toor,
chiaruscories toor met
tong-tegniek
ja, ‘n enkele rol van my tong en lip
stoot die verligte stofstraal
in ‘n tsunami van estetika

my sin
hang
sexy
kabaret-matig,
in die lug
val en ontplooi
in ‘n verleidelike lyf-kragtigheid

kan my woord ‘n witwarm
lus in jou lendene ontketen?

kan my woord ‘n senuwee
laat span
en dit in ekstase laat
terugbons na sugtende bevrediging?

Saturday, 13 August 2011

Consumer Frame

Tonight I am performing poetry at a money-themed event in the City of Gold - Jozi! Here one of the poems>

(this poem i will be performing in a dress made of 2000 beerbottle-tops)

Consumer Frame

welcome, welcome to the
consumer frame
it multiplies to the millions
feeding straight from the conveyor belt
of the factory
to the conveyor belt of your tongue

rattle rattle rattle around your feet

in your mouth
in your stomach
in your eyes
in your ears
it has taken over the world
buy buy buy
and do not stop
anything but stop!
billboards scream in your sleep
use buy use buy use buy
consume churn
burn guzzle
over and over

rattle rattle rattle around your head

you get drunk
of too many options
row after row after row after row
you walk and turn
and walk and turn another corner
in this mad
consuming world
drunk drunk
drunk of too much
too much!

rattle rattle rattle in your stomach

what are we buying?
do YOU know what you are buying?
Yes, we know everything
we are enlightened
we are informed
the labels tell the honest truth with its
detailed and well-chosen scientific language
we feel safe and informed

they even throw in a few
soothing words:
discounts
free samples
buy and win
and two for the price of one
bigger and better
exclusive
instant
and express
genuine
original
odourless
and guaranteed
inspired
professional
great value
and be moved
because you’re worth it
and you are number one!

ah, i get happy and more assured

i read twice
just to make sure
yes,
they do indeed say:
our products are good
see for your yourself!
we even turned to whole foods 
whole grain
extra grain
reduced fat
2 percent fat
low fat
no fat
bio friendly
bio-degradable
eco-enhanced
extra vitamins and minerals
high GI and lots of anti-oxidants
organic, free range and handpicked
unmodified and no MSG
no cholestrol
no sugar
no dairy
no wheat
no meat

everything
and nothing

rattle rattle rattle in your mind

your conscience tells you,
wait, reconsider, don’t be a consumerist fool
but you don’t listen
you just buy buy buy
queues can be long
prices can go up
credit crunch might crush
inflation rates rocket
stock exchange quiver and tremble
shake and rumble
consume consume consume!
a raging fire into the long hours of the night
rattle rattle rattle with all its might

stop! stop! stop

we consume
guzzle energy we do not need
energy we only imagine
in colours of tasty and luxurious inebriation
drink drink drink
till you can’t anymore
till i can’t anymore

you think it is you frame your needs

ah! it is they, the invisible they, that frame your needs
by seductive slogans cajoling you
flattering your buying power
you think YOU have the power
oh no! it is they that  have the buying power
buying your soul
and throwing it to the dogs!