Thursday, March 27, 2008

MEDICINAL POEMS: A Sad Necessity.

A word on the medicinal poems to be performed Saturday:

A motif has developed, for better or for worse.

First, we had the Familiars' Hospital during FIDDLESTICKS #2.

Then this past weekend, we learned that Mr. Hugo Ball-Rat, the incredible experimental-poetry-writing Rat owned by the British Post-Neos David Beris Edwards and Eleanor Francis Waterfowl, was ailing. Mr. Hugo Ball-Rat wrote a 'medicinal poem' which could be performed by anyone, anywhere to aid in his recovery, or at least pay him an homage in his time of trial. (Ellie and David inform us that he is far from perfect, but definitively on the mend.) You can find this poem on Edwards' blog, there's a link from here. We resolved to orchestrate a collective reading of this Medicinal Poem from the L&F Gallery.

This decision had already been made when we received some much more dire news, that Thomas L. Taylor was in hospital. We are awaiting definite news of his condition and circumstances, but Tom has been a great friend, supporter, and inspiration for many of us in the Post-Neo community (bela and olchar especially), one of the most committed and prolific avant-garde poets of his generation (olchar would say possibly the most moving poet writing in the lyric tradition), and a driving force in experimental writing, poetics, avant theory, and the Eternal Network for far longer than most of us have been alive. We obviously wanted to make a gesture of this at the first opportunity, and we will therefore perform a text that Tom sent me a couple months ago as a Medicinal Poem as well.

Cathy Bennett has very kindly posted a link to some of Tom's work a bit farther down on this blog, and his long poem Tract is the centrefold of Synapse 3 and he has a considerable amount in all three issues for those of you who have them. Jim Leftwich's textimagepoem has a good deal of Tom's work up in the archives as well. We will also have copies of his books Mandala and Kilobyte Magnificat with us on Saturday. We'll keep everyone informed as we hear more.