Monthly Archives: March 2015

Poetry Events in Glasgow, March-April 2015

Aloud – QMU have compiled a list of the poetry events in Glasgow this month – check it out!

AloudQMU

Are you, like the rest of us poetry bums, in need of a breakdown of what events are happening in and around Glasgow over the next month or so? Aye? Well you’ve come to the right place. Here’s our list of hip and happening places to be and people to see:

25th March, Wednesday – The High Flight LIVE; an excellent evening of poetry, music, high flight zines and story telling. Nice n Sleazy, 7pm doors, £5

25th March, Wednesday – Open Mic Night at the Blue Chair; a relaxed night of music, spoken word, good food and BYOB, free corkage or non-alcoholic drinks for performers, and goo The Blue Chair, 6-9pm, free in. (This will hopefully be a weekly event, every Wednesday)

30th March, Monday – Last Monday at Rio; a Glasgow staple, this month Shaun Moore, ‘a radical voice of compassion’ fronts the open mic night. Five…

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Guest Post: Halah Mohammed

This week I’m handing over the pen (keyboard?). We have an exciting guest post from Halah Mohammed, a spoken word poet from Brooklyn, New York who has been traveling the world on a Watson fellowship this year researching autobiographical narratives shared through spoken word poetry. She blogs about her experiences and posts interviews with poets here. Recently she came up to Scotland to check out the slam scene here and attended events including Loud Poets, Rally & Broad, and Last Monday at Rio. She also interviewed poets – excerpts from her interviews with Carly Brown and Catherine Wilson are posted here and here, and more interviews (with Agnes Torok, myself, and more poets) are coming soon. Halah kindly agreed to write a guest post for this blog on her perceptions of the Scottish word scene. Enjoy! Continue reading

“Swallow”: When Poems are Misinterpreted

One of the first slam poems I wrote is a two-minute piece called “Swallow” which concerns the nuances of female fertility, sterility, and contraception (the poem can be watched here). In the autobiographical piece I express my sadness over the unfairness inherent in a situation in which I, as a young, presumably fertile woman, have the ability to utilise contraception to prevent myself from having children right now while some women who desperately want children are not given that choice, as they are unable to conceive due to medical reasons. For me, this poem is an expression of my desire to magically balance the universe and lend my ability to conceive to these women: to grant them the abilities that I am currently not using, thus giving them more control over their bodies. However, I was recently discussing the poem with friends in the poetry scene and they told me that to some audience members, the poem has been perceived as implying that women should stop trying to control their bodies because that is shameful, thus conveying an anti-contraceptives, anti-abortion message. As a feminist with firmly pro-contraceptives, pro-choice beliefs, I’m writing this post to apologise for those ideas which I never meant to promote, to set the record straight on the message I originally intended for “Swallow,” to discuss how easily work can be misconstrued, and to suggest ways to avoid misinterpretations of one’s work or to make amends when it happens. Continue reading

Artistic Crossovers: How Dance Helps with Performance Poetry

Although today I identify chiefly as a poet, dance has always been a fundamental element of how I define myself artistically. I began training in classical ballet at the age of five and continued through university, getting a degree in Dance and choreography in the modern style (‘contemporary’ in British terminology). I’m grateful for this training for many reasons, but especially now for how my education and experience in dance has informed and benefitted me in my performance poetry practice. There is a surprising amount of crossover between the two art forms, and here I will discuss how dance training has been a foundational skill set for my way of performing spoken word poetry. Continue reading