Friday, 11 May 2018

When a poetry reading really works

I've written in a previous blog that I can struggle with poetry readings - partly because I like the words in my hands.

Chrys Salt read some of her poetry from 'The Punkawallah's Rope' at the Indigo Dreams Showcase, part of the Cheltenham Poetry Festival. Chrys is an experienced and well-established poet, and that rare thing - a poet who can read her written poetry exceptionally well - in fact the best I've heard.

I didn't just understand what was being said - I could feel it. It came alive. Ironically, I had the words in my hands because I had just bought her book, but obviously I wasn't looking at them. But I could take the words away with me and not just read them now, but really hear them too.

The poetry itself - and I have got to know a lot more of it since the Showcase - is so well-observed, lightly drawn, with humour and humanity. It is touching and beautiful. It has that deceptive simplicity which is so hard to achieve. It tells stories and brings people and places to life. It '...puts its hand out and is understood.' ((for RM), from 'Grass')

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1 comment:

  1. What a reading it must have been. Well done, Chrys! So often good poems are spoiled by their readers failing to use a microphone or attempting to engage.