Poetry Wednesday on Thursday – Canadian Festival of Spoken Word and ‘Be Cool. Look for Kicks.’

Poetry in Hands

I can’t believe I missed Poetry Wednesday!  Of course, I didn’t really miss it I was living it last night!  The Canadian Festival of Spoken Word is in Saskatoon this year and I was volunteering the last two evenings.  I saw Saskatoon’s team totally kick ass last night – Regina, Edmonton and Vancouver were good, but, Holy Shit, did Saskatoon ever bring it!  Poetry is getting some good press around here these days, too.  Both the Star Phoenix supplement Bridges and the independent Planet S have articles about spoken work poetry – “Poets laud power of the spoken word” and “Ready, set … slam!”

For Poetry Wednesday on Thursday I’m going to share a poem that has yet to be presented, and I think I’m still working on it, but I like it and think it’ll be a fun one to deliver at an open mic and/or slam.

Be Cool.  Look for Kicks.

My first hipsters were pants.
Back in the day, like two-thousand-and-two, or something
We wore our pants slung low on our hips to display our thong panties. 
 
Now hipsters wear too-big glasses,
Think cool is just for them
And have turned my youthful memories into one giant, ironic
Tom-Selleck moustache
 
The first hipsters, though –
                the ‘real’ hipsters,
Were all about jazz –
                the real cool bebop blue cool too cool to touch don’t get your tongue stuck to it
                jazz.
I found these words, these words about the real hipsters –
                the too cool bebop blue hipsters from the
                forties
These words sounded like poetry
When I read them they sounded
                like jazz
                like jazz and poetry
                like hip hop
                like bebop
 
And, I quote:
 
“To the hipster, Bird was a living justification of their philosophy.
The hipster is an underground man.
He is to the Second World War what the dadaist was to the first.
He is amoral, anarchistic, gentle and overcivilized to the point of decadence.
He is always ten steps ahead of the game because of his awareness,
an example of which might be meeting a girl
and rejecting her,
because he knows they will date, hold hands, kiss, neck, pet, fornicate, perhaps marry, divorce
so why start the whole thing?
He knows the hypocrisy of bureaucracy,
the hatred implicit in religions
so what values are left for him?
except to go through life avoiding pain, keep his emotions in check, and after that,
‘be cool’,
and look for kicks.
He is looking for something that transcends all this bullshit and finds it in jazz.”
 
End quote.
 
We are all looking for something that transcends all this bullshit.
Be cool.
Look for kicks.
 

Cheers and with Poetry in my heart,

Laura

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