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Commiserate — January 2016 — Ghazal Mosadeq

January 6, 2016

Qué perra es – January 2016

Ghazal Mosadeq & Ryan Van Winkle

1449867030Ghazal says: When Steven Fowler asked Ryan and I to collaborate on a poem for the Enemies Project, I was in Linares, Mexico. So this piece is shaped by back and forth emails. We decided on the theme of distance, travel and time and used some Spanish and Persian words and sentences  I wrote one passage and emailed it to him and waited for his passage to come. The final piece is one long poem with a more or less unified voice rather than two pieces corresponding with each other. This poem was performed on October 25 in the Rich Mix Centre, London as a part of the Camaradfest II in which 100 poets collaborated in pairs on 50 poems.

qué perra es

They say we age slower
if we’re traveling fast
as if time is a stupid dog
chasing after a train, as if

As if is slayable
when it comes to time
so there is el tiempo del sur
and we have immovable time
so I ask ¿qué perra es?

But they say it’s Mexican time
Ten thousand taxies ahead
Making us age like a. should I say?
I just need to know: ¿qué perra es?
It was a hot night and it made me
want know the time
in Lisbon, in Tokyo

They say, ‘he wouldn’t give me the time
of day.’ They say, ‘I wouldn’t piss on him
if he was on fire.’ They say you must know
‘when to hold them, when to fold them’

But what I want to know
is how will your eyes flutter
when the dealer calls
and you must show what you’ve made
of a lousy hand.

You say it was just a burglary
Attempt, but I think you may have gone too far
By shooting a midlevel engineer
and a top baker and not finding
the 23 pound of black tar heroin
under the armchair and not even knowing
how to get home from there

*

To master Time is to master living.
To master Time is to master dying.
To master time is to disappear
in Monterrey on an independence day party
nine and a half years ago
To master dying by timing living
she masters living

*

Often I ask a question in a language
I don’t fully understand
the response always returns
at the speed of a back-handed ball
dizzy, unsure where on the street to turn
left or turn right but it is clear one must
make a turn somewhere

pas man be samt-i paayeen peecheedam
and that’s exactly what I did
va chand soal porseedam
as one should
¿qué perra es?
¿qué perra es?
And tiptoed around centro historico
so I just turned from
Isabel la Catótica  into Regina
All  in less than 5 seconds

*

Zanini Rallebol
wanna ne ne
wanna na na
Tu veux ou tu veux pas
don’t you na na me with your tongue
don’t you ne ne me with your eyes

*

I have a big old
fashioned bathtub
I hardly use, once
it was my birthday
and I hoped
I could mark it
so I lay there
and counted the lines
on my skin as they appeared

once I walked into a
grand boudoir
and that’s all I did that
day, pacing the floor
barefeet tickled on carpet
naked on starched scratching sheets
licking a pewter candle stick
all the possible comforts, all
the possible violence, all the tourists
clicking pictures, keep shuffling.

VIDEO:

Ghazal Mosadeq is a writer and poet (winner of the Bayhaqi Short Fiction Prize, shortlisted for the Khorshid Poetry Prize). Her debut collection of poetry, Dar Jame Ma, was published in Iran in 2010, and her second book of poems, Biographies,  is published in London, UK by Susak Press, 2015. Her fiction and poetry has been published and translated in magazines and anthologies in Iran, Canada, United Kingdom, Poland, Greece and Portugal. She is a PhD research student at University of London, Birkbeck College.

Ryan is in fourfold

January 15, 2015

A collaborative piece between SJ Fowler, nick-e melville, Colin Herd, Ross Sutherland and myself has been published as part of the FourFold project. The poem is called ‘The Auld Fold’, and there is a photograph of the finished article big enough to read right here.

Commiserate Dec – 2014 – William Letford

November 29, 2014

Fuckin’ Coconuts — December 2014

William Letford & Ryan Van Winkle

Ryan Van Winkle & William Letford

Ryan Van Winkle & William Letford

William says: The idea for this collaboration began when I was on an island off the east coast of India. I was drinking a lot of coconuts, and listening to the thud as they fell beside my hut in the middle of the night. A loud thud. I began to get paranoid. I’d look up at palm trees swaying as I walked beneath. I sent Ryan two words, ‘Fuckin Coconuts,’ and he took it from there. Strange how things get started. I’m back on that same island right now. Had a near miss yesterday. Still looking up at the palm trees. Fuckin coconuts.

Fuckin’ Coconuts

how did the monkey get here?

He came to Glasgow

and left the water

for the organ grinder

 

even the monkey

wants money

but settles for scratching

moist temporal flesh

and gets stuck in

 

how else did he get here?

 

last night I went to sleep

and woke up in a tree

beside the fuckin’ monkey

we were in the tree

and down below us

was a family sittin’

in their conservatory drinkin’

lemonade

so I leant close to ask

the monkey what he

thought about the family

sittin’ in their conservatory

drinkin’ lemonade

the monkey told me

he thought about

bananas

 

then the monkey

asked me

what i thought

when i looked at the family

sittin’ in their conservatory

drinkin’ lemonade

I said I wished I didn’t

walk in my sleep

I said I wished I wasn’t

a sleepwalker

 

how else did the monkey arrive?

 

zagged

as the leaves

on a tree

 

how else did he get here?

 

I was minding my own business

just having a whiskey because

the bar was neon and there was the snow

and the monkey wants another mojito

but the lady says they’re out of mint. The season

and all the rest. Well, I don’t like to get involved

but that monkey wasn’t talking right to a lady

so I says he should watch his mouth.

Man-alive, his breath smelt like peanut butter

and those claws dug right into my shoulders.

 

I don’t often feel like a mouse, I don’t often

pass out thinking of owls and the full moon.

When I woke up the monkey was gone

the barmaid, applying a towel still sticky with beer

said ‘how did that monkey get here?

 

An old man lifted an eyebrow like

he was lifting a heavy wooden chest.

Stories folded on his forehead. Flecks

of regret cracked the corners of his

lips. A smile spread like a beer

stain on a tattered armchair and this

is what he whispered,

 

Monkey see monkey do

brass monkeys cheeky monkeys

the monkey fuckin’ stole

ma shoe. Monkey shoulder

monkey rum the monkey

licks its fuckin’ bum

monkey wrench monkey’s uncle

the monkey on ma back

monkey business monkey suit

couldn’t give one

couldn’t throw one

chances are you’ll fuckin’ know one

 

how else did the monkey come?

 

we don’t know

how our actions

may appear to others

one man’s underground wank

is another man’s nightmare

 

how else did the monkey get here?

 

Now, I hear he’s getting divorced

sold the holiday home in the keys

and the Porsche, of course – sold

all those beautiful trees

 

they say he spends all day inside

with a colour tv on mute

listening to the air conditioner hummm

wearing a tie like he was going

up the tower again

 

how else did you get here?

 

i built my life around monkey

monkeysaymonkeydo

you know the one about the tortoise

and the alligator, the one about

the pea on the chair, well

the sea moves forwards

the coast moves back

inspired, in trouble

all the people, their houses

doctors, lawyers, executives

babies, daughters, fathers

 

how else did the monkey get here?

 

it was some kind of nature

not the dark

which filled his eyes

his ears filled

with the words of charlie

darwin: from so simple

a beginning

 

 

Ramapithecus

Australopithecus

Homo habilis

 

there’s a monkey in everyone of us

a red-arsed baboon in some

 

how did the monkey get here?

 

it came from the sea

it came from space

from somewhere in the twinkling dark

it came from Centaurus A

it came from void

i am the fuckin’ monkey

i am australopithecine’s ape like urge

and culture

is killing my hormonal surge

tear down the buildings

plant the trees

empty the ginger bottles

stop shaving

let your underwear fall to the floor

 

run, run

 

climb

 

feel the sun

listen to the leaves

and there’s a monkey

in everyone of us

the monkey is life

 

how did the monkey get here?

 

The monkey is in a wet green field

not a tree on any horizon

 

The monkey is in the desert

watching a snake die

 

on a cactus, a horse

running off, a cow

 

shrinking into her ribs

a sheep licking sand.

 

The monkey lives

with no oasis.

 

Where did you leave your monkey?

 

On the fire escape, Halloween

everyone agreed, it was the best

costume and they drank monkey

and talked monkey until monkey

just about had enough

 

How did the monkey get escape?

 

Monkey wakes in a haze

of new bougainvillea

every door is locked

the air is tepid as tea

somewhere a drum

and all his hairs quiver

 

Fuckin’ Coconuts live at Summerhall, Edinburgh

http://youtu.be/clX4wL6G2MM 

 

William Letford has received a New Writer’s Award from the Scottish Book Trust and an Edwin Morgan Travel Bursary. His first collection Bevel (Caracanet) was published in 2012. A chapbook of his poems, translated into Slovakian, was published by Vertigo in October 2014.

—-

Commiserate is a monthly experiment in poetic collaboration.

Inspired by  SJ Fowler‘s  ‘Camarade’ project which pairs poets to create new work, I’ve stolen the notion and begun to collaborate with friends and writers of interest. You can read about the project and see 2013’s poems here.

Ryan is one in 100 at Camaradefest

October 6, 2014

Really excited to be one of the hundred poets producing and reading work at the second edition of Camaradefest, the mass-collaboration project organised by our friend SJ Fowler. It’s happening on Saturday 25 October at the Rich Mix Centre down London Town, kicking off at 12noon and running into the wee hours. Tickets are free, hope to see you there.

There is nothing quite like Camaradefest. 100 poets come together in 50 pairs to premiere brand new collaborative pieces of innovative poetry.

Beginning at 12 noon and ending late into the night, Camaradefest evidences the endlessly exciting potential of collaboration in poetry and the true depth, width and brilliance of 21st century poetics. Expect no two works the same, and following on from the great success of the first fest last year, an unforgettable way to experience contemporary poetry.

Get a taste, view the videos from the first fest here:http://blutkitt.blogspot.co.uk/2013/11/camaradefest-videos.html

What: Camaradefest II

When: Saturday 25 October, 12noon-late

Where: Rich Mix Arts Centre, 35-47 Bethnal Green Road, London.

How Much: FREE

 

Ross Sutherland’s documentary: Auld Enemies

August 1, 2014

Auld Enemies was a very special project. Our friend Ross Sutherland has documented the entire experience, and you can watch the 35 minute documentary right here, or head to SJ Fowler’s YouTube channel for all the individual collaborations. Many thanks to everyone involved, please enjoy.

The Enemies project: Auld Enemies was a transnational poetry collaboration where six poets worked in rolling paired to produce original works for readings across the breadth of Scotland and where in each event also featured numerous pairs of writers from the region, who also presented brand new poetry collaborations. Beginning on July 9th and finishing on July 27th, the project visited Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen, Lerwick and Kirkwall, before a wrapping up in London. Auld Enemies was a groundbreaking exploration of contemporary Scottish poetics through the potential of collaboration. Supported by Creative Scotland

During the tour, Ross Sutherland documented the project in this extraordinary documentary.

Ryan is part of the Auld Enemies Tour

June 24, 2014

Very excited to be working with SJ Fowler once again as part of the Auld Enemies Scottish tour! We’ll be heading all over the country, from Dundee to Kirkwall, it’s going to be an amazing adventure.

July 9th – Dundee – 6pm
​Duncan of Jordanstone (studio & foyer space ) University Of Dundee, Perth Rd, Dundee DD1 4HT (with thanks to Peggy Hughes)

Billy Letford & nick-e melville / Ryan Van Winkle & SJ Fowler / Colin Herd & Ross Sutherland
plus AZ Jackson & Lindsay MacGregor / James Stewart & Dawn Wood / Richard Watt & more



July 10th – Glasgow – 8pm
McChulls, 40 High Street (with thanks to Henry Bell)

Ross Sutherland & Ryan Van Winkle / Billy Letford & Colin Herd / nick-e melville & SJ Fowler
plus ​Thomas Betteridge & Neil Davidson / Katy Hastie, Antony Autumn, Iyad Hayatleh & more


July 11th – Edinburgh – 7pm
Summerhall — Demonstration Room. 1 Summerhall EH9 1PL (with thanks to Jen White)

Colin Herd & Iain Morrison / Billy Letford & Ryan Van Winkle / SJ Fowler & Ross Sutherland
​nick-e melville & Jane Goldman / Dave Coates & Rachel McCrum / JL Williams & Elspeth Murray / Luke Allan & Graeme Smith / Karen Veitch & Mike Saunders / Ed Smith & Thomas MacColl / Rob McKenzie & more


July 12th – Aberdeen 7pm
Cellar 35, 35 Rosemount Viaduct (with thanks to Gerard Rochford & Richie Brown)​

Billy Letford & SJ Fowler / Ryan Van Winkle & Colin Herd / Ross Sutherland & nicke melville
Gerard Rochford & Richie Brown / Maureen Ross & Catriona Macleod / & more


July 14th – Lerwick, The Shetland Islands- 7pm
Mareel Arts Centre. ZE1 0WQ (with thanks to Donald Anderson)

Ross Sutherland & nick-e melville / Colin Herd & SJ Fowler / Ryan Van Winkle
Nat Hall & James Sinclair / Donald Murray /  Laurajayne Friedlander & more

July 17th – Kirkwall, The Orkney Islands – 7pm
​Kirkwall Library, 44 Junction Rd, Highlands and Islands, Kirkwall KW15 1AG (with thanks to Pam Beasant)

Ross Sutherland & SJ Fowler / Colin Herd & nick-e melville
Rosemary Merriman, Sylvia Hays, Rosie Alexander, Lydia Harris, Pam Beasant & more

July 26th – London – 7pm
The Rich Mix Arts Centre
​​

Ross Sutherland / nick-e melville / Colin Herd / Ryan Van Winkle / SJ Fowler
Emily Berry & John Clegg / Tom Chivers & Roddy Lumsden
Nick Murray & Eley Williams / Vahni Capildeo & Jeremy Noel-Tod
​Kirsty Irving & Harry Man / Daisy Lafarge & more​​​​

Auld Enemies is a transnational poetry collaboration where six poets will work in rolling pairs to produce original work for readings across the length and breadth of Scotland. Auld Enemies is a groundbreaking exploration of contemporary Scottish poetics through the potential of collaboration.

Auld Enemies will commence with a six date tour of Scotland, taking in Dundee, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen, Lerwick in the Shetlands and finishing with Kirkwall in the Orkneys. It will conclude with an event in London, at the Rich Mix Arts Centre, on July 26th, which will feature many of the new works from the tour, new collaborations and a documentary screening about Auld Enemies. 

Auld Enemies is fundamentally about the creation of new collaborative works and the integration of differing poetic communities​, and has only been possible through the generosity of a series of organisational partners, first and foremost Creative Scotland, but also the Scottish Poetry Library, Literary Dundee, Summerhall, Shetland Arts, the Orkney Islands Council and Northlink Ferries.

Please find below the schedule and the poet’s involved, and if possible, do spread the word, and attend all and any of the events you can. ALL EVENTS ARE FREE

Lee Si Young on the Scottish Poetry Library Podcast

May 4, 2014

On this episode we talk with Korean poet Lee Si-Young and his translator, Brother Anthony of Taize. He reads some of his poems and reflects on how his work has evolved since the military dictatorship in South Korea when it was dangerous and extremely difficult to publish poetry. It ‘was a responsibility that young poets had to take to stand up and dare take the risk to oppose and indicate there was another way ahead.’ He also discusses his views on political poetry – ‘without something that emerges from the human heart you cannot have a poem… If I am simply angry then nothing will come out in terms of poetry. It has to be transformed.’ You may find more information about Lee Si-Young and other Korean poets on Brother Anthony’s website. We also feature one of the collaborations from SJ Fowler’s Camarade project with Marcus Slease and Claire Potter. Listen to more of the collaborations here and find out more at SJ’s website. Presented by Ryan Van Winkle and produced by Colin Fraser of Culture Laser Productions.

Ryan is Captured on Film at Hidden Door Camarade

April 5, 2014

If you missed fantastic performances at this week’s Hidden Door Festival, here is video evidence of my involvement. The entire Camarade event is available on SJ Fowler’s YouTube channel. Check it out.

Ryan Opens Some Hidden Doors

March 12, 2014

Very pleased to be doing a couple of mega-events at the big Hidden Door Fest in Edinburgh. I totally love the spirit and brilliance of this event and there’s a ton of brilliant stuff to dig into so make sure to get yourself along.
Here’s where I’ll be appearing:
* THE HIDDEN DOOR CAMARADE PROJECT, in which I team up with awesome poet and artist Sarah Kelly and eight other pairs of poets to premiere original collaborative poetry. Saturday 29 March, 9-11pm.
* DECAGRAM where I’ll be doing a poem with JO Morgan and some mind-bending music and visuals. The whole event is going to be in the key of Major. More details hereThursday 3 April, 7pm.

The Point is You Give: Camaradefest on the Culture Laser

November 5, 2013

The Camaradefest was a unique one day explosion of dynamic collaboration in contemporary avant garde and literary poetics. 100 poets aligned in 50 pairs, each writing an original collaborative work, written specifically for the festival and premiered on the day. We feature 4 of the pairs – Marcus Slease & Claire Potter, Stephen Watts & Will Rowe, Julia Bird & Sarah Hesketh, Ghazal Mosadeq & Ricardo Marques – and discuss the thinking behind the process with SJ Fowler.

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