National Poetry Week (Maxine Beneba Clarke)

party, party

The fabulous Maxine Beneba Clarke,  West Indian-Australian writer & poetry slam champion (blogging at Slamup) let me steal one of her poems for the celebrations.

Here ’tis:

What Will Change in National Poetry Week

every fifty two weeks

there is a national week
of poetry / which
really only exists
in our alternate
litreality
& in no way
actuality

as if we cd stand & say
my name is such & such
& I’m a poet
without fear
that someone backed away
or rolled eyes in mockery
(as if national veggie week / wd
make all three year olds
love broccoli )

if it really was a week / for us
we/d wouldn’t celebrate
we/d be celebrated

national poetry week

pfffft

i for one
am not placated

will the storyteller
at children/s library time
stand on her plastic chair
& scream the revolution
will not be televised

will commercial breaks
be slammed by poets
cn i feed my children
this week
on writing alone

what will change
in national week of poetry
tell me

they humour us
with tourist trickery
bt every day / we
fight / the poetic illiteracy
of the good citizens
of this fine literacity

what will change
in national week of poetry
will the flinders street
shoe shine man
de-scuff me for free
like he does for presidents
& famous people
if i commit a crime / will
there be poetic immunity
instead of tour de france
will people prop their eyes past
midnight / for marathons of poetry
tell me / what will change
in the national week of poetry
will people recognise us on the street
& beg for autographs by way of
rhyming couplets / will
we book out gigs
crash our blog servers
& sell out books
cn we stand & say
my name is such & such
& I’m a poet
without the fear
that someone backs away
or rolls eyes in mockery

would national veggie week
make all three year olds
scream for broccoli

____________________________

Thanks Maxine 🙂