CRUMB #23

March 4, 2024

THE WORD


THE WORD

It’s only words’ sung the Bee Gees. ‘But words are all I have to take your heart away.”

And we write plenty of them, words. Hear a whole lot too. Fine words, tickling words, teasing words. Sometimes they are just thin veneers that have no substance, like clouds; you reach for them but they are not there. They sound wise, philosophical, but if they cannot work out in our lives, if they are not our every-day reality, they are merely ‘clanging gongs or tinkling brass’, so to speak. Fine for entertainment, but lacking the power to change, transform and rebuild.

The challenge of course is for us to craft words that relate to reality; words that speak of justice, mercy and humility; words that open ‘deaf ears’ so that change for better becomes an outworking of our words. In the beginning was the Word. That’s where we start.

For many, our open microphone events are a starting point. They provide opportunity for us to keep writing poems and songs, to refine our own words and to develop the craft of wordsmithing.

It is always great to see individuals step out for the first time behind the microphone; and a second and third time. Stunning to see people grow in confidence and skill and focus as their words develop into powerful entities of change, transformation and rebuilding.

This month open microphone events continue at The MAD Café in Collingwood and at the Dangerous Kitchen in Takaka. We will be back at the Mussel Inn in April. Details on following pages.

Also this month the Nelson Fringe Festival kicks off with Emma Callaghan and myself performing one show and I’ll be doing another with Rose Michel von Dreger and Henry Ludbrook. See the following pages for all the details on these shows. Full programme and tickets here: www.nelsonfringe.co.nz

Peace
Mark Raffills
Golden Bay Live Poets Society



SWIMMING

I never was much good at swimming
– lungs bursting at each painful stroke.

Sometimes
the words and the reality don’t relate;
sometimes if you can’t actually
stick your fingers into the wounds,
there’s no point in pretending
the wounds are there at all.

 

Sometimes I just want to lie
in the sun on a beach,
arms wrapped in love,
taking joy in an easy yoke
and lay to rest the breathless stroke
and the constant fear of drowning.

I never was much good at swimming
– lungs bursting at each painful stroke.

Sometimes I fight to stay afloat
Sometimes I slip beneath the surface
and wonder how far down I can go
before I’m lifted by the hand of grace.

Sometimes I just want to lie
beneath the full moon,
drinking in the solitude
taking joy in an easy yoke
and lay to rest the breathless stroke
and the constant fear of drowning.

Mark Raffills



OPEN MICROPHONE


THE OPEN MICROPHONE THIS MONTH OF APRIL

MOONSHINE ON THE MICROPHONE
THURSDAY4 April. Mad Café, Collingwood.

This is an open mic like no other – sometimes starts off slow and then evolves into something a little intimate, a little family, a little inspiring! An evening of poem and song.   Come on down to Collingwood – the best open mic in town! Starts sometime after 7.00 pm. Koha.

 

ACID ON THE MICROPHONE
Thursday 18 April. The Mussel Inn.

OPEN MICROPHONE – ALL NIGHT .
Yes, that’s right. Open mic all night. Bring your poems and songs. Don’t let other people get your kicks for you!. Door charge $5.

 

THE DANGEROUS MICROPHONE
THIS WEDNESDAY
3 April and then 10, 17, and 24 April. at the Dangerous Kitchen. Register from 5.00pm. Kick off 6.00 pm.  The outside temperatures are dropping but inside the Dangerous Kitchen the nights are smooth, the sounds are sweet and the words are as silky as ever! and the wonderful audiences are treated as alway to some of the finest entertainment going down in town. And this Wednesday 3 April, the second instalment of THE DANGEROUS JAM will kick in around 9.00 pm after the open mic.

 

 

 



THE OPEN MICROPHONE THIS MONTH OF APRIL

ACID ON THE MICROPHONE PRESENTS


….WASH AWAY THE STAINS

– spoken word performance
with Emma Callaghan & Mark Raffills

Poetry is the lifeblood of rebellion, revolution, and the raising of consciousness.” American poet and civil rights activist Alice Walker

Inspired by the long shadows of Walker’s ideals, Golden Bay  poets Emma Callaghan and Mark Raffills join forces to paint, via the spoken word, their own revolution, to name the unnameable and to wash away the stains that blot our landscape.

Representing Golden Bay/Nelson in the NZ National Poetry Slam, Emma Callaghan  made it through to the second round in 2022 and on the way won the ‘Spirit of the Slam’ Award. She placed second overall in 2023.  Emma’s performances are inspired by life experiences and observations as a mixed-race woman living in Aotearoa. Her poems speak to white privilege, Afro hair, reggae music and the African diaspora. Check out Emma’s website.

 “The live poet is obvious; the words have both a lyrical and rhythmic quality. There is a depth to the poetry but at the same time, its heart is on its sleeve,” said Matt Bowler of Mark Raffills in the Nelson Mail some years back. Raffills has toured and performed throughout NZ including Waitaki and Nelson Arts Festivals, NZ and Nelson Fringe Festivals and Poetry Live. His weekly video poems on Facebook have attracted over 130,000 views. Check out Mark’s website, and Facebook.

“Mark and Emma complement each other well as performers, each bringing something different and vital to the stage. Wash Away the Stains has helped to remind me of the important role live poetry has to play in the literary scene.  If you’re interested in capturing a little slice of this magic, I would keep an eye out for Emma and Mark at future poetry events in Nelson and nationwide.” WESLEY HOLLIS, Theatreview, 18 March 2024. https://www.theatreview.org.nz/

Acid On the Microphone presents
WASH AWAY THE STAINS
Emma Callaghan & Mark Raffills
THURSDAY 18 APRIL
Open Mic 7.30-8.00 pm
Emma & Mark from 8.00pm
The Mussel Inn $10



….WASH AWAY THE STAINS

THE NELSON FRINGE FESTIVAL 2024 presents


the word the reckoning & the rose

the poem as guardian of the heart

The poet in society is the guardian of all things just and righteous, the herald of the inner reckoning; the poem is the whole world scrawled in a single word on subway walls; it is a garden of sweet perfume.

Lofty heights for a poet to reach no doubt but no mountain was climbed except the first steps of ascent were taken.

The Word, The Reckoning & The Rose brings together three Nelson poets
 with diverse styles, genuine voices and a love for the written and spoken word. When it comes to matters of the heart, they reckon the poem has got it covered!

Henry Ludbrook, Rose Michel von Dreger and Mark Raffills met through the Nelson and Golden Bay Live Poet’s gatherings over the past 10 years or so. They have performed and developed their show The Word, The Reckoning & The Rose over the last couple of years, refining and developing as they go.

Henry Ludbrook started writing poetry at the age of 16, then stumbled upon the poems of James K Baxter and Sam Hunt.

“I loved the sound of their words without necessarily understanding the poems,” he says. “Until then, I felt like an outsider, but Baxter and Hunt seemed to me to be writing from the margins in various ways and that’s where I was.”

“Some poets write in solitude; I write in cafés for background noise”, comments Rose Michel von Dreger. “It keeps me from thinking too much. Painters have themes and motifs that keep coming out in their art and writers are the same. I write about the sea, constellations, and light, and our place in it all.”

“Whether it is written or spoken, read or listened to, poetry,” says Mark Raffills, “has the power to ignite our spirit, stir us to courage and give to love a depth unfathomed.”

THE WORD THE RECKONING & THE ROSE
Nelson Fringe Festival 2024
Tuesday 19 March 2024. 7.30PM. $16
Studio One, 1 Rutherford Mews, NELSON
TICKETS: www.nelsonfringe.co.nz

 



the word the reckoning & the rose

Make Use of CRUMB


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In CRUMB you will find all the events sponsored by Golden Bay Live Poets Society plus a few other gigs and community happenings.

If you would like to be kept up to date with open microphone events happening around the Bay, then subscribe to CRUMB here

And you can even submit a gig or event that you want us to know about.

 

 

 

 

 



GOT A GIG, EVENT, NEW BOOK or RECORDING COMING UP ??

Got events or gigs coming up that you’d like to let CRUMB readers know about, please email the details, jpeg pics and jpeg posters to: mark@drycrust.com  or use the link below:

submit a gig or event 

And if you have a new book of  poems, stories coming out, or a new recording of songs, let us know and we can let our small but dedicated readership in on the action.