Sunday, 3 October 2010

Poetry Collection and Launch: After All Tomorrow's After Parties

A good friend of mine, Michael Wilson, has asked me to mention his upcoming collection of poetry - After All Tomorrow's After Parties - which is being launched this Monday (4th October) in Manchester.

My book launch will be on Monday October 4th. I'll be reading from my first book "After All Tomorrows After Parties" brought out by Knives Forks and Spoons Press as well as a selection of other poems. I'll also be performing a number of poems using sign language to promote disability awareness, create a second narrative and meddle with the 4th wall. It promises to be a top evening of poetry with sets from the cream of Manchester poetry: the nationally renowned names of Gerry Potter, Tony Walsh and John G Hall and sweet acoustic jazz from Rob Plow and Steve Brady that sounds like music to fall in love to. It all takes place at the lovely Fuel Bar Cafe in Withington M20 4AN. It starts 8pm until 11pm and it's a free event.

The book will be available from October 4th from the Knives Forks and Spoons Press website, and Amazon or ordered from any bookshop in the UK or available from myself at various gigs in the North West and beyond.

I've found my home in Manchester and have been performing poetry for over five years now and guest slots at various events for about four years. Material comes from the tried and trusty subjects of sex, drugs, and rock 'n' dole but also extends to politics and mental health. I'm interested in raising awareness of disability so learned sign language and have been successful in slams, getting to the BBC Radio Four National Slam Final last year, as well as the Cheltenham National Slam Final the last two years running. I also combine poetry with art using lost property umbrellas to write my poetry onto in interesting designs, usually leaving them in city centres for people to find but also having them exhibited in Contact Theatre this year. Finally I am also part of the Islington Mill Art Academy, a self run, self organised art education group, which explores alternatives in art education, which this book is being brought out in association with.

The book as well as being brought out in association with the Art Academy is also being brought out in memory of a close friend of mine who died ten years ago, just as I was finishing my university degree. I thought it was important to keep his memory alive and this is my small part in this. This book has been given the blessing of the family.

And here's a sample of the poetry to be found in After All Tomorrow's After Parties:

An Ode to Autumn

Deep down in yourself
Deep down in your coat
The autumn falls before your eyes
Smoke perspires from car exhausts
And the street sounds silent in your head
Watching the traffic find its way,
from safe inside the hem of a hood
The unlit cigarette burns a hole in your hand
As you take the world in,
A stage set street at a time

Your thoughts are wrapped up in pretty paper
Round numbers and letters and how they fit their clothing
In the wooliness of your mind
You had to train yourself to doublething
A single line when added to
Creates a picture you can just make out
In the dark horse sky
A sky that maps this world
All true invention pushed underfoot
The leaves
And all the deadness of past summer
Crushed underfoot

You hear a beating memory in your head
That from your past autumn never means you harm
The curled blur of street lights
Match the fuzziness in your logic
Walks with you
An elegant procession of thoughts that play to beat the band
A foresight that this winter won't bite too hard
Cause it knows its own mortality
A backlit sight that summer leaves a mark or two on your skin,
but won't do what it's told, it won't change your life,
this time around.

You walk
Back to your home the rest of the world in front
The street smells of everything and nothing at once
While the moon makes its once sightly appearance
A smile like benevolent stupidity
A smile like a patriarch not a sister
A father for you to figure out your thoughts
And for this moment your happiness won't get away
The day comes back to you
In the soft grip of night
That Autumn holds its lover lightly
As it lets the summer leave you
Feeds you and clothes you in your own colours
The halfway secret shine of Autumn is held in the single change of a skin

Copyright 2010, Michael Wilson

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