Posts in Category: Spoken Word

Evidently Chickentown by John Cooper Clarke

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A film called Ochlofobie by Belgian artist Swoon, who also supplied the music. British performance poet John Cooper Clarke is responsible for text and voice.

Here’s a video of Clarke doing the poem at a live reading from 2008:

Hate Poem by Julie Sheehan

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High school student Wiyaka His Horse Is Thunder recites the poem as part of the Poetry Out Loud national recitation contest, in a slickly produced video directed by Tony Brave for KOLC-TV of Oglala Lakota College. As Sheehan notes in an essay about the poem, the poem has become a favorite with students in the competition.

Hum Bom! by Allen Ginsberg

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This is Part 1 of the poem — a dramatisation which I think it is safe to say Ginsberg would’ve loved. The filmmaker, Caroline Petters, is a professional photographer.

Dirty Dinky by Theodore Roethke

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I do believe Michael John Muller found the perfect text for this fun little experiment: the title poem for Roethke’s collection of poems for children.

Your Super Bookstore Recommends by Dean Young

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Another “teleportal reading“:

When Dean Young came to the East Austin warehouse where we film our videos, the sky was threatening. By the time he got started, a biblical downpour was underway. You can hear the rain on the tin roof as he reads. Of course, as these things tend to go, it cleared up the second the shoot was finished. Still, we like the way the atmospheric sound plays off of Scott Gelber’s animation, which alters live footage of Dean reading in front of a green screen and layers it with gorgeous hand-painted imagery. Dean’s most recent book, a work of prose on poetry titled The Art of Recklessness, is available from Graywolf Press.

This is one case where a literal interpretation of the poem really works!

Inferno (A Poet’s Novel) by Eileen Myles

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The reading is evidently an excerpt from Myles’ new book. Update: this is not from Inferno, but a more recent piece (see comments). It takes a little while to get going, but stick with it: the hand-drawn, typographic animation on a green screen behind the reading is unique. It’s the work of Scott Gelber for Teleportal Readings, which includes some additional information:

This is the first of nine videos we shot in collaboration with Rattapallax at the Bowery Poetry Club this summer. That’s BPC founder Bob Holman you hear in the background during the beginning, before he gets whatevered by Eileen. We filmed with a green screen and Scott Gelber added animation after the fact (we’ve yet to perfect the magic of manifesting amazing, hand-drawn typefaces live, but believe us when we say we’re working on it). Eileen’s newest book, Inferno (A Poet’s Novel) is available from OR Books.

And here then is an excerpt from Inferno (via

Finally, here’s a book trailer for Inferno.

The Neighbour Procedure by Rachel Zolf

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The title poem of Rachel Zolf’s new book from Coach House Books, “a virtuoso polyvocal correspondence with the daily news, ancient scripture and contemporary theory that puts the ongoing conflict in Israel/Palestine firmly in the crosshairs.” Poetry blogger Joshua Corey calls it “A work of radical and rigorous empathy for Jew & Arab.”

I like the cut-up approach to a live-reading video here. Poet Laura Mullen is the filmmaker. For more on Rachel Zolf, see her author page at the Electronic Poetry Center.