Posts in Category: Kinestasis

Bones Will Crow: selections from ten Burmese poets

This tantalizing introduction to the contemporary Burmese poetry scene offers a rare (for Westerners) glimpse into the country’s intellectual life. Here are the details from Vimeo:

Images: Craig Ritchie.
Animations: Brett Biedscheid/State of State.
Animations Commissioned by English Pen.

Images of Burmese poets taken in their writing spaces in Yangon, Burma during 2011/2012.
Poem excerpts from the anthology of Burmese Poetry, ‘Bones Will Crow’, by Arc Publications, 2012.

The excerpted poems include “The Sniper” by Pandora, “A Letter for Lovers and Haters” by Ma Ei, “Aung Cheimt Goes to the Cinema” by Aung Cheimt, “A Bunch of 52 Keys” by Maung Pyiyt Min, “Moonless Night” by Moe Zaw, “Slide Show” by Zeyar Lynn, “Redundant Sentences” by Thitsar Ni, “Gun and Cheese” by Khin Aung Aye, “The Heart Bearer” by Maung Thein Zaw, and “If You Need to Piss, Go to the Other Room” by Moe Way. Translators are ko ko thett, James Byrne and Maung Tha Noe.

Sonnet 97 by William Shakespeare

Poet: | Nationality: | Filmmaker:

I found this musical interpretation compelling; the accompanying kinestatic video isn’t bad, either. It’s a selection from The Winter E.P. – Shakespeare’s Sonnets by Hallam London, who is credited with composition, vocals, guitars, keyboards and all programming. The photos in the video were taken on Norderney Island in the North Sea by Nicola Moczek and Riklef Rambow. Visit the composer’s bandcamp page to hear more from the EP.

The Night My Creampuffs Fell by Kirsty Elliot

Poet: | Nationality: | Filmmaker:

Canadian poet Kirsty Elliot describes this on Vimeo as

A little movie about the spring my dude went treeplanting and left me in a plastic shack with our 2 babies. I took my tweets and turned them into a chapbook which I then made into a movie.

I like the fact that this is more than just a video trailer for a book; it is the book — in a different form.

Ganthier by Kwame Dawes

Poet: | Nationality: , , | Filmmaker: ,

Another in the Voices from Haiti series produced by the Pulitzer Center, exploring life after the earthquake and focusing on the lives of those affected by HIV/AIDS, with poetry by Kwame Dawes, images by photographer Andre Lambertson, editing by Robin Bell and music by Kevin Simmonds. See YouTube for the text.

Precious Are The Feet of Those… by Kwame Dawes

Poet: | Nationality: , , | Filmmaker: ,

Another in the Voices from Haiti series produced by the Pulitzer Center, exploring life after the earthquake and focusing on the lives of those affected by HIV/AIDS, with poetry by Kwame Dawes, images by photographer Andre Lambertson, editing by Robin Bell and music by Kevin Simmonds. See YouTube for the text.

Inverting the Deer by Gary Barwin

Poet: | Nationality: | Filmmaker:

I love this poem, and was happy to see Gary Barwin (who describes himself as writer, composer, multimedia artist, performer and educator) doing something interesting with the much-abused video slideshow (kinestatic) form on YouTube. The poem appears in The Porcupinity of the Stars (Coach House, 2010).

Voices from Haiti: Boy in Blue by Kwame Dawes

Poet: | Nationality: , , | Filmmaker: ,

This is the English version of the “visual poem” Boy in Blue with poetry by Kwame Dawes, images by photographer Andre Lambertson, editing by Robin Bell and music by Kevin Simmonds. See YouTube for the text.

I’ve decided to change course here and begin occasionally posting films that consist entirely of still images so I can feature projects like this. The technical term for a film montage of still images (often found in documentary films) is kinestasis, so that’s the name of this newest category at Moving Poems.

I previously shared Dawes’ kinestases with photographer Joshua Cogan, Live Hope Love, which was about living with HIV in Jamaica. Voices from Haiti is a newer series, also produced by the Pulitzer Center, which explores life after the earthquake in Haiti, focusing on the lives of those affected by HIV/AIDS.

At the AWP conference in Chicago the week before last, I had the pleasure of seeing Mr. Dawes speak about the collaborative process involved in making these videos, and was impressed by the extent to which he and the other artists involved in these projects seem to have stumbled upon some of the same principles that make regular videopoems or filmpoems work: the importance of the soundtrack and the need for juxtaposition rather than simple illustration to created multiple narratives in the listener’s head — “reportages in dialogue,” as he put it. These visual poems are creations in their own right, different from purely textual poems, and would not have happened without collaboration between poet, photographer and composer, he said.