Filmmaker: Melissa Diem

Hare by Carolyn Jess-Cooke

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Irish poet, writer and visual artist Melissa Diem’s translation into film of a piece by the Belfast-based poet Carolyn Jess-Cooke, another of the commended poems from the 2013 National Poetry Competition. One of the judges, Julia Copus, said of it:

The carefully controlled domestic setting of this poem is held in a tense balance with the uncontrollable wildness of the outside world. Here, a common disquiet – centring on the fragility of a newly-created life – is freshly captured by the surprising image of a hare, that could at any moment go bounding off for good over the night fields.

The Poetry Society and Alastair Cook’s Filmpoem project deserve commendations of their own for enabling such inspired poetic collaborations as this.

Who’d have thought by Melissa Diem

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The latest film from Irish poet-filmmaker Melissa Diem. According to the description on Vimeo, it was filmed in Peru and Ireland. Sound production is by Colm Slattery.

Appraisal by Melissa Diem

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A poetry film by Irish poet and filmmaker Melissa Diem, with sound production by Colm Slattery.

Screened at FILMPOEM 2013 as part of the main programme, Dunbar, Scotland.
Selected for the CologneOFF IX – 9th Cologne International Videoart Festival
Selected for the 2013 VISIBLE VERSE FESTIVAL

A poetry film that explores ideas of alienation and personal identity in relation to others and by testing the limits within the self. Filmed in Ireland in 2013.

the one about the bird by Melissa Diem

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A striking videopoem by Irish poet, writer and visual artist Melissa Diem. Here’s the description from Vimeo:

Screened at the BELFAST FILM FESTIVAL 2013
One of the finalist at LA PAROLA IMMAGINATA – TREVIGLIOPOESIA 2013 in ITALY

A poetry film based on the poem, the one about the bird, written by Melissa Diem and filmed in Ireland. It explores the human attraction to horrific events through the medium of film. And the idea of the desire to stop and begin again when a situation, an experience, humanity… seems to have gone so horrendously wrong that it is beyond the point of return and can never be undone.

The poem and the visuals were influenced by a black and white film (source unknown) in which children stone a wounded bird to death. I saw this clip of film at a young age and the scenes and all they implied were so startling to me that I have never forgotten the images. Other cinematic influences include the film ‘Don’t Look Now’ in which images suddenly surface in a fleeting glimpse like repressed memories shifting through consciousness.