When We Two Parted by Lord Byron

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Othniel Smith specializes in poetry mashups with images from the Prelinger Archives. He made this one with “Images from ‘Just The Two Of Us’, aka ‘The Dark Side Of Tomorrow’ directed by Barbara Peeters and Jack Deerson (1970).” The reading is by Kristin Hughes from LibriVox.

The Fortune Teller by Robert Krut

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Another videopoem by Nick Paonessa of lowercase productions in support of Robert Krut‘s new collection This is the Ocean.

My Time by Jade Anouka

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Another video by Sabrina Grant (with assistance from Anneka Henry) starring actor-poet Jade Anouka. Grant also interviewed Anouka on the set of “My Time.” I particularly like what Anouka says about trusting the director to bring her own vision to the project:

Lifted by Jo Bell

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A recent filmpoem by Alastair Cook, featuring the words and voice of the U.K. Canal Laureate Jo Bell. On my two-month visit to the U.K. this summer, I was charmed by the whole canal scene. We ran into canals almost everywhere we went, and the Grand Union Canal was a great place to go walking near where I was staying in London. Most fascinating of all were the locks, and this filmpoem really captures their essence, I think.

This is one of four filmpoems that Alastair Cook produced for the Poetry Society in partnership with the Canal & River Trust as part of the Canal Laureate 2013 project, all screened at London’s Southbank Centre on National Poetry Day (October 3), which this year had the theme of Water. I’ll probably post the others in due time, but if you’re impatient, all four are featured in a post at Jo Bell’s site Waterlines: Canal and River Poetry. She says, in part:

My poem, Lifted, is about canal locks in general but specifically about Lock 30 of the Trent & Mersey, near Roger Fuller’s boatyard in Stone, Staffordshire. This stretch of water is very familiar to me, and to anyone who travels that great arterial east-west waterway through the English Midlands. This footage was shot on my own boat by Alastair, who proved to be not only an artist but a keen and capable crew member.

The Perseids by Lucy English

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While most of what I categorize as videopoetry here comes about as the result of a filmmaker (who may also be the poet) making a video version of a preexisting text, in this case, filmmaker/musician Swoon (Marc Neys) sent British poet Lucy English a couple of musical prompts and asked her to write a poem in response. The music she chose then became the soundtrack for a videopoem using her reading and some found footage. Swoon blogged about the process, quoting English at length:

Rather than Marc supplying images to an existing poem or me creating a poem in response to images. Marc suggested that I choose a sound track from a few he had chosen. The one I liked sounded mysterious. The tension also built up as the track progressed. I didn’t force the image but what I saw in my mind was a starry sky. I decided to follow my emotional response. The feeling the track created in me was one of wistfulness and sadness.

The previous weekend I had watched the Persieds meteor shower, from a hotel room in Stratford on Avon. This experience, so different from a youthful experience of being outside on a summer’s evening, blended with the soundtrack. What I wanted to write about was how difficult it is to be spontaneous, and indeed naively optimistic, when we are older.

When I was younger I didn’t seem to worry about logistics, such as how was I going to get to a place, or how was I going to get back, I just went somewhere. I also had a baby in my early twenties and I used to take him with me as well.

So the poems is wistful. It is about wanting to feel that carelessness and optimism. It’s about being young and what gets lost when you get older.

I sent the poem to Marc and let him have free range about the images to choose. I liked what he selected. He didn’t focus on the night sky and the meteor shower but instead he used images of children playing in the summer. The repeated sections of film, were to me, like the repetition of memory itself. The summer day and the summer night become blended and the colour changes from yellow to dark blue. His first version was more about the day time and less about the night and I suggested that the final merge into the starry night/ specks of dust could be longer. He agreed with this and now the film ends with this longer sequence.

I find the final result moving. There is a strange tension between the words of the poem and the flickering images. The sound track offers a level of emotional depth to the wistfulness of the poem. This is my first poetry film collaboration and I have found the process inspiring. More!!!

Read the rest of Swoon’s blog post.

Back to you by Karen Mary

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Filmmaker-poet Karen Mary (full name: Karen Mary Berr) writes,

Back to you is a poem I wrote in 2011 and revisited in 2013, to express what I could feel in terms of longing.
Not a longing for any kind of after life, or any other state of being, but especially for a very embodied and carnal experience, that seems to have no limit in itself but is limited by death. I decided to express this through sensuality and sexuality for I consider both experiences devastatingly founding, timeless and unforgettable. This is the expression of a kind of reversed-longing, when all is gone, for our incarnation.

Here’s the link to the poem :
Here’s the first version (2011):

Psalm 42 by Jina Davidovich

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From G-dcast:

G-dcast held a competition, The Psalms Project, inviting Jewish artists and poets to reinterpret a Psalm of their choice. We picked four winners from all of the brilliant entries. This piece was written and performed by Jina Davidovich and animated by Jeremy Shuback. It looks into Psalm 42, which poses the question ‘Where is your G-d?’. This was made possible with the generous support of The Koret Foundation, as part of an initiative to cultivate Jewish peoplehood.

Via Velveteen Rabbi.