I'm off to Cambridge this weekend for a poetry weekend, so I'll not be writing much for the next few days. It's an event dedicated to the more avant-garde side of poetry so it'll be very interesting to see what I think. It will probably give me lots of ideas for poetry, and explode my head with new ideas. Though, knowing me, my initial response will probably be to write a sonnet. I did that as a response to the Text Festival in Bury: all that exploded text, words scattered about the walls made me want to go in the opposite direction. Since then, I've written a found poem and a cento, so it's also made me want to explode my own poetry a little.
I think that's probably where I am at the moment. I don't want to keep rewriting the same poems, on the same few themes, so I'm trying to get away from it. Explore other options. Well, maybe sometime next week, I can report back on what I've found.
Actually, I was reading something the artist Richard Serra said that was intriguing. He said that art isn't a democracy - that is, I guess, that it isn't for everyone. I half agree- but would want to say that "all art is not for everyone." Most people like some art: whether it's the music of Beethoven or Talking Heads, or Jack Vettrianno or Jackson Pollock, and whether it's "good" or "bad", it's still art. But there's always stuff we don't like too. I like some pretty weird stuff myself, but there's plenty of pretty weird stuff that does nothing for me. I've got reasons, somewhere tucked in my subconscious, but mostly it's just because it doesn't light my fire.
It's not elitist to say that not everyone will like what you do. It's a fact of life. You just explore the ideas that fascinate you and hope that someone else will find them as fascinating as you do. And if that's half-a-dozen people or half a million doesn't really matter.
The Winner of the 8th Fortnight Poetry Prize is...
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