Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The Daou of Poetry: A conversation with musician and poet Vanessa Daou By Collin Kelley

A portion of my interview by incredible poet, novelist & journalist Collin Kelley from issue #2 of the Ouroboros Review, a stunning new poetry & art journal:

Collin: Let’s start back at the beginning of your life as a poet – who inspired you?

Vanessa: When I was attending Columbia University, I studied poetry with Kenneth Koch. His class was amazing and he was such a communicator for his vision and idea of poetry. He shattered the notion that poetry is something unapproachable and obtuse. I became interested in spoken word because of him and I often read at PostScrypt, the poetry spot at Columbia.


Collin: Joe Sent Me is amazing. The music reminds me of Miles Davis’ score for Elevator to the Gallows, and the spoken word element is really strong here; much more so than on the other records.

Vanessa: Originally, I conceived of Joe Sent Me as a soundtrack of sorts to my own life, perhaps a projection of it, as a kind of sonic document of my experience through time. I have a background and interest in research and one of those interests is in code, with respect to words and the kind written for a computer. Joe Sent Me is an old speakeasy password from the Prohibition-era. You said those words at a door and suddenly you were in this hidden, mysterious place. That idea intrigued me. On the digipack for the album there is a quote from Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s Poetry as Insurgent Art that reads, “Words on a page of poetry are a code for human emotions.” That idea is the heart of the album.

Issue #2 also contains poetry by Michelle McGrane, Iain Britton, Rebecca Gethin, Julie Buffaloe-Yoder, and Robin Reagler, and more.

Make sure to view Hunter Ewen's illustrations & listen to his score to Amy Pence's poetry, follow the link in the NEWS section of Ouroboros

Editors Jo Hemmant of flourescence & Christine Swint of balanced on the edge have created an internet savvy & highly forward-looking Poetry & Art experience.


Dahlia said...

My God! I'm very surprised to hear that The Hook was first written in french... If you have the original text in french, I would love to see it. It's a funny coincidence, because it's my favourite song of Joe sent me with Heart of wax. ^^

Michelle said...

Vanessa, a great interview with Collin. I so enjoyed reading it. Thank you to both of you.