Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Wind Rose Poems/Music at Temple on December 7th!

Some of you may remember the Wind Rose poems I was working on a few years back, inspired by the wind compass Italian sailors used to navigate their journeys.  I wrote these specifically for composer Andrew Litts to set to music in a full song cycle of nine poems.  Andrew and I collaborated on Transmutation, performed by Network for New Music as part of the "Dialogues with Darwin" project.

I am very pleased to invite you Philly folks to hear three of the songs to be performed by Temple University's New Music Ensemble on Monday, December 7th at 7:30 at Rock Hall.   I have listened in on the rehearsals and it promises to be an exceptional performance.

To whet your appetite, here is one of the poems that will be performed.  This poem is inspired by the southeast sirocco wind that causes the flooding in Venice. I hope you can join us to hear these words come to lyrical life.

Acqua Alta

-  sirocco (SE)

she dreams the river rises and instead of sinking, she rises with it, 
her red leather shoes make small islands, shoe-shaped ripples,
as she strolls the street which is her street,
the neighbors, her neighbors, framed in their square panes,
paintings entitled, ‘waking’ or ‘brushing her hair’,  remarkably still –
and it is easier than she would have thought,  to walk on water,
where the tree limbs begin their reaching out, and the birds weave
around her ankles like housecats, and from here she can see 
her own house, her own room, a figure at the edge of the bed – 
on her desk, crisp white paper, her pen overflowing with words.

(c) Beth Feldman Brandt, 2014

Monday, September 28, 2015

Lunar Eclipse

Well, we saw plenty of the Pope here in Philadelphia this weekend but sadly, none of the mega-supermoon lunar eclipse.  How about you folks in other parts of the world?

For those of us who missed it, a poem I wrote many years ago during a chilly winter lunar event -- the triangulated dance of sun, earth, moon.

Lunar Eclipse

slide between the gold that is you
the cold that is everything else

dim the snow-mirrored
night light

soften the tangle
of bare branches

lick at the edges
like icing from a cake

curl around my back
and hold me there

our warmth spilled
on the ember moon

clouds of our misted breath
mingled with the red stars

(c) Beth Feldman Brandt 2008

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Final Hurrah! Last Day of the 5-Day Poetry Challenge

Thanks to everyone for coming along on the Cape May poetry raid every morning and for sending your beach-warm comments.  Glad you enjoyed our beach sojourn together.  Here is the last of the seawall poems...

on the night
of a new moon
high tide meets
the Milky Way.

And for my last poet tag, I pick Ryan Brandon, a young poet with things to say.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Random Acts of Poetry-Day #4

Winding down the 5-Day Poetry Challenge on a cool beach breeze kind of day.

ocean smooths 
the sea bed
palms brush
the sandy sheets

Looks like we might have a rainy day here tomorrow morning so if you haven't checked out this 30-second poetry on the sidewalk walk, that will be your video poem for tomorrow.  No one said it has to be 5 consecutive days of poetry!

And for day #4, I tag my performance mentor and dear friend, Julia Lopez.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Random Acts of Poetry-Cape May Day #3

Day 3 of the 5-Day Poetry Challenge

wave wish breath
on your skin
at night
you dream of rain

Monday's poem is faded...Tuesday's is on its way.

Take a video poetry walk with me here.

And today I tag Haiku ninja, Sarah Martinez-Helfman!

Random Acts of Poetry in Cape May-Day #3

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Random Acts of Poetry Day #2!

It's Day 2 of the 5-Day Poetry Challenge and I headed out to the seawall again with today's poem.

swallow the sun
filled, open-mouthed
against the darkness

A few people stopped to read it.  One person asked me if that was also my poem from yesterday, a bit faded but still there. One very fit jogger guy read it out loud as he ran by and said, "Cool."

Today, I am tagging Eugene Skeef, a London-based, South African-born poet, musician and inspiration.  We crossed paths many years ago and reconnected recently.  I am grateful.

Heading into the sunshine.  Filling up for the winter.

Monday, August 3, 2015

My Random Act of Poetry in Cape May

Kicking off my favorite two weeks of the year in Cape May with an early morning guerilla raid at the end of the seawall -- the spot where runners, bikers, strollers, finish their walk and turn back toward town.

soft with the weight of blue
sky reclines on the horizon
Think I will use this for Day 1 of the 5-Day Poetry Challenge put to me by my mentor A.V. Christie.  Post a poem, tag a poet.  Denice Frohman -- tag, you're it!  Let's get some spoken word in the challenge mix!

Back to the ocean -- aaahh.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Summer Poetry Books-Summer Sale!

If you are busy tending your tomatoes or harvesting your herbs, you might be in the mood for some nature poetry from my books, Sage and Solace.  

Sage is inspired by a rare book from 1633 that catalogued all the plants and their "virtues".  Solace is a tribute to Philadelphia's own Bartram family, American's first botanists, as part of the 2014 exhibition "Bartram's Boxes Remix."

Order Sage here or Solace here (or both)!  Click on "Pick it up from Beth" and I will ship it for free.

Just the thing for some nature moments...perhaps with a nice cool drink...and air conditioning!

Wishing you all a beach-filled and creative summer!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Choose Your Own Poem Adventure!

For the past few months, I have had the good fortune to be in a writing workshop with poet extraordinaire Daisy Fried.  I've used this time to experiment with how many ways I can re-invent poems with sound, drawings, field guides and a few other investigations.

Do you remember "choose your own adventure" books? Start anyplace you like on this sheet.  Follow the arrows.  Go backwards.  Forwards.  Repeat if you like.  End where you think it should end.

Write your own poem and share it in the comment box if you are so inclined!  Have fun!

Save the Date! New RetroLove at Fergie's Pub on July 8th!

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Reading at the Free Library this Saturday!

This coming Saturday, April 18th, is Philly Poetry Day. If you feel like strolling the Parkway, stop by the Free Library Central Branch at 3:30 to hear me and some of my fabulous poetry buddies for a round robin of words:  Alyson Shore Adler, Deidra Greenleaf Allen, Minna Canton Duchovnay, B.E. Kahn and Barbara Russell.

Or join in with a poem of your own.  All are welcome.

Read more about Philly Poetry Day here!

And exciting RetroLove news is in the offing-- stay tuned.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

RetroLove News and New Poem!

Q:  How do you take 12 minutes of RetroLove poems and turn them into an evening-length show?
A:  Hook up with Philly Jazz Project, add music, stories and more poems to the mix!

Just back from a great residency at the Ragdale Foundation where I had time and space to work on creating the concept and new work for the RetroLove show slated for June 2016 in Philadelphia.  I will be updating you as we go along on this jazzy journey and save July 8 at Fergie's Pub when I take some of the new work out for a spin.

Did you know that songs lyrics are copyrighted but song titles are not?  Here is just one of the new RetroLove poems I wrote while I was away.  Do you remember this one?

you send me

flowers when it’s not my birthday
  and on valentine’s day, a nice ripe peach

mail that isn’t bills
  though everything I.O.U.
  I couldn’t repay even on lay-away

you send me

sympathy when I’m blue
  and kisses, bittersweet

sharp looks when I am unkind to
  someone who deserves better
  which I do sometimes

you send me

secret wishes
  when we blow out the candles

send me
  to places I can’t find alone
  even with a map
  and I wouldn’t want to try

you send me

  for my own good –
  but I always, always
  come back.

Beth Feldman Brandt