You pechakucha, I do!

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And if you, like me, have trouble pronouncing this word, here’s some immediate help!

A couple of weeks ago I did not know what PechaKucha was. I’m beginning to understand. And armed with this small and growing knowledge, along with a big dose of creative energy and OK, an even bigger dose of courage, I’m going for it! On April 26th, I’ll be part of a group of 11 PechaKucha presenters at the British Columbia Society of Landscape Architects Annual Conference ~ Depth of Field, in Vancouver, B.C. 

PechaKucha, Japanese for “the sound of conversation”, and according to Wikipedia;

PechaKucha or Pecha Kucha (Japanese: ペチャクチャ, IPA: [petɕa ku͍̥tɕa],[1] chit-chat) is a presentation methodology in which 20 slides are shown for 20 seconds each.

A presentation on any topic, with supporting visual images (in our case all images and no words allowed) for 6 minutes and 40 seconds in total. NO LONGER! Rumor has it the microphone is turned off after your time is up. Yikes!

You would think 20 seconds would go fast. It does not. To look at one image for 20 long seconds allows for a fair amount of gazing, thus rendering some images downright boring after 10 seconds. So, to choose 20 visually engaging images is not easy. Thankfully I have a family of avid photographers with some very uniquely creative eyes. NO SPOILERS HERE!

And, the topic of my presentation… POETRY. Before I worked out the exact timing, I thought I might read 2 poems. Seems I’ll have time for 4! Just like the images, perception and reality are different. And I am finding as I overlay poetry and images how some combinations jar the senses, how some images support the words or don’t. It is an exercise in patience as well as persistence so far. (And thankfulness for a very kind woman at my husbands office who initiated me in the ways of Power Point.)

I’m not certain how it will all turn out, but I’m excited to be creatively challenged and find a new way to offer up my poetry. I’ll let you know how it goes. And for now, here’s a Vancouver PechaKucha on the topic of the future and what open media, open source and open culture might mean for us.

Which occurs to me, is in part what PechaKucha is about… encouraging an open sharing of what we are most passionate about. Hmm… sounds a lot like Pop-Up-Poetry!

All SDG,

Lesley-Anne.

April is National Poetry Month

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Yes, indeed it is.:)

Inaugurated in 1996 by the Academy of American poets, National Poetry Month has Canadian content. According to Wikipedia, Canadians have been celebrating National Poetry Month since 1999. A young and growing month long word party where poets and poet lovers offer up books, readings, galas, festivals, and workshops… even postage stamps (USA) have been issued to mark the contributions of poetry to culture. GO POETS!

Pop-Up-Poetry thinks a Kelowna celebration is in order, and is popping up in and around town every other day with randomly spontaneous postings of poems on trees, benches, walls, fences, garbage cans and hoods of cars. People are seen reading said poetry. People are overheard saying thank you. People contacting PUP say this is a good idea.

PUP is excited/affirmed/overjoyed/ less lonely happy to know that people really do like poetry 🙂

Here are a few photos of poems popping up as they should, where the wild things are.

SDG,

Lesley-Anne

Pop up poem 1 pop up poem 1a pop up poem 3

Popping up on South Pandosy, Kelowna, B.C.

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English: Alexander Blok's poem 'Noch, ulica, f...

English: Alexander Blok’s poem ‘Noch, ulica, fonar, apteka’ on a wall in the Dutch city of Leiden (corner Roodenburgerstraat/Thorbeckestraat) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

So, as I already mentioned, I set out on a September, sunny afternoon and went down to a local village area to read spontaneously to people I met. First time out my stomach was flipping… first person I asked said , “No I don’t have any time for that.”

I was careful to say I was not selling anything… sometimes I think I over-explained! I tried not to intrude, yet have a certain assertiveness about me. I tried to look friendly, yet not overly so. I tried hard 🙂

And, as I walked and as I risked, I met people who were willing to stop and listen for a couple of minutes while I read to them. I took a couple of different poems with me, tried to choose the right poem for the right person based only on my visual assessment of them… now that’s risky too! And I had a couple of conversations that came out of the reading. One about creativity, the other about the persons own realization that to stop and listen was not what she wanted to do, but when she did, she recognized a need within herself to slow down and pay attention to things other than work and her next appointment. And I didn’t try to draw out anything from these people… they shared their thoughts readily. One fellow challenged me on why I was doing what I was doing. Another creative type suggested it would be good to allow the listener to read along… that it was a bit difficult to follow just by listening to the words. Hmmm… really good stuff… great feedback from real people.

Here’s the poem I read most often.

Thoughts on dogs that get out of the yard

Lesley-Anne Evans

You came back. It could have been worse
like the sound of brakes, teeth
on shattering glass, could have been last gasp
flesh on metal. But, you came back smiling
tongue lolling like it was all a walk in the park
darkness no limit for eyes that glowed
in my flashlight beam another time
you went missing in the orchard after supper.

They say you don’t get the dog you want
but the dog you need. What do they know.
Like I need tongued welcomes, tracks
on Berber, eyes watching forays in the fridge.
Like I need chest pressed angry late night drives
’round the neighbourhood, cold hand squeezing
squeaky toys out windows, heat turned high.

You indulge in romps of freedom while I conjure
you drowned in a neighbour’s pool
you impaled on new house construction down the street
you riding in a stranger’s car, someone who is certain
they’ll do a much better job of keeping you safe at home.

Today we strapped a cow bell to your collar. We’ll hear you in the dark.