Tag Archives: Spoken word

Pictures from the Bentway Variety Show!

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Hello, Precious Blueberries!

I hope that you enjoyed a lovely long weekend with family and friends! I spent my Sunday in Toronto at the Bentway Variety Show. It was a tremendous time, filled with all kinds of wonderful performers: hip hop acts, poets, singers, and comedians. Despite the cold and rainy weather, there was a great audience turnout. I never thought that I would perform underneath a highway…and there I was, performing right underneath the Gardner Expressway!

Here are some pictures of me doing my thing, courtesy of photographer Sherri-Lyn Finlay.

 

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The Bentway Variety Show

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Hello, my Precious Blueberries!

It’s been a long time, hasn’t it? Have you missed me? I’ve certainly missed you! If you are longing for me the way that I have been longing for you, please come see me in this wonderful show that I will be performing in come October 7th, 2018. Rumour has it that there will be chapbooks and other merch for sale…so you can take a little piece of me home with you.

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Check out the event page on Facebook here.

 

Saskatoon Poetic Arts Festival 2018

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Hello, Precious Blueberries! So, here’s a thing that you might not know about me: all next week, I’ll be in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada, performing at the Saskatoon Poetic Arts Festival, alongside several very talented poets! Our heroine is feeling a little intimidated by her colleagues, but she is looking forward to learning so much from them. We’ll be up to all kinds of adventures: workshops, performances, group writing experiences…you name it! We’ll experience a performance and workshop by Sabrina Benaim, of “Explaining My Depression to my Mother” and Depression & Other Magic Tricks fame.

This is a tremendous opportunity for me, and it is one that I would not have had the privilege to experience were it not for the support and generousity of my incredible friends, lovers, dears, queers, and beloved anonymous fans. I am profoundly grateful to everyone who contributed to my YouCaring campaign (whose funding goal was met so quickly I didn’t even have time to make a blog post promoting it!). Plane tickets and other travel expenses are not cheap, and your donations have left this poetess humbled and grateful.

I will take lots of pictures, and I will be sure to keep you all updated on my adventures in Saskatoon!

Trees, Bees, & Babies!

Peace and Blessings,

Beth

spaf photo Photo Credit: Sherri-Lyn Finley of Little Bird Beginnings Doula Services.

Afternoon Thoughts

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I sometimes wish
you would reach across the miles
to somehow smooth over
mountains of wrongdoings
evaporate
oceans of salty tears
and
shine sun rays
on the tropical rainforest of my heart
where the colours just haven’t been as bright
since the day you went away

Again.

But

I remember
how
my fingernails once left bloody crescents on my palms
how
my jaw ached from gritting my teeth until they were broken
how
your empty promises split my skin like the edges of paper
and then
I remember
how much I enjoy sleeping through the night now

But still

I

wish I could hold your hand and giggle once more
wind up at the bottom of another coffee pot together
whisper secrets and promises anew
while writing poems about ghosts that linger in the shadows
I
wish that I was still the one you turned to at 4 AM
wind up choking when I hear your voice
whisper your name to remember the taste of it in my mouth
while writing poems about a love that never made sense to me

Either.

You

pretend that I never happened
only speak my name as a curse
only look my way when time stands still
only hope to keep me broken-hearted
like a child.
But friendships are not like playgrounds
and long after the bell rings
you are going to remember me
if only to sing yourself to sleep
if only to hold yourself when you are lonely
if only to remind yourself of a time when you had a home
and

safety.

Now

I remember your name when I light my Shabbos candles
because no matter what, I still pray that you are blessed
I may not be able to look at the pictures yet
but the memories are never far from my mind
I will always look for you in a crowded room
I will always answer the phone when you call.
My heart will always be full of you.

I will see you in another lifetime
where our history together will be as light as butterfly wings
and we will be together again.

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Creative Commons License
This work, “Afternoon Thoughts” by Beth Murch, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Building Community Through the Arts

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On March 1st, 2017, I will be performing at the Kitchener Public Library at an event called “Building Community Through the Arts”, presented by Wilfrid Laurier University’s Women & Gender Studies’ department. There will be lots of great local artists and juicy community conversation regarding topics related to social justice. Please come out!

Event information can be found here.

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Shiver For Me…

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It’s cold! Every winter, I ask myself why I haven’t left frigid Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario for the balmy climate of Vancouver, British Columbia…and then I remember that I’m a poet, and I have no money. A gal can dream, though, and those dreams taste mighty sweet since I can remember my trip to Vancouver so clearly.

 

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I may have had an erotic moment with this tree.

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Commercial Drive with hippies, communists, mountains, and poets!

While I struggle through the season of chillblains (not just for Dickension characters, apparently!), let me catch you up to what I have been busy doing!

In October, the Kitchener-Waterloo Slam Team of 2015 went to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, and we placed 5th in the country at the Canadian Festival of Spoken Word! Yeah! We came hard and we beat big name teams like Toronto and Guelph. I’m proud of our team’s work!

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Queen B was very impressed with the bee theme on a Saskatoon street corner!

This poem earned me a standing ovation from the audience and some mixed reactions from my colleagues.

 In December, I performed at a fundraiser for Plan B Co-operative KW, a not-for-profit providing queer community spaces and resources for folx in Waterloo Region. It was called “Homo For the Holidays” and featured some amazing hiphop from 8th Iotomic.

In January, I performed at one of my favourite annual events – Cliterature! The show, put on by Shelley Secrett of Secrett Events, is a celebration of wimmin’s sexuality through song, dance, storytelling, poetry, and pretty much anything you can think of. Yes, there are vulva cookies. Anyway, it was a rocking good time with lots of laughter, some tears, a whole lot of kombucha, and a very generous audience.

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Pre-show selfie!

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It’s showtime! Photo courtesy of Carolina Miranda.

Next up will be a feature in Brantford, Ontario on February 5th, 2016 (it’s an anti-Valentine’s Day slam!) and my super awesome FUNdraiser, Step Up, Speak Out: A Celebration of Resistance, which is happening on February 20th! Come out! Come out and play with me!

Step Up, Speak Out: A Celebration of Resistance

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Legal fees? More like BEAGLE FLEAS! hyuck, hyuck, hyuck!

Other than some wicked writer’s block, that’s about all that’s new with me! I’ll leave you with a writing exercise I did today trying to inspire a poem. The task was to create a list of nouns. Here is my list:

figs, dates, earth, brown, calendula, bees, sunflowers, rose petals, bee hives, honey, alchemy, sand glass, robin’s eggs, twigs, marsh, cemetery, wildfire, smoke, barn, nettle, clover, dew drop, bluegrass, socks, trees, paint, clay, rope, anchor, salt, amber, candle, incense, lighter, crystals, ice, snow, apples, coffee, cigars, apothecary jars, beeswax, maps, books, and sextant.

I couldn’t come up with a poem out of all that, but maybe you can! Share and give me some inspiration!

Trees, Bees, and Babies!

Peace and Blessings,

Bethy ❤

Easy

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“You’re so lucky,” they say. “The words come so easily to you.”

Easy.

This poem took me three days to write
and I carved out my insides with a pen like a serrated spoon attacks a grapefruit.

Easy.

The hopscotch jump from bottle to cigarette to coffee to knife drawer…
My every sentence a secret suicide note written in the blood type of ink.

Easy.

Pushing past the hunger in my belly that punches me like a fist,
Convincing myself that if I can only keep writing the desire to eat will fade,
The fear of poverty will evaporate,
That the Universe will move so that my rent will get paid
Just this month…just this month…just this month…

Easy.

Words don’t just “come” to me like a sheepdog bounding towards his human companion –
They are chipped away from each of my bones like ice from a wedding sculpture,
Melting before I can even hold them in my mouth.
Poems do not arrive with grace:
I pull them from me with tweezers and rubbing alcohol like splinters from infected flesh.
When I stand before you with a piece in hand,
I am more propped up than a corpse in a Victorian memento mori photograph,
I’m leaning on a bewildering sense of self-satisfaction that comes from stringing sentences together like patio lanterns.

Easy.

It’s easy not to write another poem.
It’s easy to believe that the new poem will never be as great as the last poem.
It’s easy to believe that words are like bombs and that poems are PTSD flashbacks.
It’s easy to believe that no one reads what you put down on the page and that you will be forgotten.

But the words…
The way the words come…
The way my thoughts manifest into lines for you to read…
Those are anything but

Easy.

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Image by Mr Fox Composting

Creative Commons License
This work, “Easy” by Beth Murch, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.