Saturday, January 7, 2012

Before they set up the carnival (poem for a Bearded Lady)

We had a great night last night with The Shape of a Man at Mad Art Gallery. Lots to say about it, and very few regrets.

One regret: too late to involve her, I learned about Brunhilda Beardsky, The Bearded Lady from The Beggars Carnivale. 
As I told her, my chapbook The Shape of a Man has a Bearded Lady reference. It's in the poem that got Amy VanDonsel and me started on the concept of the show.



I was at the carnival
before they set up the carnival. I saw
them setting it up. I saw
The Pirate when it was buck seats in the dirt,
The Tilt-a-Whirl before it
tilted or whirled, the tonsils of the plastic
clown fitted with balloon lips.

I saw The Bearded Lady
putting on his beard. I saw The Strong Man hit
up in the ass with human
growth hormone, administered by a midget
still in street clothes. The Midway
at the beginning, when there is no money,
only hungry drunken men
with disassembled games, paper tickets, and
candy for kids. I saw you
when no one saw the You in you that dazzles
everyone now, but not me.

-- Chris King

Another regret is we did not prepare a performance poetry component that would work with a smashing success of a Mad Art opening. That's okay, I like having to work around smashing successes!

It does, however, beg for a performance poetry event at Mad Art before the show comes down at the end of the month. I think I'll have to talk to The Bearded Lady about that.

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