I was reading Li Po last night. ‘Long since I turned to my East Ranges: How many times have their roses bloomed?’ The East Ranges are in the Chekiang province, I have never been but I would love to visit, Li Po was writing about a poet he was inspired by called Duke Hsieh’s dancers, the roses refer to the Rose Grotto. There is a legend that said the Duke would get his beautiful dancing girls directly from the Rose Grotto – as if they were really fairies. The Duke in this poem isn’t his favourite though – that was Duke Hsieh Ling-yun, a fifth century eccentric poet. There was also Hsieh T’iao. A lot of Hsieh. I too have been trying to embrace the moon lately and I have been messing about on boats also. I spent hours in a pedalo watching reeds and reflections, ducks and a terrapin, very mellow. I love the absurdity in a lot of Li Po, and the length of poetry titles such as: Coming Down From Chung-Nan Mountain By Hu-Szu’s Hermitage, He Gave Me Rest For the Night And Set Out the Wine. I love that. The poem itself is just totally simple, Li Po remembering a good night out at a friends, perhaps not much has changed in some ways since 701-62 and now. I like his simplicity, I like his nature, I like his wine and his moon and his words. Check out this, absurdly it is Jodie Foster reading The River Merchant’s Wife – A Letter By Ezra Pound, taken from a poem by Li Po and translated by Ernest Fenollosa.
Anyhow, moons and boats and wine aside, I have two poetry readings coming up. I will be reading at the Book Club Boutique on the 2nd July from Dwang and alongside other writers who are in Dwang 2 so that is pretty cool, then on the 3rd July it will be Degenerate Sweethearts & Rebel Scum at The Coach and Horses which will be a great night. Midst that I got my degree, a First Class Honours with grades well beyond, well just well beyond, having left school so young I am glad to have taken it on and done it, you know, good. Here is Can doing Mushroom from Tago Mago, am off to look for the Rose Grotto Jxx