Tagged: spoken word

helium

helium rudy francisco button poetry 2017helium by Rudy Francisco, 3/5

By the time my library bought this book for me (have I mentioned how much I LOVE libraries?!) and I got around to reading it, I had forgotten why I requested it in the first place and only remembered a vague feeling of excitement and anticipation.  Despite the positive feelings going into it, I didn’t really connect well with most of Francisco’s poetry and found the vocabulary a bit forced, cliched, and melodramatic.  It wasn’t until I reached the penultimate poem that I remembered why I had looked the book up in the first place and also why I wasn’t enjoying it.  Earlier, I had come across Francisco’s powerful spoken-word performance of “Complainers” and it had inspired me to find out more about his work.  Turns out, spoken-word poetry needs a speaker just like a song needs a singer.  Both the artist and the performance are such an integral part of the art that it is virtually lifeless without these elements.  So, this book has value as a physical collection of Francisco’s writings and as a way that fans can provide financial support for him, but to really explore his work, I think YouTube is a better option.

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