The purpose of Open Mic Spotlight is to shed light on artists in the community. The first string of articles will focus primarily on our poets. With the reincarnation of TOAST Open Mic Poetry going on its 4th month, poets from all walks of life have dusted off their notepads and have exposed their heartstrings to the Windsor Spoken Word community.
In this issue of the Windsor Independent, the spotlight is on Adriane Clipperton, a Toronto native and University of Windsor graduate who majored in Drama and Creative Writing. I sat down with Adriane in her downtown Windsor apartment and discussed her beginnings as a writer, her thoughts on the spoken word, along with any other fun facts she was willing to divulge, all while chowing down on some homemade brownies and sipping on coffee and JD.
A young woman with words at her fingertips and poetry running through her veins, she was always a soft-spoken girl growing up. As a kid, Adriane had a minor issue with her hearing, and the personal exchange between individuals proved somewhat difficult, even having to attempt to read lips at times to help with the communication process. After having a procedure to fix the problem, not only did her ears open, but also did her creative mind. Like a Pandora’s Box of creativity, the urge to communicate better served as a catalyst for developing her love for bringing words to page.
When asked about reading poetry in front of an audience and the art of “spoken word poetry,” she had a very insightful perspective:
“[On stage] Even when you have [your poem] in front of you, at certain points, you know the direction or the emotion that your building and you have to look at the audience. It’s SO MUCH about the interaction. If you’re not conscious of that while it’s happening, I think you lose some of what’s important in spoken word poetry.”
Being an artist not just in poetry, but many other forms including painting and drawing, she believes that writing poetry by hand, for some, has become a lost art. Poets nowadays write poetry on computers and even go as far writing on their phones. The new age of technology has changed the way poets communicate and write their words. When speaking of writing poetry digitally, she isn’t the biggest fan.
“I dislike what happens. I create words I don’t mean. I have the connection; the physical act of writing pen to paper is like drawing. Sometimes a poem is created just by the look of words on a page.”
Apart from her obvious interest in writing, I asked Adriane to list her favorite things, which to my amusement, was easier said than done:
Pastimes: singing, painting, drawing, baking and sewing.
Likes: ska, vintage, punk, abstract art, rap, reggae, weed, cats.
Movie: Girl, Interrupted (which was picked arbitrarily)
Book: On the Road by Jack Kerouac
After the interview, we traveled to FM Lounge to listen to some punk rock ska, and to skank the night away. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Adriane for her time and the delicious brownies.
Where We Sleep – Adriane Clipperton
A pile of garbage, a person, it stands up, wafts out, millions of corners and alleyways and loose ends and bacteria
It speaks, it speaks, it says
“I see without speaking I hear the vibrations but not the sounds, yes
not one but three, nine, 6 billion worldwide all shifty eyed and nameless
all in house and under sky but home less, less, more, yes”
It traverses as garbage will, carried in swirls like dancing detritus, floats without stepping too hard on the ground for the footprint of nobody is the man without feet and the finest shoes
“Look, see, sea? I am not the one in shambles I am the I the am
say it with me hold it against me it is clear don’t you understand how could you?
not one but 13, an elevator and escalations of birds thrown up
I have seen what the blind taste, gourmet silt and sand in shades of chunk”
and it speaks, it speaks again as it tangos inside the filth of a gutter, laughing gutturally hoping to be found appropriate,
crackle crackle, lines from the screens of old movies vertical moving,
it spittles and drips onto the floor in passion at the phrase:
it says, “Now.”
inwardly sighs, quakes, shakes,
sleeps until bedtime.
you know those dreams you get
and cigarettes are put out on palms
but the crowd pushes past you and you you you man feel so small
you know a man he said in riddles
a whisky wish of slurred syllables and chest rattling
and I cried I was so lost and hungry and I know that feeling…
So many ankles and shoes
count scuffs and laces trailing bowed to concrete
curbs balance on the edge and,
warm and steaming insulation perfume and,
the smell takes some getting used to and,
one step carefully placed to be slower than the last
sift into the ashes, fingers deep down into the dust
‘I know why the cold goes down to your bones’
pieces are all that is left pieces leftovers piling
feel it saturate– bones we save for the broth
waking up on the sidewalk a bench against the wall of an alcove
dew dampens your skin and everything is so heavy
bury deeper gotta be a windblock if you are down far enough
plastic has this stench that assaults your nostrils after being so close to it for so long
sit and close your eyes a wall between the wind the world and the hum of
the constant breath .
To hear more from Adriane and/or many other talented poets come to TOAST Open Mic, every 3rd Tuesday of the month at Phog Lounge, with the next one being May 21, 2013.
Sign up: 8:00, Start Time: 9:00
FB: TOAST open mic @phog
By: Benny Alexander