Audio

Hand Jobs, a poem by Ron Kolm

Posted on by Ron Kolm Posted in Audio, Daily, Poetry, Ron Kolm, Writing | Comments Off on Hand Jobs, a poem by Ron Kolm

Hand Jobs

It’s my first day on the job —
A factory making steel drums.
“You’ll be rubbing acid on new
Welds to seal them,” the foreman
Tells me. “Here’s some rubber
Gloves,” he says, throwing me a pair.
“You don’t want to get that shit
On your skin.” I put them on
And feel air on my hands.
The tips of the gloves are
Worn away, and I wiggle
My fingers for his benefit.
“Sorry, dude, it’s all we got,”
He says, as I give them back
And head out to the parking lot
Get into my truck and smash
The dashboard with my fist.
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Urban Graffiti Mix #6

Posted on by urbangraffito Posted in Audio, Ephemera, Music, Urban Graffiti Mixes | 2 Comments

A massive mix, focusing heavily on themes and subject matter so often so severely lacking in Canadian literature. Indeed, a condemnation on the current state and status of Canlit: it’s writers, publishers, and critics. A mix that reveals the full extent of what is creatively possible to the transgressive, urban post-realist writer. Truly, truly exceptional works.

Transgressive, discursive, tracks concerned with the struggles of hard edged urban living, alternative lifestyles, deviant culture – presented in their most raw and unpretentious form: music, fiction, poetry, monologues. We are the stories we tell. Yet another avenue for risky, dangerous writing: off the page. For far too long, and far too often literary recitals have been a literary crap shoot, depending on the preparedness and the oratory skills of the reader. At last, the technology has reached the level where individual authors, poets, and fiction writers can produce their own audio works to promote their printed counterparts. As editor, I welcome any and all such audio works for inclusion in the ongoing series of Urban Graffiti Mixes.

Urban Graffiti Mix #5

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Transgressive, discursive, tracks concerned with the struggles of hard edged urban living, alternative lifestyles, deviant culture – presented in their most raw and unpretentious form: music, fiction, poetry, monologues. We are the stories we tell. Yet another avenue for risky, dangerous writing: off the page. For far too long, and far too often literary recitals have been a literary crap shoot, depending on the preparedness and the oratory skills of the reader. At last, the technology has reached the level where individual authors, poets, and fiction writers can produce their own audio works to promote their printed counterparts. As editor, I welcome any and all such audio works for inclusion in the ongoing series of Urban Graffiti Mixes.

The editor generously thanks bart plantenga for his contribution of several rare, hard to find tracks in this mix.

Urban Graffiti Mix #4

Posted on by urbangraffito Posted in Audio, Ephemera, Music, Urban Graffiti Mixes | Comments Off on Urban Graffiti Mix #4

Transgressive, discursive, tracks concerned with the struggles of hard edged urban living, alternative lifestyles, deviant culture – presented in their most raw and unpretentious form: music, fiction, poetry, monologues. We are the stories we tell. Yet another avenue for risky, dangerous writing: off the page. For far too long, and far too often literary recitals have been a literary crap shoot, depending on the preparedness and the oratory skills of the reader. At last, the technology has reached the level where individual authors, poets, and fiction writers can produce their own audio works to promote their printed counterparts. As editor, I welcome any and all such audio works for inclusion in the ongoing series of Urban Graffiti Mixes.

Urban Graffiti Mix #3

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Usually a writer learns more from failure and rejection than from anything else, I suppose, given the tremendous amount of both the writers I know seem to have accumulated throughout the years. That is, except for one particular and peculiar occasion in which I learned more from what at first appeared a writing success.

It was May or June of 1986, the CBC radio program Alberta Anthology had accepted a suite of my poems for broadcast. Along with the letter of acceptance was a standard ACTRA contract which I was required to sign if I wanted to be paid the $140.00 the program was offering for the broadcast of my poems. Being a young and hungry writer, I signed the contract and mailed it back to the CBC.

To say I was dissatisfied with the broadcast of my suite of poems would have been an understatement. The actor the program had hired to recite my poems had no concept of each poem’s unique nuances, inflections, vernacular, tropes and idioms. Even worse was the hokey, mawkish background music which further altered the original meaning of my works.

As final insult, though, the same contract I had signed to get paid had also given them the right to censor language they deemed offensive. Fuck became Frick. Shit, crap. Hell, heck. And so on. To me, it was an early and important lesson I learned in the commodification of Canlit, and how it determines content in Canada’s conformist publishing culture.

That single experience has motivated me through the years as a writer, editor, and publisher to never take for granted what it is the writer says, and how it is they say it, never altering one word without their prior knowledge or approval. As you listen to this and other Urban Graffiti Mixes, imagine just how much their meanings would be altered by the arbitrary changing of a word here, or a phrase there.

Note:

Special thanks goes to CO-OP Radio 102.7 FM and the hosts of the program Wax Poetic from which the works of both Catherine Owen and Evelyn Lau have been excerpted. Click on each writer’s name, respectively, to listen to their entire interviews at length.

Listen to the entire Stuart Ross reading at the Test Reading Series, here.