Poems on the Buses 2004
Endre Farkas & Carolyn Marie Souaid
In 1979, Tom Konyves, conceived and executed the idea of putting poems on the buses of Montreal. It was a bilingual project consisting of 10 francophone and 10 anglophone poets’ poems on the buses of Montreal.
In 2004 Carolyn Marie Souaid and I reprised the idea. Here is a visual record of this project. The idea behind the project was to use public space to reach out to people who normally would not come in contact with poems, to make poetry part of daily life, to have poems criss-cross the city, to make it a mobile art.
Montreal is a city that has always had a plethora of poets. It is also a city that has been poeticised more than any other city in Canada. (probably). My private/public gift to Montreal is to post poems by poets dead and alive about Montreal.
The first one is A.M. Klein's Montreal. This poem is Klein's attempt to capture indigenous origins, the bilingual essence, the multicultural reality and the poet's connection to the spirit of the city..
Murders in the Welcome Café
The Mysterious Muse Warns.
Nobody, nothing, is who or what they seem.
They show up at your door,
in your dreams, in all sorts of disguises.
Lost souls of the night,
sometimes as a trick, rarely as a treat.
You figure because you give, you should get?
Not so easy my friend.
Love. Grace. A poem is not earned nor learned.
It’s a mystery found in the daily chores spring-cleaned.
It’s the voice in the shower singing perfectly of imperfect love.
It’s the hunger in the belly feeding the hunger in the belly.
It’s the human cry unheard by passers-by.
It’s you standing erect, staring at the sun, declaring
I have been working on my videopoem Murders in the Welcome Café since the summer of 2015. I (we) have finished 99% 0f the shooting and are now in the editing phase. I hope to have it finished by April 2016. (Famous last words.)
What is a videopoem? If you want to know the theory behind it, from which i have deviated, see the manifesto available at Tom Konyves.
My notion of "videopoem" is the merging the elements of poetry: language, sound, text with video not to interpret a poem but to create a poem. To use video as a pen with which to write the poem. See examples of this genre by going to my videos in the video section of this website.
Usually a poem is written by an individual. It is a solitary process. Videopoems are, in my case, collaborative. In this poem it is created in collaboration with videographer Martin Reisch, actors Eric Davis, Katherine Turnbull, hair stylist Marie Ossa and makeup person Penelope Frechette and advisor, assistant director Carolyn Marie Souaid.
Here are some shots of the process.