13Setting out to review the Overload Poetry Festival Poetry crawl in haiku was a decision I made at the beginning of the evening, after several glasses of wine. Piecing together haiku fragments the following morning (they were scrawled over the cover of a big issue magazine, and on the backs of several of Ben Pobjie’s poems, which he was kind enough to lend me as notepaper) was another interesting exercise.

Devastatingly, (but not unexpectedly, given my not-miniscule responsibility as Overland Overloaded blog co-ordinator), I was unable to stay for the entirety of the last venue. Melbourne poet Tim Hamilton stepped in to cover the Blue Velvet leg of the Overload Poetry crawl. In my umm…poetry-induced haze, I neglected to mention to Tim that I was actually reviewing in haiku. Here is the appropriately rambling part-haiku co-review of the most amazing Overload Poetry crawl ever.

dante`s haiku

The Overload poetry crawl commenced directly after the Overload 2009 launch, kicking off at Dante’s in Fitzroy, with Santo Cazzati taking on the role of poet-herder and MC for the evening.

poetry crawl on
bring on the drunken haiku
santo looks fetching

First up on the poetry crawl stage at Dante’s was West Australian Gabrielle Everall.

gabrielle everall
knee high boots, nick cave t-shirt
bright red poet lips

in black rimmed glasses
‘orbit of your drug fucked eye’
man, what a last line!

using big issue
as note paper for haiku
pobjie gets paper

Fellow West Australian poet Vivienne Glance heated up the stage in the next set

then vivienne glance
takes sultry to dante’s stage
knee high boots again

talks about plum trees
with heart, thanks collected works
and queries meaning

man i dig poets
could be wine talking
but i love you all

‘post literal bliss’
how’s that for poetry, folks?
thank you vivienne

Melbournite, and Overland Overloaded blogger Ben Pobjie brought the Dante`s leg of the crawl to a fitting close.

pobjie takes the stage
he’s huge: a giant
poet laureate

‘It seems like everything nowadays is all in bad fun
What happened to good fun?
What happened to sexual harassment?’
he says
crowd a bit unsure

am laughing so hard
i totally lose haiku…
am back again now

pobjie says jesus
is favourite superhero…
lose haiku again

Santo efficiently brings the Dante’s leg of the poetry crawl to a close and herds us on to the next venue, with some help from his loud mountain-goat horn.

southpaw haiku

South Australian tap-dancing poet Jenny Toune hits the stage on the wooden floorboards of the small back room in Southpaw, just across the street from Dante`s

in tiny packed room
breathless poetry

dancing jenny toune
tap tap breathless tap tapping
punctuated words

Northern Territorian, Kimberly Mann takes the stage. Her new poetry collection is being launched on the 10th as part of Overload.

some tongue twister:
betty batter b—
butter better b—what the?

too much wine by now
but her words are beautiful
anyway, honest

Melbourne poet Sam Byfield takes to the stage at Southpaw.

good to hear byfield again
chance festival meeting two
still sharp with his words

yeah, gently spoken
but man he can pack a punch
into a sentence

And to close, one of my favourite Melbourne poets, Anthony O’Sullivan.

lord o’sullivan
oh i think i am in love:
word-love, not sex kind

if was a white man
would want to be you, jazz cat
bee-bop those words, anth

these haiku will bite:
too much wine and no restraint
way past my bed-time…

Handover of the poetry crawl reviewing baton to Tim Hamilton.

blue velvet

The opening gig for Overload went into it’s final leg at Blue Velvet,home of many fine poetry gigs and poetry slams. Graham Nunn and his guitar-playing accompanist Shiesh Money drew us in with the sort of poetry that makes me want to close my eyes and tune out everything else but the sound of the performance. The back room of Blue Velvet was getting to the final stages of sardine-tin-packed by this stage and this performance’s more cruisey tone was well placed to give those of us who had travelled from the town hall to Dante’s to Southpaw a breathing space before the completion of the evening.

Following Graham and Shiesh was Melbourne poet and travelling raconteur Alex Scott. Be-helmeted and energetic, Alex raised the tempo once more along with the hoots and hollers of the audience and gave the tree of pop TV culture a good shaking, along with some assistance with fellow poet and traveller Randall Stevens.

Finally Ghostboy made his appearance, bringing surreal images of love and marriage to the end of the night. It’s a shame Ghostboy’s only appearance at Overload has come and gone as many were left wanting to see more, but I believe there may be further Melbourne appearances of Ghostboy and his band the Golden Virtues later in the year

– Maxine Clarke, with sincere and sober thanks to Tim Hamilton for reviewing the Blue Velvet leg of the crawl and to Ben Pobjie, for the extract from his poem ‘Sexual Harassment is a BIG ISSUE’.

– Tim Hamilton has been published in Poam, mod_piece, the Dan O’Connell
‘zine, Eclectism, the Moving Galleries project and Concise Delight. He
also has two chapbooks, All Hands and From the Fool To The World (2002).
He featured at numerous poetry venues and has performed his work on
Channel 31 (Red Lobster and Invoke), 3RRR FM and 3SSR FM. Tim
participated in the Overload Poetry Festivals of 2005 and 2008, as well
as the 2009 Emerging Writers Festival.

Currently, he’s the current Vice-President and webmaster of the Overload
Poetry Festival.

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