2016 Kurilpa Poetry Cup Photo Review
SURPRISE ENDING TO CUP FINAL!
2016 has started most auspiciously for the Kurilpa Poets, with the fifth annual Kurilpa Poetry Cup going off with a BANG! that startled the crows from the trees and set car alarms wailing in a three block radius. The Mood was Mellow, the Music was Melodious, the words Wonderous and the Feast was Fabulous.
As Mystery Musician Jeff Usher played Pied Piper, luring unwary passers by into the Olde Croquet Club, the Poets assembled and prepared their material, whilst the newly inscribed Cup glittered enticingly, whispering sweet promises of Victory!
After a few words from MC Reverend Hellfire and a brief poem examining the unfortunate effects of “Tree Blindness”, the Contest commenced. It was the largest field of poets yet assembled for the KPC, with 18 eager contestants throwing their metaphorical hats into the allegorical ring. In order of appearance they were;
Geoffrey “Shakespeare” Evans
Tony “Fats Parameter” Kneipp
Nigel “formerly Freemarijuana”
Gerald “Gerald Keaney” Keaney
Kurilpa newcomer and a first time reader, Bryce bravely started the ball rolling with a creditable performance. The venerable Eido Boru was up next, his poem claiming that “Nobody saw Nothing“. Fiona Privitera frankly admitted that her “Love was not Fashionable“, but went on to the Finals anyway, despite her old fashioned, Luddite ways.
Renegade Trent was the day’s first “palm pilot poet” (as the Reverend dubbed them) with a poem about “My Dream Catcher“. Was he referring to the hi-tech tablet he was reading his poem from, we wonder?
Next up Geoffrey “William Shakespeare” Evans, is never a man short of a word and this day proved no exception. His lament about “Women Who Have Dropped Me” touched a chord in the Judge’s heart and took Geoff through to the Finals.
Veteran Poet Thomas Nelson brought forth the Ghosts of the Dead through the medium of Poetry, whilst “Bohemian Larry” brought us the Iconoclastic Newsflash for the day, “Money Talks, Bullshit Walks“. Kurilpa first time reader Stacey meanwhile reminded us that History walks all around us.
Next up, the man in the Sarong, Andrew Ellery took the stage, amongst other things assuring us he hated the prospect of longevity. His poem and his sarong took him into the Finals. (Both the Rev and Judge David agreed that this climate is far too hot for pants).
Tony “Fats Parameter” Kneipp was the only previous KPC winner competing in this year’s Cup, and threatened us all with the prospect of ever-looming Black Holes of the Spirit.
Gentleman-Poet Michael Vaughan bracketed his erudite offering with quotes from Einstein, whilst former “Freemarijuana Brother” Nigel gave us his take on the ugly blight of Ozzie “True Blue” Patriotism. Oy! Oy!Oy!
It felt appropriate then that Theresa Tracey-Creed took the stand next, with a powerful tribute to her Ancestors, the warrior Kalkadoon.
The audience responded immediately with heart-felt appreciation,
and no-one was surprised when Theresa was selected to go on to the Finals.
Soft spoken Sue Dreeves, alas, had to contend with an overhead jet passing by during her poem, but gamely continued reading.
First time Kurilpa reader Bridie then gave us a poem on good connections, whilst Water-Rat regular Gerrard Bromley gave us an impassioned rant on the ubiquitous evil of “Fucking Advertising”. Palm Pilot Poetess Cynthia Jauch took the time to praise her fellow competitors for their courage and honesty, a sweet gesture indeed.
The Heats ended spectacularly with notorious Bete Noir of the Brisbane Poetry Scene, Gerald Keaney, getting pied at the culmination of his rant (a diatribe with several pointed references to disgraced Uber-Poet Graham Nunn along the way). It was rumoured the pie thrower, young Dean McClure, was “paid to pie” by a shadowy consortium of poets that Gerry has written critical articles about in the Past.
Forensic examination of the pie indicated it was a lemon cheese cake. Enquiries continue.
After all that excitement it was time for a break while the cheese cake was scrapped up. Jeff Usher once more filled the air with his smooth jazz stylings whilst the crowd feasted on the fabulous spread of food brought by the community spirited Water Rats and Friends. A BIG thank you indeed for all those who contributed to the Kurilpa Feast on Sunday. This is the sort of thing that makes Kurilpa special.
Out in the Rotunda the smokers gathered in their Sacred Place to perform their mysterious rituals and discuss the doings of the day, as the sound of the Mystery Musician’s tinkling Ivories drifted across the lawn.
The “Musical Interlude” is an important social occasion for the Water Rats, but the Cup beckoned us to continue. The Rev read a short poem about a melting Cello made of Ice to Jeff Usher’s cool accompaniment, and then it was time for the day’s Feature Set from Poetry Supremo, David “Ghostboy” Stavanger.
David is more David than Ghostboy these days, he tells us, before launching into a batch of powerful new poems. They are all compelling pieces, delivered with complete professionalism. I like them a lot. I think there is a new gravitas to David’s work, even dare I say, a new maturity perhaps? Certainly it is safe to say his Talent has not peaked. The man is writing at the Top of his Form.
At last it is time for the Finals; the four finalists are named. Geoffrey Evans, Fiona Privitera, Andrew Ellery
and Theresa Tracey-Creed run thru their paces. Fiona’s poem is lizard-quick and to the point. Geoffrey goes on at considerable length.. I find myself glad I’m not judging.
Another pause whilst Kurilpa’s Visual Arts Director, Shane Kneipp, fills us in on the legend of Ferdinand Leger..
Ghostboy, the odious task of judging poetry complete, slinks back into the shadows after whispering briefly to MC Hellfire, who then announces the results;
In fourth place..Geoffrey Evans!
In 3rd place.. Theresa Tracey-Creed!
In 2nd place.. Fiona Privitera!
and, in first place, “by a whisker” it is written, is Kurilpa newcomer Andrew Ellery!
Then an unexpected development!
The crowd has barely finished applauding when Judge David starts to explain just how close the judging had been. So close in fact that there were almost joint winners. “Actually”, says the Rev,” I think I have another Cup around here somewhere!” And yes, after a quick rummage thru his knapsack he is indeed miraculously able to produce a stainless steel goblet!
With a second Cup now available, Fiona was duly anointed “Almost Winner” and her certificate amended accordingly.
Then, in a touching display of good sportsmanship, Andrew and Fiona spontaneously started dividing the Winner’s proceeds between them!
Thus the loaf of bread, jug of wine and book of verses were quickly shared out, and the $50 prize money was divided, to the cheers of the approving crowd.
Truly an exciting finish to this years KPC and where else but with the Kurilpa Poets, I thought, could you end up with a result like that.
I’ll let the pictures tell the rest of the story.
The winning poems will be appearing in the Water Rat Gazette in the not too distant Future. Stay tuned for details of next months event.
Words; Unckle Rat
Pictures; Shane K