#5 The River Was a God

Spoken Word ( Music, New Writing ) Banquet Hall, Banshee Labyrinth

Excerpts from the life's work of a firebrand communist, American veteran poet David Lee Morgan.

Uncompromising creative output from anarchist Morgan, who has put his soul and vision about a better, kinder world into his poems and songs.

No cheap shots at familiar faces of the right and the establishment, but an appreciation of the beauty and ideals on which the left traditionally has built its movement. "Beneath the cobblestones, the beach," as the French say. So go on a-digging and hurl them stones at the police.

An interlude about Santa Claus, and the impossible kindness as displayed in the film Miracle on the 34th Street (1947). Some solid poetry, and a few killer lines that punch hard, like "Toys are meant to be used and broken, not the kids." Brilliant.

Many of the poems flow in stream of consciousness form, in the American talk radio tradition. This is as close to David Foster Wallace's Madame Psychosis you can get.

AND THEN, Morgan takes it up a notch in strange. "The year is 2035, and the computer is waking up on the eve of the socialist revolution." And he sings, inspired by the story of a Vietnam war vet buddy of his. Unfortunately Morgan's booming singing voice leaves much to be desired.

His heartfelt performance unfortunately slips well into campy, and emerges somewhere in the gray zone of serious and unintentionally hilarious.

A story of fighting for the wrong side, and falling in love with a Muslim girl in the aftermath. Excerpts from the musical, in which Morgan plays all seven characters. Unforgettable renditions. "Love is a weapon", or some such sentiment rasped throatily, as only a Vietnam war remembering hippie soul playing a teenage Muslim girl can.

Oh, and the beats that back it all up: incongruous rap, synthesised orchestration and low production values.

But my God how Morgan believes in himself and his revolutionary ideals. Doesn't give an inch. Definitely not for everyone.

What a legend.