Selected poets from Poetry Night at Kafein

ariana-and-noah poetry

This summer was my first foray into trying my hand at reading poetry. The Résonance Reading Series is not even a year old and this summer saw a new addition to regular poetry events in Montreal.

Kafein began hosting Poetry Nights: a combination of poetry readings, DJ sets (Noah Bick), and delicious drinks. A small eclectic community has begun to form around these word wielding nights. Below are four pieces by poets who have left impressions on my poetry crushin’ heart.

untitled by Ariana Molly

I want to be a kid and do kid things and follow (break) kid rules.
Adulthood is a bunch of mumbo jumbo.
What happened to time outs and 8 p.m. bed time?
What happened to being my dad’s little fish and my mom’s little helper?
I just want to dance to ‘Beat It’ and the Beach Boys Endless Summer vinyl in my basement that had the swings my dad built.
I want my backyard pool and my turtle shaped sandbox.
I want my mad science birthday party where I wore metallic purple lipstick to match my purple butterfly dress.
I want platform shoes and colourful scrunchies and barrettes.
I want to be a virgin.
I want my powder pink room with the hand painted accents my mom paid a fortune for.
I want my canopy.
I want it to be cute when I act like a princess.
I want my hair to curl with the innocence it used to and I want to cut it badly with safety scissors.
What happened to my Dr. Seuss collection?
What happened to my parents’ wedding photos?
What happened to my childhood home the eggplant coloured dining room?
I want my pink plaid window seat I built with my dad.
I want my pink polka dot mini skirt because it made me feel like a rock star.
I want my collection of tapes.
Is it wrong to miss prissy private school and backstabbing little girls?
Is it wrong to miss my normal family?
I wanted to be an adult so badly because adulthood was romanticized.
I walked out of the womb an adult.
I wanted to wear a g-string and have boobs.
I wanted a boy to call me baby.

***

Ariana Molly kick-started Poetry Night and has watched it blossom from infanthood to what it is today. She came here one year ago from Ottawa and has nestled quite nicely into life in the big city. She also works as the Style Editor of local web magazine The Main and attends Concordia University as a photography major.

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gonzo

itching to break this bone prison by Gonzo Nieto

if you’re still itching to break this bone prison
be your own prism, shatter the lights and grow brilliant
there’s a billion of folks who froze quick and won’t listen
they call themselves adults, I relate more to grown children
with a sense of wonder and some jokes cracked, ponder the smokestacks
if it’s about the process, why are we rushing through so fast?
I barely made it out the door though the choke gas
now I’m out here in the cold breeze, eyes closed
hands out not asking for change, just to hold peace
.. actually I take back the change bit
I’ve got this list written, I could try and explain
see I’ve been doing some thinking, not on purpose, it just happened
but I don’t think I’d be happy with my final pictures caption
if it said, “this man had talent but he didn’t have the passion
had the tools to make it work but never worked to make it happen
grappled with abstractions and was always glancing backwards
losing focus and being passive were the hallmarks of his actions”
I dealing with a loss of potential, the cost of correcting
the habits passed down from the past to the present
gas, too expensive, I’ll find my own ride inside
to find comfort in and ride out these messes
with pride intact, ‘til I die, in fact
‘cause you can’t own your present ‘til you own your past
existential facts you can’t avoid or evade
you’ll go mad trying to find holes to escape from ‘em
I once thought I knew more than I do now
sporting a loose crown, core resting on loose ground,
battles and feuds waged, but no challenging truths found
and when I look back now, all I wear’s a confused frown
so short-sighted.. guess it’s good that we grow, right?
or grow left or grow despite our best efforts to freeze time
but never regret strides, and keep in mind it’s just a ride
and find clarity behind those closed eyes
‘cause if you’re still itching to break this bone prison
be your own prism, shatter the lights and grow brilliant
there’s a billion of folks who froze quick and won’t listen
they call themselves adults, but I relate more to grown children

***

Gonzo is a spoken word performer and writer. His work seeks to reflect the fluidity and nonlinear nature of thought, and tends to put an emphasis on complex rhyme schemes and tightly-controlled rhythm. He performs around the city of Montreal, where he is pursuing a degree in psychology and neuroscience.

***

Concrete Lights by Cam Novak 

We are lost in the darkness of city lights.
The truth is concrete will never replace the dirt beneath our feet.
The trees reach for space they created and look for refuge.
There are too many feet on this trail, where do the bloodless live anymore?
A forced intervention in a conflict never imagined. A hole in the heart that swells the eyes of those who look at the horizon.
A birth of an idea, this is what we need.
Those Cherished feelings of hope to help those who walk their path and face their dreams and not their feet.
We’ve left this too long, my lips wont stay shut.
They have a mission to open wide and encourage the mind to follow.
Strange how we have forgotten what gave us our minds.
Memories are piled into garbage bags and turned into soil for rotten thoughts.

***

Cam is a self-taught, multi-disciplinary artist who’s work tackles many issues and questions revolving around the use of public space and identity. For more of his work, see is website.

***

andrew

the martyr by Andrew Jamieson

spewing from your mouth
that stench
cheap smoke
cheap drink
yah, you’re shaking with that rage

and this boy is sad,
you, you made him sad
and this boy is scared,
yah man you made him scared.

he is trying so hard to hate you

because YOU’RE GETTING WORSE
and suddenly! it’s common fucking knowledge

you tell him no, no
like he’s a child
and he wants to defy you
but his mouth
it’s filled with blood.
and he wants to beg for mercy
but that kiss took more than his breath away.
this is your fantasy and you know everything he is going to say.

you want him to leave,
don’t you?? to run,
run run run runaway
but he won’t, he caaan’t,
cuz you’re a drug…
YOU’RE A DRUG!

(but nobody will tell me what it fucking means.)

***

Andrew Jamieson is a  writer, director, actor and performance artist living in Montreal. Andrew’s prose exhibits an uninhibited, unrelenting honesty through  personal experiences, all the while encompassing an unwavering unapologetic ethos. His book, Faith and Force – The Egoist’s Complex will be available in January 2014. 

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Check out Kafein’s next Poetry Night on September 17th at 8 p.m.

Photos by Michael Colatruglio.

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