“Roman Candles” inspired by Elliott Smith online blog Anthology

(c) Joker Little

Tincture of Opium by David L O’Nan

A  saddle strapped and swallow down the tincture.
Assimilation over these years worth of crashes to curves of corners.

It is much heavier than before
It is much heavier than before
I begin to resemble a caricature of a zombie-
drawn by the superficial you.

Under a slightly warm night sky, barely alive
I was dreaming of you dancing on unbroken bottles.
Then again, they break again, and you're always surprised.

Much heavier than before is the cutting
Much heavier than before is the failing
I watch you fainting out a smile while bleeding away onto the floor.
I watch you believing in which heaven you have restored for this day.

The evolution of the tincture.
What is willing and what is wading
You’ve tried to prove yourself almighty.  But 

It is much heavier than before
It is much much more heavier than before
Wishing I was inside that mind with you.


Poems about Elliott from Afta Gley

Untitled

hillbasement 
musician, from your 
soughtfor transition,
your oblivion ambition, 
may you never, never
land


October 21, 2022

dear Mr. Smith, twelve
years ago I was too sad
to go to work, but

decided to work 
through the depression. there
by the Dumpster: a cat.

who knows? maybe you
guided your namesake to me.
so very grateful 

TWO FROM FOUR DAYS AGO

lighting a candle 
for 34 minutes, youre 
missing Elliott 

nineteen years ago 
I knew everything else 
meant nothing to me 

Elliott Smith waltzed 
with his metaphors, partnered
by no one at all 


(C) IM-JESS ON DEVIANTART

SO UGLY BEFORE by Lynn Elliott

A great man once proclaimed
He was damaged bad at best
In my heart of hearts
To know him I feel blessed

There was beauty, truth and honor
In his troubled soul
People clammered just to touch him
and it took it's toll

I see him in the morning
As the sky is turning blue 
I feel him in the stillest night
Sometimes as if on cue

I mourn his loss quite often
Celebrate him even more
For bringing out the beauty
In what was so ugly before.

XO. Lynn Elliott

Unknown name poem by Lynn Elliott

It's so easy living in the past 
Sleep walking through each day
Living where I saw you last
Pretending I'm okay

XO Lynn Elliott

My Elliott Smith story is a little different
I broke my neck and suffered a traumatic brain injury water skiing.  For 5 yrs I was pretty much a zombie.  The only thing I could feel was fear.  I'm not a fearful person at all but that's how all tbi ppl feel
I was listening to everything's OK by Elliott
and it made me feel safe.   It was the beginning of my recovery.  I listened to Elliott almost every hour of every day.  
It inspired me to start writing songs and poetry, which really sped up my recovery even more.  I'll never be like I was before but my injury stimulated my drive to write and share what I write.  So I was in my 50s when I started.

My bio

I rescue special needs dogs.  I did extreme sports most of my life.  Surfing, skiing. diving, soccer, tennis, gymnastics, etc. I worked for the airlines so I did a fair amount of traveling.  I'm an outdoorsy person.  Elliott Smith is more than a great musician to me.  He is my safe place.




Ripples by Khadeja Ali

inspired by ‘Everything Means Nothing to Me”

days start and end in blank white and solid black
shapes that will not harmonize rigidly exist in my eyes
when finally touching, the sharp lipped edges cut 
and me, wanting so badly for lines blurring, insides blending
But there is no chance of grey. No body electricity to make it work.

was I once a kaleidoscope of magnetic color
shuddering with vibrating life, dancing constantly? I think so
if not singing, was I humming to natural silence?
now is there a piercing screech in my ear, or nothing
No ears-plugging or opening my mouth anymore. Frozen.

lying down is not an option; when did I start standing?
since when can I not move? This is not me. Is it? walking I was
but stiffly erect and standing at once. When started my movement’s death?
my mind’s edges are so sharp, but inside empty as air
Squinting hard. There’s nothing to see.

my energy; drained by a taunting echo of everything
wavering glass below me reflects my iron face
So glorious am I, yet—I’m nothing to me.

“Junkyard Full of False Starts” by Jennifer Patino

I'll refrain
from the
'gone too soon'
sentiments       Instead,
I'll boast of your intellect

There's a way back to blue
& to you, but we couldn't
remind you in time

& wasn't that you,
that one time, pounding
your chest
like a barbarian?

You couldn't speak
truthfully
to people
without scaring them

I know, I know, I know,
the burdens
you tore from
your aching shoulders

I know, I know, I know
how terrified you were
of even the vague idea
of growing older

You were only one, ever one,
little inside, unnamed,
but mighty            Someone
we'll think of
while
staring at flames,
hearing your phantom drunken
crooning on repeat,
when we're tired
of fighting,
or just tired
of the taste of the
city streets
where your ghost
lingers on
beneath neon lights
& in the silhouette soul
of every
ragged musician
in a beanie
we happen to meet

I'll say it, I'll pray it,

               RIP

Little Mr. Socialite by David L O’Nan

We’ve all been strapped to and strapped by the spellbinder
He walks up to you and expects you to drop the ceiling down to become his platform for a show.
Handed the keys, by osmosis you become a local legend.  

To the city that continues to decay, 
there is only so much here to reel in.
The cocaine socialites keep barking for you to leave their hipster colonies.
Fuck you!  Fuck You!  Fuck You!  
You can’t talk sense to the overconfident.

They want the world, and they want the life.
They want the respect,  Rifles and knives. 
They want to joke and manifest a spiritual world in which they are absorbed of their behavior.

Hell to the homeless,  hell to the mental health
“I don’t care about your personal lives”  I care about my termination.
Your words will never get past these windows because I’ll just run out
And bark out orders like a witch in a bad dream.
Blah…blah…blah    Fuck You!   Fuck You!   Fuck You!   You can’t talk about our prince and princesses
That push the drugs and sex behind bars and counters that blow up this neighborhood.

You will vanish as soon as you appear.  
Hours later you’re in another chessgame.  You’re in another straight line socialite walk.
From one blink to the next you’re game changes.  Drawn to your fuckin’ pawn.

He is in charge of our children.    Teach them well.  
Teach that future well.
Afraid of a soured reputation.   
Bullying has never left your privileged brain.
And your story will never be told as long as the socialite holds the powder and the power.

Roman Candles by David L O'Nan

I’m feeling tricked in this cold October rain
The entire town are shooting Roman Candles in masses
Hypnotized in another wired dream.
Nauseated and feeling blind, worthless 
The rain burns the cuts on the skin.  
The friction drowns me with the idiots.
I’ve never felt this tired.   I’ve never heard this much screaming.
The Roman Candles, Firecrackers, the Halloween monsters.
The shoes are beginning to sour.
The red just keeps getting darker, yet feeling thinner 
The slitting and sitting with the rattle again
Have I ever been real?   

The Kill of the Darlings by David L O'Nan

Another abused evening.  Copper skied and bloodshot eyes.
The kill of the darlings reads on a flashing screen.
I was introduced to the spilling and polishing of my sweat to the sheets.
It must be raining,  raining in my death.

I’ve been waiting, smelly and divided
On  a pitch black night with coal mine moons. 
I’ve been asked inside to feed the tiger.
The locomotives keep moving slower through the brain, through the cast.
Through the fade,  they praise the ugliest ghost after all.

Becoming so angry by medicine and shiver out new fears.
I wait and wait and wait. Just knowing you have his name tattooed in your blood.
I wait for you on the inlay filling of broken sidewalks that have survived the earthquake.
I wait for you to come home with him.
To bust him with this chain or break a bottle over his skull.

Yet, I should realize you’ve the not caring if I ever lived or died.
Adaptation, realization  and broken, a crinkled tarot card.
I’ve been calling another busy signal suicide hotline.

Winnemucca by David L O'Nan

Days of being dazed, drugged, and dangerous
Now in Winnemucca waiting for a new train.
To rescue me from the lights of the cities to the deserts to thaw.
Not feeling the jazzy hope that all these horns convey.

I’ve been travelling like it is a system wondering 
If the honey was ever laced, were your smiles ever more than pain.
You played beautifully being beautiful and being muddled at the same time.
You played beautifully being heartbroken and wearing a new ring from another lame maniac.

Wafflin’ drunk on something, traintracks shaking.
Winnemucca gives me the eye of some crook.
I’m asking for tickets, asking for wishes, I’m asking for some powerful graveyard dirt.
I’m washing my hands of you since yours are covered in the outlines of sweat from the burns.

You’ve been a cough, to send away the clouds
You’ve been a leap,  through the meek and the lack of sound.
You’ve been admired, but admiration wasn’t enough. 
You’ve been dashing,  dashing straight into the wreck.
And I will fall and eventually so will you.

I may fall sooner, but tomorrow is a full moon.
I could still be in Winnemucca, I could be dead, 
or banging on pots in the streets of Chicago.
You could still be married to the errors,  
you could be flooded out of house and home.
Digesting more fertile dirt.

Catharsis (collaboration poem K Weber & David L O'Nan)
also part of the Empath Dies in the End series

1. (David L O'Nan)

I was in the process of purging the ideas of you
The wrens, the beetles, and the crabs we’ve been energized by
On days of smiles.  The parks, the oceans, 
the imperfect apartment ceilings.

In the middle of a catharsis
I was fast to the falling down the mountainous zoo.
In the deluge of rain I remember smashing against your dress.
Umbrellas breaking, wind straining, yet in the distance we see a sunset.

Now I’m wondering are you ever really leaving me?
Will we meet again in this organic hex that has been swirling
From the ground to the trees.
To the shearing of my humility, my impulses are pulling with each inhalation.

With palms on head, a robin stares at me from the ground.  
Right against my boot it seems not fear my 50 foot shadow.
Just searching for some worms through the puddles we reflect in.

2. (K Weber)

Winged leaves breathe
Between fingers of ashen
Branches where birds’
songs rest.  The pulse
of a rain-tapped dusk
counts down the last
snippet of sun. Light
gets drowsy as windows
on one wall yawn
to a close.

Red Ant. Black Ant....The Stars (collaboration poem with Jennifer Patino and David L O'Nan

1. (Jennifer Patino)
They spoke of interior silence.
A way to navigate cacophony
with a smile on your face.
These forced emotions, pulled
to the surface, daisies squeezed out from beneath the grime
of disconnect.

One has to die to hear advice better. A portion of the self must be sacrificed to allow change to claim new roots. I think I'll bloom in winter. Switch the expected at the last moment so the patient ones can be satisfied. Those drought souls have waited for a resurrection long enough. They will have their day safe from the blinding sun. They will feel rain on new skin and be quenched.


2. (David L O'Nan)


I’ve been searching for your footprints all over the place.
The joke is only red ants meeting black ants on my shoelaces.
I’m disgusted I can’t past this place.  Scared to walk out to new noise.
I’ve feigned happiness and I’ve dreamt up new stars.
I’ve been alone and hid my aches away. 
The nightmares absorb in the pillows, as long as I stay hid.
In the shade.  I got to my tree.   
And I try to remember the invisible me.

I know you’ve been waiting for me to at least show a hello
I can’t keep the creatures inside and the rush becomes a roar
And the hush becomes hypnotic and 
my window becomes the source
for the entertaining eye.   
So go on,  and move on with what you want.
The devil is dancing and waiting for your soul.
You know you want love, but this will just be another gaslighting poem.

The lake, the flowers, the light.    Go the distance and find what’s right.

I  met you in a trance.   I was scrawny and I was a mess.
I thought I was becoming famous. And you thought you’d be the root.
I would grow from you and learn to be a jolly shine under  your foot.
It’s a shame I only can understand what is anger, snark and shame.
If I could cure myself, I would try to shave away your pain.
The scene won’t have any of it.

The Dark Aesthetic/Wives in the White Light by Jess Levens and David L O'Nan

1. (Jess Levens)

The sky is quintessential October—
wet without rain; dusk in daylight, blurring
any distant thing. Blurring what is real.
Desaturated evergreens birth out

dead leaves in every citrus shade, plus
plum and pear and red delicious. They
clatter down, loudly in the quiet fog.
The chill bites flirtatiously, without pain.

Outside my window, a lone coywolf in 
the farmer’s clearing stares back at me through
this dark aesthetic—howling into my
home; into my head—barking out malice.  


2  (David L O'Nan)


So you keep your wives in the White Light
And the mass is enchanted that you bring
The entertainment and the insanity from the mistakes.
Like paper we’ll fly with the crisping leaves.  
Some cut just like that paper, 
some just itch as the wind bites down on the skin.

The wives you hide in white light
Scurry like a squirrel trying to hide a direct hit. 
From grey to brown to orange to green trees-
that squirrels will scurry from the pain.
So slip outside of your skin,  
Watch yourself in the mirror with another angry grin.
Revenge glowing in your eye.  
And the harm you want is the harm that’ll cause you to die.

There are wires just falling everywhere…the storms are brewing
And the we all become impaired.  
Hiding your wives in the white light behind the shed.
Are they in blinking blue and red lights ripe for the restoration.  
They are just waiting for you to fall asleep and give up, 
in your irate dream.

Continue to pour yourself that drink.    
Continue to pour yourself that wolf’s howl.
Continue to transition from the rake to the shave.  
Repair is on the way. 
But the bedpans and the creatures inside may be the cream, 
and your body may just be the trough.
The Wives in white light are just looking for you to break.   
The narcissism will eventually implode
And the darkness will be decorous with light as they take you aside.  

(c) Dribble from DeviantArt

Bled Out For Liberty (collaboration poem Giulio Magrini & David L O’Nan

1 (Giulio Magrini)

The younger ones look at us and smirk…
We remember the smiling of our youth
Furtive… covert… and shrouded

Those memoirs are today’s mystery of youth
And live behind the curtains of our past 
They are cognitions divorced in time but parallel confidence 
What is the necessity of covert masks in the present
And our frustrated guilty memories? 

2 (David L O'Nan)

I've began to feel afraid.  
that i've bled out for liberty from my imagination- 
that was never brave.
The loveliness just disappears. 
Morning whispers engulfed in last night's tears.

I was concentrating too much on the lies.
Assuming everything from youth to existing was from the failing eye.
We were watched down on by the lighted figures.
 Not wasted anymore yet cultivate me with all my failures until I die. 

You're private and play hide away.
You're intellectual and passing around the plate
Damn, i'm still living slender with my fist taped up.
Everything from midnight to morning is just medicine
 just passing through.
I go from I love you to i'm sorry i've been holy for you.

Maybe my mind has bled out only lies.
And my exit is the last leaf on the tree trying to cover up his face. 

https://feversofthemind.com/2022/10/22/current-bio-for-fevers-of-the-minds-david-l-onan-editor-writing-contributor-to-blog/

https://feversofthemind.com/2022/07/13/a-poetry-showcase-from-giulio-magrini/

https://feversofthemind.com/2022/09/14/a-fevers-of-the-mind-quick-9-interview-with-giulio-magrini/

https://feversofthemind.com/2022/09/12/2-wonderful-poems-by-jennifer-patino-inspired-by-plath-and-sexton/

https://feversofthemind.com/2022/09/07/a-poetry-showcase-from-jess-levens/ 

https://feversofthemind.com/2022/09/30/a-fevers-of-the-mind-quick-9-interview-with-jess-levens/

https://feversofthemind.com/2022/05/25/poetry-showcase-from-k-weber/

A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Richard Cabut

Q1: When did you start writing and who has influenced you the most?

My first paid writing job was in 1982 – I was 22-years-old – freelancing for the NME, under the pen name Richard North – after New North Road (near Old Street), where I was squatting at the time. London back then was characterised by wrecked and abandoned property, corrugated iron, fires burning in rusty metal barrels in empty yards, wasteland, toxic clouds of tobacco smoke in the dole office, on the top deck of the bus and in one smokers’ carriage on the tube, darkness. It was an environment which you could truthfully run wild in, to paraphrase Malcolm McLaren. And I did. I loved it. I guess I was taken on at the NME to write about a particular type of post-punk bands sometimes called Positive Punk, the name of a front cover piece I wrote about the movement, which wasn’t particularly a movement – just a loose collection of reckless feckless glam soaked musicians, squatters, urbanites, trash clubbers, punk nostalgics, dopers, no hopers. It didn’t last long – satisfying a need for vitality for a mere few months, and then we all moved on.

I carried on writing for the NME as well a number of other magazines and papers, before taking a writing job at the BBC. Which I quit after ten years or so, to carry on with my own projects – journalism, theatre, and authoring a number of books, e.g. Looking for a KissPunk is Dead: Modernity Killed Every Night (Zer0 Books), Dark Entries, etc.  

Q2: Any pivotal moment when you knew you wanted to be a writer?

As a very young kid, I was looked after by my grandmother, while my parents worked. I come from a Polish background and my babcia (granny in Polish) amused me and herself by telling stories all day –  fantastic Polish tales of dark foreboding, dire warning, dislocation and disaster, fortitude and survival, of how the cold will settle with deathly embrace around our shoulders if we forget for one single moment to beware, to be constantly on your guard. Folk stories, and family history of how, during WWII, my family had been ethnically cleansed by the Soviets from our home in Eastern Poland to labour camps in Siberia, and then, after amnesty, to the middle east, Africa, and, ultimately, England. A true odyssey. My babcia placed these tales in a mythological context. Similarly, her descriptions of current affairs were akin to the telling of contemporary fables. I guess knew then that I wanted to tell stories like her.

Q3: Who has helped you most with writing and career?

I suppose those editors and publishers who have, over the years, recognised my wild and raging talent. I humbly thank you.  But, in my experience, writers rarely  help one another and are mostly fuelled by ego, jealousy and hatred of other writers, especially successful ones. I’ve seen friendships end overnight after a former pal has had a good review or a few sales. The writing scene is characterised by vanity, rivalry, and bitterness. As Gore Vidal said, ‘whenever a friend succeeds, a little something in me dies.’ Ha. I also like the line ‘succeeding is not enough, others must fail.’

Q4: Where did you grow up and how has that influenced you? Have any travels influenced your work?

I was born in Aylesbury, Bucks, and grew up in Dunstable, Bedfordshire. Thirty miles up the M1 from London. Suburbia largely. There, kids left school and went on the track, the production line, at the local factory, Vauxhall Motors. If you got some qualifications you could join the civil service. Meanwhile, some couples had been going out with each other since 3rd Form and watched telly round each other’s house every night, not saying a word. I didn’t know what I wanted, but I knew I didn’t want any of that. Instead, I was in love with punk rock. I was in love with picking up momentum and hurling myself forward somewhere. Anywhere. Rip up the pieces and see where they land. Which, for me, at the age of 18, in 1978, happened to be London the traditional refuge for suburban refugees – people who felt disaffected by life in the sticks: the treadmill, the mores, the conservatism, the repressive nature of family life. We wanted to tip all of this upside down, assert ourselves and fathom the world. There, in London, I wrote and produced my punk fanzine Kick.

Q5: What do you consider your most meaningful work creatively to you?

I always think of my latest work as the most meaningful, for obvious reasons.

Q6: Favourite activities to relax?

Procrastination, prevarication, seeing people, avoiding people, bad language, bad behaviour, hanging out, talking shit, fucking around, shopping for clothes, lying on the sofa, lying in the sun, lying, being boring, yoga.  

Q7: What is a favourite line/ stanza/lyric from your writing?

The End. Obvious huh

Q8:What kind of music inspires you the most? What is a song or songs that always come back to you as an inspiration?

While working I usually listen to Mixcloud – mostly dub, low event horizon music, spiritual jazz. Music always keeps it ticking along – the heartbeat, the soul and all.

Q9: Do you have any recent or upcoming books, music, events, etc that you would like to promote?

Yes please.

I’ve signed my second book contract of the year – with the notable New York publishers Far West Press, purveyors of fine literature, who will put out my book of verse entitled Disorderly Magic and Other Disturbances in Spring 2023– available nationally in the States, select shops in the UK and Europe, and online worldwide.

Disorderly Magic is post-punk, dark jazz, pop art verse. Essential beat up/down, free-fall, free-for-all poetry for people who don’t particularly like poetry (and who do, of course).

Disorderly Magic features subterranean scenes, picturesque ruins, neon glowing, faded glamour, Chelsea Girls, the damned, the demimonde, the elemental, being on the edge of being pinned down by our ghosts.

Also, memory, magic, mourning, worlds and words that are desperately fragile –mapping the loneliness and expression of private sorrows, some peculiar energy from the streets, hidden and brilliant corners, ‘well of course I liked Godard’s films before 68 but…’

And, a graveyard of myths, nostalgia, ‘the problem is: to get back to zero’, image of nylon, sur et sous le communication, folk devils, alienation – full face or in profile, the Scala cinema London 1983, the Zone, the consumer society, concrete brutalist situations, that which doesn’t exist.

Plus, French film slurred, correct sounds for a new audience, POV shots, reverse shots, absolute technical precision, brand new revenge, compartmentalisation of our lives, everywhere at once, ‘“I prefer American films… they’re prettier” – “Yes, but less arousing,”’ invisible people in homes, in other words no normal life.

Additionally, blocks of flats, signs of repression, reality of reflection, very little ideology, juices stirred, dilation of the pupil, Polish mysticism, passage of a signal, pop blow jobs, pravda, overlaying one image onto another, all in black and white (black and white is fast – colour is slower) – standard speed for capturing abrupt movement, madness.

Set in full moonlight, before the Flood.

Disorderly Magic and Other Disturbances will be available for pre-order March 2023, and published May 2023 by Far West Press.

Moreover, my current novel Looking for a Kiss has been picked up by the exciting publishing company PC-Press.

It will be re-published next Spring (2023) in an extended and amended edition, with new text additions, artwork and cover. There will also be an audio book version. The paperback and hardback versions will be distributed to shops nationwide, and will also be available via the usual online outlets. Until then, Looking for a Kiss is no longer for sale.

PC-Press released Melissa Chemam’s book Massive Attack: Out of the Comfort Zone, the history of Test Department, Total State Machine, etc.

Pete Webb, who runs PC-Press says: ‘Looking for a Kiss is a post-punk masterpiece. The book presents a particular slice of Post-Punk London in its brutal, negating and bleak narrative that brilliantly evokes the time.’

Looking for a Kiss remains a ‘fabulous’, poetic some would say, chronicle of speed and madness in the London/NY 80s post-punk milieu.

It was described in the programme notes of this year’s Lewisham Literary Festival, where I appeared, as ‘a cult classic post-punk pop art novel.’

Author Biography

Richard Cabut is author of the novels Looking for a Kiss (PC-Press, 2023. Previous edition: Sweat Drenched Press, 2020) and Dark Entries (Cold Lips Press, 2019), co-editor/-writer of the anthology Punk is Dead: Modernity Killed Every Night (Zer0 Books, October 2017), contributor to Ripped, Torn and CutPop, Politics and Punks Fanzines From 1976 (Manchester University Press, 2018) and Growing Up With Punk (Nice Time, 2018). 

His journalism has featured in the Guardian, the Daily Telegraph, NME (pen name Richard North), ZigZag, The Big Issue, Time Out, Offbeat magazine, the Independent, Artists & Illustrators magazine, thefirstpost, London Arts Board/Arts Council England, Siren magazine, etc.

Other fiction has appeared in the books The Edgier Waters (Snowbooks, 2006) and Affinity (67 Press, 2015). As well as on various internet sites.

He was a Pushcart Prize nominee 2016.

Richard’s plays have been performed at various theatres in London and nationwide, including the Arts Theatre, Covent Garden, London.

His poetry has appeared in An Anthology of Punk Ass Poetry (Orchid Eater Press, 2022), and magazines such as Cold Lips, Foggy Plasma, 3:AM Magazine, etc.

Richard exhibited as contributing artist (textual) to Always On My Mind, an exhibition in aid of The National Brain Appeal, the Fitzrovia Gallery, London, July 2022.

He published the fanzine Kick (1978-1982), and played bass guitar for the punk band Brigandage (LP Pretty Funny Thing – Gung Ho Records, 1986).

richardcabut.com

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Cabut

https://linktr.ee/richardcabut

A Quick 4 questions with Britta Phillips from Luna, Dean & Britta with Dean Wareham

Britta Phillips has been on the music scene over 30 years with great bands such as Luna and Dean & Britta with Dean Wareham (formerly of Galaxie 500) She has also been an actress and has some current projects being worked on. Let’s find out a little more about Britta!

Q1: When did you start writing/playing music and early influences?

Britta: I started singing first, when I was very little, with my mom and sister. My parents were both very musical. My dad was a professional pianist who played on Broadway and with Phillip Glass and Liza Minelli. One of my earliest memories is of lying beneath a grand piano while he played Chopin waltzes for ballet classes. When I was 8, I started playing clarinet in the school band and teaching myself piano at home. My mom showed me guitar chords when I was 11. I started writing (very badly!) at 18. My earliest musical influences were Beatles, Simon & Garfunkel, then on to classic rock. I had a brief metal period believe it or not, and then in the early 80s mostly listened to pop: Madonna, Michael Jackson, The Police, Prince. Then I discovered Siouxsie Sioux and the Cure… R.E.M. I really discovered the alternative/indie world of music after moving to London in 1989, beginning with the Velvet Underground.

Q2: How has your influences expanded throughout the years?

Britta: My influences continue to expand and evolve, although I still count Lou Reed and the VU as pretty unbeatable. For instance, I loved disco as a teen in the 70s but my my friends hated it so I listened alone in my car. In the nineties I stopped listening to all dance music but then came back to loving it again in 2000. Good music and good music. I’m not attached to any particular genre. In the aughties, I also discovered oldies like Serge Gainsbourg, Lee Hazlewood, Nina Simone, Dusty Springfield and Scott Walker, thanks to my husband, Dean, who is always playing me exciting new (and old) music. These days I’m really into female artists (Cate Le Bon, Aldous Harding,  Angel Olsen) but there are always great new bands, you just have to sift through a lot of mediocrity to find them.

Q3 Have travels and where you have grown up help influence your art?

Britta: There have been just a few people that have really exposed me to the music I love, starting with my mom  and my dad, and then NYC itself. I used to travel to NYC to visit my father. He was musical director of Jesus Christ Superstar on Broadway and seeing that show had a big affect on me. It made me want to get up on a stage and sing rock music. I moved to NYC in ’82 and that had an influence, of course. And then definitely living in London from 1989 to 1992 in the shoe gaze era had a huge influence. But since 2000, when I moved back to NYC, DJ Dean Wareham is my biggest influence/muse.

Q4: Any upcoming projects/links you’d like to share?

Britta: Dean & I wrote some music for a brand new HBO show, IRMA VEP!

Britta’s linktree!

https://linktr.ee/brittaphillips

https://linktr.ee/deanandbritta

oh by the way…did you know that Britta was a singing voice for Jem and the Holograms cartoon?????

Poetry inspired by Nick Cave from Elizabeth Cusack

Clubs and Diamonds

You were not there
On the sleeping veranda
When we watched the sundown
You did not see me shiver
In a wet bathing suit
As the sun went down
Grandma was nearly 
Out of her head
As she taught me to balance
The silence and dread
And daddy was in town
Feeling sorry for himself
His immaculate revenue
Dead on the ground
And mama pretending 
Jangling and pushing
Everyone around
Did not see me slither
Watching grandpa
Remembering mama
In her silk nightgown
I want to arrange 
One more vision of you
Lying naked in the sun
On a rock by the sea.

Third War(Colossal)

You knew what an alert was,
You exited when told,
You did not protest,
You covered up quickly,
And left with the rest.

Were the woods radioactive,
Were the corks, were the genes,
Was the glass in the desert,
Were the ways and means?
Were you there when the bomb came,
Did you see it fall,
Did it leave a shadow on your wall?

The man had a blade,
And he cut your throat,
He burned down your city,
And he made you choke.
When you woke with the dead,
Did your heart still pound,
Was it the day of the dead,
The day you were found?

When the innocent bathe in blood,
Is the war over then,
And are you set free?
Breathe in and breathe out,
The night is still here, 
And oh, my darling, you are so near!



Bio: Elizabeth Cusack is a recovering actress. Ever since playing Rhoda Penmark in “The Bad Seed” as a child, deservedly, she has endeavoured to keep up her end of the bargain. Elizabeth has been blessed with the best of teachers over the years, mostly from the school of hard knocks. She has championed and performed in fringe theatre in America. Elizabeth edits her favourite poet while not otherwise inspired by her muse to write. 

Poetry by Pasithea Chan influenced by Nick Cave

influenced by “Where the Wild Roses Grow” by Nick Cave & Kylie Minogue.

Rosy Tragedy

Listen to the tunes from the willow garden’s dunes.
Imagine Ophelia, Millais’ muse posing for patriarchal abuse.
Prostitute or virgin are terms we use to justify or glorify
violence as we subconsciously react to art for things we want.
 
We use music to permanently reproduce
public culture into an aesthetic produce.
We embalm women with brushes as an emblem
to pass oppression and humiliation below perception.
 
We sing along lyrics that symbolize transgression 
to justify the invasion of a woman's body in the name of passion.
It's okay because if it's a rose, then it's pretty.
All pretty things must die anyway.
 
Rose Connelly was a rose that was made to pose
long before Elisa rose to make us hit pause.
We listened to her lyrics about society’s hysterics-
enabled and pedaled by politicians and clerics.
 
They will tell you the rose had thorns and maybe horns
but I will tell you the rose never chose those
who picked her up and finished her with their paws.
Not all animals use their claws, but humans are one of those.
 
Neither Elisa nor Rose and who else knows
wanted to be men’s selected rose.
How many more do we have to find in the meadows
before we start seeing a corpse not a rose?
 
Bloody is not just a color when horror
is a demeanor we elusively mirror.
So, I ask you, how can scarlet
bring warmth to ice from blood let? 
 
Wild roses suffer with every cover
we subconsciously muster and mutter.
It’s about time for the rose to turn into a cause
for social justice to end women’s woes.
There’s nothing rosy about a tragedy
defiling dignity to entertain inhumanity.
 


Author’s Notes: Inspired by Nick Cave & Kylie Minogue’s Where the Wild Roses Grow. 

https://youtu.be/lDpnjE1LUvE  

Poetry/Stories inspired by “Elvis Costello-Veronica” David L O’Nan & Pasithea Chan
 
A Poetry Showcase with Pasithea Chan (September 2022)

Bio: Pasithea is an impressionist poet who dabbles in art and poetry. She enjoys writing about life and her experiences from different perspectives. She believes in art in poetry as in exploring art to emphasize its role in juicing creativity out of a quill. She enjoys writing poetry in symbolism laced with philosophy and psychology.  Combined with varied styles and topics, her motto will always be: poetry is a passionate expression kindled by an impression unlimited by public conviction.   To catch more of her work follow her on Instagram @pasitheachan or twitter @pasitheachan and on Ello @ello.co/pasitheaanimalibera where you can find more of her historical fiction and mythological or cultural short stories.