Saturday, January 21, 2012

For An Audience

"Club Progressions,"jazz musical written by Larry Goodell, Roswell Senior High School, 1952 - Lyman Lea, tenor sax, 
Larry, piano, Sal Gonzales, drums, on stage - lyrics by Arthur Gaddis - photo, Mr. Olson

Any perception of an "audience" interrupts the creative flow. After writing a poem it is a matter of selecting particular poems for a reading performance.

How do you perceive your audience?

As large, medium, small, drunken & loud or quiet & anticipatory.
A disappointingly small audience challenges me to fight despair & perform to them as well as I can.
"Loud" is a challenge to win them over. "Anticipatory & listening" is ideal.

Good audience response obviously encourages repeating that poem at the next performance. If a poem falls flat I probably won't try it again.

I like for an audience to enjoy the poem-reading, be moved, be amused, be exhilarated, and buy my books.

There are appropriate poems for every audience of any size or age on Earth where American English is understood. The challenge is entirely mine. I must select appropriately.

Selecting the best works for a particular audience is paramount, as well as trying out entirely new works to test the response.

I try not to conceive of any audience at the time of writing a poem. Once it is written I can figure out what kind of audience it would work best for.

Does the audience serve as a gauge for the success or failure of your work? Almost entirely. Otherwise the creating of the work is only very personal therapy.

Ideal audience: Relatively large. Mostly adult. Attuned to the intricacies of American English. Having access to a little booze. Willing to be transported anywhere the poetry goes. Willing to laugh loud at themselves & myself. Willing to become even more serious about giving Nature back to the Earth.

"The images may be true to an original or not; the public doesn't care. It has gone to look and listen, to laugh and cry - not to think." Henry James

Henry James' statement is too wordy, as is most of his work. Gertrude Stein has far more interesting quotes on the subject of audience. Your more intelligent audience of any age still values learning something as well as enjoying it. Entertain as well as instruct, or better yet, entertain as well as reinforce everyone's urge to better the world.

larry goodell / placitas, new mexico / some notes from an audience questionaire 1993

 . . . audience, from  audireto hear . . . . . present active infinitive of audiō . . . 

Some recent audiences, Duende Poetry Series, Anasazi Fields Winery, Placitas, New Mexico  . .

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