HOW TO RECOGNISE CELLULOID NITRATE
for Oscar Micheaux
If I were dead as all these stars are, in the warm dark,
velvet-lined, I’d mind
an audience peering into my mouth to see what
silence makes of words.
If, at this digitised screening of Robeson’s debut,
I’d lost my ticket
but had the transaction on my mobile, show, price,
though none of it proof,
should I be let in without the material right?
Yes, film’s made of light
and the director uses stars to silence race slurs
If you should come across old film, a star on the edge
warns you that it burns.
THE CINEMAGOER'S DREAM
I used to have translucent curtains
But since eyes are only open brain
thought, surely they need a proper stop
a metal blind. Each slat collapses
in the next
until they make a wall of solid grey.
an abusive partner
and says to eyes: Wake up.
You should watch out. Look
what you’ve made me do.
SCREAMERS IN INTERTITLES
Femuncula at last steps from the shadows.
Her secret – not born from an egg –
more human than a homunculus!
She is human! He not.
They can both break iron rods – they curse nature!
Their eyes are masked by thick shadows.
Each clawed hand, a whip to enemies.
Both tall, arch criminals.
The susceptible homunculus obsessed
by Innocence! Femuncula
watches dark stairwells. He will emerge,
condemned to be Other...
GERMAINE DULAC EXPLAINS WHY ANTONIN ARTAUD CALLED HER A COW
Because he’s mad!
Because his film script is mad but He Sees!
Because my film clearly shows Animal Nature is Cultural Definition as far as Women are concerned...
Because Surrealists are Despots!
Because he hates milk?
Copyright Claire Crowther 2014
Claire Crowther has published two collections with Shearsman and three pamphlets with Flarestack and Nine Arches. Her first book was shortlisted for the Aldeburgh Best First Collection prize. Her reviews and poems have appeared in such journals and anthologies as New Statesman, Poetry Review, Poetry London, Best British Poetry 2013 (Salt). She is poet in residence at the Royal Mint Museum for 2014-15. She also appeared in Molly Bloom 3 (January 2014).