on dressing up to expectations:
I recoil at the uniform, whether it be "dutiful daughter," "punk rocker," or "queer." I wouldn't join the Girl Guides either, just because my sisters signed up. Instinctively, Iíve always shunned groups, authority, fakery, organized religion and mobs, thusly, mob mentality.
OK, but now you're a mom, with a husband, and on the surface, just like anybody else in middle-class, Anglo North America. How do these aspects of your life reconcile in you now?
When I was young, I felt weird and geeky. I churned that alienation into being "special," a survival tactic, I think. I got over it, eventually, the need to share my humanity with everyone stronger than alienation.
I don't reside on the surface or need to worry about what people think. I simply don't have time for angst, which must be one of the advantages of aging. Surprise! There are perks. I am supremely preoccupied with meeting my obligations and responsibilites-child rearing, home schooling, along with providing a home, a sanctuary for my loved ones. I don't seek the limelight like I used to. The older I get, the more humility I get. At least, I hope that is the equation. I've accepted that my problems are no worse than anyone else's, that I indeed have free will, can choose, decide my fate.
So, I guess I'm saying, go ahead and refer to me as "bisexual," if you like. I've always known it, though puberty came as a shock. I was a tomboy, liked the status quo. I'm sure you can imagine my confusion, despair, at being attracted to girls and boys, aroused all the time. I think bisexuality must go hand-in-hand with being a sensualist, though of course, the best lovers, gay or straight, are indeed sensualists.
I think Sheri-D is more jazz and beat influenced than I am. She is almost a sound poet at times, both on and off the page. I love jazz but have no inclination to play it. Ian's work is closer to mine, stylistically. I'm going for a bent folk infused sound, haven't quite gotten there yet, but I'm looking forward to improvising with some local musicians soon.
So, wrapping up, who or what would be your creative influences?
The CBC, Daniel Lanois, The Friendly Giant, CanLit, Germaine Greer, Susan Musgrave, Simone de Beauvoir, ee cummings, Margaret Atwood, André Breton, Kenneth Patchen, Sylvia Plath, Richard Brautigan, Pete Draper, Art Bergmann and the Young Canadians, Cathy Cleghorn, John Waters, Leonard Cohen, Patti Smith, Elvis Costello, the Dishrags, DOA, Emily Dickinson, the Clash, Luis Buñuel, Lincoln Clarkes, Lenny Bruce, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Jean Cocteau, Lydia Lunch and Frida Kahlo.
From LA, some of my influences would be... Merilene M. Murphy, the Electronic Cafť, Candye Kane, Doug Knott, Beyond Baroque's poetry workshop, Deborah Margolis, Wanda Coleman, the Cramps, Snakefarm, Run DMC, Harvey Kubernick, Excene Cervenka and X, the Woman's Building, LACE, the Olympic Arts Festival, Cheri Gaulke, Sue Maberry, Joanna Whent, Jeff Isaak, the Yonemotos, John Fleck, my fellow Zellots-Jon Wrasse, Jeff Moses, Paul Eckman, Mark Francis White and Sunny Brown, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Mose Allison, Johnette Neapolitano of Concrete Blonde, Keith Levene, Rachel Rosenthal, Chet Baker, Victor Noel, John Curry of the Flyboys, Tone-Loc, High Performance, Mark and Bob Mothersbaugh, Laura London, Diane Gamboa, Daniel J. Martinez, No Magazine, Los Lobos, Black Flag, the Go-Gos, Zero One Gallery, neo-surrealists Malocchio, St. Teresa Stone, L7, Pam Ward and Penelope Spheeris.
Then, since 1992 and the Internet... Kurt Heintz, Western Front, bill bissett, Alexandra Oliver, Sheri-D Wilson, Michael Turner, Raquel Alvaro, Ian Ferrier, Catherine Kidd, Julie Vik and her band, Resin, Jill Battson, Geoff Inverarity, Adeena Karasick, Jim Andrews, Andrea Thompson, Lyle Neff, Kedrick James, Miranda Pearson, Bob Holman, Neil Campbell, Jamie Reid, Hank Bull and Alma Lee.
I admire Adeena Karasick's work. Have you heard or seen Penn Kemp? She's from the Toronto area. Catherine Kidd, Victoria Stanton and Corey Frost from Montrťal are all strong, unique voices. Kedrick James and his Verbomotorhead always amazed me. And Hilary Peach has produced a righteous CD called "Poems Only Dogs Can Hear."
Thankyou, Heather Haley.
Heather Haley's spoken word album, Surfing Season, can be found through her website.
|Heather Haley writes and conspires audiopoetry from her home on Bowen Island, British Columbia, Canada. She is an e-poets network Charter Member and contributor to the Book of Voices, author of "Sideways", and chief curator of Visible Verse.|
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