Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Did I mention?

I went to Felix Dennis’ ‘Did I mention the free wine?’ tour on Friday night, in which publishing magnate, and all-round raconteur, Felix Dennis read a selection of poetry from his new book and some from his old ones, and lured people to the reading by offering free wine and canapés. Good wine too, no cheap plonk here.

It was an interesting evening and Dennis is certainly an entertaining host, with his poetry very much performance poetry as he accentuates voices, and hops about the stage when the subject riles him – mainly politics – but always sticking to his meters – a point on which his hatred of Ezra Pound was clear to all.

He even made a sly reference to the infamous ‘I killed a man’ interview (worth a read) but no more than that. Unsurprisingly with free wine on offer the crowd was utterly raucous, shouting, talking, answering back – in some way it was like being in a physics lesson when you’re 16, all the morons sniggering, ‘oh right sir, how’d you figure that then?’ then sitting back to take in their acclaim. Except here the people were in the mid 40s, the ones near me at least, and it was all a bit pathetic really.

All in all though, it was a very interesting evening, and nice to see such a charismatic figure from the world of publishing and magazines.

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