Saturday, February 05, 2005

re: PACE thoughts 

The subversive power of the PACE reading is the citizen-to-citizen communication via poetry. People are intrigued by a different way of reaching out, a chance to publicly engage with minimal mediation. These actions possess the possibility to encourage those who witness poetry in the street to trust their own voices, as well as empowering their own tendencies toward expression beyond mainstream media.

Alliances with organizations (in print) threaten to undermine these very possibilities. The dynamic shifts, as the poets are perceived as agents of the advertised activist organizations. Trust in the voice(s) & alternate expressions diminish as the PACE poet is seen as a representative for a particular organized cause. PACE work can embolden individuals that are encountered by chance to consider divergent voices (including their own) in a culture that fatigues through deadening method & misinformation overload. Official political association (real or perceived) can be a barrier to that most revolutionary form of media- the honest exchange of ideas from one citizen to another.

Official associations undercut poetopian ideals that fuel the Debordian sensibilities. The magic of PACE can independently continue to conjure the spells of radical witches like the Situationist International, who proclaimed, "We are interested only in setting autonomous people loose on the world."

- Frank Sherlock

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