PLU Open Mic hosted by Belleville Park Pages
Whilst the parents are away the kids come out to play. So, with the three spinning hosts Jason, Kate and Emily elsewhere doing all-growned-up things – the Belleville Park Boys had an opportunity for house parties, smoking and girlfriends. And of course, with upmost care and sincerity, the responsibility of looking after and suckling the trio’s baby – Paris Lit Up Open Mic Night.
The much-whispered myth that ‘all Parisiens leave in August’ is actually a truth. A truth greater than Charlie Sheen’s Lochness Monster hunting and the flashing UFO’s that circle Rochdale’s industrial plains combined. With only 9 poets/musicians/vagrants signed up – a Round 1 only affair looked probable. However, as with most affairs, a Round 2 was swiftly organised as a room full of egos and late arrivals craved more stage space. Onwards.
Tousle-haired Gus, from Swe-gland, opened the night with a rousing cover of the new Babyshambles single ‘Nothing comes to nothing’ and followed with a lovely piece of writing about Paris Lit Up. This was his last night and we’re definitely going to miss the collage of accents which fall, quickly, out of his mouth.
Next was Thomas, a Paris Lit Up VIRGIN, oooh, ooh and ah. He read the sequel to his children’s story about ‘Chuckduck’ and his metal-winged friends whilst assuring that ‘parties need music, and music needs acorns’.
Nik strolled up to the stage next and read his poem ‘N’k stretching’. His introduction involved precise directions from Culture Rapide to the field in Indiana where his naughty ‘‘Breath pushing n’Groan cushion n’Groan pushing n’hand holding n’hands are holding’ took place.
Bill then told us about a ‘little scrumpit, ignorant of ice’ and informed us of the essential differences between people from North, South, East, West, Underground, Overground Wombling-Free Jersey.
Next to shine in the bright, brightish lights was Gus’ Swench friend Paul. Paul’s voice, again a Pho of accents, read out how ‘Passive fate’ was ‘hidden in obscure cocoon’. Nice.
Co-host James Paul Christian Bird then got introduced as the most beautiful boy Co-host Will had ever set eyes on. During the stormy storms he had written how ‘You are the lion that broke the sky’s back’ with ‘Pink treacle dribbling out of your lips’. Stormful.
Friend of N’k stretching Nik’s, Reed, was up next and romantically read with an Indiana drawl how ‘I want you so you become one poem about one kiss’. Aw.
Next up was Evan – a bronzed-cycling-statue of a manboy who has been known to melt both Gods and Princesses with his enunciation of the noun ‘bones’. Melted. His piece ‘Philosophy of Mending’ acknowledged that ‘everything we know, we break, to see if it will mend’.
Following Evan’s terracotta skin was William James Mountain Cox. Will was introduced as somebody despised by his Co-host. Somebody whose bed was to be shared with for the absent-horizoned future. Somebody whose dwindling moustache (no hint of facial hair jealousy from James here) was no replacement for an Italian girlfriend’s flowing locks. Brushing that off, with a moustache comb, Will told us his tale of Trudy Love who the protagonist sees in ‘a funeral procession wearing the cutest little black dress he’d ever seen’. Pretty.
An attractive, unnamed French gentlemen then came to the stage and wrapped up the First Round.
A break without dinner ladies or playground fights was followed by a Second Round that included Nea’s poem dedicated to a ‘whore’ whose mouth she would like to fill with her fingers and then ‘shoot dead’. The rest of the Round was occupied by performers from the First Round with Evan and ‘byzantium’, Nik pumping the black button on a hot tub repeatedly, Reed on the light of long ago stars, Thomas on the tides of oceans and days, James on window wombs, Will on how because of your senses you are senseless and a final farewell from Gus:
All in all, the house and baby were returned safely. Nobody was sick on the fluffy ‘Royal Cream’ carpet. Nobody put out a cigarette butt in Uncle Godfrey’s ashes. And nobody cooked a stenching yet oddly comforting broth out of every single item in the kitchen, as happened the last time James’ parent’s left the family home to him. Thanks for the trust and opportunity, swiveling parent hosts.