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my life in poetry - 3

3. INTERNATIONAL COLLEAGUES AND FESTIVALS

From 1969 for 8 years Bob ran weekly workshops in sound and visual poetry at the Poetry Society, at that time in a spacious house in Earls Court Square, a focus for poets here and abroad to try out our new pieces. Bob arranged International Sound Poetry Festivals there from 1972-7 so I met Bob’s contacts in France, Germany, Sweden and Canada. Invitations to perform with him at similar events abroad followed: Berlin Festival (1977); Toronto (1978); Munster, (1979); New York (1980); Herzog August Bibliothek, Wolfenbuttel (1981).
My own contact with MIRELLA BENTIVOGLIO, Italy’s Great Lady of visual poetry and bookworks, now 87 but still going strong, led to inclusion in her key exhibition Materializzazione del Linguaggio at the Venice Biennale 1978 with 85 other female innovative poets and performing my CODESTONES OF VENICE, a 25-minute treated text [See My Poetry 2] based on John Ruskin’s study of Venetian architecture combined with improvisations to patterns in the marble, reflections and waters; and chants in English/Italian.  Venetians, students from the University and visitors joined in with gusto on the keyside of the Maggazini del Sale by the Zattere as the setting sun gave way to dusk and bats began to steal the show.
 
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