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 P O E T I C   D R U M S  -  M U L T I D I M E N S I O N A L   P O E T R Y


Welcome to Poetic Drums Multidimensional Poetry and Music.

My name is Sergio Faluotico. I am a musician and writer. My main instrument is the drumset but I also play other ethnic percussion instruments such as the balafon, the berimbau, tablas, surdo, cajon, marimba, bombo leguero, stel tongue drums and many more. I started exploring the melodic and solo possibilities of the drumset and the mood and poetry created by percussion instruments along with ambient sounds  back in the year 2000. in my initial  Poetic Drums project called  "MESSAGE FROM MOTHER AFRICA -Music for solo drums and percussion"

Being a drummer,then, it was natural for me to gravitate  towards the domain of rhythm in words : poetry. Poetry, then, expressed with words on paper or read aloud, become added onto the musical vignettes already created. It became obvious to me that these were all different facets of the same poetic expression; different dimensions of poetry. I therefore named it  MULTIDIMENSIONAL POETRY.

The first dimension was that of colour. I want to liberate poetry from its black and white prison. By using colours either on the page or the tipography I want to create emotions on the reader and at the same time look for a design that would enhance the meaning of the poems.

This promted me to explore another dimension: that of meaning hidden inside the poems. Painting the text with different colours also allows me to explore and extract different clusters of meaning embedded within each poem.

Another avenue of exploration, another dimension is that of reversibility in the poem. Thus, many of the poems I write can be read up/down or down/up causing meaning to be sometimes expanded and some other times completely reversed.

The next dimension was that of visual design. Every poem IS already a visual design. I wanted this to be expanded even further and made the poems become the object they were referring to, be it a cat, a sunrise or any kind of shape. In that way the poem would not only talk about some thing; it would BE that thing. This is accomplished by manipulating the typography either in shape or size but also in the way the words and lines are group together or otherwise.

All of these reflections sent me onto the next dimension : the poem becoming a real object to look at and appreciate, much like a painting is looked at in a museum and art gallery. The poem becomes artwork.

I also put together videos showimg all the different reading possibilities of them with the background of Poetic Drums music I composed especially for them

Which brings me to the next dimension : sound. The rhythm of the poem often dictates or suggests a particular musical rhythm over which the poem can naturally and effortlessly display its message, its story. My knowledge of many traditional and ethnic musical forms is extremely important at this point. The particular voice of an instrument can potentiate, just like colour, the expression of certain poems. Just the same, a rhythm can provide a confortable sound space over which the poem naturally expresses what it has to say. Much the same as painting the page background with certain colours to elicit emotions on the reader, rhythm and harmony can provide the same to the listener.

Yet another dimension is the one of translation. Upon getting engaged in translating my poems I begun exploring what meaning is. And, exploring English as a second language I begun asking myself many questions: is meaning achieved by the way you group words together or is it a matter of how you accentuate a word within a sentence? How is it possible to traslate rhythm? Is rhythm meaning? or is it just the medium meaning uses to convey a message? Can I translate exactly and obtain the same results? Can I preserve the same reversible or interchangeable quality of the original poems? I still don't have a definitive answer to all of these questions. Everything I investigate and explore is here, writen in the poems I am presenting for all of you to read. In that way you, my dear reader, can be part of not only the questions but the answers. Of the successes or failures you will be the judge. I also want these poems to be avenues for the reader to play with by exploring their many possible readings suggested by the coloureed lines. AND MORE; dIfferent people can play with the poems and find other possible combinations. Have fun with them, be an active reader. Remember: don't just read the poem; play with it!

My book POSTCARDS FROM WARD'S ISLAND is where you can read and experience all of these dimensions I oulined here. It is a box set of 33 postcards (the poems) and one compact disc of Poetic Drums music played by me on many ethnic percussion instruments along with ambient sounds. The listener/reader can play the music and make the connection to the poems. The music is also ideal for relaxation and meditation and can, and should be used for those purposes too.

The final dimension is that of live perfomance. I don't want poetry to be just a person reading a poem to an audience. That would be the same as just writing it and presenting it in a black and white traditional way. Therefore I want to use image and sound to enhance each reading. Thus videos and background music are essential to presenting and reading poetry live. The challenge is to allow poetry to be poetry and not song without precluding that, sometimes, song can also be used as part of poetry.

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