Wednesday, 25 May 2011

The poet's voice

"Painting is silent poetry, and poetry is painting with the gift of speech." --Simonides

Whenever another poet can fathom your poem and hear its music in their mind's ear, it is like two souls resonate for a moment in an intangible world. But when this poet is able to express the meaning and music of your poem with their voice, so that it is heard, it is extraordinary.

Abigail Baker, is one of those talented poets, who engages your mind and heart with her words. You can read her blog here.

She was particularly intrigued by my poem "Letters pronouncing kisses" (previously published on my blog on 27 March 2011), which she rendered beautiful with her vivid voice in a recording, which you can listen to here.

Letters pronouncing kisses

Purse the lips and exhale the air when saying:
Where, which, what, with, whom, whether and why--
The breath of air should extinguish a candle burning.
Tantalise, titillate, scintillate, exhilarate with breath, the lips, like a sigh.

Before baffling and babbling, becoming beloved, and beaming blossom,
Peering into eyes, parting lips, pausing pleasurably, placing lips upon lips,
pulsating with passion, panting, the proof, the promise; then, as smooth as eating a plum,
Most marvellously the meeting of lips, mmmmmmmm, until touching the tongue tips.

Mouth in motion, melting, in momentum with its own miming and rhyming.
Bitter sweet; bitter the marjoram, sweet the cardamom.
Mumbling, fumbling and then the tumbling.
The tongue trembling saying renaissance romance; souls to fathom.

The rising and falling sound song of every diphthong.
Thirsty, hungry and lovelorn; kiss-drenched with love life long.


Quirina Roode-Gutzmer


  1. I remember reading this poem when you originally posted it and how good it was, and I think this is Abi's best reading yet. She's always great, of course, but this poem very well lends itself to out loud reading, with emphasis on word's physical presence. Beautiful!

  2. She did it very well ... her way of reading intensifies your impressive "sound-playful" poem.

  3. abi sure has a way with words quirina....

    and back to the "kisses" :-)
    the journey is enchanting to say the least, a kiss which i always believed opens up ones heart to the others, your lovers, your soulmate's, heart...
    here ur have captured in detail the journey... enjoyed the read thorroughly

  4. The opening two lines and the airiness of the wh-, in repetition blew over me like gauze on a breeze....and the explosive plosives of the second verse well matched with the passion.... The whole mmmmmminess of the thing surprised me....a well crafted sound-song.