Talking with the Center of the Universe about Poetry

cou 14 may 2010.jpg
Here’s the story. Back in May 2008, I publicized a DJ set that a friend an I were doing with the text below. The event took place on 16 May, the night before Norway’s national holiday, and the text was presented as 16 reasons why you should spend the night at our event:


1. You are looking for that vague “something more”. 2. You think life “should mean something”. 3. You find yourself “stranded” and “adrift” yet you feel there is a way out of this scenario. 4. You find yourself “in Norway” but you don’t know why. 5. You have money and you don’t know how to spend it. 6. You have a thirst and you don’t know how to quench it. 7. You have ears but you don’t know what you should be listening to. 8. You need to react. 9. You need to experience at least a few moments of happiness ‘ere you die. 10. You are afraid of May 17th. 11. You are afraid of your own shadow, and think we can help you. 12. You laugh in the face of destiny. 13. You laugh in the face of random chance. 14. You know we hold the gateway to eternity, but you are not sure where we have hidden it. 15. You cannot remember any other date, place, time or people, other than the date, place, time and people of this event. 16. You are us.
This prompted the musician Jørgen Skjulstad, aka Center of the Universe (yes, with the American spelling), to ask if he could use some of my ‘reasons’ as lyrics. Now, two years later, the song ‘I know the meaning of life, but I won’t tell you’ has been released on the new Center of the Universe album, Levitating Disk . The credits on the CD read: ‘lyrics on #8 based on a poem by Barry Kavanagh’. You can hear the song on lastfm to listen to how selections from the text have been cleverly bashed into song rhythm, versed and refrained.
Also this year, I rejoined Hanny and we played support to Center of the Universe at the album launch at Månefisken in Oslo on 14 May. The photo above documents the COU concert. Those are 3 and a half inch disks. After the show I was sticking them to people’s foreheads, sorry about that.

barry
Barry Kavanagh writes fiction, and has made music, formerly with Dacianos and presently with the forthcoming "voodoo project".

Contact him here.