I met Ted Joans when he came out to South Africa in late 1993. I attended a workshop of his and was most impressed by his warmth, humour, humility and infectious creative spirit. He had emphasised the importance of simply ‘writing down the poem’, not worrying about issues of form or even reception, just get the poem out, let it live. I will also always remember his words: ‘The fantasy fades, but the surrealism remains.’
A few days later, a sleepy Saturday afternoon, he gave a reading at a local jazz club, accompanied by the beating of an African drum. His powerful performance reminded me that poetry should be a shared experience, not words buried alive in a book. He had an aura of freedom about him, the freedom to move and to share and to experience life to the full. His example encouraged me to continue writing poetry and performing poetry, and shortly I dedicated a small poetry collection of mine to him.
Ted Joans – always poetry, creation, life, laughter, protest, rebellion, eroticism, the marvellous.
Ted Joans lives!
Dye Hard Press