ARLECCHINO x Richard Livermore

Rebel’s Note: The author of these swan songs was one of the first to publish my work back in the wild west days of 2013, back before Amsterdam, Rough Night Press, COVID, or death of a dream. You can find it in his literary journal, Ol’ Chanticleer (—july-2013.html) After hearing that Richard was dying, I asked him for some new work and paired it with photos from Ol’ Chanty & Rx alum, bart plantenga and his daughter, Paloma Jet who also has work on Rx. I am pleased to offer a gaze into the void from a perspective rarely seen while the poet is still with us. Check out bart’s tribute to Richard on MixCloud:

Photo x Paloma Jet

As I Was Saying

A grope in the dark

with a copper’s nark

undid the wind. Cut

to Arlecchino,

scatter stardust

on the moon and leave

the broom behind

in Nature’s care.

A Big Bucket Of God

I have lived so long now

I’m getting quite used to it 

– the clouds in the sky

the immoral order within.

Not sure yet where a dog

goes to die, but I think

Photo x bart plantenga

I’ll probably do it in bed

or collapse in the street

and be dead on arrival.

I can think of worse ways

to go. Or maybe a child

will be holding my hand

while asking its mum

if the boats go under

the bridge to be strangled.

And that will make sense

for the fifty-third time

like nothing else ever did

Photo x Paloma Jet

Deja Vu

I feel the horrors

just as much

and rage against

the bunch of shits

who call the shots

with no less anger

than before; 

it’s just that I

am getting old

and readying 

myself to die

while they commit

the same crimes and use 

the same alibi.

Sin Titulo

What do thoughts do

when they cease to be thought?

And where do they come from

before they enter my head?

Photo x bart plantenga

Are they just born?

And do they just die

with every next thought

that is thought to replace them?

Or are they preserved

for someone to think them

again? Do angels transport them

from person to person?

Or are they just stored

in the ether until 

someone else needs them 

and whistles for them in the dark?

Photo x Paloma Jet

Cut To Arlecchino

Down with the paw

of the everyday dog

and upsidaisy as far 

as the moon is concerned

with my problems.

My motto is ditto.

Not even as much

as a caw from the crow

can stop me cascading

into existence.

Last but not least: – 

How many coins

should I toss in the air

to make them land

at my feet in despair?

Born in 1944, Richard Livermore was orphaned 6 weeks later and his right to be called a “Livermore” called into question. He went to various children homes and boarding-schools, joined the Army at 15, graduated from there to boring jobs, a vagabond-existence, ‘irregular’ sex-life, unrequited love, poetry, philosophy, politics, travel, friendship – and much else besides. Richard Livermore, is now retired, and is a ‘gentleman of leisure’.

Paloma Jet [20] is an emerging multimedia artist who attends ARTEZ Art Academy in Arnhem, NL. She has performed around Amsterdam with her grrl band, the Earwurms and also appeared at Beachstock #10 in Michigan via Zoom. She has exhibited her videos on decay as art at the Beatnik Lounge in Joshua Tree, CA. She works with everything from photography, music, found objects, film, words, noise, fashion … & mold. She also served as teen advisor on bart plantenga’s novel Radio Activity Killsbart plantenga is also the author of novels Beer Mystic, & Ocean GroOve, short story collection Wiggling Wishbone & novella Spermatagonia: The Isle of Man & memoirs: Paris Scratch and NY Sin Phoney in Face Flat Minor. His books YODEL-AY-EE-OOOO: The Secret History of Yodeling Around the World and Yodel in HiFi + the CD Rough Guide to Yodel have created the misunderstanding that he’s the world’s foremost yodel expert. He’s also a DJ & has produced Wreck This Mess in NYC, Paris & Amsterdam since forever. He lives in Amsterdam.

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