The pandemic has been a roller coaster ride. This poet captures the feeling
Jasmine Gardosi has always wanted to perform a poem on a roller coaster. But it needed a raison, a worthy subject to mount a theme park attraction.
And then the coronavirus pandemic happened – and hasn’t stopped happening.
The global emergency ushered in nearly two years of whiplash – and it continues. The number of cases and deaths continue to decline and increase, followed by mask warrants and other restrictions. Eventually, the emergence of effective vaccines broke fear, but then came news of waning immunity. That makes a lot.
When Adrian B. Earle, a friend and fellow poet, urged her to finally put prose on a roller coaster – in an emotional and literal sense – Gardosi set her “pipe dream” on the right track. She worked with filmmaker Paul Stringer to produce the video.
Gardosi is no stranger to the scene. Poet of the word and beatboxer, they often think about how push the performance element as much as possible, mixing it with music or some type of movement. The poem was not written until the West Midland Safari Park in Worcestershire, England granted them permission to film. Instead, Gardosi wrote the roster to be timed with the ups, downs, twists and turns of the roller coaster.
A slam poem is a roller coaster in itself, Gardosi said. It often fits in a three-minute window and peaks at two minutes and 30 seconds.
“I feel like the roller coaster is a whole [poetic] form in its own right, ”she said.
After choreographing the journey’s “journey” poem, Gardosi was a little afraid that she would forget the memorized words halfway through the journey. (In all, Gardosi and Stringer, stabilizing a single GoPro camera in the same car, took about six takes.)
At some point in Gardosi’s recitation, the sense of control wanes, as the roller coaster turns in circles.
The past two years have been marked by loss and tragedy, said Gardosi, “but it has also been a time of connection for me.” We had a lot of time to think, she added.
“It means you have a lot of time to really understand who you are,” they said. “There’s a whole different kettle of fish when you realize things on your own. “My God, I’m an introvert! Yes, my God, I’m starting to question my gender identity. Oh, my God, what does this isolation do to me? ‘ “
One of the most important things to come out of the pandemic for Gardosi was honesty. In her poem, she is blunt, saying that she is always terrified and wary of crowded places.
“I can’t say where my OCD ends and where the ‘acceptable’ COVID anxiety begins,” she said in a line that nods to how the public health crisis has played out. in his “big time” obsessive-compulsive disorder.
“That kind of desire for control, that anxiety – I don’t think you necessarily have to have OCD to be anxious. [about the pandemic],” they said.
By JASMINE GARDOSI
This pandemic? An absolute roller coaster.
Savage. But I am trying continue as usual now.
This is what everyone seems to be doing.
And me should be grateful for having regained our freedom.
Look at the direction we’re going –
on the rise.
Finally emerging into the light,
back there. In the real world.
Yes, my social skills have been derailed but …
I put them back on track.
We have come a long way – in a good way.
I have love go back to sweaty concerts
and sitting in trains full of people
and shake hands with strangers
and cough once and thinking it’s COVID.
The way forward is clear … so clear.
We did the hard work,
so shouldn’t it be downhill from here?
See? All the things fiiine.
It goes well.
I have found my rhythm.
I am in control.
We took a turn for the better
and then for the worst
and then so much the better
and then for the …
Why do we feel like we’re going backwards,
and going around in circles at the same time?
OK, do you want the truth? I am still terrified.
I panic in crowded places.
I can’t tell where my OCD ends,
and “acceptable” COVID anxiety begins.
I’m scared so I stay home, I keep a low profile, I say no.
No matter what happens with the number of cases
we always ride through our own waves,
like my protective friends; they are still isolated.
We’re on the same coaster – different carts.
Same game – different parts.
Same storm – different boats,
holding different floats,
wear different coats.
Just do what makes you feel safe.
It’s more than normal to go at your own pace.
We have come so far again
even though we are technically in the same place.
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