REVIEW: Poet Luke Wright tackles divisive themes while trying to unite the nation at Cambridge Junction
PUBLISHED: 11:21 14 October 2019
He recited a poem for Prince Charles (O, Charles!), who the poet said went through a “living hell” as a royal, but consoled him in absentia: “It could be worse, Charles… you could live in Reading”.
Poetry was infused with theatre, comedy and storytelling on Friday October 11 at Cambridge Junction.
The poetry hour delivered by Luke Wright was part of his mission to unite the UK divided, he said, by austerity and Brexit.
His show had the title 'Poet Laureate' attached to it, as a joke started by him, rapidly taken over by radio stations who introduced him thus.
He started the show by reciting a poem for Prince Charles ('O, Charles!'), who the poet said went through a 'living hell' as a royal, but consoled him in absentia: "It could be worse, Charles… you could live in Reading".
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He also tackled the maturity of being empathetic: "As I grow older, I become much more empathetic. We are all sentient lumps of flesh trying our best, so it's hard to become mad at people."
Bullying was also a major theme he presented by telling the public an anecdote about signing books for 'some lads' who requested bad language-filled autographs for a so-called Steve. "There's a Steve in every group of friends," Luke said, referring to people bullying one person in the group collectively.
He talked about being accused of being pretentious because he is a poet, which he defended: "Most poets want connection."
Luke acknowledged that British society hates pretentiousness and noticed a pride in the collective ignorance of not knowing, but argued: "We should defend pretentiousness."
The politically-charged storytelling mentioned Michael Gove claiming a collective exhaustion caused by experts, which Luke logically followed through: "If you think about it, we are tired of people who know stuff."
The poet said we should "not be afraid to be ourselves and speak our truest words". In his 'The Lay-bys and Bypasses' poem, he says what he knows about the UK is his image of it.
The night was filled with devices to raise interest and amusement. The only things more admirable than his acting, memory and humour were his sensitivity in front of a full venue and his diaphragm - as he held his breath while creating rhythm through repetition.