Dead Poets

AMI JONES takes her own miniature Odyssey to the ADC; but these strange islanders could do with some better lotos-plants. Also, you should read The Odyssey.

ADC theatre Ami Jones MC Mixy poetry Rap

ADC Theatre, 25th May, 11pm, £5-6


Who are you? What are you doing? Why are you here? And why on earth would anyone call themselves the “Dead Poets”?

To seek the answers to these perennial questions, I ventured into the cold, unfriendly night and braved the murky waters of the exam-time ADC. The waters were not promising. Clouds of doubt filled the horizon, and every booming thunderclap on the distant shores made me question further.

But on, onwards, friends! Poetry and rap? Well, there might be at least one thing in this strange land worth seeking out, no?

The coast became clearer and clearer, and only then did I realise the true nature of the place I had sought. The plant life was sparse, scrubby. Everything had withered and died months ago, and no fresh greenery had risen to take its place.

The natives stood upon the shore (of which there were only two: Mark Grist and MC Mixy) and greeted me. They welcomed our motley crew with ready smiles, and a sort of bouncy enthusiasm alarmingly akin to that of an inexperienced teenage lover.

The fruits they offered were strange, this poetry and rap. I had sampled both before, but it didn’t seem polite to mention.

“Try them both! They are delicious together! This is the marvellous discovery we have made!”

Well, they seemed keen. I decided to avoid any mention that they were not the first to try it.

But they were odd fruits that the natives offered me. They were sour and bitter.

“But poetry is sweet!” I cried. Where was my scrumptious metaphor, my delectable similes, or even just a smack of imagery?

Maybe I was sampling the wrong fruit. Yes, yes, surely this one was meant to be the rap. But the other fruit proffered me was even more bitter. What was this? Not a poet and a rapper, but a rapper and a slightly worse rapper.

Never mind. Perhaps what I had been expecting was not what was meant to be offered. But then what was? A mildly amusing sort-of two-hander stand-up set, interspersed with these offerings of badly-written novelty poetry. No, comedy rapping. No; rhymes is the only word.

And why offer it? Maybe if the entire thing had rhymed all the way through, or had been genuinely improvised, instead of recounting the glory days of genuinely improvising and then reciting what you did, it would have made sense as a project.

As I dragged my exhausted carcass onto the shores of the ADC bar, I looked back upon my folly. I had hoped, I had dreamed. But never, never again would I dare risk those terrifying shores of exam-term drama. Not for another year, anyway.