Author Archives: Anis Mojgani

About Anis Mojgani

Anis Mojgani is a two time National Poetry Slam Champion, winner of the International World Cup Poetry Slam, and TEDx speaker. The author of three poetry collections, Anis' fourth collection The Pocketknife Bible, comes out this fall. Originally from New Orleans, Anis currently lives in Portland, OR.

#2 – Three Musical Poems – Anis Mojgani

6080124172_22a0e34f6a_b

On February 6, DMC celebrates its TWO-YEAR ANNIVERSARY! Holy mackerel, time flies. It’s been a great year. We’ve published hundreds of pieces this year that we feel proud and honored to share, and we also put out our first book! This week we will be counting down the Top Ten Most Read posts from our second year of existence, and will present #2 and #1 on Saturday, February 6. Thanks for being part of a wild and excellent two years.

 

I pretty much am always listening to music when I write. It stirs and softens. More I guess it lulls whatever in me that I want to be made known of to step closer, to come outside and smell more of the fragrance that is wafting in towards it. Very often what will happen is that once I find myself in a groove, whatever song it is that has clicked me into place, that has enticed the beast out into the night garden, I feel I have to keep playing it in order to keep it there. So, a song finishes and I play it again. And again. And again. Sometimes I will listen to that same song for an hour. Strangely, it is rare for me to just put the song on repeat, or at least not for the first 20 listens. Like I don’t want to commit to just this one sound, or like there needs to be this pause of brief reawakening “oh. that sweet sound is finished..could we listen to it once more?”

The three pieces here all sprung from situations like this, where I just kept cycling through the same piece of music. All three are from different years––2011, 2013, & 2015––and three very different periods of life I was going through. Much of the art I make, comes to fruition by making something, tearing that something up and making something truer out of the pieces. There’s something I love about creating an environment that pushes my brain to think differently, to make it so that it has to think creatively about what surrounds it. This aspect of creation, deconstruction, reconstruction, deconstruction, reconstruction, repeat, helps enable and perpetuate this for me. And what I like about not just putting a song on repeat but having to click it back to the start every time it finishes is that it kind of contributes to the above. It doesn’t lull me down the river, it makes me get back out at the same place downstream, head back to where I jumped in and repeat, mirroring the repetition of the re-/de-/reconstruction aspect of my process.

And oddly enough I think that it also helps with bringing myself closer to the truth of the things inside of me I’m trying to understand or get out of my dark and into my light. That it’s a process of trimming off as much fat as possible, or rather getting it boiled down to the most of its essence. Which enables the work (I hope) to really connect with my self, while also being able to walk around in a shape very far removed from my life, thus becoming more connective with other (I hope more). The music I listen to assists with this. As if that which is in me is naked, is more than naked, is naked of skin and body, and is only vaguely of color. And tries on different songs to see what is fitting the shape of its shadow, and when it finds one that fits right, or well enough, it tries it on, walks around in it, learns what it means to have bones and eyelids. And the shape and story of the song works its way into whatever it is I’m writing and becomes something that I would not have necessarily been able to explore or discover just on my own.

 

Second Person. Ana ana ana ana nashki oti besof haolam/Please please please please kiss me at the end of the world

2015

“Odisea” – Vaadat Charigim

It was a different life. she left you for someone with a motorcycle. and you locked yourself in a hotel room in another country. to drink a new life into your heart. when you woke up in another body you hopped a plane for the soot and leaves of the middle east. carried only a change of clothes on your back. in tel aviv you bought a scooter from a boy that looked like your brother. drove through the city. asked where to find a bar that played rock n roll music. borrowed someone’s guitar and played onstage. screaming into the loud hum of the lights you kicked a bottle. took one of its shards and cut a line across your forehead. the audience lapped it up. a girl doing a deborah harry impersonation licked the blood from your face. in the alley outside she pushed her tongue across your teeth and you reached under her skirt put your fingers inside her. the two of you smashed your bodies against each other like two bricks trying to break themselves. climbed out of the cracks between the buildings. sat on her rooftop. Continue reading

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Three Musical Poems – Anis Mojgani

6080124172_22a0e34f6a_b

 

I pretty much am always listening to music when I write. It stirs and softens. More I guess it lulls whatever in me that I want to be made known of to step closer, to come outside and smell more of the fragrance that is wafting in towards it. Very often what will happen is that once I find myself in a groove, whatever song it is that has clicked me into place, that has enticed the beast out into the night garden, I feel I have to keep playing it in order to keep it there. So, a song finishes and I play it again. And again. And again. Sometimes I will listen to that same song for an hour. Strangely, it is rare for me to just put the song on repeat, or at least not for the first 20 listens. Like I don’t want to commit to just this one sound, or like there needs to be this pause of brief reawakening “oh. that sweet sound is finished..could we listen to it once more?”

The three pieces here all sprung from situations like this, where I just kept cycling through the same piece of music. All three are from different years––2011, 2013, & 2015––and three very different periods of life I was going through. Much of the art I make, comes to fruition by making something, tearing that something up and making something truer out of the pieces. There’s something I love about creating an environment that pushes my brain to think differently, to make it so that it has to think creatively about what surrounds it. This aspect of creation, deconstruction, reconstruction, deconstruction, reconstruction, repeat, helps enable and perpetuate this for me. And what I like about not just putting a song on repeat but having to click it back to the start every time it finishes is that it kind of contributes to the above. It doesn’t lull me down the river, it makes me get back out at the same place downstream, head back to where I jumped in and repeat, mirroring the repetition of the re-/de-/reconstruction aspect of my process.

And oddly enough I think that it also helps with bringing myself closer to the truth of the things inside of me I’m trying to understand or get out of my dark and into my light. That it’s a process of trimming off as much fat as possible, or rather getting it boiled down to the most of its essence. Which enables the work (I hope) to really connect with my self, while also being able to walk around in a shape very far removed from my life, thus becoming more connective with other (I hope more). The music I listen to assists with this. As if that which is in me is naked, is more than naked, is naked of skin and body, and is only vaguely of color. And tries on different songs to see what is fitting the shape of its shadow, and when it finds one that fits right, or well enough, it tries it on, walks around in it, learns what it means to have bones and eyelids. And the shape and story of the song works its way into whatever it is I’m writing and becomes something that I would not have necessarily been able to explore or discover just on my own.

 

Second Person. Ana ana ana ana nashki oti besof haolam/Please please please please kiss me at the end of the world

2015

“Odisea” – Vaadat Charigim

It was a different life. she left you for someone with a motorcycle. and you locked yourself in a hotel room in another country. to drink a new life into your heart. when you woke up in another body you hopped a plane for the soot and leaves of the middle east. carried only a change of clothes on your back. in tel aviv you bought a scooter from a boy that looked like your brother. drove through the city. asked where to find a bar that played rock n roll music. borrowed someone’s guitar and played onstage. screaming into the loud hum of the lights you kicked a bottle. took one of its shards and cut a line across your forehead. the audience lapped it up. a girl doing a deborah harry impersonation licked the blood from your face. in the alley outside she pushed her tongue across your teeth and you reached under her skirt put your fingers inside her. the two of you smashed your bodies against each other like two bricks trying to break themselves. climbed out of the cracks between the buildings. sat on her rooftop. Continue reading