Glastonbury Festival 2014

2011 website Poet in Residence

29 June 2011

This year's website Poet in Residence is Longfella, aka Tony Walsh. Tony will be writing poems for the website throughout the Festival weekend, just as Jo Bell did last year.

Tony will be tweeting from the Festival - you can follow him at @LongfellaPoet. Tony's also hoping to crowd-source a poem which will be posted here on the website and performed at the Festival. To get involved, simply tweet him a Glastonbury memory, completing the sentence "The moment when..." in 8 words or less, using the hashtag #glastopoet.

Wednesday, June 29

Sunday, June 26

POETIC TRIBUTE TO JOHN PEEL
 
Tony appeared on BBC 6Music last night live from at Glastonbury and performed a poem that he had written on the day in tribute to the late, great Glastonbury stalwart and legendary DJ John Peel. The poem adds the voice of performance poetry to the many scenes which owe the great man a debt of thanks and records how John was a srong supporter of the likes of John Cooper Clarke and Linton Kwesi Johnson. Listen again on the BBC iPlayer.

KEEPING IT PEEL: TEENAGE KICKER CONSPIRACY

Back in the era when vinyl was vital

Each platter that mattered a vital recital

When the Festive Fifty and every Peel session

Was essential listening, a real obsession

When Peel Acres and Maida Vale

Were secretly famous, a complete Holy Grail

An avancular uncle with a grizzly grey beard

A funky punk uncle still keeping it weird  

You were dry and ironic on Top of the Pops

You were wry and sardonic as they bopped til they dropped

You would stand there bemused, just extracting the urine

Then, completely amused as you slipped something pure in

And you played the essentials, a playlist of passion

Not the inconsequential with the vagueness of fashion

And we, the outsiders, with music inside us

And Peel the provider, just there to provide us

With weirdness and beardness, the craziest combos

Yes, sometimes you'd fail but you'd fail with aplomb though

And who cared that you played them at all the wrong speeds

Cos you were daring to play them and that's all it needs

And there was Hegley and Joolz there was Linton KJ

Johnny Clarke and Attila were blazing the way

Ivor Cutler and Swells, and all different wordsmiths

But you'd time for them all and you really deserve this...

You see, music is grateful and they've had chance to show it

But I'd like to say thanks on behalf of the poets

And you told us of Walters, The Kop and your wife

While every night this dj was saving my life

And you're missed on the wireless and Glastonbury telly

And it's just not the same without Peel in his wellies

So I just wanna tell you, wanna tell you tonight

And say thanks for the kicks, John, mate, right through the night

Well alright! 

 

 

Saturday, June 25

 

Ten Things That I Learned Today At Glastonbury: Friday

1. My waterproofs aren't.

2. Unhappiness is a wet dongle.

3. Columbo died. We all wore dirty raincoats as a tribute.

4. Rooney's chopper is trending. Again.

5. Friday Muddy Friday. Where the streets make you lame.

6. God is an astronaut not a dj. But he will sing backing vocals for those that he worships.

7. It was good to see that U2 have updated some of their songs. I particularly enjoyed "I Will FF."

8. David Cameron is officially a "silly twit." Morrissey says so. And he knows so much about these things.

9. Me: "T'is murder."

10. But this place is amazing!

 MASHEDONBURY

Don't bring any glass-tonbury

Can I see your pass-tonbury

Don't drive on the grass-tonbury

(There isn't any grass-tonbury?!)

Like a holy mass-tonbury

Bold and unabashed-onbury

Strummer and the Clash-tonbury

Fire spitting flashed-onbury

Massages for cash-tonbury

Painted on moustached-onbury

Let's go on the lash-tonbury

End up getting mashed-onbury

In a hammock crashed-onbury

Slipped and now I'm gashed-onbury

Came out in a rash-tonbury

Right pain in the ass-tonbury

Isn't it a blast-onbury

Doesn't it go fast-onbury

Love it with a passion-bury

Wish that it could last-onbury

The one and only Glastonbury!

(PS Good luck with the grass-tonbury)

 

Friday June 24

Ten Things That I Learned Today At Glastonbury: Thursday

1.  If you camp next to people who have sprayed their massive tent with the legend "HCB: Hardcore Cider Bastards" then they probably are.

2.  We need more than one word for mud.

3.  The setting sun makes a noise.  It appears to be "Psssssshhhh."

4.  The only type of hat that suits my face would seem to be a ski mask.  Plus maybe a Mexican wrestling mask for Sundays.

5.  TV cameras emit secret rays which turn passers-by into idiots.

6.  If your burgers are made from "rare breeds" mate, you know...maybe there's something to think about there.

7.  The poets here are outstanding in their field.  So go to their field!

8.  Some people leave a massive trace.

9.  Didgeridont!

10.  This place is amazing.

IT NEVER RAINS AT GLASTO
 
Elvis lives! In Wythenshawe
 
The Pope has launched a condom store
 
The weather's not shit anymore!
 
And it never rains at Glasto
 
 
Father Christmas, he's retired
 
Michael Gove is well admired
 
Alan Sugar, he's been fired
 
And it never rains at Glasto
 
 
Eurovision and the UK won
 
Katie Price is now a nun
 
I read it last week in The Sun
 
And it never rains at Glasto
 
 
Osborne got his numbers right
 
Simon Cowell isn't shite
 
Cameron spoke and he was right
 
And it never rains at Glasto
 
 
I liked it once when Jedward sang
 
My phone went, Angelina rang
 
They've called their baby Cillit Bang
 
And it never rains at Glasto
 
 
A World Cup game went just as planned
 
Dale Winton isn't orange tanned
 
Girls Aloud want me in the band
 
And it never rains at Glasto
 
 
There's never ever any mud
 
It never ever ever floods
 
It's never any f***ing good
 
And it never rains at Glasto
 

WE LOVE GLASTO!
 
Have you got mud on your face, you big disgrace?
 
Yesterday in the Fluffy Rock Cafe the crowd joined me in an historic mass rendition of "We Love Glasto" to the tune of Queen's "We Will Rock You."
 
For added fun (!) we replaced the clapping noises of the original with half the crowd saying "Bang, Bang" like the toilet doors and the others making the "Psssssh" noise of the dreaded gas cannister (Don't do it, kids!)  Surely the twin soundtracks to the Glastonbury experience.
 
Bang, Bang, Psssh
Bang, Bang, Psssh
We love, we love Glasto!
 
Pass it on!  With claps or with the noises - whatever works for you.  Let's see if we can get it on the telly from the Pyramid stage.
 
You heard it here first!  Unless you were in the Fluffy Rock, of course.

NO WORRIES
 
Sex
and drugs
and rock n roll
Some people live like this all the time
 
Party!
Party!
Party!
Some people live like this all the time
 
Huddled under canvas
Queuing for a tap
Flooding and diarrhoea
Some people live like this all the time

Thursday June 23

Ten Things That I Learned Today at Glastonbury: Wednesday.
 
1.  The weather is ALWAYS gorgeous.
 
2.  Putting pole A into slot B then pole C into slots D and E can be helped by the using swear word F.
 
3.  If your tent cost less than £12 then iiiiit's probably going to leak, dude.
 
4.  Yes, we CAN hear you having sex. And we're marking you out of ten. You scored two, mate. As you appeared to be on your own.
 
5. I want to go to Poonarnia.
 
6. Ladies!  Short shorts and flowery wellies is a very good look.  Gentlemen! Not so much.
 
7.  It's not that interesting behind the Pyramid stage. But there is a big zebra. And a giraffe.  And a rhino.  (I'm not sure if they're plastic or very highly trained.)
 
8.  If you fall full length in the mud then it's very wet. And it hurts. And people laugh. A lot.
 
9.  (M&S voice) This isn't just any old mud. This is prime Somerset organic dairy farm mud. With cow shit in.
 
10. This place is amazing.
 
NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT
 
We're grateful to the people who keep safety in the queues
 
We're grateful to the first aid folk who'll help you with a bruise
 
We're grateful to the guys who sell the psychedelic booze
 
But let's hear it for the guys who lose our poos!
 
 
We're grateful to the guys who keep fresh water in the taps
 
(Do you see where we're going here?)
 
We're grateful to those famous painted naked dancing chaps
 
We're grateful to the bloke who puts an ostrich on our baps (Are you sure?)
 
But let's hear it for the chaps who zap our craps!


We're grateful to the squads of bods who pick up all the litter
 
We're grateful to the people who put feta on our pitta
 
We're grateful to the lady wearing only silver glitter
 
But let's hear it for the guys who shine the shitters!
 
 
We're grateful to the comics for their humour and their wit (You're ahead of me now!)
 
We're love the pyromaniacs who keep the night times lit
 
I love my camping neighbour too, the noisy, selfish git
 
But let's hear it for the shamen of the shit!
 
 
We're grateful to the dairy team who've moved all Michael's herds
 
We're grateful for the 4am dawn chorus of the birds
 
We're grateful to the poets for the beauty of their words (Like these!)
 
But let's hear it for the A-team of the turds
 
 
We're grateful to the artisans for sharing crafts and hobbies
 
We're grateful to the gang of lads all dressed as Mr Blobby's
 
We're grateful to the stewards and the good old British bobbies
 
But let's hear it for the top job with the jobbies!
 
 
We're grateful to the people who do all the pretty lights
 
We're grateful to the artists for their carnival delights
 
We're grateful to the crazies for so many stunning sites
 
But let's hear it for the plight of those
 
The basic human rights of those
 
The musn't be quite right of those, the guys who shift our shite! 

Saturday June 18

To kick things off, Tony (who's a Festival regular) has written a terrific poem, entitled 'Why Glastonbury?'. Check it out below (photos and video by Rohan van Twest).

As well as his daily poems, Tony will be tweeting from the Festival - you can follow him at @LongfellaPoet. Tony's also hoping to crowd-source a poem which will be posted here on the website and performed at the Festival. To get involved, simply tweet him a Glastonbury memory, completing the sentence "The moment when..." in 8 words or less, using the hashtag #glastopoet.

Tony will be performing on the Poetry&Words stage at 6.30pm on Friday and 12.50pm on Sunday. You can check out more of his work on his website, at longfella.co.uk.

Here is the text for the poem above...

WHY GLASTONBURY
 
G  is for the green fields, and for grining in the queues.
 
L  is for that long walk with your luggage and your booze.
 
A  is for the atmosphere, it's awesome, always fun and
 
S  is for the sun rise. And the sunsets. And the sun.
 
T  is for the toilets and the traffic and the tents.
 
O  is for outrageous and for Oh! My! God! events and
 
N  is for the night time filled with naughtiness, insane and
 
B  is beer and burgers, bongos banging in your brain and
 
U  is uuurgh! 'Ungover but you're up until you drop and
 
R is righteous rock n roll and raving round the clock and
 
Y could be for youth, it could be yoga in a yurt but
 
Y is why they do this. Why we come back every year.
 
Why? Because it's built on love. We find it in ourselves.
 
And while we're feeling loved up we love everybody else.
 
And Oxfam, Greenpeace, Wateraid and all the other causes
 
teach that people loving people is the strongest of resources.
 
So why don't we share lessons from this special time together?
 
And why don't we ask why more? And why can't things change forever?
 
And so why don't we resolve here now that Glastonbury's flames
 
will light a thousand beacons and ignite the sparks of change!
 
And so why don't we grow wings here as a mighty flock of doves
 
With a single word to change the world and that simple word is love!
 
I said why don't we take strength here as a mighty flock of doves
 
With a single word to change the world and that simple word is love!
 
I said why don't we take flight here as a mighty flock of doves
 
With a single word to change the world and that simple word is love!
 
And we'll burn and soar like lanterns with a smile on every face
 
We'll take heart but leave a piece here. It's so hard to leave no trace.
 
And that's why there is a part of us that stays here when we're gone.
 
And that's why it's always special in these Fields of Avalon.
 
(Spread the love, Glastonbury. Spread the love.)
 
(Peace!)