SpOT­light

The Weekend Australian - Magazine - - SOCIETY - By Will Pavia

Po­etry in mo­tion

Pas­sen­gers strid­ing through Ter­mi­nal A of LaGuardia air­port in New York can or­der cof­fee from a chain called World Bean and sand­wiches from CIBO Ex­press. They can also or­der a poem or a story, freshly pre­pared and de­liv­ered to their phone as they ar­rive in LA or Dal­las or At­lanta. Op­er­at­ing out of a kiosk, two writ­ers turn out tales of fam­i­lies, jour­neys, love, loss… any­thing they can con­jure be­fore their reader de­scends from the clouds and turns on their phone. Their work is free. “When it’s a short flight we have to be re­ally quick,” says Gideon Jacobs, 28, who runs Land­ing Pages – part of a Queens arts coun­cil res­i­dency pro­gram – with Lexie Smith. One of his sto­ries is about a cou­ple whose break-up be­gins on a long-haul flight to Greece: “Un­der the small but pow­er­ful lights per­fectly an­gled to il­lu­mi­nate seat 32A and 32B, they sim­ply saw things they had not seen in their first three months to­gether, things they could not quite un­see.” The story was not, he stresses, writ­ten for a cou­ple.

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