Tapas Goyescas


This poem is part of a series I wrote while on a break on the Costa del SolThe tapas bar in question was in Benalmadena Puerto but has now closed: 

The chalked sign reads Comida casera
Home cooking – except, disappointed,
One Spanish customer has angrily obliterated
That choice word casera.

Steel trays, neat and stainless,
Top the bar in a cool cabinet
Parading their wares like babies in an incubator
Podgy meatballs dripping in oil,
Melting chicken, wasted peppers.

Diners greedily eye the offerings
Ordering with a stab of the finger
Return to a stool to sit out the time
Until a waitress brings the slaughter.

Sharp eyes, pleased, rove over the carnage
The uneven teeth and fuller lips
Closing round the succulent mortals
Squeezing dry the flowing juices
All washed down with a beer or rioja.

Till replete, the eye now duller
The fat mouth red as blood from the sauces
Overweight hands wipe evidence inaccurately
Leaving tell-tale stains to adorn the napkins.

The odd burp, a furtive toothpick
And off into the night we stutter
Growling softly.

Cultural Diplomacy and Creative Mobility

This post comes from a presentation I was asked to make for the Creative Mobility session at the 2nd annual Cultural Diplomacy Seminar  of the London branch of EUNIC on 1st July 2011 at Europe House. The brief was to reveal any specific thoughts, ideas, visions or theories that I may hold about creative mobility, in particular future visions of how mobility could be utilised to enhance the economic and co-production opportunities for artists and cultural producers in these difficult times. Continue reading

Pacing Yourself

This article forms part of a series where the benefit of hindsight over a long career allows me to dare to offer advice to younger entrepreneurs and managers. As my responses are often prompted by a query I have received, I find that each input has a better guarantee of being timely, relevant and of good reflective quality – all objectives in my content strategy. In this way they seem to meet a wider concern than just that of the person who asked the question in the first place. Continue reading

Nine Hints on How to Talk to a Cultural Attaché

These nine hints on how to talk to a cultural attaché come out of an invitation from BAFA to speak at their annual conference of UK arts festivals in 2010, held in Brighton in the November of that year. I formed part of  a panel presentation on international links where I was asked to address the question: “The Ecology of the Cultural Attaché”.

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Cultural Diplomacy – a Rapid Primer

This information originally appeared as part of my earlier article on World Music and Cultural Diplomacy where you will find all the references. It is reproduced here in a bite-sized chunk to improve access. For a deeper read, have a look at the reading list.

Diplomacy
Diplomacy is an international system designed to regulate foreign policy and power, born many centuries ago, but which took off with the rise of the late medieval city states of Europe.

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