I have been asked to do some funny things in my time, but honouring the ‘Sacred Drunken Wookiee’ has to be one step beyond. Let me explain. Sort of.
I was recently approached by a member of the Intergalactic Krewe of Chewbacchus, which is a Mardi Gras parade organization from New Orleans, and asked to provide a series of short poems. The poems would be integrated into a number of ‘parade throws’ – items to give away to the street audience as the parade passes.
The Krewe consists (according to the person who commissioned me) of in excess of five hundred wonderfully nerdy ‘sci-fi geeks’, whose mission is to save the Galaxy… one drunken nerd at a time. Their parade theme is science fiction taken not-too-seriously, eco-friendliness taken slightly more seriously, and whooping-it-up taken in deadly earnest.
We’ll be producing the parade throws between now and February 2015, when the parade season begins in New Orleans. They’ll be in the form of little boxes, into which will be placed little pictures, gew-gaws, and found items, as well as a little baked-and-painted TARDIS. The outside of the box will be decorated as a TARDIS, and the idea is either to inscribe my words on the back of the box, or include them in a little scroll inside. Whichever, I get my name and © on each poem.
It’s rather exciting knowing I’ll be part of next year’s Mardi Gras in New Orleans, if even by remote control. It’s not my first remote connection with that city, as not only were several poems in my first collection, Naked in the Sea, inspired by what I knew of it, but also another poem was inscribed on an African drum which is now on display at the New Orleans Museum of Art. Not bad for someone frae Dundee…