Sold out yesterday for the first day of MaTerre and the performance of the poet Domenico Brancale followed by the journey in the visuals of Blerina Goce, Albanian director, both engaged in the realization of one of the five episodes in reality immersive 360 degrees of MaTerre.
The interview by Alessia Guglielmi of Il Mattino di Foggia with the Lucanian poet-performer.
“MaTerre is to get involved in one’s own land, to put an end to some prejudices of the self, of identity. MaTerre is a building site where you can explain the reasons for your actions, your voice, your words. MaTerre is the right to contradict oneself and the right to leave. MaTerre is knowing how to be in the mystery of the encounter, it is making the stranger one’s own. The idea of confronting myself with the figure and verses of Rocco Scotellaro chosen for MaTerre’s project drove me to accept. The Lucanian poet and performer Domenico Brancale describes the project in which he presented yesterday the European preview of his latest book “Scannaciucce”.
It is the cruel name that in the Lucanian dialect of Sant’Arcangelo the farmers gave to the agave plant. At the edge of clayey paths, its long leaves surrounded by thorns wound with bitter ferocity (scanna-re) the donkey (ciucce) at its passage. It is an unexpected book because it was written and edited by the poet and critic Christian Sinicco and the publisher Mesogea. It collects all his texts in dialect that appeared in previous books. Although in recent years I have written only in the language – says the poet from Lucania – the dialect has continued to flow in secret in the saliva of my saying and I can never stop reckoning with it. In some way it is precisely in the tension of these two languages that my voice unfolds, poetry testifies to this. Knowing well that to write in dialect is to betray orality – he goes on – is to transcribe a sort of braying that lies at the bottom of each of us, it is to transcribe the impossible.
I was born in Sant’Arcangelo, a small town between the province of Potenza and Matera, on the hills that turn towards the Ionian Sea and give their back to Pollino. The horizon was always at the height of my gaze – says Domenico Brancale – I just wanted to be nature. And at that moment I was.
As Milo De Angelis wrote “to be born you need a return”. In the places where I lived there has always been a return, a season from which to start again. I believe that the roots do not belong only to the past, but stay in the future. They extend into the encounters and what was the first is intertwined with the last. With these deep words Brancale describes his bond with his beloved Basilicata.
Writing has always been for me a practice of the threshold, of the precipice, of the horizon. Frequenting ravines, cracks, dictated my relationship with the word. All spaces in which the excitement is directly proportional to the possibility of falling. I have never been safe in these spaces. I will never be safe in speech. Writing is being tightrope walker, it is living the threshold, the margins. I would almost say that Basilicata is a land of the margin, of the threshold, of the border. Basilicata – affirms the Lucanian poet – is a state of mind, it is my being born, it is the beginning.
To talk about oneself is to talk, it is to try to reconstruct a time that is made of reality and illusion where the dates overlap and thin out around a breath that never stops being reborn. With the passing of time I realized that you continue to be born in the places where you live – concludes the poet from Lucania – where you are recognized, where you get lost and inevitably find yourself. Changing the city means changing the body, it means rewriting the geography of one’s own existence. And so cities like Bologna, Venice and Paris have taken on the same importance within me as the village where I was born and raised and which I abandoned more than 20 years ago.