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I have a new project – Sound Poetry. I hope to release a Sound Poetry album by the end of the year. I will be a Harrogate Sound Poet and I am unsure if there are many of those. But what differentiates ‘poetry’ and ‘sound poetry’? They are completely different.

Sound poetry is an artistic form bridging literary and musical composition, in which the phonetic aspects of human speech are foregrounded instead of more conventional semantic and syntactic values; “verse without words”. By definition, sound poetry is intended primarily for performance.

The Futurist and Dadaist Vanguards of the beginning of this century were the pioneers in creating the first sound poetry forms. Filippo Tommaso Marinetti discovered that onomatopoeias were useful to describe a battle in Tripoli where he was a soldier, creating a sound text that became a sort of a spoken photograph of the battle. Dadaists were more involved in sound poetry and they invented different categories.

But, what if the poem was made of the base constituents of speech? The actual breath?

What would that be – Noise Poetry?

Here is something …

Evryone Needs To Breathe

by Andrew Backhouse | Untitled Album

I figure that the writing of a series of breaths would make for dull reading (although scoring it would be great fun). But the listening back to it would be a bit easier? What do you think? There is the option to comment at the footer.

I wanted to create a poem that would be a poem without bourgeoisie leanings. A fighters poem – stripped back to the base with all pretention gone; I am not saying all other verse is pretentious but mine was. I am happy with this – it has kept me bust whilst Mrs Backhouse was out helping in a Youth Group.

Will I get the album done by the end of the year? I do not know. But, I’d be interested in your feedback in the comments section below.


  1. mpwosg

    Very interesting piece of work. Left me feeling breathless It made me notice my own breath and how I was feeling. I then noticed that the sounds of breaths I was listening to were very different to my own and creating conflicting feelings. Maybe because I’m listening before I am about to go to bed and I wanted to relax and slow down what I was hearing. Breath is so relateable, it took some time for me to accept what I was listening to and to sit with the different sounds comfortably. I am going to listen to this piece at different time to see how it makes me feel. Excellent work. I look forward to hearing more like this

    • Andrew Backhouse

      Thank you for stopping by my site and taking time out of your day to listen to this – it is not everyones cup of tea but I am glad to hear you will listen to it again. The main thing is that you have not dismissed it as crass – if you want to listen to more poetry like this, I recommend Henri Chopin. Hope you get a good night’s sleep and feel you can listen to it again. Thanks for commenting.


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