Dogs or cats? Early riser or night owl? Charlie's coffee or Beau's? As we have delved into discovering the art of Life Like Charlie (click here to read the interview), it is only fair to introduce the yin to his yang: Beau Cleveland-Copeman. Beau and I caught up in the Coffee Tent to chat about his upcoming poetry book, exciting ventures and artistic inspirations.
Beau first discovered his love of words when his father gifted him a copy of On the Road by Jack Kerouac. After working in advertising, he quickly realised the field was not fulfilling his purpose in life, consequently, Beau began publishing his poetry on Instagram (@mrbeaucc). He is now working on two very exciting projects; the first of which is an anthology of Beau's poetry, encompassing his thoughts on life, expression and love, all with a uniting theme of coffee and its complexities. The second is Beau's passion project, which explores the nobility found from shift work, the challenges of living life hour by hour but the dignity that comes alongside this.
Beau's debut 'Coffee-Stained Harmonies' is out now
The Coffee Tent has provided Beau with a sense of responsibility, while creating a community of creative, inspiring individuals all working towards their own goals. Accompanied by his adoration of coffee, this has triggered Beau's desire to create the perfect cup for every customer. His partnership with Charlie truly is one of a kind, and their creative ability not only inspires one another, but creates an artistic space where they can bounce ideas around.
The pursuit of perfection translates throughout Beau's writing as he agonises over stanza structure, word choice and presentation. The calculated thought process is clear to see throughout his art as he illustrates a multi-media experience for his readers. He marries visual aids, Spotify playlists and thoughtful use of colours to create a completely immersive experience. He pairs his heartfelt words to his own aesthetic photography, which showcases the Beau-ness that is integral to his art. This is reiterated by his decision to include his experience of having a fastened heart rate, and he uses this as a motif throughout the first book.
A particularly important aspect to Beau's work is his capacity to spotlight the ordinary. By honestly detailing experiences of the everyday man, he is able to create a relatable rawness that echoes throughout his work. Additionally, strengthening the theme of 'fleeting moments' and the importance of treasuring the fantastically mundane that is found within each day.
One can hear the inspirations of Charles Bukowski, Leonard Cohen and Jack Kerouac as Beau creates pieces of self-reflection while exploring the destructive nature of humanity rather than romanticising its brutality. When discussing the nature of insta-poetry, Beau recognised a flaw within the genre as stemming from the idolisation of toxic behaviour, and the refusal to acknowledge one's own flaws. Though recognising its importance, there is a tendency to ignore harmful self-intricacies and an avoidance of responsibility that is integral to self-development.
We also discussed the ideas of Jordan Peterson, a Canadian psychologist, and the importance of individual improvement. Peterson explores the complex nature of hierarchy and the creation of personal ethics. This integral questioning of conscience inspires Beau to question his own existence, and this is reflected in his writing and work. For example, if one is to correct themselves before they correct the world, as Peterson suggests, then each action becomes important. In relation to coffee, this triggers his desire to create the perfect espresso, or in writing: the perfect poem.
Though I will never tire of discussing poetry, what I most enjoyed about our conversation was the way in which Beau described his relationship with coffee, as if it were a necessary art form in and of itself. He recounted the science of dialling the machine, upholding the delicacy of each shot and the inherent juxtaposition of its fast paced nature.
For now, Beau is busy working on his upcoming projects but dreams of becoming a full-time writer, though he added that he would happily continuing working coffee jobs alongside this.
Whether you're team Beau or team Charlie, the artistic pursuits of these two is undeniable. Next time Beau is slaving over Francesca (the coffee machine), make sure to ask him about his latest work and be sure to check out his debut Coffee-Stained Harmonies on amazon.