Friday, October 14, 2016

your october annogram

Free Ferry available for preorder

I am excited to share that my second poetry book, Free Ferry, is available for preorder.  Ray Peckauskus, Sarah Lawrence Professor Emeritus of Chemistry, calls it “a fascinating take on the plutonium story,” and Nathalia Holt, best-selling author of Rise of the Rocket Girls: The Women Who Propelled Us From Missiles to the Moon to Mars, says it is “a time capsule, sublimely combining the experience of a suburban family with the production and isolation of plutonium.” Intrigued? Order now for delivery next spring.

Kickstart She Can Find Her Way

You can put UPPER HAND PRESS and twenty-four women authors on the map by kickstarting a special publishing project. In She Can Find Her Way: Women Travelers at Their Best, women from several generations tell true stories of their most memorable and challenging travel experiences.  Discover the many unusual gifts in exchange for your Kickstarter donation, while helping a wonderful indie press and fantastic publisher.

Boo at the Zoo

Gigi and adoring fans at the zoo
There’s one more weekend to see Gigi and the Lend-Me-a-Hand Band at the Bronx Zoo’s Halloween event.  This adorable family band features songwriter/vocalist Gigi O’Keeffe Schwartzman, husband Larry on bass, son Evan on electronic drums, my husband Michael Cefola on guitar, and longtime friend Paul Rutkowski on sax.  See them, and amazing magic performed by David Levitan, at three daily shows on Saturday, October 29 and Sunday, October 30.  Bring li’l ones yearning to sing and dance!

Let All Voices Be Heard

Writers of different faiths share their stories Saturday, October 15, 7-9 p.m. at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Montclair, NJ.  The Writers Circle and Tiferet Journal co-host this interfaith panel moderated by Linda K. Wertheimer, author of Faith Ed (Beacon Press, 2015). Panelists will explore how writing and other creative pursuits can lead toward a more compassionate perspective on religious and cultural differences.

Jay Milder's WHITE LINES

You are invited to the
opening reception of Jay Milder’s WHITE LINES at the Bogardus Mansion, Tuesday, October 18, 6-8pm.   The exhibit, curated by Beth Gersh-Nesic, PhD, features Old Testament and Kabbalah-themed work by Milder (born 1934), an American artist and a figurative expressionist painter of the second generation New York School

Vegetarian Chili

I made this recipe this week—a wonderful meal to welcome the cool weather!  You may have seen this in an earlier annogram. This is my version of Chili con Elote in The New Laurel’s Kitchen (Ten Speed Press, 1986), my first vegetarian cookbook.  We ate the chili in bowls the first night, and the second, spooned it onto corn chips, covered with cheddar cheese and popped them under the broiler for memorable nachos.  Tastes better the next day as flavors meld.
1 organic onion, chopped
1 organic clove garlic
2 tablespoons oil
1 or 2 organic green peppers, diced
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin powder
2 cups V-8 Juice
2 tablespoons ketchup
2 tablespoons salsa
1 cup frozen organic corn
3 cans Trader Joe’s Organic Kidney Beans
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon oregano
Sauté onion and garlic clove in oil until onion is soft. Crush garlic clove. Add green pepper and spices. Sauté another 2 or 3 minutes. Add V-8 Juice and corn. Drain all three cans of beans and add whole beans from two cans to the pot.  Mash beans in the third can with a knife until you have a thick paste; add to pot along with salt and oregano. Simmer 30 minutes or more; stir to avoid bottom burning.

New releases

“Bridge of Sighs,” a new short story by Laura Morelli, available on Amazon

Cadillac, Oklahoma (Upper Hand Press, 2016) by Louise Farmer Smith

Conversion Table (Mindmade Books, 2016) by A Maxwell

Eyewitness (Dos Madres Press, 2016) by Natalie Safir

Calls for work / classes

Presence, a Journal of Catholic Poetry is seeking poetry and book reviews by December 1

Tarpaulin Sky Press is accepting submissions for its annual book prize contest by November 1

The Hudson Valley Writers Center offers one-day intensives with high profile writers

Cindy Beer-Fouhy’s Writing Workshop for 50+  continues through December 7

Ruth Zaporah workshop on physical theater improv, October 21, 22, 23, in Brooklyn

Readings / Events

CD Wright (1949-2016)
HVWC, October 15, 7:30pm, Jim Tilley ($10); October 16, 7:30pm, Amy Dryansky, Jennifer Franklin, Aideen Henry, Jack Powers; music by Mike Latini ($10)

The New York Public Library, October 18, 7pm, Rebecca Solnit, Joshua Jelly-Schapiro, Garnette Cadogan, Suketu Meht, Luc Sante on their project Nonstop Metropolis: A New York City Atlas.

Queen’s College, October 18, 6:30pm, Kaitlyn Greenidge

CUNY Graduate Center, October 19, 6:30pm, CD Wright Tribute: Lee Ann Brown, Peter Cole, Monica de la Torre, Carolyn Forché, Brecht Gander, Brenda Hillman, Ben Lerner, Deborah Luster, Frances Mayes, Jane Miller, Michael Ondaatje, Brenda Shaughnessy, Arthur Sze, Jean Valentine, Anne Waldman, Michael Wiegers, Richard Leo Johnson, Toni Hall, Eiko
Gregory Rabassa (1922-2016)

Saint Mark's Church, October 19, 8pm, Garrett Caples, Hoa Nguyen

CUNY Graduate Center, October 21, 6pm, Celebration of Gregory Rabassa: Edith Grossman, Peter Constantine, Earl Fitz, Ezra Fitz, Esther Allen, Ilan Stavans, Mauricio Font, Elizabeth Lowe, Harry Morales, Daniel Shapiro, Nora Glickman, Declan Spring, Ammiel Alcalay, Stanley Barkan, Catarina Cordeiro, David Draper Clark, Clara Rabassa, Kate Rabassa Wallen

HVWC, October 21, Open Mic, 7:30pm; October 22, 7:30pm, Beth Hahn ($10); October 28, 7:30pm, Michelle Hoover, Patricia Park ($10)

Pulitzer Prize-winner Vijay Seshadri
Cooper Union, October 27, 7pm, Rae Armantrout, John Ashbery, Peter Balakian, Carl Dennis, Stephen Dunn, Jorie Graham, Yusef Komunyakaa, Sharon Olds, Gregory Pardlo, Philip Schultz, Vijay Seshadri, Natasha Trethewey, and Charles Wright. ($15)

McNally Jackson Books, October 30, 5pm, Kimo Armitage, Alicia Upano

Orchard Cove retirement community, October 30, 2pm, Jacqueline Lapidus, Susan Mahan, Joanne Seltzer, Christine Silverstein, Ellen Steinbaum

Tappan Hill, November 4, 6:00pm, HVWC gala honoring Yusef Komunyaka and Sylvia Nasar

Round the Net

Congrats and/or thanks to the following for news and links:

Essayist Jeanette Briggs on the nomination of City Stories in Diverse Voices Quarterly for a Best of the Net Award

Edinburgh Poet Laureate (2009-2014) Ron Butlin on the nomination of Ghost Moon (Salt Publishing, 2014) for the 2016 International Dublin Literary Award

Guitarist Michael Cefola for recalling “Dance Hall Days” enjoyed at the Ritz

Novelist Regi Claire on having a short story selected for the Weekend Read

Poet Gary Glauber for two poems in Verse-Virtual

John Malkovich as Picasso
Unicorn Writers Conference Founder Jan Kardys for this funny article on

Host Phil Pochoda on winning the Complete Hoot 2016 Owl Award for Best Literary Festival

Writer Mike Reiter for this article on “Why Fidgeting is Good Medicine

Bassist Larry Schwartzman for another bluesman recommendation—James Armstrong

Photo by Joe Vericker
Poet and watercolorist Linda Simone for sharing Kate DiCamillo's Newbery Medal acceptance speech and this funny Malkovich-inspired art

Photographer Joe Vericker for recalling his dream assignment a year ago following the Pope

Filmmaker Frank Vitale on completion of his new work of docufiction, “Anorgasmia”

Next annogram we will finally have a new president here in the US, and believe me, it's been painful! Let's focus on our glorious creative drives to create a better world.

Until next time,

Friday, September 02, 2016

Bo Diddley
Welcome to sultry, stormy September!  I am celebrating three poems that will appear in the anthology Theories of HER and two in the upcoming Opossum Lit's debut issue on music. Of course, you may have the blues because summer is fast coming to an end….

Across 110th Street

How I’ve enjoyed Saturday errands listening to “Across 110th Street”! The Columbia University radio program features blues, funk and soul, noon – 2pm. I had a religious experience hearing Bo Diddley’s “Pretty Thing”; I stared open-mouthed at my car radio as if it were radioactive.  But so hard to find authentic blues: try the Record Company and Lisa Mann, discovered online by bassist Larry Schwartzman, and Jack Broadbent, recommended by poet Linda Simone after Jack’s recent San Antonio concert.

Beth Gersh-Nesic
Beth New York performance and lecture

Multitalented Beth Gersh-Nesic invites you to see her performance piece, “Word Exchange,” at Saunders Farm, 863 Albany Post Road, Garrison, NY on September 3 at 2pm.  Hers will be one of four performances staged in the farm’s open field. Beth, also an outstanding lecturer on art history, will speak on “The Jewess in Art from Medieval Times to Today,” 10:00am on Thursday, September 10, at the JCC of Greenwich; register online.

©Deborah Coulter 2016
Deborah Coulter collage and exhibit

Artist extraordinaire Deborah Coulter celebrated my last poetry reading with this amazing collage.  She writes it is "inspired by one of my favorite poets,  Ann Cefola, and the exquisite poems from her book Face Painting in the Dark." Thank you, Deborah!  And now you can see her work in a Faculty Art Show at the JCC of Mid-Westchester September 6 - October 14.  

Celia Pilkington
Bigger than you, bigger than me

Celia Pilkington will perform in an Off-Off Broadway production of Kathryn Coughlin’s searing new play Bigger Than You, Bigger Than Me, a riveting study of our shared anxieties in the age of terrorism.  Working with longtime collaborator, director Adam Thorburn, Celia promises this drama will be “one of the most exciting undertakings in our artistic partnership.” To help bring this important work to the stage, please make a fully tax-deductible donation to Fractured Atlas.
Treasures of the night sky

Few people know the thrill of looking through a telescope at the night sky.  You can have this experience on September 24, at Ward Pound Ridge with members of Westchester Amateur Astronomers.  If daytime is more to your liking, see outstanding photos by astrophotographer Scott Namacher on exhibit at the Greenburgh Public Library through September 9.

Dogs and ghosts, oh my!

Poet Linda Simone and I are thrilled to have poems in respective anthologies To Unsnare Time’s Warp and Polterguest from Main Street Rag Press.  You can pre-order Unsnare, the dog-poem collection, and Polterguest, from the publisher now.  These anthologies make great gifts—especially for dog lovers, and the ghost collection is perfect for Halloween, or treat yourself to both!

What mistakez? How to prep your manuscript

Learn from literary proofreader Cindy Hochman in my Ragazine interview with her.  The delightful Cindy shares common errors to avoid, and winning attitudes that help nudge writers into the limelight.  The interview is chockfull of useful information and a sprinkling of Cindy's trademark humor—be sure to take a look!

You wrote a book, now what?

Learn essentials of pitching, selling and marketing your book at the Mini-Unicorn Writers’ Conference on Saturday, September 10, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. at Groton Senior Center, 102 Newtown Road, Groton, CT 06340. The $49 cost includes a light breakfast and lunch, and access to wisdom of publishing insiders.  Register online or email unicorn4writers@gmail.  See this video for more details.

 Follow Ronit and Jamil

Get to know Ronit and Jamil, the Palestinian-Israeli Romeo and Juliet who will debut in a book of verse by Pamela Laskin from Harper Collins in early 2017 and keep up with them on Twitter @RonitandJamil.

Poetry readings / opportunities

HVWC – Friday, September 9, 7:30pm, David Kutz-Marks and Justin Boening, $10

The Y Writers’ Voice – 8 Saturdays starting September 10, Poetry Workshop with Estha Weiner, $252

Natalie Safir's new book from
Dos Madres Press
The Spectrum - Sunday, September 11, 3pm, Patricia Brody, Philip Fried, David McLoghlin, Bertha Rogers, Neil Shepard, Estha Weiner

HVWC – Friday, September 23, 7:30pm, Anya Silver and Sally Bliumis-Dunn, $10

HVWC – Saturday, September 24, 7:30pm, Noah Warren and Joshua Bennett, $10

JCC on Hudson – Sunday, September 25, 1:30pm, Natalie Safir

Katonah Village Library – Sunday, September 25, 4pm, Kathleen Ossip, $10

HVWC – Friday, September 30, 7:30pm, Steph Burt and Craig Morgan Teicher, $10

Gluten-Free Zucchini Brownies

This King Arthur Flour recipe is wowing friends and family. Its not-so-secret ingredient is fresh zucchini, which reduces the sugar and makes for a delectably moist brownie.  Chill in the fridge for a cool chocolate treat.  

8 oz zucchini (one 8" fresh, trimmed), cut into chunks
3 tablespoons butter, melted
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup sugar
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon espresso powder or 1 teaspoon strong liquid coffee
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup gluten-free flour
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips

1/4 cup heavy cream or 3 tablespoons milk
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Lightly grease an 8" square pan. Combine zucchini, butter, eggs, and vanilla in a food processor or blender, and process until smooth. Add sugar, cocoa, espresso powder, baking powder, salt, and flour; process briefly until well combined. Add chips, pulse to break up them a bit. Pour into pan. Let rest for 15 minutes, while you preheat oven to 350°F. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until toothpick in center comes out clean, or with a few crumbs; you shouldn't see any wet batter. Remove from oven, and cool completely before frosting.
Frosting: Combine chocolate chips and milk or cream in microwave-safe bowl or small saucepan. Heat until milk is steaming, and chips are soft. Remove from heat, and stir until smooth. Spread frosting atop brownies. Place in the refrigerator for an hour or so, to set; then store at room temperature, covered, for several days.  Yield: 16 brownies.

'Round the Net

Al Filreis
Photographer Jeanette Briggs and watercolorist Randy Briggs on having work in the Art Society of Old Greenwich's Midsummer Night's Dreaming Exhibition

Architect Fred Cox on his Hollywood-inspired natorium featured in Westchester Magazine

UPenn Professor Al Filreis for reminding us to sign up for ModPo

Poet Gary Glauber for work in Verse-Virtual , Sick Lit, Your Daily Poem, Public Pool, Red Rose Review, and Panoply
Eric Holstein and Neil Spillane

The Guardian for advocating for creativity

Entrepreneur Eric Holstein for this great article on his Maine Fork Labs Food Kitchen

Translator Sylvia Kofler on having work in the 24th Annual Poet's House Showcase this month

Actor Tony LoBianco on winning an Emmy for Just a Common Soldier

Jimmy Santiago Baca
Poet Mary Ladd McCray for her latest Big Bang Poetry newsletter and this extraordinary trailer for a film on poet Jimmy Santiago Baca

Cellist Jay Shulman for this performance of a Bach aria; and for remembering the late Jack Davis, a lovely Southern gentleman, friend of my parents, and one of the original Mad Magazine artists
Celeste Barber spoofs model

Poet and artist Linda Simone for this article highlighting a Japanese word we could use in English; this art exhibit for dogs; this article on tidying up your writing, and this hilarious parody of Instagram poses (see at right)

Photographer Joe Vericker on being inducted into the Hall of Legends by the International Live Events Association

Filmmaker Frank Vitale for sharing "Bench Experiments," episodes 21-25 of The Metropolis Organism

In New York, we're awaiting Hurricane Hermine...stay safe everyone!

Until next time,

Friday, June 17, 2016

your almost summer annogram

With George Kraus for our reading
What a great reading at the JCC on Hudson!  Thanks to co-reader George Kraus and an impressive audience, including poets Myrna Goodman, Ann Lauinger, and Natalie Safir; George's wife Juliana Kraus, writer Jean O'Leary and genealogist Mark Gaffney; art historian Beth Gersh-Nesic; visual artist Deborah Coulter; and my favorite guitarist and one-and-only Michael Cefola. Everyone especially loved the intro to Free Ferry, my book forthcoming from Upper Hand Press in January. 

AMP—Always Electric

So thrilled to be in inaugural issue of AMP, Hofstra University's new online literary journal.  Editor Janet Kaplan has selected a fantastic diversity of poetry, including work from EJ Antonio, Jim DanielsKristin Prevallet and Edwin Torres.  I'm lifting my Prosecco to toast the editor and her poets!

Apollinaire in Paris

Congratulations to Beth Gersh-Nesic, PhD, on her Bonjour Paris review of the Apollinaire Exhibit at the Musee de l’Orangerie. Beth, director of the New York Arts Exchange, is a scholar on a key member of Picasso’s “gang,” Andre Salmon. The perfect person for this review, she inspired me to read Peter Read’s book about Apollinaire and Picasso, The Persistence of Memory (University of California Press, 2010).

Coney Island at the McNay

Linda Simone and the Coney Islanders
At a June 5th poetry event in San Antonio, Linda Simone represented New York well at the McNay’s Coney Island: Visions of an American Dreamland, 1861-2008. Linda read her own work beside Nieman Studios, Inc.’s Shackles the Great and Marie Roberts’s A Congress of Curious People. Joining Linda, native New Yorkers Evelyn Golden Schneider, Jim Lavilla-Havelin, Bonnie Lyons, Sharon Olinka and David Simon also read Coney Island-inspired poems and remembrances.

Fork Out the Food in Maine

Chefs at Ancestral Path in Maine
The most delicious foods often originate in artisan kitchens, and that’s what Fork Food Labs will allow food entrepreneurs to do in Portland, Maine. A Kickstarter campaign is helping the Labs create a $30K community tasting lab—and they’ve already halfway there. Don’t you prefer American-made products? I happily donated and you can too, even $5 or $10, by July 10.

Star-gazing with WAA

Everyone longs to see the universe from a different angle...try a telescope.  Westchester Amateur Astronomers holds a monthly star party at Ward Pound Ridge.  No telescope necessary...WAA members bring their own for public viewing.  WAA also hosts a monthly lecture at Pace University in Briarcliff, with notables from NASA and the world of advanced astronomy.  

Summer of poetry

View from the Poetry Barn
PSA Chapbook Reading –June 22, 7 pm, National Arts ClubSarah Trudgeon, Amanda Turner alongside Marilyn Chin, Jane Hirshfield, A. Van Jordan
Last Saturday at the Barn June 25, 1-5 pm, a full afternoon of poetry at the Poetry Barn, a rural literary center in West Hurley, NY in the Catskills--20 minutes from iconic Woodstock.  

Hudson Valley Writers Center – June 26, 4:30 pm, Veils, Halos & Shackles Anthology Reading

W. H. Auden
Borderline Poetry Café – June 26, 3-5 pm, Irvington Public Library, War in a Time of Love: Verses from the Iliad and other poems of war; poetry-in-the round reading led by poet Michael Carman

Cornelia Street Café – June 26, 6 pm, Why Auden Matters: J. Chester Johnson, Graham Fawcett, Charlotte Maier, Matthew Aughenbaugh, Lindsey Nakatani

Canaan (NH) Meetinghouse Reading Series Thursdays, 7:30 pm, July 7: Ellen Fitzpatrick and Mary Gaitskill; July 14: Sy Montgomery and Diane les Bequets; July 21: Vievee Francis and Dawn Tripp; July 28: Pagan Kennedy; Tommy O'Malley and Doug Purdy

Writing opportunities

Poetry Fellowships at Poets and Writers in New York – paid, part-time editorial positions; deadline June 20.

Poetry Workshop with Estha Weiner: Let’s Lose the Muse. Open to all levels. Four weeks start July 9 at the Y Writer’s Voice; $176 Member; $205 Non-Member; enroll here. See Estha read from Transfiguration Begins at Home (Tiger Bark Press, 2009) and take a look at In the Weather of the World (Salmon Poetry, 2013).

Gemini Ink Writers Conference The State of the Book – July 21-24, El Tropicano Riverwalk Hotel, San Antonio, features Janet Kaplan, Reyna Grande, Tim Z. Hernandez, and Tim Seibles; Janet will lead  “Serious Play for Poets and Other Grown-Ups”; panels, discussions, and more.

ModPo students at San Fran meetup
Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art invites writing on its current art exhibitOne typed page; caliber 11 font; contact info, title, artwork, artist; free to members; non-members, $25 with complimentary membership; email and by July 20.  

ModPoAl Filreis and the ModPo team are preparing the liveliest season of ModPo ever to start September 10—with improved site, new poems, supplemental syllabi, Teacher Resource Center (TRC), and Crowdsourced Close Reading videos by global ModPo'ers. For an extraordinarily scholarly and fun experience, enroll now.

New releases

33 Flat Sonnets (Mindmade Books) by Frédéric Forte; translated by Emma Ramadan. Released from traditional constraints, the 14-line shape unspools into a compact rectangle comprised of a single, unbroken line: we experience the sonnet conceptually or aurally yet are denied it visually.

Clyde Doesn't Go Outside (Upper Hand Press, 2016). Arresting art and wit track a cat's eccentric and sometimes dark odyssey at the window.

Death of the Reader (Mindmade Books) by Alan Loney. Paraphrasing Barthes, Alan Loney implicitly asks us to consider this hybrid text blending the poetic and essayistic, and exploring the fiction of the universal (or generic or neutral) reader and its relationship with the author.
Memory Marries Desire (Finishing Line Press, 2016) by Gary Glauber. Nature and nostalgia dominate the dreamy narratives of subtlety, sadness, glimpses of passing enlightenment and truth; these poems face fears and transcend into solace and understanding.

Of Things (Burning Deck, 2016) by Michael Donhauser, poetry translated by Andrew Joron and Nick Hoff. A thicket, a manure pile, a marigold, gravel, a tomato, a cypress — award-winning Austrian poet Michael Donhauser engages in a “close reading” of natural things, tracing the movement from object to language.

Time Trials (L+S Press, 2015) by Jessica Lynn Dotson. Observant, incisive forays into family, love, and disconnectedness that speak in a low pitch that both coolly scrutinizes pain and wholly understands its lasting power.

Easy Quesadilla

This is often supper these days—a little protein, some healthy fats and gluten free.  Gooey, dripping, delicious.  

Alfalfa sprouts
2 Trader Joe's Brown Rice Tortillas
1 avocado, peeled and cut in thin wedges
1 cup sharp cheddar, shredded from block cheese*
1 Tablespoon olive oil

Heat oil in frying pan.  Rinse one rice tortilla with water lightly, and carefully place in pan to avoid oil spattering.  Tortilla will brown quickly; turn to avoid burning. Add a half-handful sprouts, one-half of avocado wedges, and one-half cup or more shredded cheese. Cover frying pan to melt cheese, or transfer with a spatula to a toaster oven to broil until melted.  Remove, fold in half, and serve.  Repeat for second tortilla.  Serves two. Vary vegetables to include sliced cremini mushrooms or switch sprouts for leafy dark greens. *Block cheese avoids additives like cellulose (wood) or natamycin (mold inhibitor).  

’Round the Net

Thanks and/or congratulations to:

Herman Hesse
Poet and filmmaker Terry Dugan for finding Maria Popova's article on Herman Hesse's impassioned defense of reading, and Emma Converse's astropoetics

Poet Gary Glauber for work in 'Merica Magazine and Verse-Virtual (May) and (June)

Poet Mary Ladd McCray for this article on the disappearance (gasp) of the period

Bassist and ancient astronaut theorist Larry Schwartzman for this discovery of a new Peru petroglyph

Music archivist Jay Shulman for Warhol's screen auditions, 50th anniversary of Dylan's
Spine Poetry by San Antonian Librarians
"Blonde on Blonde"
, and documentary trailer on Muddy Waters's musicians

Poet and artist Maxine Silverman on the June exhibit of her collage at the Unitarian Society in Ridgewood, New Jersey

Poet and artist Linda Simone for sharing this "spine poetry" created by librarians at the San Antonio Public Library

Linda again for sharing this great story of astronomers cracking the secret to Sappho's poetry

Joe Frazier and Muhammad Ali in the Bronx
Photographer Joe Vericker for one of his first published photos, Muhammad Ali with Joe 
Frazier visiting the Bronx

Poet Estha Weiner on having In the Weather of the World reviewed in American Book Review

The NYC Public Library for this history of the New York City commuter

‘The week that became forever’

We close this annogram with a poem by Greek poet Constantine Cavafy (1863-1933) to honor our LGBT brothers and sisters martyred in Orlando this week.

The Afternoon Sun


This room, how well I know it. 
Now they’re renting it, and the one next to it, 
as offices. The whole house has become 
an office building for agents, businessmen, companies. 

This room, how familiar it is. 

The couch was here, near the door, 
a Turkish carpet in front of it. 
Close by, the shelf with two yellow vases. 
On the right—no, opposite—a wardrobe with a mirror. 
In the middle the table where he wrote, 
and the three big wicker chairs. 
Beside the window the bed 
where we made love so many times. 

They must still be around somewhere, those old things. 

Beside the window the bed; 
the afternoon sun used to touch half of it. 

. . . One afternoon at four o’clock we separated 
for a week only. . . And then— 
that week became forever.

Until next time,