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,