Wednesday, August 16, 2017

your august eclipse annogram

Reading at Stamford Arts Festival

En plein air
photo by Carol Booth
Thanks to Jerry T. Johnson for inviting me to read from Free Ferry at the Stamford Arts Festival! Our Harbor Point amphitheater featured poets Edward Ahern, Gil Fagiani, Lisa Pierce Flores, Alison McBain Lisa Pierce Flores, John F. McMullen, Shana Melton, and Roberta Bisgyer. Jerry demonstrated on-the-spot composing skill by interviewing me and then reciting a poem that referenced Mt. Washington and the blues! Trust me, it made perfect sense.

More reviews on Free Ferry

My gratitude to Mom Egg Review’s Book Editor Bunny Goodjohn for Grace Gardiner’s work, and to Lines+Stars Editor Rachel Cloud Adams for James Lord Parker’s article.  Authors can only pray for such thoughtful, in-depth reviews—they feel like manna from heaven. If you have not yet shared your feedback on Amazon, please do!  Almost 20 five-star reviews, and I am grateful to everyone who took time to post.

Ann on the John Mac Show

Tune your computers on August 27, at 7pm, as I have the honor to appear on the JohnMac Radio Show. John F. McMullen, poet and broadcaster, has interviewed poets such as Aliki Barnstone, Patricia Carragon, and Amy Holman. I look forward to our conversation, and hope you can join us!

Jimmy Santiago Baca on Faith, Magic and Writing

Jimmy Santiago Baca
What does the acclaimed poet say about writing?  Pretty much: just do it. But starting unleashes a host of characters, forces, turns and twists that both delight and confound. In his new webinar series, he guides writers past the obstacles—with one simple rule: get to the end.  To learn more from this award-winning multi-genre author, read on.

Salty Workshop with Norwalk’s Poet Laureate

"Dredging for Oysters"
by Alexander Rummler
On Thursday, August 24, 3-5pm, Laurel Peterson, Norwalk’s Poet Laureate, will lead a Poetry Workshop inspired by "Oystering Then and Now," the current exhibit in the Mayor's Gallery. Limited to 10, participants will first meet in the gallery with curator Melissa Slattery to discuss Alexander Rummler’s WPA oystering murals before writing. A $10 donation will go to the Norwalk Historical Society Museum. Register here.

Open Mic Night at Hudson Valley Writers Center

Did you know that HVWC hosts a monthly Open Mic?  All genres welcome—fiction, non-fiction,, comedy, storytelling, Friday, August 18, at 7:30pm. Featured: Vincent Bazzano.  Be on time to sign up for your five-minute slot. Suggested $5 donation. 

Laurel Peterson
Creative opportunities

August 24 Poetry Workshop, 3-5pm, with Laurel Peterson, $10
August 1 – October 1, Presence: A Journal of Catholic Poetry, call for work

New releases

Drugstore Blue by Susanna Case (Five Oaks Press)

Calling the Names by Mark Saba (David Robert Books)

Ghost Tracks: Stories of Pittsburgh Past by Mark Saba (Big Table Publishing)

Solar eclipse on August 21

Westchester Amateur Astronomers will host a partial (see this website for path of totality) eclipse event at the Harrison Library, Monday, August 21.  Early phases start at 1:23 pm, reach maximum at 2:45pm, and end at 4pm. Use proper eye protection when viewing partial stages.  If you have solar eclipse glasses, you need to verify they are not bogus.
Virginia Beach 1970
photo by Michael Cefola
NEVER look at the sun directly through binoculars or a telescope unless they are fitted with solar filters and you know what you are doing. Using polarized sunglasses and X-ray film may permanently blind your eyes. A pinhole projection is suggested in this article from Sky and Telescope.

Eclipse Cookies

So many of you are heading south or west to enjoy totality Monday, August 21.  We say this rare event merits cookies, and maybe a reading of A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court! At least cookies and a glass of milk . . . Twain would approve.

Thanks to Parade for the recipe
1 (16 ½ oz) package refrigerated sugar cookie dough or buy a package of sugar cookies or ginger snaps
4 cups powdered sugar, divided
1 tsp lemon juice
2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
6 Tbsp warm water, divided
Yellow food coloring

If baking cookies, bake per package directions and cool completely. In medium bowl, mix 2 cups powdered sugar and pinch of salt; stir in 3 Tbsp warm water and 1 tsp lemon juice. Ice flat sides of cookies, covering from one-eighth to almost completely. Freeze 10 minutes or until set. In medium bowl, mix 2 cups powdered sugar, 2 Tbsp cocoa and 3 Tbsp warm water. Spread chocolate icing on un-iced portions to represent moon covering sun. Refrigerate 5 minutes or until set. Makes 2 dozen. Thanks to Parade for the recipe.

Poetry events / readings

HVWC, August 18, Vincent Bazzano, $5

Cynthia Manick
Bryant Park Reading Room, Tuesdays, 7pm; August 22: Nathan McClain, Christina Pugh, Grace Bonner, Allison Benis White; August 29, Cynthia Manick, Ladan Osman,Iain Haley Pollock,Teri Cross Davis,Oliver Baez Bendorf; September 5, Tina KelleyJeanne Marie BeaumontKevin CareyJoseph Legaspi;  September 12: Rachel B. Glaser, Emily Skillings, Geofrey Hilsabeck; September 19:Charlie Bondhus, Tony Leuzzi, Kathleen Ossip, David Groff, Mariahadessa Ekere Tallie; September 26: Danniel Schoonebeek, Jill Bialosky, Simone White, Phillip B. Williams 

St. Thomas Episcopal Church, August 27, 10am, J. Chester Johnson on Auden

Prismatic Park, August 29, 30, 31; September 2, 3; 12-5pm, Donna Masini, interactive poetry exercises

Poets House Kray Hall, September 16, 4pm, Joy Passanante

'Round the Net

Shana Melton
photo by Michael Holstein
Poet Edward Ahern for poems in Longshot Island

Poet Gary Glauber for poems appearing in Tuck and The Courtship of Winds

Poet and artist Shana Melton for her Bridgeport, CT Writers Group

The New York Public Library’s August book recommendations

Poet and bassist James Lord Parker for poems appearing in Sewer Lid

Art Historian Laura Morelli for tips on how to shop in Florence

Poet and artist Linda Simone for this TedTalk on finding your life’s purpose

May the solar eclipse hold good omens for us all! Thanks for sharing the many ways you are reading Free Ferry—top narrative first, bottom next, and then each page.  It’s not unusual for people to read the book four or five times!  It’s deeply rewarding to me that Free Ferry is delighting people who normally do not read poetry.  Such joy!

Until next time,