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Friday, June 03, 2005


Looky-look; the Feast reading this Sunday is being featured on Maud Newton. In the land of internet poeming, this is perhaps something close to fame.

The workshop last night far exceeded my expectations. People brought a lot of varied but interesting work and it seems to me that people have real projects going on, and a lot of craft, experience, street-smarts, what have you.

I passed out the "Princess Sputnik" poem; one comment was that I needed to slow down the poem with a sprinkling of periods, and lighten up the syntax, which people thought might be a little too complicated for its own good. What say you, gentle reader? (BTW, if you're interested in seeing the painting the poem is based on, here it is).

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Thursday, June 02, 2005


So, I begin the workshop tonight, and I've resolved not to bring to the table something I've been honing and tweaking too much . . . both because I hope the workshop will be able to help me resolve problems in poems that have problems, and because I might tear out my own eyes and gibber like Hamlet's father's ghost if I brought something I thought was perfect only to watch it torn to shreds. I'm bringing two poems, although I'm not sure which one I'll hand out. The first is from my ongoing collection of poems based on the paintings of Mark Ryden; the second is from the drunken sailor suite. I reproduce them here for you, o reader, that you might form for me, if it be your wish, my meta-workshop.

Princess Sputnik

Anemones and galaxies--
an entirety of wishes: Watch the eucalyptus
drop its hoary, ancient fruits.

Oh, we know
we're not in Kansas anymore, as if anyone
could forget your easybake

your crown of plastic dinosaurs, or set aside
nine months, set aside

the brief history
of time and all the other space-age materials
and then see

if you can indifferently
consider the present rage for balance,
for the harmonious

existence of god
and rocketry, trilobites and honey.
We'll yet discover

the undiscovered
country, the hidden territory, the secret
of the old clock,

the moonstone castle
mystery, and we'll do it presently, as soon
as we've finished

our walk on the surface
of things, mapped the moon, Copernican
frame of this latest

dimension in our endless
collection of oddities, of empties, this nothing,
this space, this final frontier.

(6) Tests of Balance and Hydration

The drunken sailor appears
on the rooftop at night. Flanked

by the cedar water tower,
he looks an unavenging angel,

his dark dumb eyes glass-fronted
beneath his crew-cut hair.

I stand beside him as he waves
his torso in response
to the pulse of the traffic below,

as it blurs with the too fast tears
of the sentimentally drunk.
His face runs with salt.

We're far from his home. He waves
and he cries, this unbalanced tide.
I stand very still, thinking,

he'll cry an ocean, you know.

posted by Reen |link| ...talkety...0 comments

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Tuesday, May 31, 2005


The Week in Poems (and Pirates)

Tuesday: Hat Party, otherwise known as "La Fiesta Del Sombrero," 6:30, The Bowery Poetry Club.

Wednesday: Joshua Clover and Tan Lin, 8:00, The Poetry Project

Thursday: I start taking a workshop at the 92nd Street Y. I have not been in a workshop in a long time. I plan on bringing one of my new drunken sailor poems.

Friday and/or Saturday: BLOW ME DOWN!, or The Daring Exploits of Spanish John, Pirate, an original musical play about pirates in three short acts, 8:00 at The Coffey Street Playhouse (the backyard)
132 Coffey Street (Van Brunt/Conover), Red Hook, Brooklyn, NY, $10 (includes one free drink). Email RadioFreeRedHook@gmail.com for reservations.

Sunday: I read drunken sailor poems and more at the oceanically themed Feast reading, 5 p.m., at Camaje, 85 Macdougal Street, in Le Village.

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