Saturday, April 29, 2006
Friday, April 28, 2006
today I wrote this imaginary letter to myself, for my Phoenicia Times gossip column:
My wife is in charge of folding laundry in our house. Every two or three days, she fetches a pile of clean clothes and drops it on the floor of our bedroom. There it sits for a time -- from 40 minutes to six hours --until she folds it.
One day, in a stray moment, I went over to a pile and rearranged some of the clothing. I placed three brown socks on top, and pushed in the bottom of an undershirt. Then I stepped back. The pile looked better! I had invented "laundry sculpture."
Now, every time there's a new heap of clothes, I work on it. Often I make the pile taller. I try to harmonize the colors. Gradually, I have learned the importance of red in laundry. When I really like a sculpture, I take a photograph. I'm saving these photos to show in a local gallery.
Have you seen the latest issue of SHAMPOO magazine yet?
Recent Philadelphia transplant (originally from Atlanta) Paul Siegell has a great poem there!
I'm not sure if the SHAMPOO editors named their magazine after the famous Goldie Hawn / Warren Beatty / Lee Grant flick, but I like to think they did. Don't tell me the answer, unless it's this one.
Wednesday, April 26, 2006
Do you know your neighbors? What kinds of lives take place around you?What kinds of noises are there? Have things noticeably changed sinceBush took office?
Please join us at the Kelly Writers House on Thursday, April 27th at7pm, when six writers will read commissioned work about themicroclimate and micropolitics of their neighborhoods, within 100meters. Featuring:
Tuesday, April 25, 2006
(they were snowed out a couple months ago, but this Sunday... this Sunday... this is the Sunday!)
Performing Sunday will be:
Ifwhen (ex-All Natural Lemon & Lime Flavors) - IFWHEN
Zelda Pinwheel - ZELDAPINWHEEL
So L’il - SOLIL
Panda Riot - PANDARIOT
The Fire is located at 412 Girard Ave. And the show starts at 7pm & is $7 (though probably more like 7:30 [though Ifwhen (So L’il’s sister band) are opening and are PHENomenal]. The order should be like the listing above (Ifwhen 7:00, Zelda 8:00, So L’il 9:00, Panda Riot 10:00).
The Fire's website - THEFIRE
--posted by CAConrad
Monday, April 24, 2006
The following announcement was sent to me from Rich Wexler, one of Philadelphia's most tireless Arts coordinator, facilitator and activist. He and his Sherman Collective are putting together a BUKOWSKI TRIBUTE. --CAConrad
I am doing a tribute week for Charles Bukowski during the week of June 24th-July 1st. it will include 4 screenings (or more) of "Born Into This" the CB doc that came out about 2 years ago (and never played philly) plus a show at Tritone (of classical based music & drink specials)
I am doing this at the Cinema (former Cinemagic) and am looking for readers to do CB poems & a few of their own that are in the spirit of CB before the screenings (and poss at Tritone show). I thought of you for this. Please let me know, and forward to folks who may be into this. The week will be called something like.
Sex, Drugs and Classical Music?
A tribute to Charles Bukowski
Saturday, April 22, 2006
This life for the poems, man oh man, loving poems more and didn't think I COULD! Just got back from a trip to Buffalo, where, oh, I walked through the archive. That, a, mazing, sanctuary of poems. Michael Basinski is a SERIOUS gem, a real generous soul. He took Buck Downs, Kevin Thurston and I on the tour of a lifetime for poetry. For years I've considered my time spent at the Poetry Library in London to have BEEN IT! Next to Jonathan Williams's home FULL OF BOOKS OF POETRY, but no no no. It really is TRUE, the collection at Buffalo is -- quite seriously -- THREE OR FOUR TIMES LARGER THAN THE POETRY LIBRARY IN LONDON!
I've been hearing about this collection in Buffalo for years from friends. And let me be honest that in the back of my head was always this thought, "Wow, I'd love to go see it, but there's no way it's as big as the London library." Yeah well, I was very wrong!
Michael Basinski was such a fantastic host, he was more than happy to honor my request we look for a copy of Susie Timmons's book LOCKED FROM INSIDE, the book that so many (from Eileen Myles to Erica Kaufman, to Anselm Hollo) talk about as this true Magic Force. And there it was, on the shelf, right where it should be. Wow! It's so delicious to actually HOLD something you've been aching to see, and read but is out of print!
Shit, that was so beautiful, makes life seem worth any amount of bullshit!
Christine Thurston drove Buck and I to Niagara Falls. Neither of us had ever seen the falls before, and there's just no way to prepare for it. It's the Grand Canyon in reverse, or something, I don't know! It's just impossible to explain unless you SEE it! I mean, I've seen pictures and film footage all my life and it just canNOT compare to being there. And I know how much everyone complains about all the weird tourist trappings built around it, but to be honest, when we were THERE, and I mean, right AT the water, then below it looking up, not even the sun mattered, for the moment. Pure, exhilarating awe. A special alarm goes off and your blood gets jammed with some kind of Special Occasion Sugars.
Everyone I met in Buffalo, especially the poets, were great! We talked and talked and talked about poetry talking and talking about poetry and it was wonderful talking so much about it! Kevin and Christine were the most generous hosts, opening their new home to us. Cannot possibly thank them enough.
Buffalo is my one of my new favorite cities.
Tuesday, April 18, 2006
The title poem has a couple of my favorite lines of late. It's probably obvious which ones &/so I won't point...
the wheatfield looks lovely
because people say so. that must
poem or perhaps just a
title for the familiarity
that words breed. there is no
wheatfield so lovely
as the time it took
to say so. or really, what
day could grow greater
than the morning greeting? the
wheatfield springs from a
logic, words on
one's lips. if one is not
one has traveled wrong. the
wheatfield fills the eye, space
brings a determined
marking to our careers. there are
poems placed in every
conversation, they are
why we stay up late.
And a kickass lettre (titled Lettered) from Tarzan to Jane. One line reads "now that I'm downcast and under the impression, you will have to play fiercely along." It's signed "true to you and colonies of yes,//your love, T" !! Makes me gleeful.
I've not read the entire book yet. As much as I'd like to. I reserve newer books of poetry for the nightstand, read before sleep. Perhaps fortunately, I can only absorb a few at a time before my lids conclude...
these are fine, if not best, lullaby poems for adults, in any event.
PS AND LET ME INSIST - check out his stunning work up at The Mag.
Sunday, April 16, 2006
THE BROOKLYN CENTRAL LIBRARY
Poets Coffeehouse featuring:
Directions: Subway: 2, 3, Q 2/3 to
or Eastern Parkway/Brooklyn Museum of Art station,
or Q to
then right onto
which turns into
Friday, April 14, 2006
for Emerging Writers
USHERS IN AN EXCITING EVENING OF
FILM, PUPPETS & POETRY!
at Nexus Gallery
located at 137 N 2nd Street (between Arch and Race)
JANAKI RANPURA (puppeteer; Minneapolis)
KATE DOLLENMAYER (filmmaker; Los Angeles)
JEN HOFER (poet & translator; Los Angeles)
Wednesday, April 12, 2006
Was up working on this all night. In fact, it was daylight before I realized it.
TEN THOUSAND BY THE FOURTH OF JULY
Tuesday, April 11, 2006
My favorite piece Shanna read was something called Mouth Made Out of Trees, apparently a title suggested, if not enforced, by poet/friend Schafer Hall. A snip:
Your mouth is its own environment a canyon
with trees and snow a felt mouth unembroidered
coal a paintbrush of dark wood the instrument
of the mouth wind blown through the mouth of trees.
Conrad's reading left us wanting more as usual. I often note during his readings how eager folks are to absolutely crack up & understandably so because he's certainly honed line & delivery. Though I'm not certain many of his poems are intentionally or exclusively funny. Especially Dear Mr. President There Was Egg Shell...poem (Google it!). But it's one of the many things I really dig about this poet - relevant, opulent tragicomedy. Exhibit:
It's True I Tell Ya
My Father is a 50 Cent
my father paper thin again
lost on the basement floor
but who will put their lips
to his stiff old hard-on?
who will blow him up?
who will want this
a tree again?
Thanks for the incredible, indelible afternoon.
PS - thanks, too, for the wine and chocolate donuts with jimmies, Conrad!
PPS - re previous post "4 springing UP!," Heather's last name won't be Hassen but Saker. for future (& public) reference...
Monday, April 10, 2006
Many thanks to Larry Robin's of ROBIN'S BOOKSTORE for setting up the book party for Deviant Propulsion and DOWN SPOOKY! It was fun, in fact it was so fun that I didn't even mind when the angry woman screamed at me, and demanded the publisher's phone number to tell them what a filthy pig I am! Hehe! Then she slapped me, threw my book at me! What is it Eileen Myles says about homophobes? "It's good to be hated!" Yeah, it's funny too sometimes.
But it felt so nice sharing that day with so many amazing friends!
Thanks to everyone who came! And thanks to Shanna Compton for reading with me! Thanks to Frank Sherlock for that INCREDIBLE introduction! Yeah, it was like family Frank, that's exactly what it felt like, just like you said, and in the very best possible way too.
Friday, April 07, 2006
I FEEL TRACTOR
Saturday April 8 2006 / 8:30 PM Arts Cafe
Kelly Writers House / 3805 Locust Walk
Philadelphia / Pennsylvania
grub and box wine
Have you all had the chance to check out Heather Radawski's (soon to be known as Heather Hassen) paintings on her blog? If you haven't, please DO, AND just so you know, if you CLICK on a painting it will zoom-up closer for a better look. CLICK HERE! Her paintings gas up the tank! Y'know?!
Thursday, April 06, 2006
The interview is entitled: “WE LIVE IN A COUNTRY WITH MAYBE THE MOST DELICIOUS LOOKING FLAG OF ANY NATION.”
Here is a paragraph from my intro:
No one can quite explain Sparrow's work. Writers I associate him with include Yoko Ono, Abraham Lincoln, Washington Irving, Ted Berrgian, and Basho. It's an impossible mix, but it is a grouping that resonates with Sparrow's life and work: Ono for her Fluxus performances and her writing in Grapefruit; Lincoln for his humor, political philosophy, and grip of his prose style; Irving for his eccentric characters and unforgettable dispatches from upstate New York; Berrigan for his expansive personality and poetry mixed with facts, flair, and gossip; and Basho for his legendary mysticism setting the little life in the circle of the greater life of the Tao.
Read the SPARROW INTERVIEW here.
Sparrow is joy and surprisingly poignant. I hope you enjoy it.
See everyone who can make on Sunday at Robin's for Conrad's book party and reading! See Will's previous post here for more details!
Tuesday, April 04, 2006
which, if you ignore the lettering printed on Conrad's bird-delivering hand, reads deviant ion. The Ion was the text by which Plato demonstrated poetry to be a kind of divine madness.
Monday, April 03, 2006
Tom Raworth has created a fantastic comicstrip of his recent reading tour across the USA. To view this, click HERE!
And, if you still haven't listened to his readings or interviews recently posted at PENNSOUND, you can do so by clicking HERE!
p.s. collage to the right is by Tom Raworth (2000)