memorial for a brilliant woman

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Suzanne Pleshette Dies in Los Angeles

wow- my life flashing before me

She was married to the late Tom Poston- I saw him in a small theater production back in the 70's- he was excellent.

Sad, sad, sad.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

why poetry? why not something useful?

yeah, that.

If you're lucky your friends like your stuff, or say they do (when they bother to pay attention), maybe you feel a little better spilling your brain squeezin's onto a nice clean sheet of paper, maybe it's even more active than playing the nine-thousandth of freecell, but what is it really all for??

Go to that reading, slam, workshop, take your golf claps, shout-outs, and thinly veiled you-sucks and keep drooling those word strings all over your bib, baby-

for all the good it'll do

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Poetry and Poop

Composed by john updike, just before Valentine's Day 1989 (published in the Oxford American)

“The Beautiful Bowel Movement”
by John Updike

Though most of them aren’t much to write about—
mere squibs and nubs, like half-smoked pale cigars,
the tint and stink recalling Tuesday’s meal,
the texture loose and soon dissolved—this one,
struck off in solitude one afternoon
(that prairie stretch before the late light fails)
with no distinct sensation, sweet or pained,
of special inspiration or release,
was yet a masterpiece: a flawless coil,
unbroken, in the bowl, as if a potter
who worked in this most frail, least grateful clay
had set himself to shape a topaz vase.

O spiral perfection, not seashell nor
stardust, how can I keep you? With this poem.

(and i thought the South Park boys did it first)

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Poets and calendar conflicts

As usual, no one thinks to check what's going on where before they set up readings, so-
tonight: (I have to be at the museum, but would love to hear Ron and Buffy read)

will read from their new books Moon Road and Without a Philosophy,
both published recently by LSU Press at the
1625 W. MAIN
Richmond, VA(middle of the block west of Lombardy)
THURSDAY, JAN 17 at 7pm
No charge for admission


at the VMFA Art After Hours program
ART OF POETRY: Steven Kovach, VCU MFA candidate at 6:30 and 7:30
MUSIC: Adrian Duke Projek- New Orleans Style Blues
WINE, BEER AND SPECIALTY COCKTAILS: GrĂ¼ner Veltliners are featured, plus specialty cocktails from our expert mixologists6:30 & 7 pm
TOPIC TOUR: Art a la carte 8 pm
ART MOMENT: Jeffrey Allison- Paul Mellon Collection Educator
FRIENDS OF ART SILENT AUCTION: View & bid on works of art by local & regional artists

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

poetry contests and creativity

The Poetry Society of Virginia's annual contest deadline is January 19th (Edgar Allan Poe's birthday). Once again I will be throwing together a batch of entries to see what kind of luck I have with the PSV.

I was a member for years but recently let my membership expire, more because of lack of funds than anything, though I do have a few beefs and annoyance at some certain folks who hold the group back.

It's a very gray, very white organization- is that not being very politic? At (now 58) I had been one of the younger members. Until this year, most of the judges for contests have been members (thus guaranteeing the 'quality' of the winners- or you could argue that 'blandness' would be a better word). The poems were good- but BORING.

(That being said, except for last year I have consistently won and placed in the categories, though I got big nothing last year- I seriously question whether or not my entries got there- some were prize winners for other national contests)

A big effort was made to have 'outside' (non-member) judges this year, though some of those picked are still the School of Quietude folks that will make no appreciable difference in the results, I have great reservations about what will really happen.

I want to be a member- and will be when I enter the contest and pay the fee- I want to support the PSV and see it as a viable voice for poetry in Virginia, but I don't really know if that's possible.

Three years ago, I helped get money to start the Slam Richmond effort- PSV sponsor prizes through the various writing programs for universities in Virginia (sometimes a continuation of the SQ poets), they carry on the tradition of poets and poetry, but I can't say there's much else going on that gives me hope for the future

and before you tell me to put my time and effort where my complaints are- I was a member, vice-president, poetry in the schools chair, and exec comm member for years-

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

This really is the last chance to

see "The Fat Lady Sings"!

art 6, 6 east broad, 8pm, Saturday January 12th- $10

I'll sing Sondheim and more, Doris Day hits, Judy Garland, and a little bit of Wilco and Todd Rundgren- and tell barely believable tales about my wild Texas childhood-

Friday Night I'll be playing piano at ComedySportz for the ten pm I-Prov show- it's actually a three-part showcase of all the late night treats you'll encounter there, so c'mon call266-YESS and reserve a seat.

Sunday we have poetry at Shockoe Espresso in the slip 2-4pm

and the Henley Street Theater Company opens "The Spanish Tragedy" this weekend (preview Jan 10th) I'm not in that, though I helped with costumes- my daughter is the costumer.

So much to do this weekend!!

Friday, January 04, 2008

Birthday poem 1-4-50

Everything is easier in water

I can almost remember when
to bend meant nothing, its arc
jubilant, when a kiss was easy,

limbs in fluid motion, tended
to precise geometries, noses,
mouths put right immediately.

Fitting the bow of another's body
takes no thought, born aware, we
sense how to maneuver skin to skin.

The warm shower encourages
recollection, we are never closer
to birth than when we are wet,

some part engaged in gentle dance,
enough to create the longing ache,
then fill it, the earth's curve a bed.