Mea culpa! I didn’t mean to disappear for a week, and I wish I could say it was because I was at AWP in Denver with so many from the poetry blogosphere, but alas, I was simply BUSY. I had every intention of updating yesterday, but the project I was hoping to post didn’t work out, and working on that ate up all my blog-time.
That project? Last Friday night I joined my friends Lea Banks and Susie Patlove on a local cable show, “Over the Falls,” hosted by the dapper James Sullivan, in a special program devoted to National Poetry Month and the local poetry scene. We chatted about the Collected Poets Series, the Third Friday open mic that Susie and the Arms Library run, and the big National Poetry Month event we’re all participating in (with our other poet friends Laura Rodley, Jim Bell, and Tom Yeomans) at our local independent bookstore, Boswell’s Books, this coming Sunday. Then we each read for a few minutes.
It was enormous fun to do, and what’s more, we were each given a DVD of the show before we left! My plan was to share some of it here, but though I can watch it on our DVD player fine, it’s not opening on my iBook. I’ll have to fiddle with it some more and see what I can do.
We don’t actually have cable at home, so without the DVD I wouldn’t have been able to watch the show — though Susie tells me that they get copies in at the library, so patrons can watch them there — and let me tell you, I was bowled over by the production values and talent on display! This is not the local cable channels of my childhood! And it’s almost entirely volunteer-run! They do amazing work.
If you’re looking to get the word out about what’s going on in your local poetry world, by all means, don’t overlook your local cable channels — they’re always looking for show ideas, and I bet you’ll be as impressed as I was by the work they do.
But after 4 days of antibiotics, I feel blissfully better, enough to go to my friend Lea’s house last night for a holiday hoe-down. Great fun!
Lance and Vincent came, too, but left early once Vincent’s fascination with all the lit candles could no longer be distracted by butterfly crackers and cupcakes.
Darn good thing Lea lives just a few blocks away — it’s still snowing! I took advantage of a small break in the storm to walk home from the party last night — there were plenty of rides to be had, but what a lovely night, and I didn’t have far to go, and the crisp winter air was refreshing after all this illness — and let’s not overlook the (remote) possibility that this little exertion could help kickstart labor.
Okay, no luck. But for the first time it truly felt like the holidays yesterday. We actually have our very first Christmas tree this year (previous dwellings were too small to accommodate anything more than a festive plant.) (But it is sparsely decorated with colored lights and a few bamboo ornaments. Perhaps Vincent & I will work on that tomorrow after we go to the prenatal appointment.)
Lance’s older sons, Cassidy & Morgan, both came over in the early afternoon and helped him put up the new baby’s sky basket — a new configuration was called for now that we live in an entirely new place since Vincent’s birth.
I doubted and worried, but Lance had a plan, and it works. (Pictures will be forthcoming once the sky basket’s new resident arrives.)
Oh, and my spoils from the Yankee Swap last night? — a tin of Lindt chocolate truffles! Who would dare take chocolate from the pregnant woman? It’s the little victories, yes?
Tonight was the official launch of my dear friend Lea’s debut chapbook, All of Me, published by Shelburne Falls’ own Booksmyth Press, a.k.a. that one-woman phenom, Maureen Moore. (And isn’t that cover art, Daphne, by Lilliana Pereira, just amazing?)
We were early, so Vincent & Lance ended up departing for the short walk home before the party really picked up, but not before Vincent scarfed down some cookies & milk.
It was a wildly successful evening (i.e., many books were sold!) with new friends & old in enthusiastic attendance. There was a generous table of food that Lea spent a good deal of time making & none eating (though her Beautiful Daughter Sarah so thoughtfully [and forcefully] put a plate together for her after the crowds had left)(though the chocolate bites of heaven were gone by then, alas). (I had only one of the chocolates, I swear.) Court Photographer Laura Rodley (who has her own chapbook coming out in October) took the lion’s share of pictures, of which I hope I’ll be able to post more later this week, but here are a couple in the meantime:
I only wish I’d had more time to hang out with all my poet-friends. Our day-jobs & lives keep us from meeting up except at these special events, so we never get to really talk for long. But what fun it was to see each other & support each other & chat, in whatever time we manage to eke out.
Now it’s to bed I go — but I’ll leave you with a wee excerpt, from “Aubade”, by Lea Banks:
Your mouth, a grand entrance.
Your cordial curls longer,
golder than mine. Splashing
you with a shine of warm
brandy, honey in the back
of our throat. One throat, one
gold above me an aureole
worn like a victor over flesh.
Last weekend was incredibly full: fun and hijinks with Galway Kinnell and Cinnamon the Horse within days of each other! Can you see how frighteningly fearless Vincent is and why I lay awake at night?
The pictures below are of the Collected Poets Series reading with Galway. Directly below, his grandchildren perform with him. Then, there’s Lea Banks, CPS’s founder & impresario, with Tim Mayo, poet, previous CPS reader, and committee member. Finally, there’s me, Lea, and poet Susie Patlove. All of the pictures were taken by Laura Rodley, who is a wonderful poet in her own right, and whose chapbook is now available for pre-order at Finishing Line Press! But more on that later…