Carol Graser, the host of this monthly open mic, started us off with the sad news that Eric Krantz, one of the regular open mic participants, whom I last heard here back in September, had died in March. You can find reports about his readings here at my Blog by entering his name in the search box. In his honor Carol read Joy Harjo’s “Eagle Poem.”
The first of the open mic poets tonight was Marilyn McCabe who read her poem “Pro Patria” that was inspired by a poem by Octavio Paz. Joe Bruchac recited a poem about remembering in a language of the native peoples. Nicola Maree Allain read a piece from her narrative about her childhood in Tahiti, then, from a new series, an introspective poem “Clarity.”
After a break (during which many of the audience, those, shall we say, of the academic bent, left), Carol Graser returned us to the open mic with her recent poem, from a news article, “Man Caught Walking in Frozen Mohawk in Protective Custody.” Jeff Stubets read a story, told in rich, graphic details, about a roommate’s alleged telepathic powers, & the food in the refrigerator, “Feeding the Guru.” Dan, who said he teaches English, did a rap piece riffing off To Kill a Mockingbird. Alyssa Benaro, who has become a regular here, impressed me again with a poem responding to the Parkland, FL shooting “Dear Grad,” then an equally bold “We Were People” — the future is bright with young poets like this.
Jim Eve runs the Calling All Poets series down in New Paltz & was in the area so stopped in tonight; he called himself “a poetic straight man” & read his anthem “We Poets.” W.D. Clarke, who has a new book out, Still More Tales, read a poem not in the book “Gary Evans” about a serial killer with Saratoga connections.
Caffè Lena Poetry Open Mic is on the 1st Wednesday of each month at the historic Caffè Lena on Phila Street, Saratoga Springs, NY, a featured poet & an open mic for the rest of us.