September 30, 2009

VOX!, September 25

At the Fuze Box with our host R.M. Engelhardt resplendent in a long, black leather coat, who began before a sparse audience with "Immortality," for the recently-deceased, his friend Sue Cohn & Jim Carroll, both of whom had been in this very room back when it was the QE2. Mike Purcell then read an essay on the need to do things differently, "Shake Things Up." I read my poem for Charlie & Jack in Chicago "At the Garfield Park Conservatory" & just to be outrageous I read "Angels" but there were no nuns to chase out (or at least none that left).

Our featured poet, Margot Malia Lynch, fortunately brought her own following of friends & members of the Troy Hellions roller derby squad, otherwise there would have been only been 5 of us listening -- her performance deserved more of an audience than that. Margot's poems are characteristically self-referential, with her addressing some un-specified "you," which could be herself, as in her first poem running through a list of qualities of being a woman. "Defending Yourself" was structured like a class for women in abusive relationships, the teacher telling "you" what you should do. "This Is My Ritual" was another upbeat piece of self-affirmation, this time dancing alone & fantasizing sex (oh to be the rug). She ended with a couple songs, accompanying herself on her guitar, chanting/singing about love, then the New Age "Imaginary Friends".

In spite of the fact that there was only one other poet on the sign-up sheet, our host called for a break -- I guess he needed a cigarette. Once back, Rob began a long story leading into a poem about a dead cat, & described himself as "an animal rights activist" -- but then he should've worn a different outfit tonight.  Shannon Shoemaker was the night's last poet, performed from memory an old poem about being around a campfire, "Night in Michigan."

An open mic with featured poet(s) on the 4th Friday of each month, at the Fuze Box, Central Ave., Albany, usually about 8PM.