October 3, 2009

Sunday Four Poetry, September 27

Mike Burke was our host. His chapbook, Sonnets for a Summer Dog, is just out from Benevolent Bird Press.

I was the first up, read the old QE2-inspired "Yellow Cab," the dead rockers "Summer is Ended," & the tiny "Yom Kippur 2004." Marion Menna read from her new chapbook from Finishing Line Press, An Unknown Country. Her poems were responses to Catholicism & the Mass: "Communion," "The Difference" (also on Communion), "Sing the Lenten Song," & "When it Comes." Larry Rapant responded to a fellow workshop-poet's dictum not to use first names in poems with "One Sugar Extra Cream" in which he ponders what he will take with him when he dies & puts as many first names in the poem as he can.

Mimi Moriarty said she found a series of "bear poems" -- the first a dream, then the horrific experience of "Family Camping" as a sestina, & the "Meandering Bear" on her deck. Dennis Sullivan said not enough of us are "Looking Forward to Winter;" "The Polloi" talked about the anesthetized, & "Genealogy" was for a friend in the monastery, imagining Heaven. Philomena Moriarty (not related to Mimi) read "On Being Irish," then one on her supposed Druid past, "The Priestess" & "Letting Go, How Is It Done?" ObeedĂșid (Mark O'Brien) read 3 poems about his mother from his chapbook, Neo-Lethean Dreams (Benevolent Bird Press, 2009).

Jim Williams read a mix of politics, rhyme & suicide, "Kill Yourself," "Letter to Hortense" from a rehab hospital, & "Tercet." Mike Burke read "Falling Leaves" from his chapbook, his "only nature poem" he said.

I've heard Will Nixon read many times, both before & after he published My Late Mother as a Ruffed Grouse (FootHills Publishing) & I enjoy his relaxed, well-planned performances. He included some poems not in the book, the childhood memories "Saying Cheese 1960" & "Citizenship," "Autumn Leaf," & "The Fire Tower" (on Outlook Mtn. in the Catskills, not in the Adirondacks). He read a selection from the book, including the funny "Dyslexic," "Priceless," & others, ending with the title poem -- a pleasant afternoon of nature & memory poems.

But if that wasn't enough a few of us went over after the reading to Smitty's legendary tavern for afternoon libations & food, & conversation carrying on the poetry in other forms.

Every 4th Sunday at the Old Songs Community Center, Voorheesville, NY, 3PM. A great line-up of poets coming this year.


Anonymous said...

Dan, I like your summary of Marion Menna's poems, and I think you were courteous to list them in your blog post. I think your summary is reasonably accurate and objective. In the past, your citations and summaries of my poems have always been accurate and objective. I think that Marion, like all poets, needs to understand that if she reads poems in public, they are fair game for positive or negative reactions. Bloggers have the right to cite and to critique any poem they've heard in public or seen in print. And Marion has the right to set up her own blog on which she can comment in response. Or, she has the right to leave a comment here as I am doing now. In the past, you have never altered any comment I have left on your blog. I am sure you would offer the same courtesy to Marion.

Anonymous said...

Apologies -- I once again forgot to leave my name. That last comment was from me--
Therese L. Broderick