October 12, 2010

Charles Olson Centennial Celebration -- Marathon Reading, October 8, 2010

This was held at the historic Independent Christian Church at 10 Church Street in Gloucester.

It was an exciting & eclectic reading by poets from near & far, each reading something by Charles Olson & sometimes their own work too, hosted by Gloucester's own James Cook.

I arrived as Ed Sanders was ending his performance singing Olson's piece, "setting out on the sea" (Maximus Poems, II, 203). Ed was a constant presence throughout the weekend sharing is his memories of Olson & his years in Gloucester; his archives are an unknown American treasure.

The other readers were Carol Weston (another constant presence this weekend) reading with a big round magnifying glass, John Landry with "a reading from the Book of Charles," Donald Wellman ("so much of my work is indebted to Charles Olson"), John Galloway, Kristen Prevallet, Ricardo Cazares Grana reading from his Spanish translation of the Maximus Poems, Dale Smith, Michael Kelleher, Dave Rich (editor of the recently published Charles Olson: Letters Home) reading 3 of Olson's public, civic letters, the enthusiastic Michael Peters (who has been rooting among the Olson papers), Fred Dewey, Jonathan Skinner (Maximus Poems, III, 2), Christopher Rizzo (who came over from Albany with Michael Peters), Chuck Stein (reciting 2 brief Olson phrases from envelopes in his possession), Ammiel Alcalay (Maximus Poems, III, 137), &  rocker Willie Alexander's rousing performance piece on the Gloucester mail carrier, "Fred Buck's Footsteps."

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