January 12, 2011
Second Sunday at 2, January 9
& for the usual reason (nobody signs up #1) I ended up as the first poet to read, the November poem "The Lesson," & "The Brown Bunny." Carolee Sherwood had 2 related poems, "Boudoir" (where did that alligator come from in her room?), & the 5 pieces of "Claims," including a new hive like a bedroom. Tim Verhaegan created the most buzz of the afternoon (& had to shut the door to keep the kids out), with a hysterical memoir, "The Fuck Family." Leslie Neustadt rose to the challenge of following Tim with the humorous defense of her "Stay At-Home Poems," then "The Language of Things," & "The Sacrament of Sushi" with its lush description of food, served by her son.
Jil Hanifan was back again, this time with a couple of urban Mary-Oliver-poems (her description), "The Sorry Neighbor" & "Old Pears" (or "Pairs"), with pear trees reminding her of her parents. Denise Hackert-Stoner was a new voice, with some short nature poems, "After the Rain Storm," "Small Hope," "Diamonds in a Cave" (snow), & "A Tree in Winter." Carol Jewell said she is learning Swedish & shared with us 2 poems from an anthology of Swedish women poets, then a poem of her own written on a train from Indiana with a description of Lake Erie.
Terry Bat-Sonja's poems ranged from a memoir of her Kosher grandmother, to a couple of notes to former boyfriends, to the tender poem for her husband, "The Beach at Laguna Niguel." Jill Crammond's poems both dealt with marriage in different ways, "What Really Happened" is about a nun re-thinking her marriage to Jesus, & "Unfinished" has Cinderella nostalgically recalling her previous life & regretting her marriage. Jason Crane was the most topical with a poem on the shooting in Tucson, AZ, "This Changes Nothing" (I expect to see more poems on this topic in the next few weeks & months).
This series continues, for free, & for prose writers as well as poets, at the Arts Center of the Capital Region, 265 River St., Troy, NY, 2PM on the 2nd Sunday of each month.