December 13, 2012

Poetry + Prose, December 9

It's me & Nancy Klepsch as the afternoon's hosts, with a nice sign-up of open mic readers &, more importantly, an audience of happy listeners.

Nancy, battling a cold & laryngitis, managed to get through a new poem, a love poem it seemed. David Wolcott read from his memoir, a chapter titled "C.O." about confronting his family over being a conscientious objector during the Viet Nam War. Kate Laity used her own timer (damn, we need more like her!) to keep track of her reading, a segment of a medieval tale of a young girl being offered to a nunnery.

It is amazing to think that it was the first time here for poetry diva of Albany, Don Levy, but it was, reading classic pop-culture pieces, "Marilyn Monroe & Ulysses" & "The Prime of Miss Don Levy," on surreptitiously watching TV in his parent's bedroom. Ron Drummond began with an anecdote about this morning's church service, then on to the long personal essay, "29 April 2010" that begins with Philip K. Dick, moves to D.H. Lawrence & the chain of being, then he tacked on at the end "a short piece from a work-in-progress."

Tim Verhaegen had us rolling with laughter as he railed against his mother in a piece that began when he found a stack of unopened sympathy cards. Mimi Moriarty read a cluster of poems on holiday themes, "Inventory of Reasons I Will Not Be Celebrating the Holidays," "Two Wise Men & a Buddha," "Hemingway & His Polydactyl Cats" (about spending New Years in Key West), & ended with a meditation on aging, "Hair, a Travelogue." Howard Kogan's poems were also meditations, the first titled "Meditation" explored his "monkey mind" during a poetry workshop at Omega, his second poem is one of my own personal favorites, "Blue Heron." Actually, the piece that I ended the day with is a meditation of sorts, the short prose essay, "God on Alto."

This series continues at the Arts Center of the Capital Region, in Troy, on the 2nd Sunday of each month, starting at 2PM -- prose, poetry, whatever you got that's written.

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