October 28, 2014

Reading & Open Mic, October 25

I was invited to be one of the featured poets at the monthly open mic at Inquiring Mind Book Store in Saugerties, NY. The series is run by Laura Lonshein Ludwig & Sean Willett. It is a loosely run, intimate event, with folks who seem to be regulars there & friends of the features.

First up was not a poet but a painter of wildlife pictures, Fred Adell, from Flushing, who passed around some of his hand-painted cards while holding up a few of his paintings.

The first featured reader was Babette Albin, a friend of Laura’s from Queens, NY. Her poems & introductions were often sprinkled with references to other poems & poets, such as a Yiddish poem, “In Sullivan County,” she read then her own translation. Another poem, “The Question of Good & Evil in the Golden Medina,” referenced a poet friend of hers & Laura’s, Robert Dunn (now gone). Other poems included “It’s True,” “The Queen of Sleep,” “Out of the Revision of My Mind,” & “Thank You Note to My Regrets.” She ended with a poem about reading her poetry in Russia, “Hold the Door Open.”

I was the 2nd featured poet & this is my set list: “A.J. Muste,” 2 poems from Poeming the Prompt, “What Really Happened” & “The Lesson,” “The Pussy Pantoum,” “Different Tastes in Music,” “Saturday Hawk,” & a poem from boundless abodes of Albany, “Planting Tulips.” I had fun.

Featured Poet Babette Albin (right) with host Laura Lonshein Ludwig
After a long, long break Laura brought us back for the open mic. Maddie Taliese read one of Laura’s poems, “Love,” then invited Laura to read it also. Mary Lee Giodano read 3 of her own poems, “Consciously,” “A Poet’s Lament,” & “The War’s Nightmare Was Mine,” then a couple of famous poems from a gilt-edged anthology. Lawson Upchurch read a series of short, philosophical musings, shyly into the mic from what looked like 3x5 cards. Mona Toscano talked about her poetry group down in Newburgh, NY, then read a Halloween poem “Father Will” about ghosts in her house, a story of a priest’s sex with a housekeeper. Gary Siegel was the last reader with a cluster of sometimes compelling, sometimes humorous poems, beginning with “Shimmer,” then a a piece about the futility of waiting in an airport, then a longer poem filled with crows on a “Brisk” morning, & a list of fanciful headlines riffing off “Pregnant Duchess Shows a Lot of Leg.”

There is a regular series of readings here at Inquiring Mind Book Store, 66 Partition St., Saugerties, NY with features & an open mic; call the bookstore for information about the next reading 845-246-5775.

No comments: