|Our host Mary Panza|
Unfortunately I missed the first 2 poets, Judith Prest & Jessica Rae, 2 fine area poets you can sometimes find at open mics, & arrived as Alan Catlin was reading about a party in a backyard, Sylvia Barnard read about aging & the passage of time, while Debby Mayer explained “Why I Let My Dog Hang Her Head out the Car Window.”
|Charles Straney entourage|
There were some early no-shows on the list & host/MC/Ring Master/Dominatrix Mary Panza, often abetted by MC-in-training, Julia, established the ritual of calling out “They’ll rue the day!” whenever a name was called & no one answered. But Joe Hesch was there to read, as was Howard Kogan (his poem about imagined lives, “Bit Player,” perhaps my favorite of the night); Charles Straney should come more often & read more of his barn poems, while Joe Krausman makes it to lots of open mics & did a rare “accounting poem.”
|Thom Francis with Molly & Julia|
Cheryl Rice had poems for Groucho & her uncle, A.C. Everson had “new ones!” she proclaimed (later posted a marvelous video montage of the event); Brian Dorn read about all 40 poetry venues he visited this past year, & Jay Renzi’s phone rang while he read.
|Brian Dorn reading, Don Levy lurking|
L-Majesty mixed pomegranates & playgrounds, then Tim Verhaegen introduced us to his parents, “The Fuck Family,” & Bob Sharkey did a poem from past WordFests, & Don Levy was, well, Don Levy looking at “Hot Dudes Reading.” Steve Minchin had a gay tally sheet, Adam Tedesco got all auto-biographical on us, while Tess Lecuyer was proud of all new poems.
Ian Macks was a new face but read new poems & those from a chapbook, & Poetyc Visionz also had a new poem “The Black Experience,” while Anthony Bernini read of woodchucks, aging, youth & a tornado, then Caroline Curran included a marvelous piece of fiction about a clash with a student in class wearing headphones, & the poet going by the name Mystic breezed in with a cluster of short poems.
|L-Majesty & his audience|
The no-shows kept piling up & Shannon, who hadn’t signed up, got a chance to read about frogs & phone booths & happy endings. The last poet of the night was also a fill-in, Lizzie, who did 2 poems, the last a funny piece on therapy, ending the evening with a smile — for many reasons.
There was one more event left to the 2015 WordFest, & if I can decipher my pages of notes, I will write about it next.