It was a cold & blustery night. In past years when Sanity Clause visits the Social Justice Center at the December third Thursday, there are often more men than women to sit on his lap to say how bad they have been throughout the year before receiving a gift of poetry. But ah, this year, the women braved the cold & only 1 guy signed up on the open mic list. In addition the featured poet was Philomena Moriarty. It was a good night for Sanity Clause — & for all those who showed up to listen & to read. Continuing a tradition from the last few years, the Muse I invoked was the gone poet Enid Dame (1943 - 2003) & I read her moving “Holiday Poem.”
A bonus gift for Sanity Clause was the arrival from Florida of poet & novelist Jan Tramontano, back in the area with her husband Ron for a family visit. & eager to sit on Sanity Clause’s lap she signed up 2nd (which became 1st). Since there was only of hand-full of poets on the list, each were permitted to read 2 (!) poems if they desired. Jan read a piece about her father titled “Atlantic City,” & “My Mother’s Silk Scarf” combining her mother & her mother-in-law.
Dineen Carta returned to the open mic to read from her book Loving the Ache: a Woman’s Journey an effusive, hopeful poem “Letter to the Universe,” then a sensuous poem, “The Real You.”
Our next reader, Dawn Marar, also brought her husband, Hanni, along & it was a good thing because between the 2 of them they took all the photos of the readers on the lap of Sanity Clause. She began with a poem she just happened to have with her “Bartender” a story of a violent attack at a piano in a bar, then a poem re-written after the election, about meeting & marrying her husband & the conflicts in the Middle East, “Endgame.”
We read poetry here, at the Social Justice Center, 33 Central Ave., Albany, NY each third Thursday of the month, starting about 7:30PM, with an open mic for community poets, & a local or regional featured poet. Your donation supports poetry events in the area & the work of the SJC.