March 11, 2014

2nd Sunday @ 2, March 9

More Poetry + Prose at the the Arts Center, with a wonderful outpouring of writers, some old friends, some new. Nancy Klepsch & I were the co-hosts.

Bob Sharkey began the day with a little of each, a “prosy” untitled piece of satire about an imagined theatrical event, then a collage poem composed of lines from his reading of the Best Poems of 2014, “Lucky to Have Come This Far.” Peggy LeGee read 2 versions, one as a poem the other as a song, of “Dumpster Cat Homeless Cat,” then another poem about a cat “My Little Speed.” As luck would have it Ken Denberg read next from his manuscript of dog poems, with an introduction about the manuscript’s history of rejections; the poems read were “Good Dog Bad Dog,” “Wolf’s Dog Dog Bone,” & “Scratch & Bite.” Fortunately that was it for the pet poems for the day.

Darby Penney read next a selection from her marvelous non-fiction work co-authored with Peter Stastny, The Lives They Left Behind: Suitcases from a State Hospital Attic (Bellevue Literary Press, 2008). Don Levy followed with 2 poems that interestingly enough were about not eating, “Hunger Games” about a Utah man’s short-lived fast to protest same-sex marriages, & a consideration of the meaning of a sign “No Gay Eating Here.” John Burton returned with some poems from his notebook about experiences in the military, the first an encounter with an old man in the desert, then another set in Somalia, & ending with a humorous haiku.

Mike Connor read a letter written but never sent to a woman in a candy shop, “Spoonful,” then a poem to Troy, “Street Politics.” Shannon Grant read from her tablet “Jealous,” then the assertive, defiant “Kill-Me Switch.” Howard Kogan read 2 pieces, the first a short story, the second a briefer poem, based on the same material about an friend from a group, & her death. Cathy Abbott’s first piece was about a sign of spring: baseball, then a poem about a bumper sticker “Flush Rush.” My co-host, Nancy Klepsch, read next tapping her foot to the rhythm of her lines, a poem addressed to Winter, a threat & a looking forward to Spring, the second poem in 2 parts, “My Cells,” played on reality & technology & data tracking.

Jil Hanifan drew on her musical training to write about what happens in a rehearsal of a classical orchestra, the piece composed of sentences each no longer than 7 words. I read a love poem written last year “Winter Peace.” Ron Drummond read a piece written in August, “A Riot in the Spring,” an intricately rhymed song for lovers. William Robert Foltin was the last reader, beginning with a couple of tales of his family, “Multi-Lingual” & “Katarina” (his mother), & the concluding “Sexy Party.”

As the title says, we are here at the Arts Center in Troy, NY on the 2nd Sunday of each month at 2:00PM for readings of both poetry & prose — free & open to the public.

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