This long-running, weekly series, run by Mike Platsky, at the Wok’n’Roll Restaurant in Woodstock used to be held on Mondays, now held on Tuesdays. Mike always books an interesting mix of featured poets (I’ve been a featured poet in the past) & tonight’s featured poet, Barry Wallenstein is someone I remember seeing read, with a bass player, at a series in Westchester County back in the early 1980s. Of course, there were lots of poet-friends to chat with & hear read in the open mic.
Mike Platsky started us off with a tongue-in-cheek piece titled “I Just Wrote This On A Napkin At The Bar” & dedicated it to Leslie Gerber who took great delight in it. Alison Koffler read a piece about woman in a store in the Bronx “Diamonds,” then a poem about imaginary frieds “Kendra Brings Her Griffin to School.” I read sections from Inauguration Raga (& actually made a sale on that basis), then the newest addition to “What Makes America Great” #20.
After a break, Roberta Gould continued the open mic with 2 new poems, a description of a man delivering bread on a bicycle “I Was There” & a love poem on the absurdity of greed. Dayl Wise began with a poem by Viet Nam veteran Jan Barry “Earth to Earth” from a book-in-progress with fellow veteran Walt Nygard, then one of Dayl’s own poems, like being in Fastasia. Pamela Twining read 2 memoir pieces, the first about choking on a candy as a kid, the second (is there a connection here?) about sex in a car while driving West. Appropriately, Andy Clausen followed with a poem by A.D. Winans in funny rhymes about what he’s gonna do, then his own in the same vein “Poetry Smoetry,” the long poem his forte. After Ron Whiteurs bailed & didn’t read, Gary Siegel began with a rhapsodic “And the Night Comes” & then an ode to the singer Suzanna Abdulla.
Harmony Cafe open mic is at Woodstock's Wok'n'Roll Restaurant on Mill Hill Rd., 8:00PM on Tuesdays -- a featured poet & an open mic, leave a donation.