Monday, January 28, 2008

Associated Writing Programs off site events at the Bowery Poetry Club

AWP events at the Bowery Poetry Club- Stop by for some Naked Lunch Punch, Lower East Cider or a Robert Frosty!

Wednesday, January 30
6:00pm - 8:00pm
Students, alumni and instructors from the Stoneocast MFA program at the University of Southern Maine join forces with Study Abroad on the Bowery to read original poetry and fiction. Performers will include Patricia Smith, Tim Seibles, Gray Jacobik, Aaron Hamburger, Annie Finch, Cheryl Boyce Taylor, Jeff Kass, Christopher Watkins, Kristin LaTour, Mel Kozakiewicz, May Joseph, Mary Reilly, Gabriella Santoro, Marjorie Tesser, Kristin Prevallet and others.

8:00pm - 9:30pm
Page Meets Stage: Paul Muldoon & Thomas Sayers Ellis. Admission $12

10pm to Midnight
The 2nd Annual Cave Canem Fellows Reading - Featuring twenty poets from around the country in celebration of Cave Canem, A Home for Black Poetry. $10

Thursday, January 31
5:00pm - 8:00pm
To help celebrate AWP, Seattle's most popular and populist reading series Night of Cheap Wine and Poetry presents featured readers and an open mic. Brian McGuigan and his MC Charla Grenz host the event. FREE!

8:00pm - 10:00pm
The editors of Ahsahta Press and Litmus Press present readings by several of their authors in conjunction with the 2007 AWP Conference, featuring Kate Greenstreet, Heidi Lynn Staples, Kristi Maxwell, Rusty Morrison and Brenda Iijima. FREE!

Friday, Feb. 1
5:00pm - 7:00pm
Group Reading in celebration of AWP, featuring recent English-language poetry and work in translation from New Directions, Ugly Duckling Presse, Zephyr Press, and Zoland Poetry. Readers will include Forrest Gander, Jim Kates, Dan Machlin, Mani Rao, and Jeffrey Yang.

7:00pm - 10:00pm
Counterpath Press celebrates the publication of Lyric Postmodernisms $6- An Anthology of Contemporary Poetry, edited by Reginald Shepherd and featuring poets such as Carol Snow, Gillian Conoley, Peter Gizzi, Elizabeth Willis, Laynie Browne, Marjorie Welish, Susan Stewart, Bruce Beasely, Cole Swensen, and others.

Saturday, February 2 2008
2:00pm - 4:00pm
Celebrating Plain View Press! Readings by Susan Bright, Gloria Dyc, Pat Falk, Madeleine Mysko, David Radavich, Lauren Rusk, June Saraceno, Ken Jones, Marian Kaplun Shapiro, and Nancy Scott FREE!

4:00pm - 5:40pm
Segue Series- GILBERT ADAIR and P. INMAN $6

6:00pm - 8:00pm
Red Hen Press celebrates our 13th anniversary; the release of RATTLE CONVERSATIONS (interviews with major poets by Alan Fox), and LETTERS TO THE WORLD: A WOMPOLOGY. FREE

8:00pm - 10:00pm
Sarah Lawerence

10:00pm - 11:45pm
Salmon Poetry Launch of Salmon's celebratory anthology, Salmon: A Journey in Poetry (1981 - 2007) with readings by Patrick Chapman, Kevin Higgins, Susan Millar DuMars, Phil Fried, Emily Wall, John Hildebidle Simmons Buntin and John Menaghan. goes late- FREE!

11:55pm- Until Late
Closing Night of AWP event-
Midnight CinePoetry & Performance Extravaganza: Poets of the Unreeled! Multimedia poets, artists, and musicians Linh Dinh, Wang Ping, Paolo Javier, Ernest Concepcion, Jeremy Thompson, Kate Ann Heidelbach, dennis M. somera, Walter K. Lew, Mike Estabrook, and Dillon Westbrook give live reinterpretations of classic films, screen new videos, pay homage to great jazz drummers, and redraw on-stage some present scenes. A shadoWord production curated by WKL. $8.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Mayakovsky at the Bowery Poetry Club

On Monday, March 24 2008, 7:00pm - 9:00pm The Poetry Society of America and Bowery Arts and Science present: A Celebration of Vladimir Mayakovsky. Featuring Martha Plimpton, Ron Padgett, Francine du Plessix Gray, Rachel Cohen, Matvei Yankelevich and Val Vinokur, and Michael Almereyda in a reading of the essential Russian futurist poet’s works, plus selections from the new anthology, Night Wraps the Sky, Writings by and about Mayakovsky, published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Event takes place at the Bowery Poetry Club, 308 Bowery, New York.

Here is a great story on Mayakovsky's muse and lover Lilya Brik. Brik is the woman in Alexander Rodchenko's striking and much appropriated image above. She is shouting about books!

"The poet Mayakovsky may have been a genius, a hipster, a shill, and the first and only early-Soviet rap star. "Night Wraps the Sky" finally does justice to one of the most fascinating and controversial literary bad boys of the 20th Century." -Gary Shteyngart

Read Mayakovsky's poem A Cloud in Trousers Part 1

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Hone Tuwhare, has died.

Photo credit: JO BEAUMONT/Southland Times

One of New Zealand's most loved poets Hone Tuwhare, has died.
Here is a link to the The Dominion Post story

Here is his poem

Hone Tuwhare
(Poet Laureate of New Zealand, 1999-2001)

I can hear you
making small holes
in the silence

If I were deaf
the pores of my skin
would open to you
and shut

And I
should know you
by the lick of you
if I were blind

the something
speical smell of you
when the sun cakes
the ground

the steady
drum-roll sound
you make
when the wind drops

But if I
shoud not hear
smell or feel or see

you would still
define me
disperse me
wash over me

"It was with much sadness I learned of the passing of Hone Tuwhare. I was recently involved in the publishing of Our Favourite Poems: New Zealanders choose their best-loved poems where Hone Tuwhare's Rain took out top place, beating off the likes of Rudyard Kipling, William Wordsworth, and James K Baxter. No Ordinary Sun also made it to number eleven. We were overwhelmed at the number of votes for Tuwhare's work in the nationwide poll. It shows how much New Zealanders genuinely treasure his contribution, and that we do now have a poetic tradition firmly rooted in Aotearoa. I first studied Rain at high school, and then went on to study English Literature at Otago." - Phillippa Duffy

Hone Tuwhare, New Zealand's most distinguished Maori writer, has died aged 86.

Tuwhare has affliations with the Nga Puhi iwi.

He is believed to have died today in Dunedin.

Born in Kaikohe, he moved to Auckland when his mother died.

He spoke Maori until he was nine years old and was always an accomplished orator.

He met another of New Zealand's top poets, RAK Mason, while working as an apprentice at the Otahuhu Railway Workshop and the pair shared in interest in literature and trades union organisation.

Until the Soviet Union's invasion of Hungary in 1956 he was a member of the Communist party.

In 1964, his first published collection, No Ordinary Sun, received acclaim and was reprinted 10 times in 30 years.

Granted the Burns Fellowship in 1969, he moved to Dunedin where he often worked with the painter, Ralph Hotere.

Tuwhare has won two Montana NZ Book Awards, has been Te Mata Poet Laureate, and holds two honorary doctorates in literature.

His tangi will be in his birthplace of Kaikohe.


More Tuwhare poems
More info on Tuwhare

Saturday, January 12, 2008

John Giorno at the Bowery Poetry Club

New York State Council on the Arts and Bowery Arts and Science Presents: JOHN GIORNO, JAVIER COLIS, JULIAN BLAINE

John Giorno, proud Papi of Performance Poetry and leading figure in the Beat and NY School scenes, joins two other world-renowned poets for a night of mind-shattering uneasy listening poetry at (where else) the International Treasures' series at the Bowery Poetry Club.

Where: Bowery Poetry Club, 308 Bowery NY, NY 10012
Date: Saturday, Feb. 16th
Time: 8pm
Price: $10 / students FREE!
For more info call 212-614-0505

"In 1961 I was a young poet who hung out with young artists like Andy Warhol, Bob Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns. The use of modern mass media and technologies by these artists made me realize that poetry was 75 years behind painting and sculpture, dance and music. And I thought, why can't I do it for poetry. Why not try to connect with an audience using all the entertainments of ordinary life: television, the telephone, record albums, etc? It was the poet's job to invent new venues and make fresh contact with the audience.

This inspiration gave rise to Giorno Poetry Systems, a non-profit foundation under which many projects were born. The record label called Giorno Poetry Systems eventually built up a catalog of 40 titles, ushering poetry onto the radio. The Dial-A-Poem service, begun, in 1968, was a huge success. Not only did we ourselves get millions of calls, we inspired the creation of dial-for-stock market info and dial for sports-info services, etc. We also foreshadowed by a generation the explosion of 1-900 telephone promotions, not to mention the delivery of the Internet over phone lines. We produced poetry videos, and films. We formed bands and toured like the rock'n' rollers. We displayed poetry on the surface of ordinary objects, producing silk-screen and lithograph Poem Prints. We established the AIDS Treatment Project in 1984.” - John Giorno from the The Best of William Burroughs Box Set.

The LA Times described Javier’s portion of the recent Leonard Cohen Tribute in Los Angeles as “the night's only really sexy moment”. Harp Magazine says that he “writhed and pranced on stage like Nick Cave or Joe Cocker”...JAVIER COLIS is one of the essential figures in avant-garde rock in Spain. He has a background as composer, lead guitar player, and lodestone member of several influential bands, including Vamos a Morir, Demonios tus Ojos and Mil Dolores Pequeños. After releasing his first solo album, “Luna de Agosto” he formed Javier Colis y las Malas Lenguas, with whom he released “El Futuro ya no es lo que era” in 2006. This album, equally intuitive and cerebral, captures his experimental spirit, combining terrifying waltzes, broken tempo blues, and rock in its less pure state. Javier and the band, consisting of Saúl Cortés, Julen Palacios, Sergio Ceballos , Adrián Ceballos and Marina Radis, hit the road and touring widely around Spain. On top of this, Javier toured solo, as a spoken word duo with poet John Giorno, and performed during the Leonard Cohen Tribute Tour alongside John Cale, Jackson Browne, Perla Batalla and Elliot Murphy.

A rare visit from the legendary JULIEN BLAINE Subject of last year's award-winning documentary, "l'éléphant et la chute" ("The Elephant and the Downfall"), Blaine was crowned the Universal Ambassador to the World of Sound Poetry (le Monde) he is the living spirit of the avant garde, proof positive, at 65, of poetry's indomitable spirit. Editor of Doc(k)s, the most influential new poetry journal in France, and founder of the Centre International de Poésie de Marseille, Blaine's own performances mix raw, guttural sound and elegantly hilarious gesture in a highly concentrated poetic consciousness. And if that's not enough, he is fabulously entertaining!

Hosting between 20 and 30 shows a week the Bowery Poetry Club (BPC) is proud of our place in the lineage of populist art: the Yiddish theater, burlesque, vaudeville, beat poetry, jazz, and punk that gave the Bowery its name. Located in HoBo at the corner of Houston and Bowery.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Alzheimer's Poetry Project at the Bowery Poetry Club

Poet Laureate of Rhode Island, Lisa Starr and New York Foundation for the Arts Poetry Fellows, Kristin Prevallet and Betsy Andrews give a benefit reading for the Alzheimer’s Poetry Project.

On Monday, Jan. 7th, 2008 from 7 to 9pm at the Bowery Poetry Club, 308 Bowery NY, NY 10012. The event is free. For more info call 212-614-0505

Guests of honor will be members of the Early Stage Alzheimer's Support Group from NYUs Silberstein Institute. The group facilitated by Tricia Spoto and Ursula Auclair meets once a week and often writes and reads poetry as a support group for people in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease. To find out more about the group contact Ms. Spoto at:

The Alzheimer's Poetry Project’s (APP) mission is to improve the quality of life of people living with Alzheimer’s disease, their family members and the health care workers who serve them. The APP is based on a simple idea, to read poems to people living with Alzheimer's disease that they might have learned as children. APP finds, even in the late stages of the disease, that people can remember words and lines from poems from their youth. Reciting poetry helps spark memories. APP brings professional quality, recited poetry to the undeserved population of people living with Alzheimer’s disease. APP also brings students into facilities to work with people living with Alzheimer's disease.

In June of 2006, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) listed the APP as a “best practice” for the NEA Aging and the Arts Initiative. APP was one of twenty groups in the nation to receive this distinction. APP has held 150 programming sessions at 75 facilities in Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, and Washington DC, serving over 9,500 people living with Alzheimer's disease.

Lisa Starr is a mother, innkeeper, basketball coach, and also the new Poet Laureate of Rhode Island. A champion of fun, free speech and the importance of listening, Starr founded and directs the Block Island Poetry Project, an annual celebration of the written and spoken word. She has two collections of poems: Days of Dogs and Driftwood (1993) and This Place Here (2001). She is currently working on another collection of poetry and a novel.

Kristin Prevallet is a 2007 New York Foundation on the Arts (NYFA) poetry fellow. She is a poet and essayist who currently lives and works in New York City. She is the author of I, Afterlife: Essay in Mourning Time and A Helen Adam Reader. In her academic life, she has taught at Bard College, New York University, and currently at the Institute for Writing Studies at St. John's University in Queens. She has also lectured and performed frequently at the Jack Kerouac School at Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado.

Betsy Andrews is a 2007 NYFA poetry fellow. Her book New Jersey was selected for the 2007 Brittingham Prize in poetry. She is the author of She-Devil and In Trouble. Her poems, essays, and review have appeared widely in publications ranging from PRACTICE to the Yemeni newspaper Culture.

In July of 2007, the Arizona Chapter of the APP was featured on Channel 12 News NBC’s Arizona affiliate. You can view the clip on U Tube at

The APP has been featured on NBC’s “Today” show, NPR’s “Weekend Edition”, Voice of America And New Zealand National Radio, as well as in many regional television, radio, and print media accounts. These broadcasts and stories have reached over 20 million people and helped to keep the issue of quality innovative care for people living with Alzheimer’s disease in the public’s mind.

The Alzheimer’s Poetry Project is partially funded by New York City Department of Culture, New York State Council on the Arts, the Society for Arts and Health Care
and is a project of Bowery Arts and Science.


Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Lorca- Poetry Slam Muse

Lorca is a major influence on my writing and I had the good fortune to spend a couple of months in Granada in 1998, the 100th anniversary of his birth. What a delight to read Dale Fuchs' article Chasing a Shadowy Imp, García Lorca’s Muse in the New York Times, about artists creating exhibits in Lorca's family home in Granada. Here is a quote from the article, "García Lorca displayed a postmodern distrust of the printed word, said Andrés Soria Olmedo, a professor of literature at the University of Granada. The poet exalted the spontaneity of a reading or a flamenco performance long before words like “happening” and “poetry slam” made it into made it into anyone’s vocabulary." For me it brought to mind a late night conversation with Regie Gibson talking about Lorca and Duende after a reading in Arkansas a few years ago. Lorca's essay Play and the Theory of Duende has been a major touch stone with many slam poets and I have used that essay and quotes from it in dozens of workshops on performing poetry. So its really that Lorca's exaltation of spontaneity in performance tilled the ground for Poetry Slam in direct way, influencing and informing poets like Gibson. Check out his performance of "The Word" in the previous post to get an earful of Duende. Meanwhile John Giorno who is also quoted in the article will be reading at the Bowery Poetry Club on Feb. 16th at 8pm- more about that later.