Sunday, April 13, 2014

Women Poets April Madness/Jack ("Finnegan") Hirschman Poem/

Hilarity From Powell Books in Portland, Or.


If it's April, it's...

Poetry Madness!
Last April at Powell's, we pitted 64 poets
against one another in a Tina Turner-style
cage match to determine The Best Poet of
All Time. As you'd expect, it wasn't pretty.
Poets from all eras and every corner of the
globe arrived armed with their meaty metaphors
and their monster rhymes, ready to whoop
some poet butt.  But the most dangerous
weapon of all? The dash. Our victor in the epic battle known as
 Poetry Madness was, of course,
Ms. Emily Dickinson.​Since a woman defeated all comers last year,
we decided to up the ante. In conjunction with #readwomen2014, this
year's Poetry Madness will feature only female poets. To keep it fair,
our reigning champion will sit this one out and act instead as
moderator of the event. So, without further ado, your host,
Ms. Emily Dickinson:

Poets play their hunger games—
It's right there in their genes—
But add a little estrogen—
And they'll get downright mean—
That's why I'm here, the best
poet, please call me Emily—
To remind you, though a contest—
Ladies, keep it clean—

The brackets

This year, the poets are organized into four divisions: Dragons, Sharks,
Wolverines, and Vipers. To vote in the first round of matchups, scroll
to the bottom of the page. Good luck, and may the best poet win! 
Note: For a printable bracket, click here. View last year's bracket here.
Questions? Comments? Send emails to poeticjustice@powells.com.




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San Francisco Poet Laureate Emeritus and Poet-In Residence at the SF Public Library Jack Hirschman provides this wonderfully witty poem wherein he employs the style of Finnegan's Wake to right onederfly offalrongs.

THE WANPA SCENT ARCANE

1.

The wanpa scent’s
the smell of all stinksomeness,
the morder of all vowels
to make a bowel of turds
that defeckshate on
all who roccupy
against the stench
of the rot of the rat
at the root of the deathrattle
of Ruinoil Regoon,
the shitasson 
of that carwreckter assassin
Retchard Noxon the door
like Death, who ambitched
to power on the flaming
red body of Hell in Gahuggun
Dickless, the first
of meany witchhaunts,
ant taught that lamebrain
Gonzo how to knife
The People in the buck.



These are the
heads of the swine corpse
against our shoccupy.
They’re who give the cops
who beat you
their clubs.
They’re gunsells all,
from Gangwretch
to Snitchromnay
and in fact so is
Obummer, the sad drip
of the Capuddlist Potty, who,
while you and yours
were singing
“Y’all lang zine”
was signing the Endeeayay
and disappearing your lieberty.
You’re in fatshits America now,
you’re a hebe without Habeas,
a carnal without Corpus.
You can be harrasted
for the crumb of being
part of a tahririst plot.
And he’s depotted
foehundread-thousand
people so that the Statue
hasn’t stopped weeping

downcheeks and allover
Emma’s Lasarussian poem
since the start of the year.
Nothing could be worser
than a hearse of humane verses
all in mourning.





2.

So it’s amnasty to an Ind,
this kartun,
and where’s Moe Zez 
 to shofar it to?
It’s amneotic destuning,
the tear of your ear off,
the tumult of your scorn.
                       Ha!
Shem will strike you
lightning-fast,
you won’t even know what
hate you, you’ll be
fatelly down for the count,
but at the sound of ten
your hand’ll become a hundred
with a manifasttalking
destribuning again.
Uppenadam, moccupiers,
once dead ducks, now
feenixes on fire
transflaming ovarythang
tombey in the womb
of tomarrow
into a whole new bowl game
where the thrallest
to feel is when
throwing out the fierst bull
at the start of god,
for we’ve taken refuse at lost
and gone to the fear end
of Occupy
(Kiyippee Kiyay!),
we who’ve tam-tummed
and zim-zummed
and now are scribabbling
everywhere to spring
the checkmates of the world
from the jail
the whimper sentenced
to life without parole.

                         - Jack Hirschman

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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Cool Poem From My Son/Sondheim On Music vs. Poetry/Calder's Environment/Ed's Pelican/Writing(humor)

Cool poem from my son, notable NYC poet, John Coletti in the 3-17-13 edition of Everyday Genius.



Dukes Up
by John Coletti

The Easter egg hunt
inherently cruel
religiously obscene
“I see one.” “Let me get one.”
tears. like that.
an epiphenomenelogical account from like organisms
teasing @ the homegrown
in a banged-up locker
that convince me, at the end of darknessses
that I want to enjoy being family-kept-spilling
I never understate
& demonstrate daily
the capital shock then “wooed
& won by wireless”
weeds I thought more beautiful tilted
like a panix’ serpent
calming
core doubts. it’s been a little rough.
pancakes at midnight
pancakes at day
Medieval reenactors
dragging
that one aria
from Turandot
around your eye. forever closed
the tingling of clean, crystal lights
then I laid back down. don’t rot: sayeth Beaker
the tendered non-capital evening so eschewed
now, I have a third wave: Starting fresh!


John Coletti is the author of Deep Code (City Lights, forthcoming 2014), Skasers, a half-book with Anselm Berrigan (Flowers & Cream 2012), Mum Halo (Rust Buckle Books 2010), Same Enemy Rainbow (fewer & further 2008), and Physical Kind (Yo-Yo-Labs 2005).  He has served as editor of The Poetry Project Newsletter and co-edits Open 24 Hours Press. Other projects include a collaborative print with artist Kiki Smith, a chapbook collaboration with Shana Moulton, and a libretto for Excelsior, an opera composed by Caleb Burhans commissioned by Chicago’s Fifth House Ensemble, which premiered in 2013.

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What Stephen Sondheim Has to Say About Music vs Poetry

Music straightjackets a poem and prevents it from breathing on its own, whereas it liberates a lyric.  Poetry doesn't need music; lyrics do."

" 'Poetry seems to me to exist in terms of its conciseness - how much can be packed in,' he told Bernard Levin in 1980.  'Lyric writing has to exist in time...Therefore it must be crystal clear as it goes on.' "

"I firmly believe that lyrics have to breathe and give the audience's ear a chance to understand what's going on.  Particularly in the theater, where you not only have the music, but you've got costume, story, acting, orchestra.  There's a lot to take in.  The whole idea of poetry is denseness, is concision, is abutment of images, and that sort of thing.  You can't do that when you've got music going, and expect the audience to take it in."

"Poetry is something that you can go back and read multiple times to extract its meaning.  But with lyrics, you hear them once, and they have to stick." 

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 Alexander Calder Piece


Submitted by Deetje Boler who enjoyed my poem "How The Gulf Felt" (see below) from my book Germs, Viruses, and Catechisms (historicowarpoligious poems) published by Civil Defense Publications (SF Dec. 2013)




How The Gulf Felt to Me and a Pelican



                       

I felt this same wretched way
the day the grove behind our house
fell and continued to fall to chainsaws,
the same way I felt when George W. Bush
responded to 9/11 by invading hapless Iraq,
the same way I’d felt when my father died,
the same way I’d felt when that wildwood
behind our house where the scrub oaks
as old as our nation fell beneath chainsaws.
The birds I’d come to venerate,
the juncos, woodpeckers, finches
with no home here to return to
simply disappeared along with
the oak trees to become
markets, restaurants, realtors,
coffee shops and a yoga studio.

And oil well may prove to be
the very worst substance ever
put to use by the not-so-human
infant machine we refer to as
a “brain” this engine that may conceive
one great poem or painting
for every million barrels of
gloppy goo fouling the very subject
such slime predicates to slow
tortured death not to mention
each and every act of corruption,
all the wars fought for
this hideous bloody slop,
all of this here and now
summarized in the agony
of one more dazed helpless
pelican.



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Wednesday, January 01, 2014

"juice" by Wanda Morrow Clevenger /Lynne Knight "Advice"/Interview With Ed Coletti/New Book Germs, Viruses, and Catechisms/



Old Photo Of Germs, Viruses, and Catechisms author
(Please see interview below) with even older friend in Oaxaca.


This poem by Wanda Marie Clevenger
was recently published in Rattle, and it very nicely 
ties in with our own title No Money In Poetry.



juice


no one doubts if
I've got
what poetry takes
more than
editors

when I don't
hardcore cuss
because
the syllables 
bleed feeble

don’t go
Dita Von Teese

don't get
how I don't
squeeze juice
from
catfish tits

no one doubts
more
than
when I say
another poem
got picked up
today

did you make any money,
he says

no, I say
or yes when Every Day Poets
tosses a dollar
into the till

let me know
when we're rich,
he says

Published in Rattle Issue 42 – November 2013

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and, from Lynne Knight in that same strong
Rattle Issue 42 – November 2013

"Several years ago, I met the poet Anna Rabinowitz just before the opera made from her book Darkling was about to tour Europe.  When I said how wonderful it must have been to get a phone call from someone who wanted to turn her poems into an opera, she smiled. "You never know what's going to happen' she said, 'So just sit at your desk and do your work.' That's the best advice any writer has ever given me. No operas on the horizon, but at least the poems keep showing up."

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Coletti Interview 

Publisher James Tracy of Civil Defense Publications conducted an interview with Ed Coletti following the publication of his new book, Germs, Virsuses, and 
Catechisms (historicowarpligious poems).  Here are the questions to which
Coletti responds.  Note: Folks are finding this interview quite enlightening!         
  1.  What inspired you to start writing poetry? What inspires you do keep doing it?
  2.  How is Germs different than your other volumes? Do you think that your readers will be surprised by some of the ground you cover there?
  3.  What are the best ways for poets who want to address political issues to avoid sounding didactic?
  4.   Your work in Germs is some of your most skeptical of power and government. What led you to this point?
  5.  One of your poems, Columbus, the Mafia and Denial as a poem from an Italian-American as it casts a critical eye on your heritage. Does your IA ancestry influence your outlook? Why or Why Not?
  6.  If you could go back in time and have dinner with any seven dead poets, who would they be? (this is my favorite question) 

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Ed Coletti's Germs, Viruses, and Catechisms Published December 2013 by Civil Defense Publications (San Francisco)

As you well can imagine, it was difficult finding a press interested in publishing a political ( in this case "historicowarpoligious") poetry book.  I'm very pleased and humbled by CDP's acceptance and all that publisher James Tracy has done!

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41JgJtBxYeL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_.jpghttp://www.amazon.com/Germs-Viruses-Catechisms-historicalwarpoligious-Pocketbooks/dp/0978691393/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1387481432&sr=8-1&keywords=ed+coletti
Ger
Here's what Jonah Raskin wrote,
“Ed Coletti is at the top of his form in Germs, Viruses, and Catechisms, a collection of irreverent, sacrilegious verse that might become infectious, and that could become a kind of contemporary catechism. Playful and punning, satirical and lyrical, political and whimsical, Coletti’s brave new book brings together Crazy Horse and Joe Gallo, Columbus and George Bush. The lists are funny; the imagery of war and torture is absolutely wild. There are surprises here, too, as in “Hypatia of Alexandria,” a wild and wonderful poem that offers a heretical heroine for our own crazy, brave times.” 
                       
- Jonah Raskin, author of The Radical Jack London and Rock ‘n’ Roll Women, Portraits of a Generation.

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Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Laurie Anderson with Ai Wei Wei/Onomatopoeian Empire/Ed Coletti Poems, Publications, and Reading 2 Poems/Nominations/

Intelligence: Laurie Anderson (with Ai Wei Wei)  

amazing combination of insight with music and major international hookup - 
-so cool and right on! The complete concert at the Luminato Festival in Toronto 
May 29, 2013 featuring the queen of NYC performance art Laurie Anderson.

PLEASE NOTE that when you hit this link, there will be a ridiculously long pause.  BUT I figured it out.  Just put your cursor on the black progress bar at the bottom left. A circle will appear. Pull it a quarter inch to the right, and you'll be right into Laurie!!!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MA4j4TLznE0&feature=youtube_gdata_player




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Ed Coletti’s Recent Acceptances by Literary Journals

(Dates signify expected release)

    
"Tetzel Box "                    
East Coast Literary Review            
2013         

"On Plumbing Following A Divorce"      
North American Review                 
2013

"The Poet As Survivor Assistance Officer"           
Journal Of Military Experience       
2013

"Freight Train"                                                    
Lummox                                  
Nov 2013

-"Lying on a Chair Swing in August"                   .                          
-"New Years Eve"                                                          
-"Once Upon A Time In China"
Edwin E. Smith Q (England)
2013

-"Resisting the Created Need to Text and
  Tweet"                                                                                  
-"Astonishing"
The Round Thing
Oct 2013

"Perhaps Not Yet"                                              
Ghost Town Poetry Anthology    
Jan. 2014 







On Plumbing Following A Divorce

Plucked corroded
by her hand
the cold water faucet
handle turns useless
as a cartoon steering wheel
torn from its post.

She will not
absolutely will not
permit herself
to investigate
using a pair of pliers
(something like a pump handle)
and so admit now even
such a task as drawing water
has become a running backwards
to a time of women at the well,
a time before men,
a time of mothers.
                                             








 


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Ed Coletti Reading

"wet on wet"

 

and



"Kerouac Cataract"




WHO WILL BE THE NEXT SONOMA COUNTY POET LAUREATE?
Bill Vartnaw 2012-13 Laureate


Nominations are now open for Sonoma County's eighth Poet Laureate. The Poet Laureate is a Sonoma County resident, whose poetry manifests a high degree of excellence, who has produced a critically acclaimed body of work, and who has demonstrated a commitment to the literary arts in the County. The Poet Laureate often participates in official ceremonies and readings. The Poet Laureate will not have a formal job description but will be encouraged to develop an agenda promoting poetry and the literary arts in Sonoma County. Organizers of various community events may invite the poet laureate to participate in their events. There is no stipend or compensation for this position. Deadline for nominations is October 31, 2013 and the new Poet Laureate will be announced in December.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Review of Koneazny Book/Bauman Photo/Beckman Sonnet/Coletti Paintings/



Review of Paula Koneazny's Installation

 by Ed Coletti  



Noticing well and over the years how people have different ideas about what poetry is, I wonder how the vast majority of occasional poetry readers and even traditional poetry lovers might feel about the exquisite experimental work in Paula Koneazny’s little combined poetry/photography book, Installation (Tarpaulin Sky Press 2012).  I suspect that many, not discovering an easy answer to “What does it mean?” would reject it outright.  However, were they to express their “reason” to me, I would respond in accordance with the title of my first mentor John Ciardi whose text was titled HowDoes A Poem Mean?

As might be expected here from the assistant editor of the concrete and experimental Volt Magazine, Koneazny’s “meaning” begins and ends in studiedly tangible photographic images which may defy immediate prosaic description but which serve as poetic installations.

The poet spends quite a bit of her writing minimizing the essentiality of words or their ultimate value.  However, she is a poet and, by definition, requires words.  But she uses them in much the same manner as she uses photography, to create or build her image as in “Stele 1” which ends,

we can
w/ frontal cast
iron / clad
& back slash
separate (in other words
sideways)
suture

Lest I leave the totally false impression that MS Koneazny is at war with words, I’ll point out right here that she looks into their use and their usage as few do. 

Prepositions are sometimes added to verbs to say that something is true now:

She jots down the molecular structure of anxiety.
“You morsel, you,” he scribbles in.

William Carlos Williams’ immortal “No ideas but in things” is wonderfully rampant here in Koneazny’s “Field Guide To A Girl,”

neighbors push their backyards together
leave her the crack between/ gaping hole
where appliances were once electrified

This also makes me mindful of “Seven Songs & Song Pictures,” (the English translation by Jerome Rothenberg from Ojibwa by Frances Densmore,


Song Picture no. 54

in the middle of the sea
long room of the sea
in which I’m sitting

Each song picture is combined with a primitive drawing, a most concrete image.  How like Paula Koneazny’s use of photography. 

And from “In a declarative sentence much can come in between:”

He had no formal training; aluminum and copper gave him a shudder.
Then one day he stumbled into some driftwood.  The next thing he knew he
owned 3 pianos. No longer having to illuminate anything, he experienced
a sense of freedom. He said, “Movement in the exhaust pipes created
this...”

There remains so much to be said!  Don’t take it from me.  Prose cannot describe Installation.  Get a copy for yourself, now!

Installation can be purchased from Tarpaulin Sky Press

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(Photo by Martin Bauman)


Breath
 by David Beckman

Beware this new import from the East -- yoga. Suspect celestial and/or bizarre influences coming into play and inducing never-ending hibernation
                                                -- attribution tk (circa 1863)




On the inhale see atoms cascade from
Mercury’s moons. Attain full backward
arch to flower the heart. On downward
dog feel sunspots kiss and planets spin.

In raised palms cup the heat that firms
cell walls, warms dark matter and
loosens galaxies. In sun salutation reach
for Ursa Minor, prompting the spine

erect. Come lunging twist, hear knees
speak in tongues and watch the floor
recede, a damask carpet seeking orbit. In
lotus pose open birth canal lilywide

stretching you a body length past your
birth and one exhale from your demise.


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View More of Ed Coletti's Paintings at Flicker 


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