Sunday, November 19, 2006

The November 17th Reading



greetings! this is just a brief but enthusiastic report on the reading
i just got home from. wow!

the glorious amy king, with her oh-so-intense-blue-eyes, kicked off the
evening as host. (let's drop that decorative "-ess" stuff, shall we?)
she brought up the first reader of the night: justin marks. justin was
teased from the audience about the "penetrating" devices in his poetry
(a word from one of the poems, thrown back at him); to his credit, he
called our attention also to its, and i quote, "multiple points of
entry" (also from his poem). : ) he gave us a straight ahead, funny
reading of mostly new work from his manuscript-seeking-a-publisher. (i
didn't catch the name of the ms., but some lucky publisher will make it
known to us all.) good stuff!

ms. amy had to dash off to a conflicting engagement, so passed the baton
(aka the MiPO tape recorder) to the dimpl-icious shanna compton. shanna
called to the stage the second reader: kate greenstreet. woo-hoo!!!
kate got herself situated with the mic and then treated us to a reading
of the whole first chapbook/section of *case sensitive.* i loved
hearing her poet-voice; the section she read was the only section
of her book i had read prior to the reading, as it happens, and it was
great to see what she did with it. she's not a consistent respecter of
her own line breaks, fyi. and if you thought some of those lines were
funny, you were right -- they are. she read amy into one of her poems
("She seems young to know so much.") and got a nearly full audience
consensus on her observation about ghosts (what they "have in common: /
they always want to tell you how they died."). we were all charmed (i
speak for everyone present).

finally, shanna lovely shanna introduced the final reader, janet holmes,
as her "hero." (yay for dropping the decorative "-ine"!!!) we all
cheered. janet read from her new book (which i was delighted to snatch
a copy of for myself, sans shipping and handling fees), called "f2f,"
which everyone who's anyone (online, that is -- not including me, before
tonight) knows stands for "face to face," as her cover illustrates. she
is a most expressive and captivating reader -- high energy and working
the multiplicity of meanings in her phrases. she's got all these great
dyads from mythology, literary history, and literary theory operating in
her poem as a kind of scaffolding / plot device: couples such as eros
and psyche, emily dickinson and her audience, eurydice and orpheus, and
"you" and "i" (the reader and the writer, so to speak). i loved her
reading (not to mention the hot little black sweater-dress she was
wearing -- yes, the 80s are back, damnit, and you'd better love it!!),
and got halfway through f2f on the way home, and i say to you "go forth
and get your copy today! and while you're at it, get your copy of case
sensitive, too! and consider yourself lucky to be living in the era of
such fine poets!" and i won't say it again.

but there you have it.

evie shockley