Monday, August 31, 2009

Beach Bear

I went to the Williamsburg Waterfront yesterday to catch the last concert of summer. Vegas opened up. They sounded like a more 80s, less talented version of The Black Kids. But I don't think too many shared my opinion since the crowd was definitely into them.

I was surprised how well Beach House's sound filled the open air. They were quite good.

Grizzly Bear was quite good too- a highlight was having Victoria (Beach House) come out and sing on Two Weeks.

After the show I came home and prepared for my first day back at Staten Island.

Now I need to prepare for my first day back at FIT. Then I need to check the proofs of my State(s) of Flux chapbook.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Friady With Rain

I think my sister & niece are coming up today. It's raining which makes Central Park less attractive unless we buy ponchos. I don't see ponchos in my immediate future.


There's a new ish of Diode ready for consumption.


There's a new ish of Keyhole Magazine waiting to be ordered.


I have a review of Yo La Tengo's forthcoming album, Popular Songs, here


I will be reading at the Cakeshop on September 19th. When I know the other readers I'll post it in the "reading section." I will also be reading at Home Sweet Home on Sept. 30th as a part of their 1yr. anniversary. A lot of peeps will be reading at this so each person will prolly read for 3 minutes. I'll prolly read for under 3 minutes.


I'm all out of news.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Wash Your Hands The Sink Is Back

The new issue of Sink Review:

Jon Woodward
Juliet Paterson
Rauan Klassnik
Paige Taggart
Amy Lawless
Keith Newton
Emily Kendal Frey
Justin Marks
Steve Roberts
Sampson Starkweather

Reviews/essays on Kate Greenstreet, Tao Lin, Matthew Rohrer and Frank Bidart

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Tuesday with Sun

An interview with Jennifer Chang here


The new issue of Raleigh Quarterly is up and it has poems by Zach Shomburg, Emily Kendal Frey, and Jim Goar. Check it out here


Mathias Svalina here


Word for Word Poetry presents readings by Kate Greenstreet, Jan Heller Levi, Janet Kaplan and Molly Peacock at the Bryant Park Reading Room, Tuesday, August 25, 2009 at 7:30pm.

The Bryant Park Reading Room is located at 6th Avenue @ 42nd Street. Subway: B, D, F, V to 42nd Street.

Bus: M5, M6, M7 to 41st @ 6th Avenue.


keeps it on a short leash

Jim Behrle & Shafer Hall
Wednesday, August 26. 7 PM sharp.
Home Sweet Home
131 Chrystie Street

Jim lives in Brooklyn. His poems have appeared most recently in Strandzig.

Shafer Hall's first collection of poetry is available from No Tell Press. His poems can be found in the current issue of Open Letters Monthly and in many other journals. Occasional diversions can be found at

Watch this space for info regarding our GIANT SPECTACULAR ANNIVERSARY BLOW-OUT. If you have been a Chrystie Street reader, get in touch...we want you for a special project.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Today & Other Days

I made two sandwiches & didn't photograph either of them. The ingredients were invisible, as a result my breath became bad.

I brushed my teeth, then decided I was still hungry. I ate chili-spiced dried pineapples. My breath smelled just like yours. No really. Really. It did.

I went to LaGuardia Community College. I went to F.I.T. I became tired.

I read two Author Sze's poems. I read a chapter of Kyria Abrahams' I'm Perfect, You're Dommed, Tales from a Jehovah's Witness Upbringing.

I read blogs. Prolly yours.

I'm listening to the latest From Monument to Movement album.

I poured myself a glass of water.

I find out Dan & I are reading on the same day. Sept. 19th. 'tis a shame since all our friends are the same.

I want to dance but I've covered my legs in chili & am pretending to be a pineapple.

Art is art as is is not.

Friday, August 21, 2009

If not a sandwich, (for ya vegan tongues)

how about a wrap? I used mainly CSA ingredients for this one. I sauteed onions, garlic, zucchini, kale (all CSA) plus sunflower seeds, black beans, tomatoes, red-leaf lettuce (both CSA) and a flour tortilla. I sauteed using Grape seed oil and also used sea-salt, fresh ground pepper, thyme and a little rosemary (cooked with the black beans).

Wrap it up and tongue taste.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Readings Galore

Poetry from the Rooftops: Cynthia Cruz, Laynie Browne, and Valzhyna Mort

August 20, 2009, 6:30 p.m.

VENUE CHANGE:The Zoo School Building (next to the Arsenal Building at Central Park), Enter at 64th Street at 5th Avenue, New York, NY
Free and open to the public

This summer, the Academy of American Poets continues its tradition of summer poetry readings by working with the City Parks Foundation to present Poetry from the Rooftops. Step out of the flow of traffic and hear these poets "bare their brains to heaven": Cynthia Cruz is the author of Ruin (Alice James Books, 2009). Her poems have appeared in Paris Review, Boston Review, Pleiades, Black Warrior Review, among others, and have been anthologized in Isn't it Romantic: 100 Love Poems by Younger Poets and The Iowa Anthology of New American Poetries. Laynie Browne is the recipient of the 2007 National Poetry Series award, and is the author of several collections, including The Scented Fox (Wave Books, 2007), Original Presence (Shivistan Books, 2006), and Drawing of a Swan Before Memory (University of Georgia Press, 2005), winner of the Contemporary Poetry Series.

Valzhyna Mort’s collections include Factory of Tears (Copper Canyon, 2008) and I’m as Thin as Your Eyelashes (Belarus, 2005). She was born in Belarus and composes her work in Belarusian and English. She has been the recipient of the Crystal of Vilenica award in Slovenia in 2005 and the Burda Poetry Prize in Germany in 2008.

Poetry from the Rooftops: View the complete line up for the 2009 series
Sponsored by Academy of American Poets and the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation.
Info: (212) 274-0343
I'll be in Westchester so I'll miss this reading but it the readers and the backyard are both worth the trip to Prospect Hieghts
August 22nd, 2:30

Craig Morgan Teicher
Ana Božičević
Graeme Bezanson

381 Park Place between Underhill and Washington in Prospect Heights. Cate wants everyone to know that her zip code is 11238 in case you want to mail yourself there!
Bring yourself something to imbibe. We're in a recession for christ's sakes!
Hopefully, I'll be back in time for this:
Pour some poems on your steamy late August with Emily Kendal Frey, Phil Memmer, Jeni “truck darling” Olin, Zachary Schomburg, JodiAnn Stevenson & Janaka Stucky!

Emily Kendal Frey lives in Portland, Oregon and teaches at Portland Community College. She is the author of AIRPORT (Blue Hour Press, 2009).

Philip Memmer is the author of three collections of poems: Lucifer: A Hagiography, winner of the 2008 Idaho Prize for Poetry; Threat of Pleasure, winner of the 2008 Adirondack Literary Award for Poetry, and Sweetheart, Baby, Darling. His work has been published in many journals, including Poetry Magazine, Epoch, and Mid-American Review, and has been included in several anthologies, including 180 More: Extraordinary Poems for Every Day and Don’t Leave Hungry: Fifty Years of Southern Poetry Review.

Truck Darling (published as “Jeni Olin”) lives in NYC where she rages in posh isolation with her dog named Good Times. Truck received her BA & MFA from Naropa University. Her first full-length book BLUE COLLAR HOLIDAY was published by Hanging Loose in 2005. Her most recent publication is a chapbook of pharmaceutical sonnets about antidepressants titled THE PILL BOOK from Faux Press, 2008. Her next book called HOLD TIGHT! will be published this April 2010 by Hanging Loose.

Zachary Schomburg is the author of Scary, No Scary (Black Ocean 2009) and The Man Suit (Black Ocean 2007), and the co-editor of Octopus Magazine and Octopus Books. A collaborative chapbook with Emily Kendal Frey called Team Sad will be published by Cinematheque Press in the fall. He lives in Portland, OR.

JodiAnn Stevenson makes her home in Bay City, Michigan where she is an Assistant Professor of writing and poetry at Delta College. She founded Binge Press, to showcase women’s work, in 2004 and 27 rue de fleures, an online journal of women’s poetries in 2005. Her first collection of poetry, The Procedure, was published in the fall of 2006 by March Street Press. Her second collection of poetry, We, the Emperors was a finalist in the Gertrude Press Chapbook Award in 2008. An excerpt of her Kamikaze Death Poetry is forthcoming in the “faux histories” issue of SPECS. Her recent blog project, Ms. Fish, the relentless, can be found at: Some of her visual poetry resides at

Janaka Stucky is practicing the perfection of effort while working on silent relationships with knives, hairpins, & a history of tentacles. Other passions include whiskey and pugilism. He is also the Publisher of Black Ocean and its literary magazine, Handsome. Some of his poems have appeared in Cannibal, Denver Quarterly, Fence, Free Verse, No Tell Motel, North American Review, Redivider and VOLT.

Goodbye Blue Monday
1087 Broadway
(corner of Dodworth St)
Brooklyn, NY 11221-3013
(718) 453-6343

J M Z trains to Myrtle Ave
or J train to Kosciusko St
oh and how about you rip your ears off listening to this
I want to invite you to another installment of the bliss-out post
avant-miasma that is Sportsman's Paradise!

This Thursday, August 20th, 8pm at the ISSUE PROJECT ROOM in Brooklyn.

We're playing with Cotton Museum + Sick Llama which sounds intriguing
and contagious.

Here's the website:

We will debut a ten minute vocal piece and full-on expand a tested
soundscape of descent.

Bring earplugs or stick some toilet paper in your ears. We will end loudly.

I can let you know in the evening of the day we play when we'll go on
by text or email, if you'd like. I'm not sure if we play last or what.

Here's the address:

At the Old American Can Factory
232 3rd Street, 3rd Floor
Brooklyn, NY 11215

WOODS - To clean (FD session)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

An Audio Kind Of Day

My review of the new Taken By Trees album is up on GSL

Check out readings by Ron Padget, Elaine Equi, and Brian Kim Stefans on Poetica

Monday, August 17, 2009

Art, Words, & Stuff

Hey y'all, my friend Stella has two pieces up in a group exhibition over at Joshua Linear Gallery. You should check it out as it is one of the strongest group exhibitions I've seen in a while. Francis and I were both lamenting about how we have neither the money to buy art or the space to hang it.

Yesterday I embraced the heat by walking around The Storm King Art Center with Lila, Farrah, and Jared. Pics are coming.

Speaking of Ms. Field, Coldfront Magazine has a little feature on her here

Coldfront also has a dope review of Ms. Greenstreet's Lame House Press chap here

Getting back to Jared, he updated his blog (something some of us have been bugging him about for a little while). It's the goods, so check it out here

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Meanwhile we live in the paperweight of swirling blizzards
and little toy buses painted vermilion like the sky
when it rises up reasonably to our defense in the half-hour
after sunrise or before sunset and likes to, it likes
the idea of museums. Then so much of us is fetched away.
Often you think you can see or even smell some part of it
before it too is put away, used and put away. But then these
so recent nights would be part of the elaborate past, that old
contraption, the one we were never sure about--

excerpt from "Of Dreaming And Dreaming," John Ashbery

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Francis Bacon at the Met

Just a reminder the Francis Bacon exhibition will only last a few more days.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Sometimes You Just Want A Sandwich

Earlier today I was flipping through the 'wichcraft cookbook and decided to leave the park, come home, and make a sandwich. As you can see, I made two. Sadly, hardly any of the ingredients are from my CSA. The bread is Trader Joe's Tuscany bread which is quite good if toasted and perfect for hardier sandwiches.

I sauteed an onion (CSA) with sunflower seeds, olive-oil, sea-salt, pepper, and thyme(dried). Once the onions began to carmelize I added mushrooms and black olives. I poured in a little of the olive juice (for added salty-ness) and squeezed some lemon then sauteed for a little while longer.

The first sandwich has the above ingredients plus fresh mozzarella,arugula and tomatoes. For the second sandwich I switched the mozzarella for a sharp cheddar and the arugula for red-leaf lettuce (CSA).

You can make either of these sandwiches vegan by excluding the cheese or simply replace the cheese with fresh apples slices (I suggest something crisp and a bit tart like a Granny Smith or Pippen or Crispen(if in season) if you use a Crispen make sure it's on the smaller size- there's an exceptionally bad batch of over-sized Crispens right now which is a true tongue downer).

Monday, August 10, 2009

Soft Blow Looking for your soft touch

Just to announce that we (Soft Blow) will launch our first monthly issue on 1 SEP 2009 with the works of 4 poets. We want to say thank you again for your encouragement and support in helping the journal to keep going. If you are interested in submitting new poems to the journal, simply email with 4-6 poems and a short biography. We strive to feature contemporary poetry by both emerging and established poets, so do visit for more information. Over and out.

SOFTBLOW | Editorial

Friday, August 7, 2009

Big Daddy Kane - Ain't No Half-Steppin'

Saturday, 7pm. Prospect Park Bandshell. $3.00

CSAing away a Wednesday

On Wednesday, I made this sandwich using mostly my CSA ingredients: red-leaf lettuce, grape tomatoes, cucumbers, and roasted beets. I also added cheese (sharp cheddar, but a drunken goat would have been much better) olive-oil, sea-salt, and pepper.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Big American Trip is Where I Stay

Where I Stay by Andrew Zornoza (tarpaulin sky press, 2009)
Big American Trip by Christian Peet (Shearsman Books, 2009)

Forget the Blueberries

A couple of years back, Blueberry Nights, a film by Wong Kar-wai was released and it sucked. Kar-wai is known for his dreamy, gauzy, sensual films, which obsess over love, lost, place, identity and time-- all delivered in fragmented narratives. Blueberry Nights was his first Hollywood film so what better to make than a “road movie?” The movie not only lacked vision and contained some awful acting, it really showcased how the obsession with the road has become another cliché of Americana. If I think of the road as a literary trope I think Steinbeck, Kerouac, and McCarthy. So my question was whether Zornoza and Peet’s books could make the road feel fresh again. These are two drastically different texts yet both are united in the necessity of search and that ability to be in a place, or of a place, to pass through a place, but not possess or change the place—i.e. the anti-capitalist imperative, that is if Huck Finn sets off down the river to find a freer and wilder America does it exist? According to Zornoza and Peet the answer is yes and no.

Where I Stay is a prose-photo book, which sets up a rhythm by wisely having photos on every right-hand side of the page. This strategy allows for Zornoza to have a nuanced and complicated reading of his book because although the photos relate (sometimes quite loosely) to the text the photos tell their own story. So you have the opportunity to get one story from the text, another from the photos, and a third reading by combining text and photos. This allows a certain emotional resonance and mood to permeate throughout the book while challenging your intellect and intuition. Where filmmaker Wong Kar-wai failed with Blueberry Nights, Zornoza succeeds. Part of the success of Zornoza’s book is that he allows it to roam—despite it’s title this is a restless book traveling the American West, Mid-west, and Mexico. The prose gives us just enough information to remain engaged in both character and place, but Zornoza doesn’t try to define, instead allowing the reader to make associative leaps from Sept. 17, Albuquerque, New Mexico which begins,

“My older son don’t write me, but he’s a good boy, she says. We park in a diner parking lot and tilt back the seats to sleep. When I wake in the morning,she’s sewing shut the end of a pillow. A pocket with a tooth embroidered on it has been stitched in one corner.”

The next page has a photo collage of a pillow, photos of people and a newspaper. Below the photo the caption reads, “I worked at a toy factory, I worked at a restaurant washing dishes. People gave me money. I was ashamed, but I took the money, I never did not take the money.” The page after this it’s Sept. 20, Boulder, Colorado and the narrative begins,

“A man on a motorcycle with a Yorkshire terrier in the sidecar, a woman in a Volvo, and finally a water fountain, shade, a field of green grass.”

One of the reasons why Where I Stay is so successful is because of Zornoza’s ability to navigate and weave together fully fleshed sentences along with airy lines of staccato. Zornoza’s prose has range, which is what makes this book at times so beautiful and at other times so devastating.

He hands me a burger wrapped in butcher paper. He hands me a road atlas, a disposable camera, a tube of pepper spray. He picks the atlas off my lap and leafs through it. Boy this no place to be anymore. I was out there, far gone, when I was your age, then met her. We ain’t going to last, but maybe we will. He puts the car in gear. He says, We both probably been thinking that so long that it doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter? No.

This is from Oct 25, McCaren, Texas which is followed by a photo of a bridge, grass, shrubs, and a tree-line with this caption below it,

I faded, subsumed by broken pieces of Americans and places—people, places and feelings all stitched together, larger than themselves than me and you, all stretched around us, our life together, around the country.

This is how it began, in the middle. With no beginning. A bridge and a river.

“Broken pieces of Americans and places” is part of Peet’s agenda. The irony that his book is called, Big American Trip, and has a UK publisher as opposed to an American one is lost on no one. Next is the cover, three foregrounded Native-Americans holding rifles while behind them sprawls an American street with a factory and traffic lights, finally the entire cover is covered in tie-dye. The book contains poems in the form of post-card entries. This allows Peet the ability to roam while providing only snap-shots landscape and the people. Peet’s book is overtly political and at times exceptional for its black humor. For instance on the back of a postcard entitled, Superior, Montana he writes,

Superior is good name for town lake, but coffee
Here is only the brown water.

I am finding very difficult to maintain the 75 MPH.

& great terror is the use of the law:
An eager representative of the Cherokee Jeep
Patrolled my routine encampment. His duty
The hat and the nod-- and the raised eyebrow.

At first, it’s easy to be either thrown-off or seduced by Peet’s sense of syntax or the way the poem flits around from coffee to law, but a closer examination finds Peet slyly commenting or questioning the need to name a town “Superior,” especially a town that has difficulties producing a decent cup of coffee and then the law appears as a “great terror.” Notice now how Cherokee isn’t a Native American tribe but instead a vehicle used to patrol and maintain order. The subjugating the subject is both humorous and horrifying, which is Peet’s aim—to force the reader to re-examine names and how these names are co-opted and used as a means of power. The brilliance of Big American Trip is similar to Zornoza’s book, in that both allow for and meaningfully complicate the readings of experimental or fragmented text by subtle shifts of nuance. Here’s another poem, which is addressed to WABC Radio, 77 WABC, 2 Penn Plaza, NY, NY 10121,

Found roadside a white girl is Rasta. Her mantra:
“It’s all good.” She imparts a knowledge of the
foreigner to leave me a wonder of self-scrutiny.


Well, I’m Hot Blooded
Check and See

I got a fever
Of 103

Come on, baby,
You can do more than

I’m Hot-Blooded!
Hot Blooded!

More appropriates the desert. Even if dull words.

Is it “all good?” Peet, like Huck Finn, openly challenges authority and those that attempt to construct our world and thoughts for us. If America is a littered landscape of hyperbole, waste, and conformity, then the “wildness,” that feeling of “free-ness” seems to be gone, yet if we look at Peet’s poetry then we find through art and words there are still some of us who are wild and wide-mouth armed with pens and disapproval. Christian Peet ravages through the American landscape injecting poems with Americana, pranks, puns, and power. Both Peet and Zornoza’s books are examples of not submitting to a status quo in literature, instead they use the traits once synonymous with Wong Kar-wai: originality, vision, risks, and experimentation to give you back this country as it is: flawed, fractured, hypocritical, greedy, beautiful, breathtaking, mesmerizing, and the constant dialect of a lie and a truth.

* some formatting differs from that of the books.

Monday, August 3, 2009

More, More, More

Wheelhouse has out a their Summer/Autumn issue here

Wheelhouse has free e-chaps here

& a new anthology entitled Press

Cate Peebles is this week's No Teller
Hi all, please join us and also spread the word about this year’s Lit fest in Fort Greene Park--- this year the featured readers are all Fort Greene residents. A link to a beautiful printable flyer follows, and if anyone wants postcards or a poster to put up, let me know.
* * *

Colson Whitehead + Touré + Nelson George at the Fifth Annual Fort Greene Park Summer Literary Festival!
Saturday, August 22nd
3 PM
Fort Greene Park, Brooklyn (at the monument)
Featuring Fort Greene’s own: Colson Whitehead, Touré and Nelson George!

We are proud to announce the return of our popular Fort Greene Park Summer Literary Festival. The 5th annual free outdoor reading will be held on August 22nd at 3:00 PM. This year features young writers, ages seven to seventeen reading alongside Fort Greene residents Colson Whitehead, Touré, and Nelson George. This exciting event brings several generations of writers together to build on the rich literary traditions of the neighborhoods surrounding beautiful Fort Greene Park.

The Festival celebrates the end of a free summer-long series of creative writing workshops for youth held in the historic Fort Greene Park. The event is free and will take place at the monument in Fort Greene Park. Come join us for a fun day of music and poetry in the park!

The Fort Greene Park Summer Literary Festival is presented by NY Writers Coalition,Akashic Books, GTHQ and the Fort Greene Park Conservancy, with additional support from the Walt Whitman Project. Laurie Cumbo, Founder and Executive Director of MoCADA, returns as MC for the third time.

Sponsors include State Senator Velmanette Montgomery, Time Warner, the Hot Topic Foundation, Independence Community Foundation, the Valentine Perry Snyder Fund, and the NYC Department of Parks & Recreation.

Colson Whitehead is the author of the novels The Intuitionist, John Henry Days, andApex Hides the Hurt. He has also written a book of essays about his home town, The Colossus of New York, and is a recipient of a Whiting Writers’ Award and a MacArthur Fellowship. His new novel, Sag Harbor, was published this spring. Whitehead’s reviews, essays, and fiction have appeared in a number of publications, such as the New York Times, The New Yorker,Harper’s and Granta.

One of America’s leading young African-American journalists and critics, Touré is the author of three books: the novel Soul City, a collection of short stories The Promised Landand Never Drank the Kool-Aid, a collection of his work for magazines including The New Yorker and Rolling Stone, where he has served as a contributing editor for the past decade. In addition to his new TV role with TREASURE HD’s I’LL TRY ANYTHING ONCE, Touré is the host of BET’s “The Black Carpet” and regularly appears as a pop culture expert on NBC’s “TODAY.” He has also served as CNN’s first pop culture correspondent and has made appearances on “Dateline NBC,” CNN’s “American Morning,” “Anderson Cooper 360°” and “The O’Reilly Factor.”

Nelson George is an author, filmmaker, television producer, and critic with a long career in analyzing and presenting the diverse elements of African-American culture. Throughout the ’80s and ’90s George was an columnist for Billboard magazine and the Village Voice newspaper, work that led him to write a series of award winning black music histories: Where Did Our Love Go: The Rise and Fall of the Motown Sound; The Death of Rhythm & Blues; and Hip Hop America. George co-wrote Life and Def, the autobiography of his old friend Russell Simmons. He’s also had a career writing fiction, including the bestselling One Woman Short, and the story, It’s Never Too Late in New York, which has been in several anthologies. His 2009 memoir, City Kid, is a look at the connections between childhood in Brooklyn and his adult career in Manhattan, Los Angeles and Detroit.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Dusie Does It Again

The latest issue of Dusie Magazine is up and it contains a ton of great stuff. Check it out here.

I have a poem up on Blue Print Review's Blog, just a moment, which is a continuation of their current issue which I blogged about maybe a month ago. Check out my poem and the blog here and the issue here

I'm off to the reading in Cate's backyard (which I blogged about a couple of days ago and then to see Crystal Stilts/Dean & Britta tonight at Prospect Park. Enjoy your day.