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Monday, January 31, 2005

Bembo's Zoo!

(Thanks to J. Bushnell's Raccoon for the link.) Cubicle warning: with sound.

January reads

Enjoyed all of these. Niedecker is really fascinating. I'd only read her in drips & drabs before. I think Dan suggested he figured she'd be in my top five femmetheon & since spending lots of time with her short poems, I'm almost getting the feeling that I anticipated her influence while writing Down Spooky (if that makes sense at all). Murakami's new to my favorite novelist list and I'm "saving" the new one to make the love last. Am working on a review of the UDP chaps, so more about those later. Particularly recommend Guess Can Gallop and The Babies; each exudes its own fresh energy. Verbal pops absolutely crackle in GCG & a Grimm's-tales feeling spooks up SOMark's narrative sequence with hypnotic repetitive loops. The three collections I didn't quite get to stay in the stack for Feb.

Note: After the end of December, I moved the December reading list to the last day of the month, so each month's READS can viewed at the top of each archived month, going forward. If yer interested.

Sunday, January 30, 2005

Do You Eat The Spooky Last?

This new toy is fun. (Thanks to Greg at Grapez for the link.)


I'm Stuck on Spooky, 'Cause Spooky's Stuck on Me.

Give That Man a Spooky.

Simple, Impartial Spooky.

Bookmarked these photos a while back

But forgot to show them to you. (By Carl Corey.)

Note to self:

There are a lot of things--real things--that make me angry, jealous, spiteful, catty, bitchy, rude, dismissive, anxious, depressed, revolted, feel helpless, feel pity, feel sorrow, itch to revolt, crave revenge, wish for religion.

But poetry is not one of those things. I will not let poetry be one of those things.

Finally catching up with these essays...

over at the Academy of American Poets site. Like this one by Stephen Burt on Frank O'Hara. That conspiratorially friendly open style was a revelation to me when I started reading O'Hara. That's exactly why I found him so appealing, even though (don't freak Dan), I wasn't really drawn to confessional poets like Lowell. The TMI poets. They made me uncomfortable. And the girls in my undergrad classes who wrote urgently about their periods or oddly dispassionately about the loss of their viginity made me uncomfortable. Frank I wanna call up and invite to the Four-Faced Liar. Yes, please do tell me everything, Frank. Then let's write some poems.

And then at the end, in the last line, Burt throws in Albert Goldbarth. Even though I had some minor complaints about Pieces of Payne I really dig Goldbarth. And you know, he also reads the Fortean Times. Right on. AND he's not above singing for KPF.

Saturday, January 29, 2005

More like it

Ok, sent out two packets and three queries yesterday. Should be able to get a few more things out there today.

Also, some of the books I've ordered to begin researching the new project have arrived. That's right kids: Miss Frequentist Frivolist is embarking on a long poem, a long historical poem. Wish me luck. February's reading list will likely give clues.

SOFT SKULL POETRY STATUS REPORT: Totally signed off on Jerome Sala's Look Slimmer Instantly! & Maggie Nelson's Jane, just waiting for the books to arrive! CAConrad is reviewing his edits on Deviant Propulsion and then we'll go to design. Wait'll you read that one! Ron Palmer's Logicalogics is next and also stellar. I just wish Ron came with the book so he could perform them all in your living room. Then Jen Knox's A Gringo Like Me & Danielle Pafunda's Pretty Young Thing, two rockstar ladies for sure. We've also got a book of hilarious sestinas by Jim Cummins & David Lehman with a forword by Denise Duhamel and guest appearances by Beth Ann Fennelly & William Wadsworth--Jim & Dave Defeat the Masked Man. Then there's a SUPER collaboration anthology, Saints of Hysteria, coedited by Denise, David Trinidad & Maureen Seaton. Oh, and Clayton Eshleman's translation anthology is March too. (That one's deep-image Chris Connelly's baby.) SSP 2005 poetry totally rocks, dudes. And we're also doing a hands-on handbook with Gary Mex Glazner, How to Make a Living as a Poet. (I'm not working on that one either.) We made him a blog. He should be online over there soon.

Finally feeling better, too. Thank goodness.

Friday, January 28, 2005

Oops! Don't forget to tune in for GAMERS on NPR!

Started airing yesterday. In NYC it'll be on WNYC 93.9 FM at 10 AM tomorrow & on WNYC AM 820 on Sunday at 7 PM. Here's the schedule for all y'all.

UPDATE: And you can listen to WNYC streaming via iTunes or Windows Media too! Links in the right sidebar here. The sound effects alone will make you smile, but every interview is fantastic. Be sure to check out Cory Arcangel's videogame art too!

Bad mailman!

Despite the fact that the address (under the blur I added) is correct, the postage sufficient, and the envelope intact, this was returned as undeliverable.

Perhaps they should print up a sticker that says "Nah, we just don't feel like it today."

Thanks, USPS!

Nothing out

Realized recently that other than a few things that have already been accepted, I have no poems out. Even if you've asked, I haven't sent 'em.

And this is the first time the OTHER MS hasn't been out, in like 3 years. It's not even accurate to keep calling it the OTHER MS. It's not the same book it used to be.

BUT I do have a fellowship application in the mail (as of today). AND I will get Spooky off this next week too.

Insomnia & still sick.

UPDATE: Just tallied. 31poems from Down Spooky have been published (well, 3 are forthcoming but very soon). But that leaves slightly less than half, plus all the newer ones. I really have no excuse. And I think about half from the OTHER MS are still unpublished too.

UPDATE 2: Argh! I never resent my lost hay(na)ku for the anthology either! Kicking myself. Ow.

"Breakdown is pretty much the right word for normal in my life."

From an interesting interview with poet & Shenandoah editor R. T. Smith, over at EWN. (Thanks to Dan Wickett for the link!)

Also, since I noticed lots of chatting on this topic elsewhere, here's a link to an e-panel of journal editors, also from EWN.

Thursday, January 27, 2005

Julie Speed!

Get her new book. Right now!

See some more here.

UPDATE: She's going to have a show here in NYC in the spring. April 7th to May 7th, 2005. Gerald Peters Gallery.

UPDATE 2: "I knew that I wanted to be an artist as soon as I figured out that I could not be a caveman, which was the first thing that I wanted to be," she says. "A pirate was the second thing that I wanted to be, and then by the time I got old enough I couldn't--that I figured out that I could not be a caveman or a pirate, then I knew that I was going to be an artist." Read this interview.

Gosh, it's Bosch!

Garden of Earthly Delights action figures, anyone?

[Via hubby via Boing-Boing]

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

FREQUENCY is back.

With even more back to come.

Blogged from the couch.

Bug discovered to be culprit

Grouchiness, headache, mild nausea then extreme nausea.

Yay. We're sick.

But at least now we know.

The one.

Absorb C. Dale Young's latest lovely, ya frisky sponges.

The new Puppyflowers

is featuring a passel of poems from Big Confetti, some by Shafer (including rare non-chap tracks!), and some by me. Plus lots of other goodly truck by alike bloggers and wetworld peops.

Go puppy them flowers.

Note to self:

Feeling poorly.

All this practice, and still hit or miss.

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Note to self

They don't matter. But they sure are annoying.

Congrats to Colum for his OSCAR nomination!!!!

Wow! Colum's novella Everything in This Country Must was adapted for film by director Gary McKendry, and it's received a nomination for best live action short film!


And to think, C used to pour my Shiner Bocks when I was in college. I really should have tipped better.

Seriously...this is outstanding!

Monday, January 24, 2005

Whaddaya think?

Lots of you kind peops have read my li'l chapbooks, and some of you darlings have even read the full MS, or listened to me read every single poem 20 times, but can you pretend for a moment you haven't? And could those of you who haven't read or heard either maybe take a stab at the following questions also?

When you read the title Down Spooky what do you think?

What do you see?

Thanks. This is just for my own curiosity. Backchannels also welcome.

UPDATE: Thanks for all the great notes! Keep 'em coming. This is super interesting and a big help.

Sweet heathen

likes the "Cherry" & we likes the heathen whom we fondly recall in his neon tiger-striped cowboy hat.

Sunday, January 23, 2005

The poet's cat


Cascade Experiment: Selected Poems, Alice Fulton

Simulcast: Four Experiments in Criticism (Modern and Contemporary Poetics), Benjamin Friedlander

The Constructivist Moment: From Material Text to Cultural Poetics, Barrett Watten

He Paves the Road With Iron Bars, Caroline Knox

Don't Let Me Be Lonely, Claudia Rankine

Some Mountains Removed, Daniel Bouchard

Cur Aliquid Vidi, Lance Phillips

This week's scorecard*

medulla = 3

Daniel Bouchard = 7

*Note: I heard or saw DB's name (or his book) mentioned 7 times last week, while I heard or read the word "medulla" three times. As far as I can recollect, I neither heard nor saw DB or "medulla" the week before. Perhaps instead of "scorecard" I should say "tally"--an observation of mental weather akin to a list of last week's high temps, for instance.

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Better weather yesterday

Cold and bright, with Daniels in the afternoon and a little Maisie breeze from the lows in the Park Slope region. Long walks talking of poetry and other subjects such as property value and value and potential moves weather more poetry. Brief mentions of elsewheres, some futures. Late afternoon listening and browsing of collections, some envying but in the good ways with Triscuits and black coffee and laps in the marmelade kitty. Some agents are blowhards. Some wishes agents weren't. Everybody seems to enjoy the wishes. Less talk of blowhards, some of boneheads, but much genuine friendliness and medical case histories intimate with traumas. But lightly, on the good dishes. Vicodin punctates the poet's best lines in the reclining under window late afternoon to just dusk. What a heating pad! What an aluminum ladder! The return train yellow and slightly less trashy with optimum seating time and just a brisk swipe of neighborhood to the heated apartment with the dishwasher quietly finishing up. Some noodles, some unfunny comedy. A toastier waiting for phone calls directions and some delicate maps. No sign off no saying goodbye some movies some wineglasses. Easy hours of couchandcat of honey talk. The bedtime! The lights off!

A storm advisory

Poetry prowess warning in effect. Bunkering to commence at 2:00 PM at the Club. A store of newly winterized poets has been laid in and pretested to sustain large crowds of peers and East Village refugees until 4:00, with additional salting of the stage till 6:00 by vetran poetry forecasters. All have been found to meet if not exceed the Emergency Poetry Broadcast Systems requirements for major poetry conditions. Teas, coffees, and hot apple cider will be available, as well as selection of insulating liquors and brews. Stage lighting and operational heat will be increased to combat record low temps, and the club's velvet draperies are expected to provide additional buffering against the Bleecker Street bluster and gusts of up to 35 mph out of Joey Ramone Place. Poets and attendees are encouraged to dress appropriately in loose layers of lightweight clothing under waterproof outerwear and hoods, preferably in purple, complete with shoes or boots designed for traction in icy conditions. Experts suggest clapping and even mild hooting to help combat snow blindness and hypothermia. The traditional "poetry moan" has not proven effective in cases of major storms.

Um, we think.

Awesome loads of snow to fall from sky onto NY poets

... A Blizzard Warning remains in effect for this afternoon through Sunday morning...

Friday, January 21, 2005


Of new software that allowed me to write the poem & insert it into fruit. Not to read, but to eat. Eater would know the poem. I tried several oranges. Juicy. Delicious. So cold.

Thursday, January 20, 2005


Yep, I got it too.

A few days later when sorting through a stack of mail, hubby said, "Do you need this giant photo of J.D. McClatchy?"

So, when you have your boyfriend design YOUR journal's press kit, tell him to keep the headshots to a minimum. (Though it is a smoky pic.)


Thoughts toward next book forming, fading, reemerging.

Proceeding with caution.

Don't scare it away!

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

First stab at the bouts-rimes



Josh beat me to it!

More Mina for Erica

Mexican Desert

The belching ghost-wail of the locomotive

trailing her rattling wooden tail

into the jazz-band sunset. . . .

The mountains in a row

set pinnacles of ferocious isolation

under the alien hot heaven

Vegetable cripples of drought

thrust up the parching appeal

cracking open the earth

stump-fingered cacti

and hunch-back palm trees

belabour the cinders of twilight. . . .


The   present   moment

is an explosion ,

a scisson

of past and future


those valorous disreputables ,

the ruins ,


in an unknown dawn

strewn with prophecy .

Only the momentary

goggle of death

fixes the fugitive

momentum .

Virgins Plus Curtains Minus Dots

Latin Borghese

Houses hold virgins

The door's on the chain

'Plumb streets with hearts'

'Bore curtains with eyes'

Virgins without dots*

Stare beyond probability

See the men pass

Their hats are not ours

We take a walk

They are going somewhere

And they may look everywhere

Men's eyes look everywhere

Our eyes look out

A great deal of ourselves

We offer to the mirror

Something less to the confessional

The rest to Time

There is so much of it Time

Everything is full of it

Such a long time

Virgins may whisper

'Transparent nightdresses made all of lace'

Virgins may squeak

'My dear I should faint'

Flutter . . . . . flutter . . . . flutter. . . .

. . . . 'And then the man--'

Wasting our giggles

For we have no dots

We have been taught

Love is a god

White with soft wings

Nobody shouts

Virgins for sale

Yet where are our coins

For buying a purchaser

Love is a god

Marriage expensive

A secret well kept

Makes the noise of the world

Nature's arms spread wide

Making room for us

Room for all of us

Somebody who was never

a virgin

Has bolted the door

Put curtains at our windows

See the men pass

They are going somewhere

Fleshes like weeds

Sprout in the light

So much flesh in the world

Wanders at will

Some behind curtains

Throbs to the night

Bait to the stars

Spread it with gold

And carry it home

Against your shirt front

To a shaded light

With the door locked

Against virgins who

Might scratch

* Marriage Potions

[From The Lost Lunar Baedeker, Mina Loy (FSG, 1996)]


Spent cooking (braciole[*] with goat cheese[*], baby bellas & pine nuts in a mushroom sauce, broiled tilapia[*] with cilantro and lime with an avacado/jalapeno salsa and buttered[*] green beans), reading Guess Can Gallop, Yonder Stands Your Orphan, and last night rereading The Next Ancient World. Working on Down Spooky, trying to make sure about the order, the final revisions, the sections. Listening carefully to the aquamarine Olivetti. Enjoyed brief snows, especially the light and the way it makes the cat cling. Didn't leave the house at all since we came in Thursday. Nice and bunkered. Finished the second season of Millennium last night, unfortunately annoyed with the Patti Smith music video. Looking forward to the short week. Hope to go see a stellar Belladonna on Thursday and also to venture out Saturday for "the boys of Ahsahta." Maybe we'll get more snow tomorrow. I dislike the cold but.

*[This post has not been modified, but I have since gone vegan. Yeah, I miss cheese, but this book has made it nearly painless!]

Friday, January 14, 2005

I'm feeling so fond of you now, and I want to show you something.

This is a photo I took in September--a detail from Ilya Kabakov's installation at the Chinati Foundation in Marfa, TX.

It does little to convey the effect of the whole. Wow.

[Because I signed a photographer's release form, please do not take this photo for anything other than personal enjoyment. And if you're ever in West Texas...really.]


and I am seriously considering using an epigraph from the Log Lady.

I had lunch with Jim Harrison once...

along with Colum McCann, Tom Kelly & the husband. We went to St. Dymphna's on St. Marks Place.

He told us hilarious stories about French hotel maids and used every conceivable condiment: vinegar, HP sauce, ketchup, mayo, Tabasco, etc.

Here is the picture he drew of himself as a walleyed sun in my copy of Wolf: A False Memoir:

My copy of Selected & New Poems bears the inscription: "To Shanna from the Lone Geezer, Jim"

Hey, I got my first Carve

One of my lit mag subscriptions for 2005 is CARVE, edited by Aaron Tieger. I received Issue 4 in yesterday's mail.

Here's a fab poem from the issue by Tony Robinson:

Tuesday Without Warning

Let's darling fall down the flue,

fire in the back chute magic markers

in the vimmed vixen's hair. O what I want to do.

Here is where you aren't birdless stingy

thing there is merely points on paper--

distance of such-such that-there: mili-

somethings. Don't write: try, or beg,

or ask don't leave the hutch unlatched.

Rabbits & their ilk prefer the proffered

mix of mesclun endive greens & blues.

Forsooth, Madam, 'tis true. Verily, ah

verdantly, we walk in scenes of aqua,

we threw our shoes in the lake...can't be!

Considerations cluster & become

fiscal. How much $$$ how come? When

you come I swear I can feel it over

here I swear I just gave birth I swear

it's bigger than air & all that's in-

between. Giving up giving in. Giving

the glove back to the brandysnatch

giving the girdle over to Bercilak

your skintone is frosty your musty is sexy

& fie! I guess. I fall into your rain.

Smack! The issue also includes Gina Myers, an interview with the ubiquitous Daniel Bouchard, plus poems by John Mulrooney, Mairead Byrne, Aaron Kunin, and Jane Sprague.

See A's sidebar (linked above and in blogroll to yr right) to get your very own.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Reminder: GAMERS reading TONIGHT at 7:00

Thursday, January 13

7:00 PM


Thomas Kelly, Daniel Nester & J. Brandon Housley

Reading with Q&A to follow

Barnes & Noble Booksellers

Court Street

106 Court Street

Brooklyn, NY 11201


UPDATE: A handy map is here.

By subway, take the R, M, 2/3 or 4/5 to Court Street/Borrough Hall.

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

All booked for Vancouver...

Actually, we're flying to Seattle a week early to spend some time in the PNW and see some friends from Portland, etc. Recommendations for Washington, Oregon and that tip of Canada welcome. We've been to Oregon a couple of times before, but just to Portland and Ashland. Went hiking once just over the line in Washington. Anyway, I'm looking forward to it. Then it's up to Vancouver for AWP.

By the way, I found a 3-star hotel about a half-mile from the conference hotels for about half the price, if you're interested in that particular tip. Personally, I think I'd get a little burned staying in the conference hotels themselves. The freaking bars and restaurants are always crowded. Good when you feel up for it, but not when not. Last year we stayed a few blocks away and it was nice to be close but not on top of the bustle.

Still working on an off-site reading for Soft Skull with special guests from Winnow Press. If I'm gonna be pimping, might as well pimp myself, yo. At the book fair, we'll be sharing a table with BOMB.

Do the panels this year look more interesting, or is that just me? How excited am I that William Gibson will be there? Speaking of whom, he's now on the blogroll.

Realizing I like to plan my year in terms of trips to be taken. If I have a trip to think about, I am always excited. Jen Knox and I are also planning a street-paving-ladies poetry tour together in the fall. Maybe we can get Ms. Pafunda to join us in the South. Want us to come out?

Jimmy Guns resurfaces

Check it out: Our buddy James is featured in Architectural Record.

He's gonna be in town this week, kids.

Monday, January 10, 2005

Resolutions sticking

Mostly. So far. Which means I'm finally signing off on my two winter books for Soft Skull. Next up, twofer spring, then twofer fall.

And oh yeah, my book is due + a fellowship application by the end of the month.

Transient dude's sign, this morning's B train

"Tell me off $2.00"

Friday, January 7, 2005

Check it!

Geof Huth reads his visual poem ARCHETEXT, which happens to appear in the new LIT.

A whole new way to experience this fascinating piece. Thanks, Geof!

Friday hippo blogging

This is Owen, a baby hippo that survived the tsunami. He has been adopted by this giant male tortoise. Click the photo for the awwwwww-inspiring story.


Fame Atwood style

She's invented a contraption for virtual booksignings. Oh dear.

Thursday, January 6, 2005

GAMERS announcements

Click over to the GAMERS page for several new reviews and details on the next reading with Thomas Kelly, Daniel Nester & J. Brandon Housley at the Court Street Barnes & Noble in Brooklyn next Thursday at 7:00!

Also...GAMERS will be featured on WNYC's Studio 360 from January 27-30. Be sure to tune in to hear an interview with contributor Marc Nesbitt on any of more than 130 stations nationwide.


Wednesday, January 5, 2005

[Stage whisper:]

Pssssst! If you would like to read in the spring Frequency Series, you might wanna pitch yourself to Shafer now. Not sure what's left. Schedule to come.

Getting my stuff done.

See tagline at right.

Then view this funny cartoon (with audio).

Tuesday, January 4, 2005

Who's afraid of the Big Bad Balloon?

Currently obsessed with The Prisoner, a British television series c. 1967.

Coming out of my Murakami bender slowly. Can't there be one me who goes to work and one that stays here, musing from the bottom of a well?

Monday, January 3, 2005

Resolution(s) resolved, I think.

Live up to that indefatigable label...by heeding warning signs of overextension.

Simultaneously work concentratedly and ease up.

Cultivate unencumbered moments, don't just pass out.

Deadlines are not everything but are something.

Continue to be a part-time volunteer, with more emphasis on the part.

Recognize that NYC is not as determined as we are.

Learn to meditate.

All of the above will help me be a better partner.

Thank god my love life is in order. No, really...thanks.

Saturday, January 1, 2005

Happy New Year

We stayed in last night and skipped all festivities. I was in bed by 10:30. Dreaming of bombs that were actually fireworks loudly cracking nearby, I woke up for a bit at midnight to a flashing window. Snuggled in with the novel and the cat and thought off and on about resolutions. New Year's is a useful holiday, kids.

Woke this morning to plenty of coffee and no particular plans.

Now we're off to Charlie's for bloody marys, skipping the marathon.

More skipping to come in 2005.