Sep 30, 2010

The Face

The Baby Face
The Calm Hitler
The Nose Bleed Hitler

The Ex-Cop
The Mitch
The Butcher
The Almost Jewish
The Spitball
The Lemmy
The Dali Lemmy

The Civil War Vet
The General

Sep 29, 2010

The Bloof Tour, 2010

Day 1 in Muncie, Indiana, reading with Jennifer L. Knox and Shanna Compton and my former student, Cody Davis. It was good and books were sold. I was still home then, sleeping in my bed that evening and waking up the next morning to kiss and hug my kids, and then to play guitar and wait for Jen and Shanna to pick me up and then—off, to Nashville, TN.

Day 2 in Nashville, where we couldn’t access our floor, the eighth floor, of our hotel room because of something to do with the Tennessee Titans who, we were left to imagine, must have used the entire floor in some sort of visit. But, we learned, we could use our room key to make the elevator work properly and elevate us to the appropriate altitude. The reading at the bookstore wasn’t worth our time, but there it was, and there was our time, and so, it went like that. Afterward, we appreciated drinks and company at a Mexican restaurant. A filmmaker dude named Elvin explained his movie and we enjoyed that explanation immensely. Jen and Shanna took to calling me Pony Ann.

Day 3 found us in Atlanta, passing a statue of MLK that didn’t look like MLK. There we met Bruce Covey and Sandra Simonds and had an excellent reading at Emory University, where we sold books, met kind people, and bought alcohol from a hotel bartender who let us buy alcohol even though they were closed and she wasn’t suppose to.

Day 4 and Jen K. took an early flight out of town, heading to her cousin’s wedding who happens to be a member of a Burt Reynolds tribute band called Hooper. Bruce C. replaced Jen in the car and off we drove to Tallahassee. Good times and homemade food (courtesy Sandra S.), and a very nice hotel staff, who gave me a free Sprite. We read that night at The Warehouse.

Day 5 was a long day, with no reading. Bruce folded his somewhat immense body into the driver’s seat and drove Shanna and I back to Atlanta, where we left him, in the same parking lot we found him in. Then Shanna and I drove somewhat recklessly all day, arriving in Raleigh, NC around 11:00pm. By then we had eaten at Ruby Tuesday’s 3 or 4 times. Good salad and very average cold slaw.

Day 6 brought us to D.C. I was driving as we got close, but my eyes got so sleepy and tired I had to pull over and make Shanna drive. We found the spot we were suppose to find, and found my former student, Shaun G. who looked like he could have played in the The Hives. Buck Downs, Mel Nichols, Cole Swenson, and Reb Livingston were there, amid others. Reb’s son Gideon was there and he happens to be five so I read him "Poem Addressing Boys Age Five." He gave me a thumbs up sign, which I appreciated. Books were sold and drinks were drunk. After watching the Colts kick the shit out of Giants with Maureen Thorson’s husband, Jeff, I slept like a rock and woke the next morning and went running with Shanna around the Capitol building. Just before we left we discovered the car had been moved, by the city, a few blocks away. This initially caused us to freak out, but it also caused us to be relieved when we found it forty minutes later. Thank goodness for relief.

Day 7 meant reading to a practically empty bookstore in Baltimore. Baltimore was like how a person might imagine Baltimore, except a good, old friend was there and so he drove us around some and paid for our dinner. Thank goodness for good old friends, especially in Baltimore which felt exactly like Baltimore, or how a person might imagine Baltimore.

Day 8 brought us first to Shanna’s house, and then to Philadelphia, where we reconnected with the fabulous Ms. Knox, and where we read in a very old bar, selling books and meeting good people like CA Conrad, and then back to Shanna’s house where I drank much gin with Shanna’s husband and where we laughed, with the lights out, to Louie C.K. I had briefly napped in the upstairs room that afternoon and that night I slept up there again with the TV on, before waking to turn it off, and sleeping more and then sleeping a little more. Pony Ann was missing home, but happy to be in a home that wasn’t a hotel.

Day 9 took us not too far from Shanna’s house, to the college of New Jersey at Ewing, where the student creative writing organization, ink, hosted a really nice reading in a nice room in the student center. Those students were attentive and thoughtful and asked us actual questions about poetry and us being poets. We were like, “well, yes” and “sure, that” and “sometimes, this” and “really, thanks.” That night, at a vegan restaurant, I stuffed myself with food that didn’t come from an animal. What was good about it was the taste, all non-animally and tasty. The night was windy and leafy and, in a distant way, lightening shook the darkness, causing us to think of horror movies and to rethink the words of the old man at the liquor store who said, “Raining yet?” in a somewhat David Lynch-y way.

Day 10 and we were in NYC where I read at the Best American Poetry reading with lots of poetic hotshots. It was fun, but the most fun part was meeting up with my sweet wife, who had dropped the kids off at the grandparents and had flown in, meeting me in Brooklyn. We took the subway to Manhattan and almost didn’t find the New School, but then, wandering almost aimlessly, we saw David Lehman quickly rounding a corner and I said to my wife “There, David Lehman! Follow that guy!” So we did, making it to the reading in plenty of time. After the reading, we were lucky enough to speak with Amy Gerstler at the after party, which was in an apartment that was very swanky and millionaire-ish. Amy and my wife talked about the failures of American sexual education. Jerome Sala and I discussed the NFL and the greatness of the Indianapolis Colts.

On day 11 I woke in Brooklyn and took my wife to Manhattan for a conference she attended, went back to Brooklyn and slept some more. Then back to Manhattan, before returning again to Brooklyn. Then we attempted to locate Rose’s Live Music for a few hours in the hot sun. Listen, just because Rose’s Live Music is on Grand Street, that doesn’t mean you should actually exit the A line at the Grand Street station. That’s just stupid! But, later, when we did find it, we found kind people like Greg T. who hosted the reading, and other kind poets (youngish and older), sold books, etc., and we were tired by the time we reached the hotel, worn out.

Day 12 was the last day of me reading on the 2010 Bloof tour. That afternoon I read at the Boog City event at Unnamable books. But then, after my reading, my wife and I hustled uptown to attend a reading by Ada Limรณn, Jason Schneiderman, and Jennifer L. Knox. And Jason and Ada were amazing. An excellent reading. And so Jen Knox, who was the last reader that evening, really let out the last gasp of the September 2010, Bloof Books tour. And it was a very kind, hilarious gasp. I laughed and felt like laughing more. I ate more cheese and drank more beer. I hugged Jen and Shanna goodbye and left mostly buzzed. Stopped off a few blocks later and bought a pair of burgundy and light tan, suede Pumas.

Sep 13, 2010

Via Bloof Tour, Readings I'm Doing Soon!

Muncie, IN Bracken Library 104 @ 7:30 9/14
Nashville, TN Davis Kidd Bookstore @ 9/15
Atlanta, GA Emory University, Few Hall @ 8:00 9/16
Tallahassee, FL The Warehouse @ 8:00 9/17
Washington, DC In Your Ear at DC Arts Center @ 3:00 9/19
Baltimore, Maryland Cyclops Books @ 8:00 9/20
Philadelphia, PA Fergies's Pub @ 6:00 9/21
Ewing, NJ The College of New Jersey @ 4:00 9/22
New York, NY Best American Poetry 2010 Launch Reading @ 7:00 9/23
New York, NY Earshot Series @ 7:30 9/24
New York, NY Boog Festival, Unnameable Books @ 3:15 9/25

Sep 10, 2010

Sep 1, 2010