It's Charles Bukowski's birthday. Maybe we should all do today's writing drunk, naked and sweaty in commemoration. I've been meandering my way through Sifting Through the Madness for the Word, the Line, the Way: New Poems for months and to be honest, I find parts of it brutal - where the subject overwhelms what craft there is to the point where I have to put it down. It's like spotting micrograms of diamond in a pail of rotting meat.
On the other end of the spectrum, I've been spending lots of time with my contributor's copy of Silk Road. I'm just thrilled at being included in this inaugural volume alongside some of the writers whose works I've been studying and learning from. Among the poets you'll find there are Deborah Ager, Kelli Agodon, Steve Schroeder and Suzanne Frischkorn. From the Editors' note:
A series of collected writings on place is like a string of caravansaries along the ancient Silk Road. Each one offers a similar refuge from the immediacy of a dusty, perilous highway, yet no two are the same because of the mix of travelers who gather there.
What a great way to approach creating a magazine.
The 06-07 season of the Spoken Word Series has been posted at DeBaun.org. If artistic diversity is my primary objective in scheduling artists, I may have hit my peak in this, our 5th full year. And we're not done - I'm finalizing plans for a day of workshops in May and stewing up some longer term plans. I hope you NJ locals will keep an eye out. Or better, get on our mailing list.
The list of poets presenting at this year's Dodge Festival has been posted. It takes artistic diversity to a whole other level (and look for some lesser known but terrific talents in the bottom section of that list). It's interesting to think of this list and my own much smaller effort in the context of Deborah's recent comments on "KINDS" of poets, and to imagine the conscious and unconscious checklists in my head (and the heads of other event planners). "Diversity" requires criteria against which to check off "differences". Have to think about that some more.