Mike Lala returned to Detroit to read new poems at Cave for the closing reception of Robert Sestok’s exhibition Static. Also reading, James Hart III, Matthew Polzin, and Jonathan Rajewski. Photos courtesy of Katie Barkel.
"I try to make a point of at least reading, if not writing, poetry every day." Mike Lala on working.
In 2011, we were privileged to have Diane Wakoski read at our inaugural book release. It was a moment we will not forget. Wakoski’s bibliography is as important as it is immense. In 1989, she was the recipient of the William Carlos Williams Award for her book Emerald Ice: Selected Poems 1962-1987. In 2012, she continues to be an international force in poetry.
A reading by Diane Wakoski, and a celebration of her 75th birthday, will take place next week, Friday June 15 at (SCENE) Metrospace. Happy Birthday Diane.
Last week, [sic] traveled East to the Philadelphia Photo Arts Center for the Third Annual Book Fair. Hosted annually by the PPAC, the Book Fair features a number of local, national and international presses, publishers and artists. We’d like to thank Maia, founder of DittoDitto Books, for representing [sic] and an amalgamation of other Detroit-based publications. For more information about the PPAC, visit them here.
Photo courtesy of Megan Major.
SURROUNDED BY SNAKES
for Jean-Michel Basquiat
i saw his burning body and recognized my own:
in a painting of tar and feathers: a lung pulled through the snow:
ghost shapes pulled from a brass horn;
a breathless mouth of gold:
the song of a boxer without arms
hums from my skeleton, stripped of its bones:
an audible sinking feeling,
a smoke colored chant in the rain:
a homeless king crumbles,
carries some gold wood to his grave:
a black crown at his feet
a coal mine pulled from his teeth:
the night turns into a yellow canary
fluttering when he speaks:
an undiscovered genius:
a trembling torso full of nightmarish sleep:
the lonely artist descends:
a silhouette surrounded by snakes.
CHARLIE PARKER: CHEROKEE
against warm breath.
from a breath
to a lung
to a heart.
through a vein
to a tree;
grandad hangs in the wind.
red. dirt. blood. dust.
half-born. middle passaged.
hushed by a horn.
ready to explode.
Jack Brown lives and works in Detroit, MI. TWO POEMS courtesy of Jack Brown © Jack Brown 2012. Image courtesy of Jack Brown.
We are wrestling all our submissions into one journal this quarter. The submission deadline for the 003 release is April 27. Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks!
swirling scarlet eddies red seas coagulate near naked trees and my cup runneth over autumn warlords windy caterwaul beckoning the blood leaves of grass to fall the wind on which i stand pulls me up tumbling me over and out its a screaming carnival your face is upside down tucked inside out but baby you were so beautiful
if our fingers were tightrope walkers then your words and my lips and your veins and my hips would be wires it’s a carnival and balance is required our hands fall heavily through the air weightlessly though the show’s not expired
bold blue boys admire each other capture days and dares in digital formats frames gazes let me take you picture let me lick this a frame of reference for my absent memory when you are no longer beside me my beneficent butch bundle of boy because i adore you on this blueberry afternoon show me your face my beautiful baby basted in sweat and deli dollar beer
she sits and reads another book another way to pass the day arms crossed tightly over her chest to guard a nervous mood greasy hair all piled on top her head black shoes black pants black shirt she says if i can make it back again and my books and alchemy keep on traveling a pass time where i will not have to think about the things pushing me to the brink of this solitude
tranquilize vicious tendencies when the dogs are on the move keep them sedated its a dogged day down dawn departs and evening descends on me pearl pit puppy picked up polly pulled her up the road piping pink pastry lips she passes on her way time to go very berry pink strawberry lemon drops and eyes like cherries bold blue boys and clever girls make this whirlwind go round
elizabeth devlin lives and works in brooklyn, ny. two poems courtesy of elizabeth devlin © elizabeth devlin2012. photo courtesy of elizabeth devlin.
CRAZY HORSE SPEAKS
It was a queer dance, for a horse.
UNTITLED (POEM FOR A MONUMENT)
Six thousand pounds of dynamite
for the father of my country.
A chisel for God’s messenger, detained.
A hammer as his cue:
Washington: Bring the money.
Jefferson: It’s soft.
Borglum: Move behind Washington, and Roosevelt, back.
South Dakota: It’s odd here.
Italy: It’s old.
Michelangelo: That’s freedom: a new face in an old place.
Han Solo: I know.
I stood at the rail, put a quarter in, and received my 90 seconds
set aside for detail:
Tom staring off at the hills.
Abraham, in absentia,
George, chest out.
Susan B. Anthony (at home): All rise for the Federal Boys Club.
Roosevelt (to tourist): Take the fucking photo.
Jefferson (erected): Leave your likeness where they worship.
The stationary viewer clicked closed, and mother
led me to Crazy Horse in-progress. I looked at the mountain,
the face emerging from it, then the plaster mockup
on the boardwalk by the gift shop.
Ziolkowski (on his death bed): Do it slow. Do it right.
He has been honored by the U.S Postal Service
with a 13-cent stamp.
mike lala lives and works in brooklyn, ny. two poems courtesy of mike lala © mike lala 2012. photo by brandon lake.