A beautiful Fall day in the Northeast & “Chowder Fest” in Troy, NY & we still had a bunch of poets show up at the Arts Center. Sometimes you can do it all. & we were glad to have Nancy Klepsch back with us to co-host (particularly me, who is the other co-host).
Our first reader was one of the “legendary” poets from the early days of the Albany poetry scene & the Readings Against the End of the World, Druis Beasley, who performed a chant-like narrative/homage to the Harvest Queen, accompanied by the rhythmic vocalizations of Isaiah. Nancy Klepsch followed with a very new piece written just this morning, a portrait of a writer & wannabe cowgirl, then an older poem, “Another Troy, the Re-Mix.” David Wolcott treated us to something totally different from his usual memoir segments, a recitation of the opening stanzas from Lord Byron’s “The Prisoner of Chillon.” Mike Connor read three seasonal pieces, the “Polaroid snapshot” “Days End,” “November Already,” & “Lakeside Reflections” with its crayon box of colors for which this season is noted. Inna Erlikh is our translator-in-residence, but a reluctant reader, so she asked me to read her translation from the Russian of the love poem “Dry Cleaning” by Sara Stolyarova, which I did.
A new voice today was Peggy LeGee with the rebellious “Little Girl Lost” in short line rhymes, & the memory poem “Revise the Echoes.” I followed with “October Land,” a baseball pastiche of T.S. Eliot’s “The Waste Land,” then a new poem written to my friend Charlie Rossiter, “14-Round Magazine.” Howard Kogan read his poem “My Mother’s Salami Sandwich,” then the meditation in a cemetery, “A Close Family.” Ron Drummond‘s gift to us today was reading 5 poems by other poets, 4 of whom were in the audience: Howard’s “On Doing Poetry Readings,” Nancy’s ” Mrs. to Be,” his own “4 Lines & No River,” Jil Hanifan’s “Dream Forgets Her Old Adventures,” & my own “At the End” — Thank you Ron! William Robert Foltin managed to sneak in before the end with a couple of seasonal poems, the 1st on Halloween, followed by “Sunday Night Football.”
We do this each month at the Arts Center of the Capital Region in Troy, NY on the 2nd Sunday, at 2PM; it’s free & you can read poetry or prose. Join us.