Tuesday, May 11, 2021

While all this Covid 19 was happening, I may not have posted videos of my readings, so here they all are!

After the video below was posted, I realized I've posted videos on many social media platforms, but not here. Here are as many as I could find since March 2020.

May 8, 2021, Lit Balm, with Matthew Zapruder, Vahni Capildeo, and Andre Bagoo
Honored to be part of this all-star team. OMG, check out the epic poem by Vahni (she screen shares)




April 24, 2021, Virtual Speak East. with Karen Klein, Nancy Gray
and Dance by Kelley Donovan, Roza Dance Company, Boston Community Dance Project
This one was pretty cool. I love multi-art readings!




April 18, 2021, Rockport Poetry Festival
Lots of readers here, all doing about five minutes. Nine poets in my group. 




March 14, 2021, New England Poetry Club, with Linda Haviland Conte, and Elenor Kedney
After the features, the open mic with members from NEPC was pretty damn stellar 





March 10, 2021, Stone Soup, hosted by Chad Parenteau
One of the oldest open mics in Boston, kept alive by Chad. 




February 28, 2021, Book Launch for 2020 Poems, with Guests Jennifer Martelli and Yuyutsu Sharma.
Grateful for this day. 





January 20, 2021, The Writers Voice with Linda McHenry
Nice to be interviewed by Linda, who is the quintessential professional 

 

  August 6, 2020, Boston Poetry Marathon
Greater than 26 miles of poetry. This went on for three days. 




July 27, 2020, Poet to Poet, Writer to Writer, with Doug Holder
I've picked up many tips on the interview process from Doug Holder

Monday, May 3, 2021

Video of my appearance on Freshwater Literary Series posted today on Vimeo

I've known John Sheier for over ten years, and I've been published in Freshwater, the literary journal of Asuntuck Community College, so when John asked me to be their guest, I jumped. It is also a good interview technique to butter up the guest by saying they are a writer they like right off they bat. (They really, really, like me>)This interview is about 2020, the year, and the poetry book, so I'm glad to share it with you.

Freshwater Literary Series - Episode Two - Timothy Gager.mp4 from Asnuntuck Public Speaking on Vimeo.


Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Going Back Into the Wilderness this Spring? Here are the Fiction selections for WHLR Spring 2021 Issue


 It's spring and Vaccination Nation is upon us. Birds are singing, the sky is blue and if you are vaccinated you can do the things you wanted to do last Spring. Why say, "no," to that, and help others stay healthyt, even though the maskless freedom fighters didn't give two shits then, so why should they give one shit now. That's not fiction, but these stories are. The following are the selections I made as fiction Editor for Wilderness House Literary Review's Spring Issue:



Also: Publishing credits may get you mentioned elsewhere. Just ask Emma Deimling!








WHLR 61st  Issue (Volume 16, no 1)-April 2021

Wednesday, March 31, 2021

REPLAY CENTER: Winter's features from Virtual Fridays Dire Literary Series-recordings

   Replay some great readings and interviews from January 8, Rick Moody,  all the way to March 26, with Steven Cramer



1.8.21 Rick Moody 



1.15.21 Laurette Folk


1.22.21 Mark Saba


1.29.21 Sarah Anne Johnson

2.5.21 Josh Barkan
and Jennifer Haigh

2.12.21 Keetje Kuipers

2.19.21 January O'Neil

2.26.21 Elle Nash

3.05.21 Daneille Zaccagnino

3.12.21 Marty Beckerman

3.19.21 Nathan Graziano 

3.26.21 Steven Cramer

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

2021 Spring Schedule for Virtual Fridays Dire Literary Series (4/9-6/25, 2021)


     
Features will read 10 minutes at either 7 PM or 8 PM, their preference. To see these events on live stream join Virtual Fridays Dire Literary Series Group on Facebook or message me for information. All feature segments get uploaded to YouTube, and you have the option to subscribe.  Our  features are followed or preceded by the best open mic in the world, so bring your best stuff. For previous features see HERE

Note: I no longer accept queries for features. 

April

2 Easter Weekend- OFF

9 The all-open mic One Year Anniversary Event

16 Sandra Simonds

23 George Wallace

30 Caroline Leavitt

May

7 Charles Coe

14 Susan Henderson

21. Major Jackson 

28 Memorial Day Weekend-OFF 

June

4 Kara Vernor

11 Meredith Goldstein

18 Kimberly Ann Priest 

25 Joanna Smith Rakoff



Still Zonking the Zoom Bombers--You can't get me!!


Because of pranks, perversion, and racism which will not be tolerated, here are some guidelines I will be using some of the following at various times.

1) People will be Automatically muted when entering, only host can unmute you, at any time
2) Eliminate Chat
3) Eliminate screen share
4) Lock Dire at 715 so even if you get booted out by mistake, you may not be able to re-enter--sorry.
5) Block camera ability for any interlopers that are frustrated by all of the above.
6) Not post the event on Twitter
7) Not publicly post Dire link to zoom

7+) Immediately remove offending animal. 



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Monday, March 15, 2021

21 Words of mine, "Motel Room," published in Molecule today

 

Molecule, a group of two or more atoms that form the smallest identifiable unit into which a pure substance can be divided and still retain the composition and chemical properties of that substance.


Molecule, a tiny lit mag.

(read it here)

-------------------------------

Molecule takes poems, prose, fiction, plays, interviews and art, which are fifty words or less. Edited and founded by Kevin Carey, and MP Carver, Festival Director at MassPoetry, the magazine has gotten "big," by being small for the past two years. 

Here's the Table of Contents, which feature some folks (Chris O'Carroll, Chad Parenteau, J.D. Scrimgeour, Michael Estabrook, David Somerset, Cindy Veach, Elizabeth Weiss) I know.  If the listed Table of Contents (below) piques your interest, go to the site and download the issue for FREE






Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Grey Sparrow Press Tenth-Year Anniversary Anthology: Catch the Moon, includes my poem Everything's Connected from 2009

 It is an honor to appear in their beautiful Anniversary issue (which you can buy HERE), which celebrates ten years of Grey Sparrow Press.


     Grey Sparrow Press, in this landmark book, cherishes the voices of national writing treasures published over ten years; Robert Bly, Robert Wexelblatt, Michael R. Keith, Jules Nyquist, Khem Aryal, Marie Sheppard Williams [posthumously,] Doug Holder, Momila Joshi, William Woolfitt, Thomas Smith, M.J. Iuppa, LB Chhetri, John Roche to name a few. Grey Sparrow Press was formed as a non-profit 501[c]3 May 11, 2009. Writing is dedicated to global issues that haunt us all.

     My poem, Everything's Connected appeared in only their second issue, as currently they have published 36.

Also, I recited it way back in 2009. Has anything changed since then?



Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Two Poems published 1) Dead Mule School of Southern Literature and 2) Bagel Bards #14

      The poem, Living With Rabbits, appears on page 19, of my bestselling book 2020 Poems. It also appears in this month's Dead Mule School of Southern Literature. I've been in Dead Mule a few times, but they now have a really modern and stiffy website with photographs accompanying each piece of fiction or poetry. You should really check it out, the website is absolutely gorgeous. 

To the right is the picture they used for my poem: 


    That's kind of a cool rabbit, but far less superior to mine, as I do live with rabbits and talk them during the pandemic.  Look there is one of them! Bertie surviving the pandemic!

      The story behind the poem is that apparently if you are a woman you can feel safe staying as the guest of a guy who owns rabbits, as they probably are not interested in women anyway...so it's going to be safe. Right? Not everyone is so, please be safe whether men own rabbits or not.


     My second publication is in the Bagels with the Bards Anthology #14, put out by the group the Bagel Bards, who the late Sam Cornish said

     "The Bagel Bards (or Bagels with the Bards) (are) a group of poets varied in age, race, gender meet, share poems, discuss poetry, drink lots of coffee, chew a bagel if so desired, sometimes sell their books. The atmosphere is generous and open to all, and you don’t have to be a poet to attend. What I find most exciting about the Bards, people here are not conscious of reputation and achievement, but love the poem and good friendly unpretentious talk."


     They have also put out 14 anthologies, and to be an official Bagel Bard you only have to go to one meeting of the group---and now, Zoom counts! The group was started by well-know poets Doug Holder and Harris Gardner as a way to start a poetry community in the Somerville, Massachusetts area.  The book is lovely as well, and this round was edited by David Miller. Steve Glines, as always, contributed the design, both inside and out. 


Sunday, February 28, 2021

So I had a book launch for 2020 Poems and it went like this...

 



Thanks to all that attended....there were so many! Special thanks to Robin Stratton who hosted, and runs Big Table Publishing----and also my wonderful special guests, poets, Jennifer Martelli and Yuyutsu Sharma

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Jones Woodfin Purcell, December 20, 1955-February 23, 2021

  
 "The most original singer songwriter in his time period"

 -Drummer, |Ed Shockey speaking on Jones Purcell


"Troubled and supremely talented songwriting genius. Coulda and shoulda been more widely recognized, if not for the baggage."

 - Most of the Universe  


Sometimes when I scroll through Netflix or Amazon Prime Movies there are this music documentaries about musicians or bands that should have made it, and for various reasons did not. Jones Purcell, or as he was known, Woody should have one made about him. He was hands down one of the best song writers I've ever encountered, and certainly one of the best I've ever heard. He was brilliant, funny---could play anything, in any style. Here are some of his songs, but these demos or studio versions of his songs do not give them much justice, as I think there was too much to mettle and play with in studio settings---the music was always better live.

The music posted on Sound Cloud is curtesy of DC Harbold, who said, 

"Woody was a complicated brilliant man that I was privileged not only to play with but to call a friend."

So what happened? Baggage? Is that what you call it?

Well, you can't understand what you can't understand.

Those who knew him well knew of his struggle with mental illness, although we didn't really talk about it back then. He self-medicated with alcohol which often caused volatile behavior, and although filling rooms with his various bands, he was banned at various venues for his behavior. He was known for being in the band The MIBs, The Ranchers, Kamikaze Posse, The Jones Purcell Band, Pie Hawkers, nu-MIBS, Cornbred--all forces of music in the 80s-90s Delaware Music scene.



Woody came to the Delaware scene vis South Carolina, brought in by John Baumeister who played with Woody in a band called the Mammals which morphed into the MIBs.

"One Christmas I was visiting my folks in Charleston and found him playing in a place called Captain Harry’s. We went to see him and he started throwing beer bottles at the fireplace and yelling at people. Anyone who knew him would not consider that unusual. So I told him that he should come back with me to Delaware. We had a house in Elkton (the Land Yacht) where he could stay and we could start a new band and just play. This was about 1980/81. So he packed up and came back with me. I was living with Paul Slivka and Jim Hannum among others and so we began the band." 


    He made tight friends until things would happen, usually he would flip out on them and then bridges were burned. Looking back, we had much less understanding of mental health, and even people in need of recovery were not empathized with much. People always returned though, either drawn in by his talent or

personality. I knew him quite well, and although avoided him after some of his angry outbursts, we would always check in with each other. In 1986 he was looking to move somewhere, and I was living in Lexington, Ma., with my parents, so he came up to play -- maybe start a band. We played all week, but he was down, and in his dry, dark, sense of humor, stated, "I was planning on killing myself, but I didn't want to upset your Mom." The only impression he had made on her was a good one. My mom really liked him.

    After that he disappeared for about five years. He moved to Nashville, and didn't really tell anyone. He played, wrote, and worked as a roadie for The True Believers. I was on with my Boston life, by that time but we kept in touch via late night phone calls, and later on social media. Lately he would say or comment, "I'm proud to know you," even when his health began to fail horrible, ending up, in and out of hospitals because of various medical issues, as he needed oxygen now to live, and was having trouble walking.


Sax player Alan Yandziak,

"So sad to hear. He was such a force of nature and one of Delaware s favorite sons. I'm sure everyone's got a story or two to tell, and I'll be sure to raise a glass to a one of a kind talent. He will be missed."

    Yesterday and today there is a lot being said about his music, and life. To say that he suffered through life isn't true or even fair, as he had a huge kind heart when he wasn't fighting off his demons. I never blamed him for having them, though at times I needed to distance myself. Jones, I hope the afterlife treats you like a king, and  I'm proud to have known you. 

There will be no documentary, but there should be.