THE BIG POETRY WEEKEND: Oh, dear sweet, Buddha...I'm exhausted. But in a good way. It was a hectic, poetry-filled weekend, and while part of me wants to lay on my fat butt, the other loves being in the thick of it all. So, here's the recap:

On Friday night, Cherryl Floyd-Miller and I volunteered to work the book table at the Manifestations anthology reading at the Carter Library. Neither of us are in the book, but a number of our poetry pals are, so we pitched in. Gary Corseri (who edited the anthology and selects the poems for the d'Arts quarterly mag in DeKalb County) picked a great line up of poets to read including Alice Lovelace, Cecilia Woloch, Kodac Harrison and Karen Wurl. There was a wonderful, diverse audience and the evening was a success. However...

Also on the bill was Lawrence Hetrick, the editor of The Chattahoochee Review, but he pulled a no-show. Some of you may remember a few months ago, I posted about a local literary mag that was tired of publishing local poets and being connected to local readings. Well, it was Chattahoochee Review. They also pulled out of co-sponsoring the Voices Carry event back in September, which was a gigantic, standing-room only success. The next week, Chattahoochee Review held some literary conference for lit mag editors. I heard about 30 people showed up after the event had to be moved to a gymnasium in Decatur when the power was out at the Carter Center because of Hurricane Ivan. What comes around goes around. Chattahoochee Review was going to co-sponsor the Manifestations event as well, and pulled the plug, so it's not a huge surprise Lawrence didn't show up, but it made him look like an unprofessional asshole. Talk about cutting your own throat. If Chattahoochee Review was a big, well known mag, I could maybe see some of this empirical, holier-than-thou attitude, but umm...guess what...it's not. Pick up the white courtesy phone, Lawrence, and get a reality check. Rude bastard.

On Saturday, the Georgia Poetry Society held its quarterly meeting at The Portfolio Center in Buckhead. Tania Rochelle (who teaches there) helped set this up and she also gave probably the best workshop GPS has ever had. Thanks, Tania. Cecilia was our featured poet and she was a hit. Sold lots of books and read some of her "sweet" poems. Thanks, ladies.

Sunday was non-stop. I went up to Cumming, GA with Cecilia for her reading at Humpus Bumpus books. A small, but receptive audience. Then we dashed back to the city so I could drop in at the release party for Cherryl's new book, Chops. And I do mean drop in...I basically ran in, hugged her, looked at the book and ran out the door (she knows I love her). I had to be back over in Decatur to meet up with Cecilia and the featured poets at Java Monkey, the wonderful Richard Garcia and Katherine Williams. I hosted Java Monkey (Kodac's on a three week European tour - lucky bastard) and we had a great turnout for Richard and Katherine. They were brilliant. I know they were tired from their drive over from South Carolina, but the Java crowd won them over and they sold a lot of books. I was thrilled to host them.

Whew. I'm tired just typing it all up. I just got back from a meeting with some of the Poetry Atlanta board. I'm writing the grant for the Fulton County Arts Council to get money for some upcoming events, including the second volume of the Java Monkey Anthology and Voices Carry 2005. I haven't written in a grant in about six years, so this has been a re-learning experience for me. Tomorrow night is the meeting about the fellowship I mentioned some weeks back. I still don't want to mention too much about it until we've decided to actually pursue applying. So, look for a post about that later in the week.


Comments

Anonymous said…
What kind of poetry community do you have there in Atlanta? Sounds like a bunch of old farts who can't let go of the past and embrace the future. Keep up the good fight.
Teamaster said…
mother Mercy, Collin, I'm tired after *reading* your recent exploits. You are an effing maniac! I salute you! Er, let me reword that. Much respect! :)

-David

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