Back from La La Land

Reading at The Ugly Mug
I'm back from LA and poetry readings with Steven Reigns and Julie E. Bloemeke. Many thanks to Larry Colker and Jim Doane with the Redondo Poets and Poetry Idiots Ben Trigg and Steve Ramirez for their kindness and enthusiasm in having us at the venues, Coffee Cartel in Redondo Beach and The Ugly Mug in Orange. These are two of my all-time favorite places to read. The audiences are warm, engaged and welcoming. It was great to perform some of the new work, as well as old favorites.

Along with the readings, I also got a chance to drop in on some of my favorite LA haunts: Book Soup, Amoeba Records, In-n-Out and the stunning campus of The Getty Center. If you happen to be in LA or traveling there in the coming weeks, make sure to check out the Concrete Poetry exhibition at The Getty. The exhibit features prints, artists' books, journals, and manuscripts documenting the international concrete poetry movement, this exhibition focuses on the visual, verbal, and sonic experiments of the 1950s, '60s, and '70s. I was fascinated with the "word sculptures" created by Augusto de Campos, Ian Hamilton Finlay, Henri Chopin, Ernst Jandl, Mary Ellen Solt, and Emmett Williams. It makes me want to experiment with some of my own short work to see how I could bring it to life in visual form. Be sure to check out my Facebook page and Instagram accounts for photos from the exhibit and other images from my adventures in LA.

Collin and Vanessa
I was also thrilled to catch up with friend/poet/musician/muse Vanessa Daou over a leisurely breakfast. We had so much fun collaborating last year on the "Leaving Paris" song that we're talking about another project in the near future. Stay tuned! And be sure to check out Vanessa's new greatest hits album, "Welcome to My Blues: An Anthology (1994-2017)" at this link.

Right before I left to go to LA, I received word from Diode that my new poem "Ritual" will appear later this year. Diode is one of my favorite journals, so I'm happy to have placed work there at last!

If you happen to be in Atlanta on June 21, drop by Charis Books in Little Five Points at 7:30 p.m. for the special event to mark Pride, The Stonewall Reading: Honoring Our Literary Ancestors.  Rather than reading their own work, local poets and writers will be perform selections by Langston Hughes,   Gloria Anzaldua,  Amy Lowell,  Audre Lorde,  Leslie Feinberg,  Adrienne Rich,  Truman Capote,   Edna St. Vincent Millay,  James Baldwin,  The Lady Chablis,  and Justin Chin. I'll be reading Capote.


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