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Thursday, September 18, 2008

Reading Bit

On Thursday GC Waldrep hosted a reading for Mathias Svalina. It was a pleasure meeting him and seeing Karla Kelsey again. She brought five or six of her students to the reading. Nice bunch. GC had a nice spread of sweets: cookies, cake, and chocolate. I suspect he was hoping for a lot of leftovers. He has a sweet tooth the size of Alaska.

Here's what I liked about Mathias' reading:.

1. He has a good reading voice. He doesn't have a "poetry reading" voice.
2. He praised and read another poet's work: Karen Volkman. Love it when poets do this.
3. His creation myth poems. I was really taken by these poems. The poems were brimming with surrealistic logic, but vulnerability and tenderness kept them tethered to the moment: the terror and beauty of our times.

Here's a bit of news for you: GC Waldrep drinks Diet Coke out of a Porky Pig glass. Yes, the very glass in the photograph above. Porky Pig. Diet Coke. Ha.


greg rappleye said...

That is pretty funy.

Please say "Hello" to Mr. Waldrep for me.

Keith said...

Not sure if I've ever been to a reading where someone's supposed to be reading their own work and then they read someone else's (I'm not being sarcastic -- I've really never seen this). Seems odd to me. But maybe the times are changing.

Barbara Jane Reyes said...

I have come to love it hearing poets do "cover poems," like paying homage, and/or broadening their own poetic worlds, acknowledging the poet's work is connected to others. Seems so nice and larger than the almighty "I." I've kind of started doing that myself, the "cover poem," as well, because I tend to get tired of hearing my own voice for the duration of a long (20-30 min?) set. Me me me!

Keith said...

Good point, Barbara. I can hardly take myself for more than about 15 minutes (and I haven't read as much as most). Again, maybe the times need to change. Bands do cover songs. Why not the cover poem?

Ron said...

Oh, this sounds so nice! I treasure my copies of Mathias' chapbook & Karla's book... How weird/sad is it to be *this close* and not know they were in town... I'm not whining. Oh fuck it: I'm whining.

SO looking forward to hearing Adam Zagajewski read; it's been years.

JeFF Stumpo said...

Hi Eduardo - found this through C. Dale's blog.

Just wanted to note that, perhaps ironically, given the emphasis on ego in this arena, slam poets / poets who slam tend to read and/or perform work by other poets when they feature. It's usually in the spirit of "this writer helped me to be before you today - always remember your roots." It also seems practical - if you spend hours in the car driving back and forth to gigs, listening to CDs or your friends reading from books, you just begin to memorize lots of stuff.

Marc Smith (so what) is particularly known for reciting the work of a variety of "page poets" who sound great aloud.