Here we are...

...a group of Baby Boomers of sundry religious,
political and cultural orientations, who have been
meeting at the Voorheesville Public Library since 1991
to read and discuss each other's poems.

We include old fathers and young grandmothers,
artists and musicians, and run-of-the-mill eccentrics.
Writers are welcome to stop in and stay if they like us.

Some of Us

Some of Us
Dennis Sullivan, Beverly Osborne, Tom Corrado, Edie Abrams, Art Willis, Alan Casline (all seated); Paul Amidon, Mike Burke, Tim Verhaegen, Mark O'Brien, Barbara Vink, Philomena Moriarty

Friday, August 24, 2007

War Psalm

Mimi's chapbook of WWII poems for her father has been published and she donated a copy for the VPL collection. The book has a pic of the author looking absolutely glamorous-in full color, with lipstick even!They are on sale from her or at Amazon ($13). (Mimi, my favorite is Postcard from the War.) Her poem last night was also about war, the current one, and the presentation of a medal to a young widow (aside: check out war portraits by Nina Berman in the NYTimes this morning 8/24).

Paul presented another glimpse into his mischievous young life with a circus story that was very funny and deserved a five-star rating. Obeedude did a funny with What maks tha Happie Maun happie? Rather oddly, it referenced serotonin. Perhaps a more colloquial spelling. Saeretunen?

Dennis started out to Perth Amboy with a bang - hauling a truckload of chickens with his grandfather. I thought I was gonna love it, but he lost me in stanza two and the discussion between us degenerated into a minor tift over Priam, of all things. I no longer have a mind for complexities. Oh, well. Joyce (welcome back, Schreiber!) was also into mythological references. Her Medea was very emotional, in spite of the spaghetti straps.

We discussed the shape and size of Asparagus, which was Tom's title. Not many comments, as Tom's style is all his own. Alan, on the other hand, fielded a lot of suggestions about his Campfire on the Land, a sweet/sad memory of father-son camping trips. (from me: read the poem on his second page called Poem as Confessional. Great one.)

I did not have a poem, blaming it on my computer which has vomited up my Microsoft Word and rendered me helpless.

I was wrong about segue. No one got gaveled.

No Ally, no Art, no Edie, Mike or Dan or Catherine. Tim is off to Rockport, MA, today and I am off to Maine next week. Tom is doing the old college trip with his daughter this weekend. Good luck to him. Maybe we will be back to full strength on September 13.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Survivor by Roger McGough

Everyday, I think about dying.
About disease, starvation,
violence, terrorism, war,
the end of the world.

It helps keep my mind off things.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Pooched for Kisses

Last night I wanted to be Marilyn Monroe with her dress blowing in the hot air, her wasp-waist and her red lips pooched for kissing. My poem reflected the reality of it all. Mimi remarked that she had been thinking about the word "pooch" recently. Odd.

Mimi brought her annual Elvis poem (yes, the King is dead!) which everyone liked. It is hard for me to imagine our sensible Mimi as "boy crazy", but that is what she admits to. Philomena, with a last minute entry, asked the pitiful question who am i.

Art's poem was visually pleasing to me, with a recurring line of "sometimes I ask too much of chance." It also struck a chord (sorry) with a reference to Sibelius' 7th, rising and hanging in the air. Dan, our opera singer, particularly liked that, too.

The stout-hearted Scottish wanderer continues his journey. Mark responded to our questions for further explanation about ULLANS, the language he has been sleeping with. He is able to access the words through glossaries and other writings to establish their meaning and usage, which I didn't understand. I thought he was just making it up as needed.

I was happy to see Paul at the Ernie Williams concert Wednesday night. It was a great evening. I love Ernie. Was wishing Tom was there to hear the sax player who was phenomenal. Paul's poem was very strong, about an old man dying to sounds of a baseball game outside his window. We all offered a little trimming advice and I suggested a title change to "Crossing the Plate".

Napoleon at Elba was well served by Dan's verse. In fact, we all wanted him to continue it beyond the four stanzas he had started with. A Napoleonic epic.

I got a little carried away with rearranging Cathy's effort at comparing pelican flight to the Blue Angels, although she took it graciously. My excuse was that I liked the concept so much it needed to be made stronger. Cathy won a nice cash prize in the Greenville All Arts Matter contest for her poem about driving with her oxygen. Good woman.

BTW, Cathy will be deciding soon whether or not to continue with Lifelines this fall. Anyone who wants it to keep meeting should be ready to make a real commitment to the group. Think about others you might recruit and contact Cathy at 861-8067. Any of you who are also prose writers might want to sign up for a writing workshop I have scheduled here in October with local author Elizabeth Brundage. Details will be coming out in the next Bookworm at the end of August.

Mimi was featured at Cafe Lena this month. I am going to be at the Lark Tavern in September. Mike Burke appeared on Mimi's program on Bethlehem TV last Thursday. I missed it.

Someone made a suggestion (after I ripped up Cathy's pelicans) that we pick a short poem and all write our own versions of it. Something simple, for example, the WCW poem about the plums whose title I can't come up with. We also mentioned another group topic night, which I always find interesting. Anyone got a topic?

Love and kisses, Marilyn

Monday, August 6, 2007

from Mimi

On Sunday, July 29, 2007, EOTN Poets Joyce Schreiber, Dennis
Sullivan, Philomena Moriarty, Catherine Norr and Mimi Moriarty
attended a special service, "Poetic Perspectives on Spirituality," at
the First Unitarian Universalist Society of Albany. Philomena, along
with church member Julie Lomoe, hosted, greeted and opened the
service with their remarks and their poetry. Dennis, Joyce and Mimi
read three poems each, all on the subject of spirituality. As you
can imagine, each had a very different slant. Catherine played
guitar and sang two very haunting, beautiful songs. There were two
other poets, Carol Graser and Pam Clements, who also participated.
The EOTN poets were warmly received. Philomena was an especially
gracious host. Afterwards the poets, with guests, brunched at
Bountiful Bread in Stuyvesant Plaza. The conversation was lively.
Dennis entertained the table with a bit of Latin, Mimi, Catherine and
Joyce reminisced about their week at Pyramid Lake, and witnesses say
the place was much quieter when they all left for home.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

New Link

We are NOT meeting at Mimi's house on August 9. In addition to our mixed vacation schedules, Mimi tells me that Rte 85 is closed for construction until ???, making it very complicated to find her. Therefore, we will meet at VPL on the 9th and try for another date in the fall at Mimi's (beautiful) house.

Please see the new link on our link list. You can follow it to a new reference database the library has subscribed to (Thompson Gale), choose "literature" link and you will arrive at the Contemporary Poets site. You can look up hundreds of poets for bio information, reviews, etc. It is pretty interesting.

Congrats to Tom on another gallery acceptance. Those orbs are really in orbit, aren't they.

Have a happy weekend.
Remember "The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time." (Bertrand Russell)