Wednesday, January 5, 2011

  • Holy crap, who is Nick Demske? His book is blowing my mind. Actually it's the first book of poetry I've picked up in the past couple months and wanted to read past the first poem. I can't stop making little notes so I'm going to have to review this.

  • When I lived in Houston they didn't have curbside recycling. You had to collect your recyclables in bags and then drive them down to the nearest recycling center. (Because there is nothing you can do in Houston without driving.) This was pretty fun, because you got to throw all your glass bottles and jars down into the glass pit, and the smashing sounds were about as satisfying as a good golf whack. One day, after having finished a paper (not sure if it was philosophy or linguistics or what) and driven out with my recycling and smashed some bottles, I distinctly remember thinking, I'm good at life. GEEZ. I was pretty good at it, back then. It's not that I've gotten worse, but I'm at a higher level. Life as Tetris: I can't always keep all my blocks in the bottom half of the screen anymore, and sometimes holes are unavoidable.

  • Self-promotion corner: I've got a couple readings coming up, one in Cambridge and one in New Haven. The New Haven reading is next Saturday, 1/15, 7 p.m. at Detritus (71 Orange St.). I'm reading with Karen Garthe and Paul Legault. Then on Monday, 1/24, 8 p.m., I'm reading in the Literary Firsts series at Middlesex in Central Square (with Jonathan Clark, Andra Hibbert, and Colin O'Day.

Also, I've got a few poems in the first print issue of Dark Sky Magazine; Kathy and I have a couple of collaborations in Super Arrow; and big thanks to Coldfront for including The French Exit in its Top 30 Poetry Books of 2010 feature and calling it "one of the best first books of the year"!


  1. We never had curbside recycling in Terre Haute, and I don't think they have it even now. I always just assumed it was a big city thing. We have it here, of course, but I'm way too lazy to recycle. I'm *almost* too lazy to take out the trash at all.

  2. I loved Nick Demske's advice in the latest issue of Poets & Writers enough to want his book already, and this post puts me over the edge, squarely into I'm-buying-it territory. I look forward to your review.

    SOTD? Don't leave those of us who come here for both the poems & the perfume hanging.

  3. Elizabeth! I can recommend it, especially if you like Chelsea Minnis, Gabe Gudding, or K. Silem Mohammad. I'll post a link here when I get around to reviewing it -- soon I hope. What was his advice?

    And I keep forgetting to post my SOTD!!! Yesterday, when I posted this, it was A*Men Pure Malt. So far today I am sprayless. My wrist is my oyster.

  4. There was a place in California where one could go to smash plates with abandon. I need a place like that nearby. It's just so satisfying to smash things.

    My husband once attended a "smash bingo". The winner got to choose a "weapon", such as a sledgehammer or a bat, and smash the crap out of whatever was on offer that day, old computers and radios etc..I have a feeling I would become a "bingo bag"!

    On the poetry front, I haven't picked up a book of poetry in years. The last I read was Kate Braid's Inward to the Bones. I'll be reading your "The French Exit" soon! I hope your readings are a success.

  5. Smash bingo sounds amazing! If a little Gallagher-esque. Smashing really is satisfying -- popping packing bubbles just doesn't cut it some days.

    Oh, thank you -- I hope you like it!!

  6. Isn't that Bruce Lee on the poster?

  7. Hi Elisa,

    got alerted to your post---just wanted to say thanks, to both you and Elizabeth. I'm really glad to hear the good gospel isn't falling on deaf ears. And being round-up with those three poets you mentioned in your comment is extra sweet. Definitely three of my favorites.

    Someone else who I've never met just took the time to type out my quote from poets and writers, so I wanted to pass that on. She even mentioned the hat my girlfriend knit me which I'm wearing in my picture in P&W. It is, indeed, the coolest part of the article, so I'm glad she worked it in. It's here:

    Glad to have you guys on my radar now. Keep in touch and visit whenever you can:


  8. Nick! Thanks so much for your comment and for pointing me to Sandra's post. I will definitely add your blog to my reading list. I'm loving your book. Keep an eye out for my review.

  9. Nick writes amazing poems and is a lot of fun to hang out with! Mark and I met him in Ohio at the Post Moot conference last year, and he hosted Mark at a reading in Racine, WI. Yay, Nick!

  10. I second Lorraine's emotions about Nick Demske. Bonk, the performance series he curates, is way worth going to if you're in/near Racine (or even if you're not):