A Century of Black Voices 3: 1912-2012 Photos!

Photo by Jack Scully.   Thank you to the First Church in Cambridge!

{Sorry folks, no MAPSONE: A Century of Black Voices annual reading for 2013.  The host was launching a new Press and didn’t have enough gas to do both.}

Toni Bee, Poet Populist of Cambridge, MA; (Bridgit Brown, Boston writer, not pictured; Mignon Ariel King, Boston-born writer and Deliriously Happy Host; Denise Washington, Roxbury writer; Sam Cornish, Poet Laureate of Boston; Charles Coe, Cambridge writer and Event Co-host;  Beatrice Green, JP writer and composer.  Aren’t we a stylish group?

Photos by Pat Williams:  http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10150711770136457.454550.749876456&type=1&l=748b100dfa

Thank you to everyone who read, listened, helped.  The reading Saturday was great.  It was a pleasure as always to host and to listen to 7 of my favorite local poets at this annual event.  Old and new friends made set up and breakdown a breeze.    –And Happy Belated Birthday to my big sister!  She gave me the sumptuous sweater in the photo.

Missing Winks (memoir)

All I want to do in February is sleep.  I’d always assumed this was due to the snowy, cold weather.  The cold outside makes settling into soft white socks, heart-printed thermal underwear, and a plush robe a moment of sheer sanctuary.  Armed with a cup of tea, shortbread cookies, and a serious book, I’m a literary woman warrior taking a stand against hostile elements.  There’s also a bit of “back home” nostalgia stirred in to this fantasy.  “Back home in New Hampshire we had to get out of bed in the dark to start a fire. …and at night we’d make a big Dutch ovenful of beef stew and dip biscuits in it.”  I have never lived outside of Massachusetts.  My parents met in Boston in the late 1940s, settled here after marrying.  Yet I was so used to them–having grown up on opposite sides of New Hampshire–refering to that state as “back home” that part of me grew up longing for the deep, dark woods, a creek, or a barn full of chickens.  Being comforted by the indoors is combined with respect for the outdoors and with a love of those mighty winters that give bookish homebodies an excuse to fall asleep reading in an emotional and physical retreat.  Maybe if I close the blinds and drapes I can pretend a blizzard roars without.  I’ll drop marshmallows into liquid chocolate and finally doze off.

One Feb. Feature Down, One to Go!

After a crazy week of a semi-intruder in the house, 4 cats hanging out in the basement, my voice bailing via a headcold so I had to make major poem subs, et cetera, leading up to it — and a friend’s calamity the morning of — I somehow made it to the PTAOW feature.  I don’t remember anything but the good-natured audience and the splendid little girl who gave me Valentine’s candy after, but apparently I didn’t botch it.

I have a habit of writing myself notes in case stage fright freezes me.  Good thing.  I subbed two poems and tossed in a bar from a Bob Dylan song at the last minute, for reasons I couldn’t tell ya, but I had notes here and there.  Some pushy broad directed “Read_____!”   Whatever possesses me to read in public?  Who knows?   Thank you to the hosts, the open mic readers, and the exceedingly patient audience for making the mad dash to the Red Line on a Sunday worth it.  I missed my co-feature Charles.

Thank God I didn’t hear about Whitney Huston until after.  Words might have failed me.