Took a breather from the NaNoWriMo pressure to get out to this month’s Plasticine. Usual host Cathy Petch was unavailable so Mike Lummis (aka Mr. Lisa Young) stepped up to the mike to sub for her. Hence a little less vulgar … I mean raunchy that we’re accustomed to. A great set of open stagers got the night off to good start – I read a sliver of my NaNo work-in-progress – I’m so used to reading poetry that finding breaths and pauses in prose is a challenge.
First up was Adam Abbas – This was his first feature and he delivered a confident set of prose poems, haiku, sestinas and even a short real prose section. He enjoys a lot of word play, highly structured forms and strong rhymes. Some of us were disappointed that the chap book wasn’t ready for sale. “Rococo Cocoa” is one of his many inventive turns of phrase.
Next feature was Anya Douglas – her soft Russian accent give every piece she read a political and cultural context – she presented a fine set of strong political, romantic and even amusing pieces “’if i still loved you, maybe i would be a better poet”
Rod Weatherbie – his pieces were as east coast as a pack of cigarettes and a cup of tea falling off a card table during a bridge game – his pieces were strong on place – Montreal, PEI but universal in emotion.
End the night was Lisa Young reading from her just released book “When The Earth” – well-crafted almost domestic pieces that were both gentle and pointed looks at childhood, longing and being married to Mike Lummis (just joking).
I did a bit more table hopping than usual to talk to some of the features and open stagers. Then got my picture taken for ‘Snap’ mainly because I’ll be hosting Plasticine in December – to allow Cathy the chance to feature & not have to introduce herself.
Here’s the NaNo sliver I read:
Dezum, Hassler, Alex: Bartenders at Story – a bar where this scene takes place:
At the end of the night Alex was taking a leak in the second floor men’s room. It was usually the tidier of the two after a busy night. The urinal was plugged so he used the toilet. As he zipped his table rag fell to the floor. Picking it up he noticed a graffiti. It said “To read this you have to be on your knees sucking a dick – he who sucks is the real queer.”
He’d seen it when he started working and thought it was funny then. Made sense though. He muttered ‘he who sucks’ under his breath as he left he washroom. Dezum was entering as he exited.
“What’s that.” Dezum said.
“Just laughing to myself about that graffiti in there. ‘He who sucks is the real queer.’”
“Mighty true.” Dezum grimaced at the plugged up urinal.
“You ever, you know …”
“Let a guy suck me off. Yeah.”
“What!” Dezum towered above Alex, at 6’4” with a footballer’s hard compact body to back up his height.
“Oh yeah.” Dezum said from the toilet stall. “Sometimes you gotta sell what you got to get by in this world, you know.”
“You were a hustler?”
“No no my friend.”
They started to wipe down and stack the tables on the second floor’s back patio.
“Must been about eighteen at the time. Folks far away. Me here in this city. Didn’t know anyone except Hassler. Some guy offered me a couple of hundred and some blow to make a movie. Ha Ha. Blow for me for blow me. Rich.”
“You did gay porn?”
“It was whack alright. Some dingy apartment. The guy who was doing me was in the same boat as I was. But he was the one gettin’ on his knees not me. Wouldn’t let them shoot my face either. I couldn’t get it up. The other kid sucked on my long shlong to no effect. The producer …” He made air quotes as he said producer. “ … gave me something. Viagra or one of them hard on drugs, put some straight porn on the TV for me to watch and boing I was hard. Everyone happy. Got my cash, my two blows and that was that.”
“So you were pretty stoned to let it happen.”
“Not that time. The next yes. Rent had to be paid. Praise Jesus I got a real job when I did.”
“You enjoyed it? I mean having a guy ….”
“Enjoyed? No, not really. It was only them two times. Second time was even worse when I couldn’t get it up. He said he liked his dicks big and hard, not just big. Rich dude too I could have been set for life, or until he wanted a new eighteen year old.”
Riding his bike home Alex tried to figure out where queer really began. Was it really queer when neither wanted to but did. Like Dezum doing that movie with another guy, both just trying to make a buck.