Capturing Fire Negotiation

Capturing Fire

the world is changing

faster faster faster

the bandwidth revolution

releases all voices

people won’t be silenced

stopping the blaze of words

won’t keep the world from changing


lawn art in DC

Capturing Fire, for me, was being thrust into the ring of a prize fight in progress. As an earlier Fire post said the poets covered every faction of the LGBTQ rainbow, with a strong presence of the trans & non-binary, non-gendered. Articulate, angry about recent murders in the trans world & recent riots in Baltimore.

One poet said, visiting the day after the riots, that she saw no difference to that city – not that the sanitation department did such a good job but that the city was so decayed before the riots one couldn’t tell if they had happened. These are poets living in both a gender & a political war zone. Another said that poverty will never disappear as long there is money to made from appearing to make poverty disappear. Which make me thing of the pharmaceutical industry: treating disease makes more $ than curing it.



The event was well organized by Regie Cabico – who gave props to the DC Centre staff & all who helped but it still seemed a one man job. The pace was ideal – intimate & socially friendly to spoke word. Great dining, coffee & snacks  where steps away. I had excellent ribs at Eatonville, wonderful shrimp/chicken pasta at Busboys & Poets; & an interest sausage patty at St. Ex. The Starbucks isn’t as strong  as it is in Toronto; Dunkin’ Donuts coffee is okay but the donuts were crap.

I took in multiple events each of the three days of Fire. After two late (for me) nights I fell asleep in my room after supper & missed the wrap party. Sometime the body knows better than the mind.

Some of the poets were so hyper-charged they had to go barefoot to stay grounded. Too many fine performers to name-check everyone but: Lady Dane Figueroa Edidi was amazing – she slipped easily from saucy, romantic to unrestrained fire-hose anger – all in one piece. Authentic and precise, she was inspiring. Vita Elizabeth Cleveland at her first event of this nature was a natural & powerful. Her Caitlyn Jenner piece was daring & remorseless. The men from the UK, Toby Campion & Dominic Berry, were brash energetic spokenword hooligans with their so from the heart humour & struggles. Mental Health issues in the UK are no more advanced than ours. ‘Those pills are fucking you up – take these instead’ not ‘Let’s see if you get better without pills.’ What’s the difference between standing up for yourself and being non-cooperative.


wouldn’t eye

I loved the city – maybe avoiding the tourist stuff helped me I was there not just visiting. My hotel (The Churchill, was excellent (tell them I sent you). It was the perfect distance – a twenty-five minute walk to the DC Centre. The staff were helpful & cheerful (& some were hot hot hot. I nearly asked the man who serviced the safe in my room, if he wanted slip on a safe & service me.)

I can’t say that I made any creative breakthroughs but my world view has certainly expanded. I felt welcome & comfortable, made some new FB friends & depend others with the great Ontario crew that held there now going toe-to-toe at the slam. They discovered what it was like to be really challenged by performers at their peak. If I can afford it, I’ll be back next year.

(written on the plane Tuesday June 9. Before I boarded I got a FB message from Valentino Assenza to talk about Fire on HOWL Tuesday 16.)

The links to all my Capturing Fire are on my Washington Roundup page here. 


Between workshops, open stage & walking I did write a few things in DC 🙂 here’s one:


I learned

there is a difference between


and butt play

one involves

anal penetration by various body parts

tongue   finger/s   cock

the other involves

anal penetration by objects

vegetables carrots   cucumbers   corn on the cob

dildos – of various lengths  thickness

possible cast from someone favourite porn star

ass play can also involve

enemas  the fist  or even the foot

but which is which

anal or ass play


because if you say yes to one

& find out the other was intended

it can be too late to say

‘no fucking way

I thought that was a floor lamp’

you have to do more

than read the fine print

on both sides of the negotiation

when yes means yes

but only up to a certain point

you gotta make sure

both parties know what that point it

because if a guy drops by

expecting you to be

fresh douched & eager

to be fisted

& that isn’t even on the bottom of your list

he can get quite hostile

as if it had been your fault

that language & mental telepathy

have let you both down

perceived rejection can quickly escalate

to active violence

forced compliance

by which time it’s too late for negotiation


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