Hot Damn! Set Building

selfieb01It’s been a few years since I’ve done a full set at a poetry series in Toronto. Even then I’ve been one of three or our others, never as a sole feature. Not that I mind the competition but the theory of more poets the broader the audience appeal rarely works out – the audience pool is pretty small & fans of one are often fans of all.

hotdamn2I was aiming to be a Hot Damn! Slam out of town feature but that didn’t work out – timing etc. I’m doing the March show sort of by default. Not hitting open stages for some time means I have lots of ‘fresh’ material to choose from. The set I’ve put together is mainly pieces written as result of the 48 Laws of Power. I used each law as a prompt. These prompts often took my writing in fun, provocative directions.

Don’t worry I’m not going all 60+ pieces I wrote from these prompts. I picked a handful that either I have liked, or that other’s have responded to when I blogged them here. I’ll also include a couple of more recent pieces prompted by the 227 Rules of Monks. There be some political comment, some nostalgia, some sexy stuff & at least one surprise.

menoirPast sets I’ve tried to theme – east coast life, sexy stuff, in your pants stuff, political commentary – but this set will have no connecting thread other than the prompt sources. I will group things so there’ll be social, relationship, political, sexy pieces paired off. As usual I do start with the pieces that invite then become more ‘challenging’. There’ll be a fair bit of ironic humour  & perhaps out-right laughs. Many of the pieces have been already blogged but these versions have been edited more tightly.

jan0117meAs it stands now the set will be Dead Already*, Don’t Do Anything, Love Your Work, Give Generously, The Illusion of Democracy, Reaping Victory, Chalk It Up To Experience*, Faultless, Spoilers, After The Falling, Hard On, Man In The Moon, Breaking in Grief. The ‘*’ are from the 227 series of prompts.

After the Falling is the title of the chapbook I’m putting together for the show. I won’t be reading all the pieces in it. The ‘*’ poems won’t be in it either as I’m limiting the book to a selection the Laws of Power  pieces. Watch more about the chapbook in a later blog post. The chapbook will be $10.00. $9.00 if you have exact change 🙂

covsnap

Give Generously

you can make a difference

in the lives of these children

dogs  endangered species  bees

ice shelf

you can make a difference

the overfishing of the sea

the destruction of the rain forest

the testing of make up on animals

only you can help

we know you want to

if only to stop

seeing these high definition

close ups of tears on cheeks

skin taut over fragile bones

acres of swamps

replaced with sugar cane fields

birds slicked with oil

babies

look it’s babies

for fuck sake

innocent little kittens

going hungry

so skinny

even the human babies

starving won’t eat them

 

only you can help

these photographers need work

these administrators need

your funds to administrate

we don’t want you to rescue anyone

we have skilled professionals

who studied in universities

to learn how to teach these unfortunates

what they need to change

to become suitable candidates for rescue

that education doesn’t come for free

you won’t have to touch anything

other than the donation button

only you can help

 

only you

 



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on going 🙂 when new podcast are posted:  Disability after Dark  iTunes

April season 3 FINALS – Friday April 15th Buddies in Bad Times – early show – 7pm startgames

http://www.queerslam.com/season-3-dates.html

June 8-9 attending: Capturing Fire 2018

 

https://capfireslam.org

money

Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee in Washington – sweet,eh? paypal.me/TOpoet

Like my pictures? I post lots on Tumblr

burn that cksckr down Pride2012

https://www.tumblr.com/blog/topoet

Year End Review!

30-blue-01Is it time for an end-of-the-year wrap up? If you follow me here you’ll already know most of the highlights 🙂 A few things didn’t make it here though. I expanded my regular fwb network with some sweet sexy men. It’s not that I’m overly fussy but if there’s no emotional chemistry it won’t work regardless of technique of physicality.

30-blue-02Flipping though my calendar for 2016 I see things worth mentioning. Seeing Charlie Petch’s wonderful Mel Malarkey in April, getting down to DC for Capturing Fire, reading collections by some of amazing trans writers I’ve met in DC, seeing some great shows at Stratford, judging the dynamic Hot Damn! slams & meeting some excellent new writers. Fan Expo was good fun too.

I came to the end of the 48 Laws of Power & moved on to the 227 Rules for Monks. I finished the rough draft of my Nanowrimo novel Picture Perfect – I now have some 200,000 words to edit – joy.

30-blue-03My WordPress following has slowly, but surely, grown to 175; Tumblr 150; Twitter 190. 257 WordPress posts this year – my busiest year so far. Even a couple of two post days when I was in DC. Fun facts: I get more twitter likes & retweets for links to my WordPress posts that I get actually hits to my WordPress posts. How is that possible? No retweet has resulted in an increase in WP hits either. I get new followers at Tumblr every time I post a set of car pictures – imagine their surprise. Frequently new Tumblr followers are hetero porn spam which I block. I rarely follow back on Twitter – in particular if my new follower is an editor, or an agent specializing in increasing your online presence or an author with a new book coming out soon.

30-blue-04I have to thank Andrew Gurza‘s Disability After Dark for pushing me to look at issues about my own sexuality & sparking many of my blog posts about things easily overlooked. I also thank the trans & queer poets I’ve met & heard at Hot Damn! & Capturing Fire for making my word view even wider than it was before. I can’t match their anger but appreciate the power & need for it to be expressed.

What will 2017 bring? I’ll be blogging here on Tuesdays ‘Lazarus Kiss’ my first Nano novel. I’ve made my flight & hotel reservations for Capturing Fire in June. I also have my FanExpo tickets purchased. Plus a mess of new undies coming from Daily Jocks. So despite Tump – it’ll be a good year.

sample

On Your Knees

it can’t be free

the more it costs

the more it’s worth

it will be within reach of all

through a window

nothing to hide

nothing to give away either

time is as good as money

spread the word

that’ll be enough

spread it far and wide

stand on street corners

yell in basements

cut through the illusion

of now here reality

it can be freeing

to cut yourself loose

of all that holds you

to your ideals

try ours instead

they are built on

ancient tried and proven realities

they wouldn’t last

if they weren’t better than

what you think you think

that’s why they aren’t free

they aren’t cheap

surrender give in give up

it is pointless to resist

this tide has been washing the world clean

before there even was a world

in your heart you know

this is the one true way

the ultimate loss of self

why waste time resisting

we’ll be coming for you

whether you like it or not

so pay up now

or regret it later

we can wait

as it is written

so it will be

admit it

you like

to be on your knees

say please

thank you

July21

6DC0301

kiss-copy

January 3 – launch of Lazarus Kiss – here14257567_1162384753819933_3271661288579707843_o
on going 🙂 when new podcast are posted:  Disability after Dark  iTunes

hot3

http://www.queerslam.com/season-3-dates.html

my first local feature in over a year: location date TBA

it came in

April season 3 FINALS – Friday April 15th Buddies in Bad Times – early show – 7pm startgames

http://www.queerslam.com/season-3-dates.html

June 9-10-11: attending: Capturing Fire 2017 –

dcjan01

https://capfireslam.org

check out these poets from  Capturing Fire 2015 & 2016

August 31-Sept.3

fec17-header

https://www.facebook.com/events/526940540845331/

November 1 – 30 Participating NaNoWriMo

nanowrimo_2016_webbadge_winner

http://nanowrimo.org/

money

Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee in Washington – sweet,eh? paypal.me/TOpoet

Like my pictures? I post lots on Tumblrbluejohn

https://www.tumblr.com/blog/topoet

unBroken Spirit

Season 3 of the dynamic Hot Damn! It’s A Queer Slam rocked it’s new home Buddies in Bad Times with stellar slammers, uncompromising judges, fierce feature, power-hungry open stagers all under the tender ministrations & endless energy of host Cathy Charlie Petch. Every one was eager for Charlie to open the show with their saw rendering of the Queer national anthem: Somewhere Over the Rainbow. 07-greenbook-03The work presented covered lookism, race, cultural expectations, binary de-coding, gay marriage, self-realization & even the ecology. Non-conforming gender identity was a powerful subtext with Asian, Indian (native & east) voices being represented.

Lines from the open stagers: mutation increases an organisms ability to survive, who’s with the cane, swag so tight it’s off the wall, I like a lot of cereals but your my favourite box, are you man enough to take it, not usually a leader but a guider07-greenstatue-04

Six strong poets performed in the slam. Lines from round one: sucking natural juices from your thighs, my queer fat is soft & bouncy, at least I’m not rigid, it covers me & is me, scarred by sunburn in October, I am singing to love myself, gathering lovers like they are bandages, mourn by acquiring more hurt, wounds you don’t remember getting, pulled you too close to his love, I’m drunk, this is not a Disney movie, you left us alone at his hands, I am empty not lonely with you by my side, I can’t see hurt but I can feel it.07-dccgreen-01I haven’t heard Truth Is … since they moved to Guelph some years ago. When I first started in on the spoken circuit they were already established as a force to be reckoned with. Truth’s set was warm, sometimes funny, always emotionally raw, real &  compelling work dealing with current race relations in the USA, marriage, the Church, body image & the joy of poetry itself. Some lines: she gave my definition of love a heart, everything we were celebrating has been (realized) through beatings & blood shed, that day – two weeks ago – I was mint, beauty is what survives, one pant size from being perfect, conditioned not to see, carcinogen known as privilege, the father – the son & the broken spirit, how many churches are there in heaven, poetry is not a luxury.

Line from Hot Damn! Round Two queer slam: you like that Louie – that Gucci – that fucking Coach, the Chinese make that shit, tip of my cold-blooded tongue, don’t tell me I have nothing to be afraid of, is forever enough, rain clean enough I can keep drinking it, chastises me for picking this place to vomit, left at home by her expectations, what right angle explains attraction, straight becausde I never have to prove I’m straight, to find somewhere I belong, I don’t do Pride because Pride doesn’t do me.

And the winner is Shawna Dimitry.07-dccgreen-02Buddies is a great fit for Hot Damn! The space is intimate, the tech staff is cooperative – I was able to get a blackout to start my open stage moment to show off my glow in the dark tee-shirt. Damn! will be spreading the queer slam gospel to St. Catherine’s, then Guelph before returning to Buddies on December 1.samples

when I hit the open stage I did freshly edited version of

My Ass Pussy

ooh I can’t wait

for you to fill my ass pussy

with your man clit

what

it’s not a clit?

 

you don’t want to be feminized

yet

want to fuck my ass pussy

want to eat it out

breed me  fill me

with your baby seed

 

I’m not a female proxy

I don’t have a man cunt

I know too many

who have made the transition

from male to female

I respect the cost of that journey

too much

to let you treat me like a woman

 

sure

it lets your masculinity

enjoy man on man sex

if you pretend

you aren’t fucking an ass hole

but a butt vagina

a permission to pleasure

without committing to the gender

 

if you want pussy

get someone who has one

that one sure isn’t me

I’m not some sort of activist

trying to diminish your fantasy

I’m not part of it

even if you want parts of me

to fulfill it

am I supposed to be grateful

that you want

to breed my ass pussy with your

what …

I don’t know what to call it now

 

your cock

yes it is big and hard

but

it’s not my dream dick

 

you are man enough to give it

but are you man enough to take itsoon1

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on going 🙂 when new podcast are posted:  Disability after Dark  iTunes

November 1 – 30 Participating NaNoWriMo

nano_odwv0rd0j91s3yvqto2_540

http://nanowrimo.org/

December – Thursday Dec 1st – Toronto, 8 pm, Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander St.divine

http://www.queerslam.com/season-3-dates.html

6DC0301

Early 2017:

my first local feature in over a year: location date TBA

it came in

April season 3 FINALS – Friday April 15th Buddies in Bad Times – early show – 7pm startgames

http://www.queerslam.com/season-3-dates.html

June 2-4: attending: Capturing Fire 2017 –

newcap

https://capfireslam.org

check out these poets from Capturing Fire 2015: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCx5KD1eDccdjdTdQ28kZRNg

money

Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee in Washington – sweet,eh? paypal.me/TOpoet

Like my pictures? I post lots on Tumblrdollhousehttps://www.tumblr.com/blog/topoet

We lit a candle in you

Dipping into the past to repost one of my first WordPress posts –

Even if I do say so myself, as host it’s hard to be unbiased, but the Damned’s Very Crawford Christmas was a rollicking success. A packed, responsive house enjoyed the great line up of features, open stagers, endless trivia questions and my spectacular shirt. Give-a-ways were handed out with the sparkling assistance of Snowflake and Tinsel – no need for a Christmas tree with these two in the room.

blackcoat

Sophie Mayer, here from London UK, did a saucy and sexy set, dressed in her fur fringed elf festive attire. I’ve met or heard Sophie before & was eager to hear her. She did not disappoint. I managed to snag her book & chapbook – which I hope she sold enough copies of that she won’t be walking back to the UK. Her kissing poem were right on target for mistletoe season. One line stuck in my mind “He lit a candle in you no one could snuff out” – or something like that.

lights

To intro James Ince I read this poem that Joan Crawford had written:

Joan’s Poem

Where are you?

My heart cries out in agony,

In my extended hands

I give my heart with

All its cries – its songs – its love,

But it’s too late.

You are not here to see its sorrow

Or hear its throbbing of your name

Perhaps it’s better that way

You who love laughter

Did you ever know I love laughter too?

Oh my beloved

Where are you?

 

Little did we know Joan had so much more to offer besides her eyebrows.

blackcoat

James read from his latest play, “The Ties That Bind.” The section he read dealt with bullying and its repercussions in a sometimes humous, often angry and always with direct raw emotion, not that there’s anything wrong with that.

Amoeba Starfish wrapped up the show with their seductive mix of electronica and psychedelic ambient music. The final set of open stagers read with Starfish accompaniment.

The open stager line up was Marcy Rogers (everyone’s favorite tooth fairy), Jeff Cottrill (everyone’s favorite Ondaatje impersonator), S. MacDonald (everyone’s favorite Anne …?), Rex Baunset (everyone’s favorite Christmas Ho), Tinsel (aka Philip Cairns: everyone’s favorite leftie), Snowflake (aka David Harry Bateman: everyone’s favorite profile), DM Moore (everyone’s favorite Kermit fan)

 

crystal0

here are the Joan trivia questions – (answers in the new year)

1 Joan did the first audible what in the Hollywood Review of 1929:

a slap              b kiss           c tap dance

2 Joan’s first talkie was:

a Hollywood Review of 1929         b Untamed            c Our Dancing Daughters

3 Joan’s first technicolor picture was:

a Torch Song        b Johnny Guitar           c Sudden Fear

4 Joan took how many pieces of luggage to film Trog

a seven        b seventy-seven        c thirty-seven

5 Who said of Joan: “You are a female Johnny Weissmuller.”

a costume designer Gilbert Adrian       b costume designer Edith Head     c costume remover Clark Gable

6 Who tried to pull off Joan’s shoulder pads only to discover they were her real shoulders.

a Michael Curtiz      b Clark Gable       c Franchot Tone

7 What did Joan believe you should never let your husband see you doing?

a plucking your eyebrows      b exercising            c sleeping around with Clark Gable

8 What did Joan eat instead of chocolates in Baby Jane

a Bette Davis Eyes        b tofu tortellini      c tiny meat balls

9 What did Joan recommend for fuller eyebrows

a Clark Gable sperm massage      b castor oil          c hot peanut butter massage

10 Joan accepted the Academy Award for

a The Miracle Worker          b Mildred Pierce         c Baby Jane

11 In Mildred Pierce Joan’s character

a sold real estate       b worked as a cocktail waitress to make ends meet     c baked pies

12 Who replaced Joan in Hush Hush Sweet Charlotte

a Joseph Cotton     b Olivia De Haviland       c Bette Davis

Shape-Shifting Reptile

James Dewar is not a shape-shifting reptile from outer-space but his Hot-Sauced Words is a reading series that is not afraid of shape-shifting – sometimes offering us a night of all female poets, or a poetry book launch, or his anti-Christmas show the series always has something distinct to offer –

dino

On September 15 the series returned from summer hiatus with a juicy, high-energy show by the Toronto Slam Team – each of whom brought their distinctive spoken attack – starting with David Delisca’s sweetly crooning – almost shy set, followed by Cathy Petch’s brash fun sexy & definitely not shy, porn-o-ramic set – after which we took a much need chill out break – Electric Jon – (subbing for LipBalm) gave us a sprawling shark-a-delic workout – ending with Eytan Crouton’s swag-a-licious  throw-down – well not quite ending, as he & Jon brought what was left of the roof down with Reptiles – Eytan’s final lizard tongue lashing is sure to please the ladies (& some laddies given the chance).

the patio is very open

I haven’t been the the Black Swan for a few months and was dismayed to see that the tables (as usual) hadn’t been wiped from the last show that had been there. Atmosphere is one thing but beer and booze sticky tables make me question the cleanliness of their glassware.

cropped-shoe.jpg

@TorPoet
@TorPoet