My Renaissance Teapot

I was walking along the Danforth on a sunny Saturday in 2015 and as I passed the Renaissance Cafe I noticed that the doors were wide open with Randy in the midst of a sell-off of the old cafe’s stuff – cutlery, china, menus – even the tables & chairs.

renpot01

Renaissance Teapot: 400 ml

The Ren was where I made my way into the spoken scene in Toronto thanks to the Cafe’s dedication to local musicians and writers. Even the staff were performers. I remember hitting the Cryptic Chatter stage way back in 2000 & how badly I had to pee the minute I stood behind the mic. By the end of the year I did my first feature there.

renpot02

Renaissance Teapot/ my morning tea mug 750 ml

I have so many vivid memories of people I met, heard and even still know today. Valentino Assenza, Kevin Fortnum, Jeff Cottrill, Cathy Petch, Cynthia Gould, Mike Bryant, Paisley Rae – to name a few – plus musicians Blue Venus, Arthur Renwick, Shawn Sage (he was the waiter the first time I stopped there for lunch), John Layton, Big Blue Sky. I have cd’s I bought there & always enjoy. Plus this where I first met Nik Beat, Norman Cristofoli – where the Renaissance Conspiracy was first hatched.

renpot03

Renaissance Teapot flashing its basket

I wrote lots of material that was first performed here. I came out as a loud mouth queer poet here. So it was a little heartbreaking several years ago when Randy had to close the cafe – poetry isn’t a money making proposition for either the poets or the venus that sell them their bottomless cup of coffee. I looked through the goods on sale and picked up one of the single serving tea pots. My Renaissance Teapot – it still had the the loose tea basket intact and even some loose tea leaves in the pot. I took it home, cleaned it up and polished it for a prime spot to remind me of good times.

sample

a piece inspired by & written & eventually first performed at the Ren – published by Norman Cristofoli in his literary journal Labour of Love:

Rimes of Ancient Drunks

got time to listen to an old drunk

well, not so old and not drunk enough

but you’ll listen won’t you

buy me a beer

and I’ll tell you your future

not that you deserve to know your future

because its the same future for all of us

listen

you won’t want to miss this

I’ll tell you  what you really need to know

that stuff in books

isn’t going to get you anywhere

words aren’t the answer

you think you know it all

well all you know is shit

are you listening

you understand that much don’t you

all that thinking and writing

isn’t going to get you any where

you know that don’t you

there isn’t any way out of this

even what I say isn’t going to mean shit

in the long run

it’s just a pointless chase

after something that isn’t even running

something that can never be caught

you following me – catching my drift

I see through the likes of you

come on buy me another beer

you gotta have something to share

I’ve more to say than you’ll ever think

no matter how broke you are

the morning always comes

a body needs a drink

a way out for a few hours

that’s all we really want

you getting this down

do I make you uncomfortable

can’t be bothered looking at me

is that the problem

you wanted a little quiet

to doodle useless words about

the way of  the misery in your world

that some gal is not giving you enough

some guy playing the same game

no way out of it, is there

not that I give a shit

you know that don’t you

that’s half the problem

no one gives a shit

they just want suffering to stop

so they don’t have to see it on TV

that’s the way of the world

you know that don’t you

and you

you think you have some notion

of a better way to live

yet don’t have the decency

to buy a guy a drink

well that’s the way of the world

that’s why I say what I gotta say

something you won’t ever hear

because something more important

is waiting for you

buy me a beer

maybe I’ll change your life

because you know buddy

it’s time for a change

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‘our almost is unbearable’

Another full house cheered on the Hot Damn! slammers in the last Toronto battle before the season 1 Grand Finale May 7 at Buddies in Bad Times (tickets are limited so call Buddies and get yours now.) Cathy Petch kept the house laughing and the show moving without tripping over her moustache (not as easy as it sounds.)

rink

ripe for rink

I kicked thing off with a quick open stage set that included a glimpse of my April set, which is all about queer sex, drugs & rock & roll. After the blood sacrifice came the first round of slammers: ‘the sky is a landfill/& we are the ones who polluted it,’ ‘our almost is unbearable,’ ‘just like my mother taught me,’ ‘my sexuality was not picked up at a trendy thrift shop,’ ‘playing connect the dots with my freckles and a sharp object.’ Lines I heard during the two rounds.

stairs

winter walk in the woods

Dressed in a eye-catching gold lame houndstooth pencil skirt Catherine Hernandez did a polished and warm set. An admitted Asian melting pot her pieces flowed with accents, phrases in Filipino, Japanese & was that French? Hard to tell.

Her pieces were fragments of longer works about, amongst other things, the emotional & cultural stresses of being a ‘hard-working’ Asian in the North American world. A nanny using her children’s ‘emails & pictures/sown together to make your shadow,’ ‘crying into my pillow knowing the pillow was not my children.’ Some of the pieces were sexy ‘this table is the perfect size for my naked body.’ Funny, without the need for punch lines, emotional without being, to me, maudlin and frank about her sexuality Katherine was the perfect size for the stage.

tree

tickled by trees

Another great night of slammers, open stagers and fine food at The Supermarket. Check the Hot Damn! FB page to find out who the night’s winner was.

I’ve decided to start awarding ‘The Hot Snap’ for my favourite line of the night. It goes to Tanya Neumeyer for the line that became the title of this blog post.

sample

Besides the Born to be Blown teaser I read:

Death in Paris

there’s been death in Paris

fervour for revenge

young men caught

in the need

to teach a lesson

to set people right

to affirm a price must be paid

for not listening

for not respecting

the young men are aberrations

their personal faith is the fault

not the faith itself

did they come from broken homes

is this another crime

caused by cultural neglect

now shifted to religious cant

or does it matter

as long as there is room

for the camera man

the probing host

and his teleprompter

we need the right pundit to explain all this

to make it even more compelling

to assign the right blame

all I know

is that it’s not my fault

I don’t even want to watch it unfold

I can’t blank out my TV screen

can’t chase away

the bottom of the screen scroll

can’t keep the cell-cam images

from spattering

the edges of my FB page

it’s everywhere

the issue of respect

who has the right to demand it

what is freedom of speech

I’m afraid to start conversations

there is death in the news

again

that it happened

is the truth

the evidence is in front of my eyes

the damage done

I heard the the words said

but I can’t account for why

why it happened

why what was said

even though I see the video footage

I don’t know what I’m seeing

one side interprets it

the other refutes

each equally self-serving

but what cannot be denied

is someone died

you can’t lie about that

you ask me what I saw

what I heard

then question my veracity

my truth becomes a matter of perception

slanted by my own personal queer judgments

I become someone incapable of telling the truth

why bother telling it ever

it’s so much more practical to lie

to spin reality

to become a compulsive liar

no one is listening anyway

they ask how do you feel

while all they care about

is how short your answer is

that you answer in a way

that doesn’t draw them any further

into your life

than the moment it takes to ask

then get the fuck out of there

before too much information gets revealed

they don’t want to be witnesses

they don’t want to rationalize away

your reality

I’ve learn to say the same thing back

how are you doing

rather than answer their question

because no one cares

there isn’t enough time

before the commercial break

not enough language

too many ways to spin the facts

and the facts seem to be these

there is no truth

there is death in the news

again

and that’s

no lie

soon

June 21-26 – attending – Rosemary Aubert’s Workshop: The Novelist’s Selfie – Loyalist – Belleville https://www.facebook.com/events/965611026782246/

( I’ve registered already 🙂 I’m doing two presentations )

loyrocket

register now while there is room at the table

page 23 for details next page down for registration info

https://www.loyalistbanner.com/ceweb/doc/LoyalistSummerArts2015.pdf

June 26, Friday, 10:00 pm – feature – Pride 2015 Erotic Cabaret – Glad Day Bookstore, 598a Yonge St., Toronto

glad

https://www.facebook.com/events/630930370341697/

June 27, Saturday – 9:00-  Feature along with Alissa Vox Raw, Neil Traynor:  Hot Summer Nights at Hirut, Hirut Restaurant, 2050 Danforth Ave., Toronto

hirut

https://www.facebook.com/events/550898671715666/

September 3-6 – attending – Fan Expo

Expo15

( I’ve registered already 🙂 )

http://fanexpocanada.com

October 18, Sunday – feature: Cabaret Noir: Inner Child Sacrifice

noiroc

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night

‘a pillow for your heart’

1503344_10152495405605840_8890820160595626152_n

Hot Damn It’s A Queer Slam! the ideal blast off to the new year. Host Cathy Petch, pitch perfect as always, didn’t shy away from the Regina/Vagina opportunity to rub our faces in a good time. (Feature Johnny Trinh is currently studying at UofR, which prompted the Regina/Vagina face rub.) The third floor at Glad Day was a riot of color with the exhibit Bill Bisset’s amazing paintings.

The SRO crowd brought more colour & warmth to the space, while the slammers feverishly slugged it out to get that ‘free’ trip to Capturing Fire this June in Washington DC. As a judge I was reluctant to queer anyone chances of taking the big prize, but as a queer it’s hard not to do just that.

shelf03 shelfie #1

Before the first round I did hit the open stage with a couple of pieces, one that was a bit of a mess (if you are afraid of making a mess in front of crowd this isn’t the scene or you), the other (see below) that wowed them. The first round of the small moved fast with emotion, sensuality, even a dash of humour. I’d name all the poets but don’t want to miss one, or misspell one either. I’d quote lines but they came too fast, plus it’s too hard to make notes, remember names & judge at the same time.

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 shelfie #2

Feature Johnny Trinh did a funny, emotionally compelling and barefoot set. Barefoot because his feet were wet from the rain out side, but I suspect someone in the house is a toe fetishist & Johnny was willing to please.

His material tackles racism head on – as an Asian ‘I was raised to love your skin,’ ‘George Takei is not loud enough to drown the white voice out.’ on the death of a lover: ‘worse than the absent of you is the invisible me.’ Politically sharp without being strident,  sexy without being explicit (or maybe he was overly explicit to some, I can’t judge but he was never as explicit as I can be). I got to participate in his final piece about the big O. Unrehearsed group gasping and moaning to suggest coming was fun. check out this pic by slam winner  KT Job: the cast of the big O.

shelf01

 shelfie #3

Second round of the slam moved quickly, pieces were more emotionally raw, less sexual & universal, as opposed only queer. I’m not the only one who finds the fact that I’m ‘coping’ means I don’t emotional support. People didn’t want to leave when the show as done. A great mixed crowd – nice to see lost of guys in the house but I left wondering why there were no male slammers?

Organizers Cathy Petch & Brock Hessel, were ably assisted in slam duties by Un-commonly Andre scorekeeping & Tanya Neumeyer on the timer. Next Hot Damn! is in Hamilton. Keep track at www.queerslam.com

shelf

  bonadge shelfie

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Hot Damn!

As a member of an esteemed panel of judges – Lizzie Violet, David Bateman, Cate McKim & random audience members, I finally got to try out my best JLo frowns at Hot Damn! It’s a Queer Slam, Wednesday night at Supermarket in Kensington. Whew, now that’s a long sentence.

All too often I find myself the only gay guy at a poetry event. There are some trans, queer women who I see around but the guys are rare. I’ve blogged about this before so won’t go it it again. At Hot Damn! there were other queer men in the room & I wasn’t the only one over 50. Sweet.

toys love the Disney dildo and other colourful sex toys

The event is hosted by the potty-mouthed Cathy Petch (who would rather be pussy-mouthed, if you get her drift). Free of her pervious host duties she was more free-wheeling and out there than ever & was clearly happy to have the chance to just be herself with a like minded audience. She and Brock Hessel are the organizers of this much needed slam.

Hot Damn! is sponsored by LBGTOut and Get Screened, both of whom made brief presentations. LBGTOut reminded us about World AIDS day. David Bateman read a portion of his piece about being diagnosed ‘How Does it Feel’ – ‘it’s like getting a whole new lease of life, but a very short term’ – funny, emotional and surreal.

blackhat head shot

The slammers were excellent, all very different in approach to queer, bi themes. It’s hard to make notes & score at the same time but some lines I caught ‘we are close/single bed close,’ ‘the rough draft of my body,’ ‘I alway fall for straight women,’ ‘my body is not scared, but its not a ruin either.’ Sorry if I didn’t get exact wording (drop me a note & I’ll correct.)

I’ve heard Regie Cabico a few times and his ease on stage is a joy to watch. He’s funny, emotionally real, direct, surreal and compelling plus is a hot Philippine stud. ‘Harriet Tubman was my slam coach,’ ‘I was never Asian enough for the roles I was auditioning for,’ ‘your fucking is foreshadowing,’ ‘Trojan as heavenly host.’ He’s made me seriously consider going to Catching Fire – not the movie but the international gathering of queer slam poets this June in Washington (maybe I’ll crowd fund my trip there.)

doors try door number 3

Check out https://www.facebook.com/groups/1504753909765085/ 🙂 A vibrant night of energetic, emotionally connected & connecting poetry that I’ll make a regular monthly (when it is in Toronto) show not to be missed.

lifewithmorecowbell on the same show, with pics: http://lifewithmorecowbell.wordpress.com/2014/12/04/hot-damn-that-was-one-fine-queer-slam/

 

soon

December 14 – special guest spot – Lizzie Violet’s Cabaret Noirnoirmas

https://www.facebook.com/events/743240899058830/?notif_t=plan_edited

samples

I  hit the open stage with this, Moonbelly http://wp.me/p1RtxU-Yp & Last Will & Testament http://wp.me/p1RtxU-Kf

Art Abstracted

what do you do when art stops working

when the frame is the attraction

the word becomes conclusion

even when there is no way back

you wouldn’t go back even if you could

memory can’t be changed

filtered scribbled over tattered torn

art gives it less than it needs

without the image

would there be reason to look

if the TV was a black blank

that didn’t reflect our fevered faces

as we peer into it scrying for an answer

when the answer isn’t art but industry

when the artist becomes the freak

the curio that uses a pencil paper

how pretentious it is to dip a brush

use actual language

instead of breaking things into relics

that at the right distance

form an impression of misty bitterness

at not being as famous an artist as …

well I can’t name a famous artist

because it takes one to know one

which is what happens when

art doesn’t work anymore

if a starlet falls in a club

and there are no cameras present

did she make a noise

that sort of glib patina of cynical flash

is the art that works today

shoots off at the lip

in an attempt to distract

long enough for something real to happen

fast for a moment blur then gone

as we don’t want it to be remembered

history is for dead people

death is art that has stopped working

snowpurses purses in the snow

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Viral Roommate

What happens to the truth when a writer gets a hold of it? It mutates into story, sometimes a plot, sometimes a character, sometimes an opportunity to revisit & get revenge. The Roommate springs from another of the Go Viral prompts – this one, you guessed, about a bad roommate experience.

metalshelves empty shelves

I don’t think I’ve heard many good roomie stories. I’ve had a few roommates, none recently, but I can remember & this piece pulls together some of those recollections into a sort of list poem. I’ve also added a few details from other’s stories of unfortunate shared accommodation experiences. Perhaps ‘shared accommodation’ would be a better phrase as ‘roommate’ is an euphemism for live-in lover.

dresser cold storage

I did have a dish washing resentment against a guy I shared with back on the east coast but I never when as far as to hide my clean dishes. But I would move his dirty ones to one side if they collected for more than two days & just wash mine. He felt I was being petty & frankly I didn’t give a shit. He never went to Calgary. I was the one to leave, for Toronto. I did have a nasty nick-name for him though, too nasty to repeat here, that I would use behind his back.

clothes clothes snow banked

Other details were picked up from stories I’ve heard. Drunken New year’s Eve sex is something that never happened to me, sadly. In those days I would pass out before the that cork could be popped.

I did visit this guy a few years ago when I was on the east coast. He’s doing well.  There were dirty dishes in his sink.

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May 26 – attending – King John – 2 pm – Stratford

bownew

June 6-8 – attending – Bloody Words

June 23-27 – attending – Manuscript to Book – Loyalist Summer Arts – Belleville, Ont https://www.facebook.com/events/589522924455695/

sunset08 Loyalist sunset

August 28-31 – attending – FanExpo Canada http://www.fanexpocanada.com

samples

The Roommate

I guess it didn’t help

that I referred to him as Damien

when I was talking to others

it always got an understanding laugh though

while making him

a little easier to take

just a little though

I’m not sure what riled me the most

his shoes left in front of the door

so the door never opened properly

when I was getting in

he thought it was amusing

I was irritated by anything he did

said I was oversensitive

to what he considered ordinary behaviour

like his dishes left to wash

when he could get around to it

when I started to wash

just the dishes I used

as his piled up and up

he started to use mine

so I hid mine in my dresser

well hid is the wrong word

but he thought I was hiding them

to get even with him for some reason

and when I told him

I like to have a clean dish

he just laughed

at my up tightness and inflexibility

he’d never rinse the bathroom sink

after shaving

his pubic hair would

cling to the shower curtain

his nail clippings

would be in a tidy pile

on the kitchen table

there was never any milk left

even his friends

would roll their eyes

when they saw how he lived

they’d ask me

how could I put with him

as if I was sleeping with him

and that his cock was worth all this

which it wasn’t

because I only had sex with him twice

once the week he moved in

he wanted to get that out of the way

then a drunken new year’s eve

he stayed a year and a month

he got a job in Calgary

left with a week’s notice

packed a suitcase

asked me to ship the rest of his stuff to him

but when I didn’t hear anything

after five months

I tossed everything he left behind

starting with those dirty dishes

SAM_1119 take your sad painting and get out of here

 

Mixed Messages

Here’s something from the archives. It was one of my first ‘big hits’ that people would ask for or would say ‘yes, yes’ when I started it, which I think meant they were happy to hear it. It works nicely as a duet or even group piece. I’ve performed it a few times with Cathy Petch to good effect.

parkingmixed media

I think it’s pretty clear where the idea came from – for those you who wonder where writer’s get their ideas – here I take one of those magazine articles on what does he or she mean when they say “  ”- or what does that hair flip really mean.

pile skiing not in the mix

It also works with the nature of Freudian slip – where in one inadvertently says what they really mean – saying “I loath that”  when they intend to say “I love that.”

bleak lost in the mixt 

In Mixed Messages the slips of tongue aren’t that sonic or subtle. More along the lines of ‘I’ll call’ means ‘Don’t hold your breath.’ But being me I wanted to push things to the extreme without being too subtle to start with. The challenge with over-the-top, in this case, was to start with something pretty over the top to begin with – ‘useless piece of shit’ is strong stuff. Plus doing it without getting more vulgar than ‘shit’ added another constraint I enjoyed working within.

soon02

May 26 – attending – King John – 2 pm – Stratford

bw

June 6-8 – attending – Bloody Words

June 23-27 – attending – Manuscript to Book – Loyalist Summer Arts – Belleville, Ont https://www.facebook.com/events/589522924455695/

camp

August 28-31 – attending – FanExpo Canada http://www.fanexpocanada.com

samples

Mixed Messages

 

I’m sorry

when I called you a useless piece of shit

I really meant to say

how much I respected you

 

when I admitted I made out with your brother

because it was close as I could get to you

without having to touch you

I actually meant say

I cherish the time we spend together

 

when I said

the sight of you makes me want to vomit

I actually meant to say

the thought of not seeing you again leaves me bereft

and without a reason to live

 

when I went behind your back

and lied to everyone

that you had given me a social disease

again

I had intended to thank them for being your friend

and that the disease

was just a bad case of loving you too much

 

trust me that when I called

you a cheap money grubbing soulless dick head

as bright as bag of sour milk

I meant to say

you were someone with the finest

emotional and spiritual insights

 

when I called you the

the useless off spring of two demented

misshaped unwashed oozing genitalia

that were ground together

in a blind moment of drunken stupor

I was really trying to say

that I can’t stand the thought of you

 

so get the fuck out of here now

sorry sorry I mean

 

I just want to know

how long it would be before you get here

so we can be together

 

believe me

I really really miss you

more than words can say

really

tunnel sometimes a tunnel is just a tunnel

 

‘word leapt from the body’

Hosting boosts the immune system – at least that’s my theory – so when I was asked to host the march Plasticine Poetry I was happy to accept to fight off a cold. I ended up co-hosting with the poised Susie Berg – it takes two to sub for usual host Cathy Petch. We split the duties with me looking after the first set of open-stagers.

yellow spring is just around the corner

Susie introduced first feature Suzanne Alyssa Andrew. She opened with a lyric ‘ever felt something look over your shoulder,’ ‘your fear fuels his power.’ The she read a well-chosen excerpt from her soon to be published novel ‘Circle of Stones.’ A scene set in bed of two lovers teasing and playing. Tarot cards come out ‘the cards smell like the inside of her dance bag – feet, sweaty tights and rosin.’ A real sense of the people was drawn with precise images and realistic dialogue.

As I had taken a UofT Master Poetry class with Niki Koulouris, I was happy to introduce her. She read from her recently-launched book ‘The sea with no one in it.’ Her pieces dealt in one way or the other with the sea & with painters: Philip Guston, Jasper Johns, Anselm Kiefer. The poems flow with strong images ‘rosewater that smells or sardines,’ ‘watching the rain is like watching a foreign movie’ ‘as many stars as there are targets.’

glory morning glory tells a story

Susie conducted the next parade of open stagers to start the second set. Then I introduced Sheila Stewart, who, in green, brought more than the flavour of St. Patrick’s Day to the stage. Her engaging poetry took us directly to the twisty roads of Ireland and then to High Park. A strong sense of place kept us from being lost even when we ‘emerged on a road you thought was elsewhere.’ Many of her vivid turns of phrase ‘word leapt from the body and never returned,’ ‘alone for the weekend I forgot to put my skin on’ resonated with me.

purple how much longer

Michael took a rare step on stage to introduce Molly Peacock. She easily lived up to his effusive words with a simple set with a couple of sections for her forthcoming book Alpabetique (sp?) – in which each letter has it’s own life. In P we appreciate the ‘the smell before rain,’ in B with feel the struggle to be B in the fractious world of fonts. Her poem ‘The Flaw’ reminded us that ‘though the flaw I am alive.’

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April 21, Monday – featuring – Lizzie Violet’s Poetry Open Mic at The Amsterdam Bicycle Club – 7:30 – doors and open mic sign up, 8:00 – start – 54 The Esplanade, Toronto https://www.facebook.com/events/1379693865637955/

amflyerjpg copy April 27, Sunday – attending – Julie Czerndea Workshop http://chiseries.ticketleap.com/chiseriesworkshop-julie-czerneda/

June 6-8 – attending – Bloody Words

tombstone

June 23-27 – attending – Manuscript to Book – Loyalist Summer Arts – Belleville, Ont https://www.facebook.com/events/589522924455695/

August 28-31 – attending – FanExpo Canada http://www.fanexpocanada.com

samples

Force

how did I turn out

the way I turned out

no one held a gun to my head

said

you do this

you become that

unless the force of peer pressure

can be called that gun

what force is it that makes

one of us heterosexual

and another homosexual

who would chose either

considering

the drawbacks

better to be nonsexual

to avoid all the pressures

of meeting mating so-called morality

working out

raising children

avoid stds

doesn’t seem

that either side

of the life style equation

really gets such good press

the sexual grilling of congressmen

the boredom of those who

never seem to stray

the envy for those who do

the energy wasted on judgment

who would chose either

yet there is some force

beyond the ken

of the mind heart peer pressure

the dna string spinning around in our blood

a force that makes

all the variations flux and flow

those people caught up in it

are trying to find

some way to make sense of it

that allows

for a space for each

well, not all people

as some have this dna string

that doesn’t allow for any variation

where any variation

must be destroyed

shunned

that very fact

makes me wonder

what force brings anyone into

the fold of the shunned

something happens

that pushes against the tide

of the commercial world around us

breaks them free

of the rigid accepted standard

it happens

like sun spots

and like any invisible force

it becomes easier

to go with the tide

that to fight against it

the greater the resistance

the greater the pain

the hidden becomes less hidden

when the pain of hiding is too great

what was once such a scandal

doesn’t seem to have the weight

it once had

no force behind the fear

to sustain that pressure as it once did

it stopped being seen as revolution

and was accepted as a part of evolution

we can’t draw a line

that keeps the races apart

when hearts are involved

the sky is the same over all heads

the earth is the same beneath all feet

the feet of the judgmental strike with the same force

are held by the same gravity

as the feet of those who are judged

as the feet of those

who know nothing about anything

the messy melting pot

that gives all the opportunity

to be

none has the right to deny

that right to another

and even though some don’t

they find themselves

eventually drowned

in the ever rising tide of the past

of history

and the rest of us

make our way as best we can

not looking to disrupt anything

but merely to be

city02street without snow!! 

Dildettes Finger-Bangers Delight

The Dildettes played to a packed-to-the-rafters crowd at Buddies. It’s been a few years since I last had the opportunity to hit the stage at Buddies and when this opportunity presented itself I was quick to take it. Plus the Dildettes requested raunch – a stretch for me I know but I did pull something out of my pants to satisfy the audience.

chairass chilling casino

The Dildettes Cathy Petch, David Bateman and Regie Cabico offered comedy sketches, puppetry, poetry, singing, bad dancing, drag, musical saw and flashy costumes. The show opened with a the diary of a dildo in its owner dresser drawer (made me glad I resisted writing something from the dill’s pov) followed by modern dance poetry or perhaps poetry vogueing? The stars moving to music, striking a pose to recite a short piece.

crackdildo this crack

They took the stage separately, using the space fully – coming down the stairs, moving through the audience. Too many strong moments to list, harder to pick out a favourite: “I love unicorns because they have dildos built into their heads,” “the sexual tension between his cock and his brassiere,” “shoving sex toys up my ass till it felt like an Ikea project.”

redIkea red

Great lighting, music, costume changes elevated the poetry making strong work even more powerful. We saw Tina Turner, Elvis, Snow White channelled on stage at different points. Loved the zit popping tango, I want a casino rant and the truth behind emoticons :-O. There wasn’t a dry seat in the house by the time the show was over.

 

samples

I opened the show with my guest spot & started it with this to set the tone for the rest of the show:

Watch

I like to watch

I like to see my cock going into a mouth

I like to have the lights on

to look them in the eye

as my cock goes into a mouth

though I have never seen the reverse

a cock going into my mouth

I tried a few times with a mirror

but it took too much attention

too much focus from the action

I wanted to be in the action

not observing it

as if I was watching porn

though the cocks I suck aren’t porn cocks

neither is mine

but when I see it going into a mouth

a hand holding the root

the mouth happily eagerly

working a tongue around the the head

my dick looks like a porn dick

I fuck that mouth

hold that head

or grasp those biceps

as he going down to the root

gagging for a second

happy to gag

eager to gag

I like to watch

I also did Born to Be Blown and The Future of Sex (both in recent blogs)

not getting into my drawers

get into my drawers

The Future of Sex

I’ve been working on my guest spot at “The  Dildettes  at  Buddies! THASSRIGHT.” One of the requirements, for some reason, was to write a piece that included, in some way, a dildo. Fitting one in isn’t as easy as it sounds 🙂 I resisted the temptation to do a top ten list of songs that were originally about dildo’s: Dilly Jean; Teenage Dill Dream; etc. because it was too easy – Walk on The Dillside.

fence02fence gallery

I wanted something that but wasn’t about the dildo – no descriptions of life from the dill’s point of view, or a how to buy, use or break-up with one: “The Dill is Gone.” But something that showed how a dill can become a part of one’s sexual vocabulary in a sensible, as opposed to a fetishy, way.

fence01shady nook painting

As I started the piece it took its own direction and shape. Like many of my pieces it pretty much wrote itself in a first draft over two days. I let it simmer for awhile before going back into it for pacing, sequence and story – not that there is a real story in this just snippets of various conversations stitched together and some very soft-core sex thrown in to pull it together.

glassgreen glass

Some of my thoughts & readings on identity, our expectations of love, sex got into the mix as well as that thread about getting old. I’ve met some guys under 30 who think the right guys means never having to look for sex again. I smile, nod & move on.

coming

January 30, Thursday – guest spot -The Dildettes, 8 p.m., Buddies in Bad Times, 12 Alexander Street. https://www.facebook.com/events/234979810009039/

February 21, Friday – featuring – Racket at the Rocket: 7 p.m., Red Rocket Cafe, 1364 Danforth Ave. https://www.facebook.com/events/818441091515505/

stsml March 1, Saturday – attending – Toronto SpecFic Colloquium

Email_Header_Image_2014.1aa1067 June 6-8 – attending – Bloody Words

June 23-27 – attending – Manuscript to Book – Loyalist Summer Arts – Belleville https://www.loyalistbanner.com/PROD/cewkcrss.P_IndexPage

August 28-31 – attending – FanExpo Canada

samples

The Future of Sex

he kisses like he means it

like he needs it

as much as I do

there is no rush to get naked

but there is a need to

we mean to be bare with each other

the compulsion of the flesh

a subtext for our concerns

about each other’s activities

his work

family at xmas

driving conditions

my writing

our notions of love

not that we are talking

about being in love with each other

but what love means to people

I’d say to men

but it doesn’t really vary

from gender to gender

he’s seeing someone he likes

I’m living with the same man

for over thirty years

is this enough for either of us

or is this need for enough

a reflection of a cultural social paradigm

that says we have to seek a mate

for life

to make our lives fulfilled and satisfying

that we need to settle down

we’ll have someone

to look after us when we get too old

to look after ourselves

so we won’t end up lonely bitter old piles of bones

stranded in a corner of a geriatrics ward

with only our memories of great sex

to keep us warm

too feeble to appeal to anyone

to even reach for a dildo

because honey there ain’t no handbook

on gay geriatric sex

I’m pretty sure the will to live

is tied into the will to get it off

but because age is so disgusting

only dildos will be willing to do the job

he rolls to face me

erections touching

says lets worry about the future of sex

after the sex of the moment

rubbleoops

Beware Lake Pinebow

wo01

I’ve been presented with online summaries of the highlights of my 2013 by Facebook and WordPress that have missed the mark completely. WordPress gave me statistics and my numbers are so overwhelming for me to even bother reblogging, as they suggested. But I am satisfied with the slowly steady spread of my posts around the world. Facebook splashed lots of pics but missed the big moments as well.

trunksbeware of Cathy Petch

Some of those moments weren’t captured on line but a couple of them where. I did great features at Secret Handshake and Cabaret Noir but my performance highlight has to be Boogie Inferno at Lizzie Violet’s open stage birthday – with Nelson Sobral backing me I tore the roof off the Central and made people see me in a different light as a poet. Sometimes pulling your clothes off is a good thing.

lanewaybeware of speed bump

Getting my day of the dead look on for Cabaret Noir’s Hallowe’en show as also a game changer. Another opportunity to force people to see me in a different way.

bakyardbeware of falling branches

I also heard/saw some great performers and saw them differently now that I am reviewing and really paying attention. I was happy to meet and enjoy Nelson Sobral in his many band personas; also fine things out of Myke Mazzei – plus both of them are easy on the eye. Too many good poets to start picking & choosing though – it was a delight to hear Vanessa McGowen often, Tomy Bewick, Koom Kankesan, Cathy Petch sawing her way into our hearts, and … better stop here or I’ll miss someone in my name-checking.

 soon02June 6-8 – attending – Bloody Words

August 28-31 – attending – FanExpo Canada

samples

Lake Pinebow 1

come gather around the fire

gather close and snuggle

come gather around the fire

for here we’ll be safe

from the flicker of things in the night

come gather around the fire

I’ll tell you a tale

that you may not believe

but you’ll never forget

perhaps you’ve heard

of the Denizen of Pinebow Lake

you haven’t

we’ll, guess you haven’t been

in these parts before

or if you have

maybe no one had the courage

to tell such a tale

to some as young as you

cause you know it isn’t fair

to place that sort fear

in someone whose

mind hasn’t grown enough

to listen and learn

to know

when the truth

grabs you by the throat

squeezes the very life out of you

so does everyone have their hot cocoa

any one else want another hot dog

the fire will last a little while longer

so I want to tell you the tale

before it goes out

while the warm embers

keep the chill of night

away from your tender young bones

so how many have been

to the shores of Pinebow Lake?

water wasn’t too cold was it

often is this time of year

it never seems to warm up

no matter how hot the summer

this has been a pretty warm one

even I have to admit that

but still the lake stays cool

gather round the fire

for the tale is about to be told

you want a tale don’t you

one that may cool you

as much as the fire warms you

it happened one summer

many years ago

when we became aware of

the Denizen of the lake

not that any have actually seen the Denizen

we sensed it

you know

the way you can

feel something in room

when there isn’t supposed to be anything there

or the way

a face is seen at the window

of an empty house

and is gone before

you can focus on it

that’s what the Denizen is like

we just have the sense

the feeling of it being there

sometimes there is powerful smell

like a log

pulled out from the bottom of  a deep well

that black brackish decay smell

that makes it hard

to smell anything else

for the next day or so

when that smell comes up

from the lake

we know

the Denizen is on the prowl

we’ll hear a gasp

in the middle of night

a calf bawling for its mother

but the calf is never seen

lost a few myself that way

bones sometime sound

on the shore

over by Pine Point

litter along the rocks there

a few small wee bones

bleached white

and we know

it was one of the feasts

of the Denizen

we know

grind the bones

scatter them in the field

to warn the cattle

of what happens

if they feel too safe

now the Denizen has never been seen

foot prints are sometimes found

small and dainty they seem

but with a smudge mark

deep and long

between them

like a long sharp tail

or maybe its the long sharp tooth

that is uses to takes its repasts

so if  you see that mark beware

skybeware Lake Pinebow