Pandemic Poetry Project

I have two pieces in the Pandemic Poetry Project ed. David Bateman published by Buddies In Bad Times. I’m is good company as the anthology includes work by Patricia Wilson, Kathleen Whelan, Robert Standish, Neta Rose,Charlie Petch, Stedmond Pardy, Dianne Moore, Ashok Mathur, Merle Matheson, David Marshall, Marcy Rogers, Sri M., Peter Lynch, Amy Lester, Steve Keil, Brock Hessel, Sky Gilbert, SK Dyment, Judith Chandler, Philip Cairns, Ashley Bomberry, Marusya Bociurkiw, bill bissett, Paul Bellini, & David Bateman. A superb sampling of lgbtqia writers.

Buddies glitter washroom floor

I was asked by David to submit a couple of pieces last year. I sifted through some recent writing & sent in the two that appear. At the time I was unaware that it was a ‘Pandemic’ project or I might have sent pieces with a lockdown subtext. It is a handsome little book the size of a cd case with 150 pages of insightful, silly, spiritual, sexy, political writing.

It can be bought for $19.95 , in person, at Buddies In Bad Times on Alexander St. Glad Day Bookshop also has it on the shelf or you can order it, but there will be shipping costs.

Buddiehttps://gladdaybookshop.com/item/kUIAuTpWhPwIbxRv1yQZuA

ISBN: 978-1-7775101-2-1

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Hollywood Poems

In September 2020 Philip Cairns asked me to write an introduction to Hollywood Poems – a collection of his writing. He sent me an advance reading copy & here is what I wrote:

“Philip’s Disney sweetheart was Annette Funicello, mine was Haley Mills. He exalts in Anita Ekbert, I was enthralled by Brigette Bardot. You might ask – what’s with gay guys & obscure female film stars? In his Hollywood Poems Philip explores that question in a series of tender odes which reveal as much about him as it does about the objects of his fandom. The Bedbug Blues pieces are funny & bitingly true.

The poems are like quilts stitched together with contrasting swatches of the fabric of his life, patterns get repeated, images emerge & a person appears. They are like meeting up with a chatty friend who tells charming stories with tangents that sometimes connect to each other but always connect to life. The style is Frank O’Hara meets Walt Whitman – amiable, comfortable, inviting & emotionally resonant.”

1990

I met Philip way back in 1990 when he was cast in Bushwack Theatre’s production of T-Shirts. One of his lines, that I still remember, was ‘I was never a cute kid.’ Which really summed up the way many gay men felt about themselves. He delivered it with sincerity. He became a valuable member of the Bushwack company of performers, & was featured in many of its productions over the nine years that the company lasted. 

After Bushwack ended we sort of lost touch for several years. I retuned to full force to my own writing & became involved in the Toronto spoken-word world, in which the out gay male perspective was seriously under-represented. I encouraged Philip to hit some of the many open stages. He found them somewhat homophobic but persisted.

Eventually he, along with myself, Lizzie Violet & others formed The Beautiful and Damned collective which ran a monthly performance series for two years at various venues. We rotated hosting, lined up features & musicians. It was great fun while it lasted.

I heard many of the pieces in Hollywood Poems when they were first performed at various readings, when of course, one could go to readings. You can get the book on Amazon. Check out his web page. 

HOLLYWOOD POEMS , www.philipcairns.com 

For more about him, The Beautiful and Damned, & Lizzie Violet take a search stroll through the TOpoet archives.

from may 2008

Ready

the ignored alarm

the heeded bladder

the rotation of cereals

kiwi a radical change

strawberries 

blueberries grapes bananas

different yet consistent

rotation from what is there 

to what is there now

the ritual with water 

the seasonal changes of view

but still the same view

the email check 

the rotation of  shoes undies

the clack of spoons

ring of phones

expected voices

expected scatter of opportunities

land in the same places

different days

yet the same days

this on the first Friday

this on the second Monday

a trusted structure

to give balance to the routine

never identical 

but always the same

does it need variation

can the little books be left out one day

consistency and variation

brief departures

make routine so welcome

enjoy more and more

what doesn’t happen every day

if it did 

pleasure would be gone

opportunity isn’t the aphrodisiac

or  is it

time memory fluctuations 

flow

picture of the innocent lie

the flavour of oranges

the melt of chocolate

the squirm of recognition

the long to muss hair

how can the hands keep reaching

each morning out of the bed

follow the slopes of the day

that rolls back to the same bed

to the same sleeping moments

dreams lost to bladder

secure consistent 

ready to ignore the alarm

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Noir Magick Finale

A chilly October night was made even chillier by Cabaret Noir’s Halloween show. At least we weren’t knocking the snow off our boots. A full house, some in costume, ‘enjoyed’ an evening of zombies, witches, vampires & Bela Lugosi. Lizzie Violet, with lips artful sown shut, started the show with a piece of her own: ‘I could still hear it breathing.’ Philip Cairns brought the Ghosts of the Past – a piece sparked by a film shoot in a place he had lived as a child – there’s a movie plot is that – apparently he’s still haunted by Annette Funicello’s breasts. He was followed by Shawn Sosnowski who did a fine acapella take on Bright Eye’s ‘You Will.’

blueplant

First feature D. S. Campbell hit the stage with his inner child literally exploding out of his head. He read from his Zombie Manifesto. First a scene on an airport tarmac: ‘just enough breathing room, to consider the weather,’ ‘I saw them shuffle … eating as they themselves were dying.’ Tension was palpable & characters were sharply drawn. The other section was the nano-technological rational of the zombies – for once it makes sense but you’ll have to read the book to find out what it is.

bluewater

After a break Saraah October did a vampire piece: ‘She said I could come in, but I wasn’t sure.’ I followed with my much anticipated set – anticipated mainly by me 🙂 I’ve never read one of my short stories so I wasn’t sure if I had the energy, for one thing, or that the audience would follow & not get antsy after five minutes. Yes I had the energy & no they didn’t get antsy. Sex Magick cast its spell over them.

pinkcloud

After a break Conflicting Plaid hit the stage – bass, lead & drummer in various zombie makeup – or were they just scary than usual mimes? As always their punk drive delivered a pile-driver set of propulsive fun. They added a few seasonal songs: ‘pieces of you keep turning up’ ‘she loves me for my brraains’ ‘you cut off my hand & shoved it up my ass.’ Great originals plus some covers include a great take on Bela Lugosi’s Dead. A set that left us both called & warmed up.pinkdoll

Sadly, & unknown at the time, this was the final of Cabaret Noir. The Central just isn’t making enough $ on sweet potato fries – most poets, performers don’t have enough cash to keep that show commercially viable enough. Rest assured this isn’t the end of Lizzie Violet.

samp01

For my set I read Sex Magical Quarterly – a stolen magazine has unexpected results on the thief – this is a excerpt from the story:

 

When Hogsy got home he stashed his magazines in a box under his bed. All through supper he itched to read whatever it was the Sex Magick had to say.

As Hogsy ate, he felt the witch’s eyes burning into him. They seemed to be everywhere he looked.

….

Back in his room, Hogsy propped open his history text. The Sex Magick pull-out fit perfectly under it so he could read it and hide it fast if someone came into his room

The witch’s glittering eyes danced on and off the page. They seemed to be in 3D. He held the cover at eye level and tilted it this way and that to see what sort of printing technique they had used. It had to be some sort of laser print. The eyes darted in a way that made him open the insert.

The first page was an introduction to the use of the spell. He skimmed it; the print got smaller toward the bottom of the page. It was stuff about getting the right implements, taking take to clear one’s mind. Stuff he didn’t care about.

The weird font and odd use of language made it difficult for him to understand what was being said. Then it became another language all together.

“Nam drim incagto Hogsy fridamo.” He was amazed to see his name right there in the spell. He looked away, rubbed his eyes and looked back. Yep, it said Hogsy all right!

There was whole paragraph which he felt compelled to say out loud. The words felt odd as he stumbled through them, but when he read it a second time, it flowed and he felt he actually understood what it said. His name only appeared in that one place. After the third time, his eyes became heavy and he fell asleep at his desk.

He woke out of a wild sex dream. He was with the witch on the cover making out in a huge, endless bed. The bed was like the beach. She kept touching his cock and balls with her tongue while talking to him. She was speaking in the same language as the spell. He was forced awake by the need to piss.

When he woke he was in bed. He didn’t remember leaving his desk. His cock throbbed with pee pressure, and he rushed to the bathroom.

He struggled with his fly on the way to the bathroom to get his cock out before he pissed his pants. It felt like his underwear had gotten twisted around and all bunched up around his nut sack.

He kicked the bathroom door shut behind him and pushed his jeans down. He couldn’t believe what he saw. His cock was big. He was dizzy looking at the size of it. He began to piss and the stream was dark yellow and he was missing the toilet. Pee was splashing off the rim, on to the floor and walls.

He was afraid to touch his cock, but had to keep it aimed. How could it grow that much overnight? What took one hand to aim now took two. Yesterday he could get his hand around the shaft; now it was like trying to get his hands around a … a football.

November 1 – 30 Participating NaNoWriMo
nano15

http://nanowrimo.org/

money

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doll

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#Hawaiian Noir Eye

Who has time for the PanAm when Lizzie Violet, with co-host Romeo Satin, sizzle us with a night at a Luau! Luau! Luau! Romeo, channelling both Jack Lord & Don Ho – not as easy or as confusing as it sounds, was the umbrella in our cocoanut drinks as he & Lizzie surfed the laughs of an audience decked out in more Hawaiian togs than you would see on Surfside 6, or even Hawaiian Eye.

greencloth

not my luau costume

Yes, it was great to see the audience get leid as it embraced the Luau theme – lots of great Hawaiian shirts, Tiki buttons, leis, sarongs but sadly (for me) no shirtless Hawaiians. Romeo Satin & the Satinets (Tessa Stone, Cynthia Gould) started the night off with the classic ‘Little Grass Shack.’

The first set of open stagers quickly raised the heat of the room. Brenda Clews with some pimp-mobile, cybersex raunch; Philip Cairns with apples in the vortex – is this the madness Snow White dreamed of until the Prince awoke her? Bonnie Bonser raged about the distant illusion of satisfaction; Jeff Cottrill was delayed in transit 🙂 with a sharp new piece that everyone identified with.

I’ve heard The Rando Bando a few times & was hau’oli to hear them again, but circumstances forced them to cancel 😦 So I got a last minute call to step in & do a mini-set :-). To keep it simple I chose some of the recent Village pieces I’ve blogged: How I Learned to Play With Boys, In The Workshop, Founders Day, By the Moose of Moses: which came together as a nice suite. I must have hit the right notes, as during the break more than one stranger was effusive about my writing (too bad they were merely effusive & not asking to buy chap books).

redgold

cool thoughts from Hell

During the break The Satinets worked the crowd for tequila while checking for Hawaiian shirts, sarongs & the best beach wear for the contest. Kensington Market must have been stripped bare to the walls. Speaking of strip, burlesque temptress Lilla Koi: Hawaii’s own Forbidden Fruit – started a heatwave when she let more than her seat wave in an all too short set after the break.

She did a polished, sweet sexy routine to I Wanna Be Like You – Disney for burlesque, why not? Her tropical costume was strategically placed green sequinned leaves & fronds. She balanced sexiness with humour without getting kitchy. Gloves were peeled & leaves fell to reveal glittering lotus blossom tassels. Out of 5 she gets an Hawaii 5 Oh Oh Oh.

dolls.JPG

got my eye on you

The Satinettes worked the crowd again checking out Tiki buttons, yacht pants & hula hips for the contest before doing another number with Romeo – Blue Hawaii – that lead to the final round of open stagers – great music by Michelle Lecce-Hewitt (check out her upcoming benefit); Anastace & finally poetry from Shawn Sosnowski – ‘she gave me a racing stripe … then stole the car’ Winning the prize for best Hawaiian shirt he won’t missing that car so much.

Jeff Alan Greenway closed the night with a great set of piano driven pop. He has an appealing stage presence, a great voice & singing style that lets the lyric carry the emotion. His piano playing is deceptively simple, much like his singing, filling the melody without underlining the emotions or showboating to say ‘what a great Keith Emerson I am.’ He allows his songs to breathe & the crowd loved him & the songs & even sang along.

jluau

overdressed for the luau

A great night, sweltering heat, fantastic Fringe shows & dynamical PanAm games didn’t keep the Luau Noir from filling the Central & giving the people what they want – grass skirts & real entertainment 🙂

sample

Besides the Village pieces I did two new, non-Village pieces. Here’s one of them – summer escapism:

Hoop Dreams

second story back window

Venetian blinds open

sunny noontime

shirtless guys in the laneway

play bball without a hoop

deke dodge around each other

winter pale skin eager for the sun

as eager as my eyes are

for their pale winter skin

 

they can’t see me

as aware of my look

as they are of the sun

their pant legs rolled up

hairy calves revealed

am I looking too long

looking too close

would I look if they were

older

than their twenties thirties

if they were in their fifties sixties

yeah sure but not for as long

if they were younger

pre-teens

I wouldn’t bother

 

from this window

I have the opportunity to stare

not feel their response for

my old queer guy gaze

age isn’t the factor

the opportunity is

so here I stand

an idle old man unseen

on a warm day

enjoying desultory male flesh

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The Shrine of Saint Elizabeth

David Bateman, always a fun & generous host (digging deep into his own book collection for trivia question prizes) put together a great line up of features for the April show at the Secret Handshake Gallery – at last I can say I did a feature in Kensington Market. It was a bright warm afternoon that gave me the opportunity to play dogem with strollers, cars, people on various devices, and photographers while enjoying a great bagel from NuBagel.

blueframe

blue frames

First up was Lizzie Violet https://lizzieviolet.wordpress.com who cooled us down with some of her eerie pieces about zombies, gypsies & serial killers. ‘well worn cards of the future … choosing your lover of today,’ ‘trails of entrails,’ ‘how did I fall from grace into a chaotic blood vortex.’ Blood Vortex – a latte I’d order. Lizzie’s pics of the event: https://www.facebook.com/lizzie.violet.1/media_set?set=a.10155490776165725&type=3&l=356ec5fa21

redchairs

snow bound chairs

Next up was Philip Cairns with his animated, invested and glittering verse. His pieces abound with diamonds, sapphires, rubies and emeralds. ‘a closet full of art and no buyers,’ ‘powder blue jag crashing into a red brick wall,’ ‘ashes to ashes dust bin to dust bin.’ At The Shrine of Saint Elizabeth we found ourselves resonantly om-ing ‘Elizabeth Taylor Elizabeth Taylor Elizabeth Taylor.’

After the break Dan Curtis Thompson did a section from “Consonance: A Stand Up Dramedy.” Although I’ve heard this piece before it remains fresh, emotional true and involving. ‘all I needed was a girl who likes the same video games as me to believe it’s real love.’ It’s always good to see a musician who doesn’t spend ten minutes tuning up. Check out his story telling series  Mountains and Molehills!

reddanger

danger ahead

I closed the show with my Born To Be Blown blast. It was a fun, energetic set of pieces to perform, pieces I’ve blogging about here on Wednesday this past month so look’em up. Heads were nodding to the rock, shoulders where jiving to the disco beat and by the end everyone wanted to ‘get head out on the highway.’

samples

a piece that didn’t make the final cut for the Born To Be Blown set:

 

Saint Jim

 

Pere Lachaise

section six section seize

‘seize the moment in section six

you have to seize the moment

saiser l’instant’

Jim starts a new song

‘you have to seize the moment

in section six’

I can hear him shout

through stage fog strobe lights

teeny bopper girls rush the stage

police push them away

as he taunts flaunts teases pleases

scowler prowler

hurt lost shouting shaman

 

like those silly teeny boppers

I lust after that idol

I wonder what they saw

that day in Miami

if he did flash the iconic cock

 

I make my way though a light rain

everything is a line in a Saint Jim song

‘making my way

through cemetery rain’

I know he‘s here somewhere

I see mystic marks sprayed

mementos of worship

‘the blue bus stops near here’

the rain stops

and I am there

 

no monument

only a flat grey space

with a tombstone

his name wrong

James isn’t Jim

beneath my feet his bones

unless they’ve been stolen

relics in sacred altars

for those who think

 

they can petition this saint

a bunch of faded flowers

some used condom lizard skins

‘lizard skins drying in the sun

show we have seized the moment’

 

I hear birds

then dozens of people

hiss of cameras

posers smile lean over the tombstone

stoke his name then gone

 

left alone

I seize my moment

unzip

flash my cock

the only gesture of his I can duplicate

construction

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thanks

“hear my whisper in your heart.”

Even with a chill in the air Cabaret Noir pulled in a full house. A great line-up of open stagers taught us that you don’t play cards with Jesus & that Marilyn Monroe’s death resonated all the way to Russia. I wish open stagers would learn to print their pieces large enough to read – holding the text between your face and the microphone muffles everything read. I did hit the stage with another Pinebow sneak peek.

scarf Philip dropped his come pashima

Philip Cairns (www.philipcairns.com) fresh from the launch of his diamond encrusted chapbook Elizabeth Taylor’s Jewels did a great set of all new material. A sequel, of sorts, to his Bedbug Blues, became a bedbug blue movie. An affectionate bio-poem about Jayne Mansfield name checked her many films (but missed her singing career) – it was her wig not her head that was lost in that tragic accident. Then he tapped into his dark side with Blood Lust ‘the snap of a collar bone.’

I missed his last piece because of chatter – friends of the music feature felt fine talking all the way though his set & getting louder as he got louder to be heard (then were silent when their idol was on). Plus people coming up to the bar to pay their tabs shouted over Philip as they paid their bill.

shoeblack Philip dropped his shoe running from the police

First music feature Shikha Sehgal (www.shikhamusic.com) drew us into her songs with her simple & direct stage presence. Accompanying herself on an electric uke her songs were bluesy evocations of romantic longing and loss. Delicate, spare and sweet with carefully controlled yet emotional vocals – sensuous like a fine silver wire yet strong as steel – her music pulled us into her web.  We were willing to “hear my whisper in your heart.”

emerald

Philip dropped his 31306.75 carat aquamarine 

Sadly I didn’t get to hear Cappy & Kev. It didn’t look like they’d get to the stage much before 10 & I like to be home by 10. Next time.

some pics: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.364186547073526.1073741839.145297655629084&type=3&uploaded=24

 

samples

 

Kept In The Loop

 

when I said

I’d meet you at 7

I meant

if I had nothing else to do

something else came up

I didn’t have time

to get in touch

it won’t happen again

how could it

unless something else comes up

I promise I’ll never let you down

I’ve never let you down in the past

well

at least not like that

and that was your own fault

yes I did say I’d be there

but I didn’t know

what you were asking

I had other things on my mind

at the time

I am not seeing someone else

there is only you

at least

at that time there was only you

but you knew that

I told you about the other guy

I’ve never kept that from you

you can’t say I deceived you

I always kept you in the loop

most of the time anyway

bballs03 blue balls, not Philip’s

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How The Damned End

The Beautiful and the Damned had a good run starting at Zelda’s, then Glad Day Books, Q Space & finally The Central. Over its few short years the series brought a rich variety of spoken-word & music to the stage. From James Ince to Spencer Butts to Marcia Rogers, to name-drop but a few. Musically diverse it introduced musicians from Kat Leonard to Rex Baunset to Nelson Sobral to spoken-word audiences.

fog03 mist in the Whispering Woods?

The final show of the series was hosted by Brenda Clews, with fun Poe trivia supplied by John Oughton. Spoken feature was the urbane, comic & tres gay J.P. Larocque. He did two powerful, insightful, funny & in your face queer pieces. Both combined explicit sex with the ironic counter-point of the mundaneness of daily life – in one piece he explores the mutual negianegationstions of a couple at a bathhouse – wanting to be sexually adventuresome while at the same time preoccupied with financial planning. ‘I am no longer the youngest one at the orgy’

His second piece took us to the under-lit confines of washroom sex – ‘… more hopeless that a men’s washroom on Friday afternoon.’ Again he easily mixes the erotic amidadmistst the ordinary. Sharp writing, that reminded me of Conner Habib’s clear eyed take on queerness.

fog02 what lies beneath the surface?

Music feature Amoeba Starfish has graced the Damned stage before & also featured with them at Pride a few years ago. Elegant, trippy, thoughful zen jazz that works effortlessly with spoken-word performers and stands equally engaging on its own. I might be biased as I do I have several of their recordings in my collection.

fog01 red eyes of the besat?

Although I’m saddened to see the Damned come to an end I’m not sorry to have it out of the Central – the wrong spot for a spoken-word show – at times it felt like listening to the performances while trapped in an MRI machine with earplugs on – loud house music, louder band downstairs – as volume was upped for readers, volume was upped else where to compete.

soon

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

expo hair

why so sad? No Buffy reunion panel at FanExpo 2014

October 19 – feature – Cabaret Noir – Pinebow pine2https://www.facebook.com/events/1651892755035275/

samples

I hit the open stage with another glimpse of my October set:

Pinebow 2

has anyone seen Brad?

he was here last night

remember how he screamed

when we told tales

around the campfire

last night

has anyone seen Brad

he shouted with fear and delight

said he wouldn’t be able to sleep without a light

has anyone seen him

I saw him go down to the lake

he took a canoe

rowed into the mist

now Jeff are you sure

that’s what you saw

because all the canoes are there now

not one’s missing

has anyone seen Brad

he has a talent for hiding

that’s for sure

he went missing last week

for two whole days

till we found him then

sleeping in the crook of an oak tree

as tidy and warm

as could be

up so high and deep

in the Whispering Woods

out near Pine Point

perhaps we should look

for him there

he could be pulling another of his stunts

just to teach us a lesson

to make sure we don’t scare with such tales

as you told last night

I saw him go to the smoke shed

he wanted a sausage 

he felt so hungry and weak

he needed a snack before he went to bed

now Olaf that can’t be so

we don’t use the smoke shed

for the summer

that’s for the fall

as you well know

or in the spring

when we run the maple syrup off

perhaps he’s gone there

looking for what is left 

there’s always some dribs and drabs

of that sweet sugar to be found

if you look hard enough

if you scrape under the ground

the black sweet blood of the earth

you don’t say

that’s news to the counsellors and I

so let’s go to the smoke shed

perhaps we’ll find what

we need to find there

as they approached

they saw a strange trail

footprints

small and dainty

hollow and round

with a smudge mark deep

between them

like a long sharp tail

we can’t go in there

the boys shouted as one

we can’t go in there

the Denizen is there

that’s what’s happened to Brad

the Denizen has gotten him

eaten him up

smoked with maple syrup

we know

we can tell

you warned us

the smell of death is in the air

they stood silent

in a circle around the smoke shed

none willing to to take a step forward

the door swung a little in the breeze

they all jumped back

a bell rang

six rapid clangs

ah there breakfast ready boys

we’ll leave this till later

Brad is bound to show up

he’s hoping to give us

another merry chase

another merry chase

which we won’t give into

as a whole

they rushed to the mess hall

hot steaming plates of food were ready

rice crispy squares

scrambled eggs

crisp bacon

pancakes

French toast

home made sausages

cornflakes

poached eggs

Belgian waffles

fresh milk

yellow butter

and ladles of maple syrup

syrup to wash everything down

to make the boys

fat and pump and round

as plump and fat and round

as Brad

river01 river of syrup?

wpjl14

Noir One Year On

Lizzie’s Cabaret Noir celebrated it’s one year in style – a packed house was treated to massive talent & wild raffle prizes. Doing the front-of-house I was glad to see many generous people dropping more than a fiver in the pwyc.

glove (g)love in the leaves

The show kicked off with a slate of dynamic usual faces starting with Nelson Sobral (soon to replace all of the Rolling Stones), Brenda Clews with a saucy piece, Cate & Dee with a great a cappella duet, Jeff Cottrill telling us why Halle Berry is better than you, me (because I did the first open stage a year ago). closing with Matt Gerber: aka Mr. Furious.

hockeydiscarded dreams

Feature Philip Cairns with Peter Lynch performed a short new play, What Ida Said, written by Philip with David Bateman A sharp comic piece that played with the slippery gender roles, aging, insest & conformity. ‘I don’t remember about sex? What is it?’ Peter was the perfect foil with his dry offhand delivery against Philip’s more emotionally sloppy character. After the short play Philip did a great job on Dory Previn’s Mr. Whisper, then Peter did a monologue as, I think, Tony of the Soprano’s mother. www.philipcairns.com

blanket bundle of dirt

After the break more things where raffled off – I restrained myself from buying tickets as I have enough ‘things’ already :-). Next feature was the sensational The Rando Bando. I manned the iPod for their music & managed to get my cues right. The songs were sharp, sexy, bawdy, funny lyrics to well known (at least to me) melodies. You Don’t Know Me – became the stalkers lament: ‘You don’t see me – I’m watching from the heating duct’  The set had great flow that took us from from saucy to flat out vulgar. Loved it.  www.floatingdeskinternational.com

pink2 pink parking

By the time they were done it was 10 pm, and time for me to head home (I like to be abed by 11 most nights) so I missed Arlene Paculan’s set – maybe another time Arlene. A great show & a great night. www.arlenepaculan.com

great Noir photo set:  https://www.facebook.com/anna.l.romeo.9/media_set?set=a.10151999723547129.1073741909.523022128&type=1

coming

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

100_0495 writing blocks broken at Loyalist

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

pineoct at The Central

samples

Laid Plans

so things didn’t go as planned

no one took into account

the end of the world

getting in the way of important things

why did it have to come to an end

before our plans could come to fruition

all those hopes and dreams

dashed turned into a dusty waste of time

time that could have been spent relaxing

enjoying the flow of things

we squandered those precious moments

on worries constructing news ways

of controlling to suit our wants

now all for nothing

the world has come to an end

almost laughing in our faces

as the tremor shook us up from its core

rending the sky

while we were busy getting our way

making things safe secure perfect

if only we had at least time to get naked

enjoy one last fuck   one last embrace

but the end came sudden fast relentless remorseless

crushing without pleasure

leaving this desolation in its wake

where there was once a planet there is debris

debris without even a residue

of karmic happiness left in the air

because we were so busy

we didn’t have time to leave a warm glow behind

didn’t even have sense enough to enjoy

the end of the world

saxophone daydream saxophone daydream of trombone love

Winter’s No Ball

Philip Cairns put together an eclectic group of wild-card performers for the poetry salon at the urban gallery, as part of Brenda Clews’ exhibition. As hard as it was to compete with the amazing art on the walls, the line up did the best it could. Luckily we had a packed house to egg us on.

snowswetr

Philip kicked things off with Bed Bug Blues: ‘I’ve fallen into a Cronenburg movie.’ Next up was Brock Hessel with a fun, ironic set of sharply-honed queer social context pieces. Following him David Bateman, read from his Palindrome chapbook. I too like tanned men in white bathing suits. Then Lizzie Violet with Thirteen Nails In The Coffin – ‘Tomorrow is the day I die.’ The first set concluded with a compelling modern dance by wheel-chair dancer Frank Hull – he is more agile and emotional than many of us without wheels. With his effortlessly, evocotive movement his wheelchair was an extension of his body not merely a way to move.

snotwg

Second set opened with DM Moore, her deeply emotional pieces reached us all: ‘Drunk myself to sleep, or something like it.’  She was followed by me, TOpoet.ca, with a set of all new pieces that ranged from the paradox of identity to in-your-pants raunch that got laughs & also touched a few. Next up was Alec Butler with hot sex in a snowbank with Pussy Boy. Then Vanessa McGowan with a set of her raw and emotionally complex pieces ‘it took us thirty-five years to learn forgiveness.’ The evening wrapped with Allen Shugar with sweet song of yearning ‘take the sky, fly away, there’s nothing to hold me here.’

snowsho

We were all grateful for Brenda for the salon opportunity and to perform against backdrop of her eye-catching & pleasing poem paintings. The exhibit is up till March 1 – so get down to the urban gallery, 400 Queen E., Toronto to enjoy it.

samples

here’s one of the new pieces I did at the Snow Ball

Identity

you aren’t you

she shouted pointing at me

I don’t know who you are 

you aren’t you

he’s you

she went on

pointing to a heavy set black man

who smiled and waved at me

 

great, I thought,

I’ll finally know what it feels

like to have a thick black cock

 

how long did you think 

you could get away with it

she stepped closer

pretending to be yourself

some one you clearly are not

 

thanks, I finally got a word in edge wise,

now that I can stop being me

I can be who I really am

 

that’s not how it works

she glared at me

you can’t just become anyone else

because you aren’t you

 

what about me

the black guy came over

to shake my hand

pleased to meet me

 

he’s not you

she pushed us apart

neither of you are each other either

you are both not

who you are

can’t you get it through your heads

she was nearly screaming

 

but I’ve always wanted to a white dude

the black guy said

if I’m him

I’m not this big black guy anymore

 

no no no the woman was scornful

it’s not that simple

stop thinking you are who you think you are

because you aren’t you

he’s you

identity is in the eye of the beholder

don’t you get it 

she was exasperated

as if we were children

how can I make it any simpler

you can’t change what you are

 

well, I tried to calm her,

I’m not you, for starters

are you you

 

of course I am she snapped

but trust me I know you aren’t you

he is you

and don’t you forget it

 

okay okay I get the picture

I tried to calm her down

it felt good not to be me

to let go of all that identity crap

I was finally free

I looked at the self

I was just introduced to

let’s get out of here

I said

it’s time I learned how to 

play with myself

meurbanon stage for winter snow ball

What Did That Man Want?

I continued that conversation with the guy who asked me what I wanted. My reply was that I was looking for opportunity, communication to see where things might lead – that I wasn’t looking for the ‘one’ but if that what was present I’d be interest.  I asked him what he was looking. He replied that we weren’t looking for the same thing.

wldlfparkette wild life

What that ‘thing’ was he didn’t say. It was clear that, like many guys, he didn’t really read my profile. Unlike many, I’m clear about what I want – the fact that he even asked was pretty much admitting he hadn’t read it. What I don’t say is that my ‘wants’ apply to first dates, as it were, more is possible if we get past that.

hassockhassock in the wild

One of the first things in my profile is my nearest intersection – so guys know where I’m at. If they ask what area I live in that usually ends my interest. If they ask if I’m into any number of things not on my profile I figure that haven’t read it and there goes my interest too.

wildlifeeast end wild life

Some find it hard to believe I don’t do drugs, other than coffee, or drink. If things get to the point where I send them my youtube links I often never hear back from them. Poet in theory is interesting but in actuality scares ’em off.

I think this man wanted a reason to move out of Buttstink, Newfoundland – as if being stuck there wasn’t reason enough.

samples

Personality profile test 534

Where you you rather go:

1. to the store

2. to the mall

3. to New York to see the Producers

4. to Easter Island

Would you rather:

1. roller skate

2. roller blade

3. ski

4. sky dive

Would you rather wear:

1. Donna Karen

2. Hugo Boss

3. Coco Chanel

4. Christian Dior

Would you rather eat at:

1. McDonald’s

2. Harvey’s

3. Wendy’s

4. Denny’s

Would you rather drink:

1. Scotch

2. Draft beer

3. Red wine

4. Soda water

Would you rather have sex with:

1. A woman

2. A man

3. A man and a woman

4. Yourself

Would you rather have a threesome with:

1. A stranger

2. Your partner

3. Your next-door neighbour

4. the co-host of the Sex Wars

Do you have a craving for:

1. Chocolate

2. Attention

3. Affection

4. A roof over your head

Would you rather:

1. Listen

2. Tell others what to do

3. Follow the lead of others

4. Drop dead

Which shoe would you prefer:

1. Converse runners

2. Six inch stilettos

3. Mary Janes

4. Doc Martins

Would you rather dance:

1. The tango

2. In a ballet

3. On a lap

4. Alone in the moonlight

Have you ever cast a spell for:

1. Love

2. Money

3. Revenge

4. Power

How do you get to work:

1. Public transit

2. Bicycle

3. Car

4. Helicopter

Are you more like:

1. James Bond

2. Don Rickles

3. Eva Gabor

4. Mother Teresa

Where would you hide the body:

1. Under the bed

2. In a closet

3. In the attic

4. on a deserted island

Which would you save first

1. Money

2. A sick puppy

3. A drowning baby

4. Your relationship

What do you look forward to the most:

1. reading a good book

2. working in the garden

3. impressing people

4. helping the homeless

Do you have in your home:

1. A washer drier

2. A fully stocked bar

3. A work-out station

4. A four car garage

Which do you see life as being:

1. Hopeless

2. Worthless

3. Pointless

4. Endless

Do people see you as:

1. Full of it

2. Cruel

3. Miserly

4. Pushy

Which do you see yourself as:

1. Bossy

2. Cold

3. Indifferent

4. Smug

What color would you paint a room:

1. Midnight black

2. Blank white

3. Tedious blue

4. Timid beige

When you hear the word love do you think:

1. Trapped

2. Opportunity

3. Dead end

4. Sacrifice

Which would you rather cook:

1. Cornish game hens with fresh mushroom stuffing

2. Sole almondine

3. Stuffed red and green peppers

4. Rodents

Where would you hide:

1. Under the bed

2. In a closet

3. In the attic

4. on a deserted island

lostwild life on my roof 

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