A good weekend for poetry so far. On Friday I went to Rapp Saloon, which rocked. I really thought the night was going to suck, because at the beginning of the reading there were about 10 people in the room. People kept trickling in though the night, and by the end it was a pretty full house. (The reverse of the usual poetry reading pattern.) Ken Scott was the feature, and did a fine job -- some serious oratory in there. Overall, the quality level of the night was quite high. Michelle Daugherty did a love poem that really showed how her writing style is developing -- good stuff. I did "Tuesday Morning In The Rain," "Palenque," "Tacos México," and "Ceviché." Got a pretty good response, and I think I did OK.
After Rapp, went on over to Rev. Dave's Forum (just found out that's the proper name) -- and had another rockin' night of poetry. I don't remember everything that went on, but I remember I was really impressed. Michelle, Rev. Dave's poetry, Maitreyana, Rev. Dave on guitar, Patrick -- a bunch more whose names I can't remember. I wrote a new piece that night -- started writing it at Rapp Saloon, and finished it at Rev. Dave's. Read it at the Reverend's, and it got a great reaction. It's called, "Solid, Heavy, and Red." I'll send it out to the mailing list later today. (If you're not on the mailing list, I hope the new poems are an incentive to join.) I also read "Impressions of Guatemala," which got a muted but good reaction.
Saturday went to "Mia" at Tanner's in Culver City. In general a good night. Michelle Daugherty did the first genuinely cheerful piece I can remember her doing, and it also showed how she's really continuing to mature as an artist. Wayman Barnes and Frankie Drayus of LitRave were there. Frankie did a heartbreaking piece that really ripped the roof off -- a side of her I don't think I've heard before. Wayman did a long piece that wasn't as laugh-out-loud funny as most of his stuff -- actually more like a short story about some of his Hollywood experiences. Still, quite entertaining -- he's a good writer. Wayman thanked me for all the kind words in this blog -- and I said that one of the reasons he was so prominent was because I don't remember anyone else's name. The truth is my poor memory is why a lot of people who probably rate a mention here don't get one -- but Wayman gets in here 'cause he's good. Charlotte read as well -- rocked as usual. A new piece and an old one -- both excellent. I like the little peeks into her life. Her stuff, while quite personal, often feels inviting rather than simply confessional.
I read "Guanajuato," "Void," "Welcome to the Hotel Obregón," and "Solid, Heavy and Red." Got a good response, although not as strong to "Solid..." as I did Friday night. Not sure if it was the presentation, the audience, or the poem. (Got to find the right reading level for the poem.) Got a surprisingly strong reaction to "Welcome to the Hotel Obregón," since I didn't think it was my strongest piece. (Of course, I have edited it quite a bit since the last time I performed it -- perhaps the editing worked.)