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Public poetry / Get on the Bus / Buffalo Itineraries

Not many books better to be published in than an NFTA bus shelter. This poem is in love with my influences and itineraries, w/nods to Buffalo. Deep gratitude to @justbuffalolit and @noahfalck and NFTA workers for making this happen. This poem is for my friend and poet Simeon Berry.

“Today our skyscrapers and houses don’t consider poetic writing as part of their structure. This fact says everything about the nature of our silence.” -Heriberto Yépez / Not that this is as playful/subversive as Yépez’s Public Visual Poems. But poetry needs to be written into public space.

Mindful, also, of the NFTA’s need to raise entry-level pay for drivers and the expansion of public transportation in Buffalo, which is in exceptional need and an awful place to not have a car in the winter and often always.

Also surprised to find the poem placed in Niagara Square outside of Buffalo’s monumental City Hall. City Hall: our marriage made legal there. City Hall under this mayor has not been good for public transportation or freedom of movement, putting clout behind creative-class-luring gimmicks like plans for app-pay electric scooters downtown, backing police checkpoints, dumping more and more $ into the police, who, in turn, disproportionately target the Black community. Niagara Square: I know mostly as a place of protest, the cops cracking Martin Gugino’s skull, futures revealed in the scale and energy of the BLM protests, touch-point of plans in organizing, organizing following what happens here. A symbolic terrain of struggle. Literal Nazis come here, neo-confederates, boot-lickers, the former Sheriff, our local far-right paramilitary goons. What’s a poem on the margins of this?

Ppl doing their thing, around the circle, city hall, the courthouse, the jail. Buffalo’s triptych. I’d write a different ending if I’d known where this one would go! It is where it is. Consider this the volta.

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Kim, Weiners, Brodine, Milton, Sapigao, Delany: Book Lovefest & New Poems at etcetera

What could I want more than to talk about my library, the books and encounters with language that changed my life? –& some icons: John Weiners, Myung Mi Kim, Karen Brodine, Samuel Delany, Janice Lobo Sapigao. Grateful to @k_e_naughton at Etcetera for the invitation and hope you follow this expanding web of ecstatic readings. Two new poems too from these fugues I’m tumbling through. Here’s the link.

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Wendell Berry Peace Disintegrator Pistol

Delight! Despair! Annulet published my short critical spasm “Wendell Berry Peace Disintegrator Pistol.” Which I hope is part 1 in an arc re: climate crisis & po. There are gaps; it doesn’t go far enough. Most of what has been taught as ecopoetry needs to be let go. Here is a quote my friend Marty liked “somehow poetry, even in this moment of climate catastrophe, continues to mistake transcendent visions of empty rural space as something other than a conservative rehashing of one version of a settler-colonial organization of nature and society.” Looking forward to digging into this issue: Brandon Shimoda, Shira Dentz, Joyelle McSweeney, Janice Lee–and seeing what else. & thx to Alicia Wright for encouraging the thing proper after the initial pitch.