Tag Archives: setlists

Setlist: First Sundays, 11/3/2013

autumn leaves
Despite an absolutely gorgeous autumn Sunday afternoon in Bloomington and the inevitable discombobulation that comes with the clocks having “fallen back” the night before, we had a nice little audience at Boxcar Books today for the First Sundays reading. I read a selection of poems from “Chasing Angels,” my manuscript-in-progress about a fictional rock musician; it was my first attempt to construct an entire setlist solely consisting of “Chasing Angels” poems and I was fairly happy with the narrative arc and the way the poems hung together.

I’d left the manuscript untouched for quite a while – a couple of years I guess – feeling frustrated and tired of it, and was pleasantly surprised when I dove back into it last night to find that I was interested in it again. Sometimes you have to let writing sit and marinate by itself for a while before working on it does anyone any good, you know? Now I’m thinking of getting it back out and fiddling with it some more; it’s way too long to send it out as it stands now, but hopefully with new perspective I’ll be able to ruthlessly yank out the poems that aren’t as strong. By spring 2014 I’d like to start sending it around. Don’t tell, y’all. It’ll be our little secret.

I’m also, because I enjoyed reading the poems so much today, having wacky ideas of constructing some kind of a semi-theatrical staged reading of a big chunk of the manuscript. I know, that’s crazy talk. It wouldn’t be that big a production – I certainly wouldn’t try to memorize it all, I’d have the pages in front of me – but with musical interludes here and there and some slides behind me and maybe some interesting lighting. I don’t know. I’m not necessarily the most dynamic of performers and I don’t know if I’d want to watch me on a stage for 45-60 minutes solid, even with multimedia and music and awesome boots on my feet and whatever… well… watch this space next year and see if anything develops!

Anyway, here’s what I read today (a 15 minute set):

  1. The Roar the Day After
  2. Sweet the Morning After
  3. The Smoke
  4. Curfew
  5. That Conversation
  6. First Earthquake

Many thanks to Nancy Long, the Bloomington Writers’ Guild, and Boxcar Books for hosting this monthly series!

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Setlist: 4th St. Festival, 8/30/2013

Fourth Street Festival t-shirt designI’m going to start using this blog to keep track of which poems I read at readings. Maybe it will be interesting to other folks, maybe not… we’ll see!

The Spoken Word Stage at this year’s Fourth Street Festival was a lot of fun; I especially enjoyed sharing the stage with Indiana’s current poet laureate (and former classmate from way back in undergrad days) Karen Kovacik, storyteller/movement artist (and former dorm-neighbor from way back in undergrad days) Nell Weatherwax, and local group Five Women Poets, of which I was a member for several years. In the “it’s the little things that count” department, one of the organizers thought to install a clock on one of the poles holding up the canopy, within sight of the microphone used by the readers. Super helpful, as I’ve become one of those awful people who relies on her cellphone to check the time instead of wearing a watch, which makes it a lot harder to discreetly check on how you’re doing for time as you read!

Anyway, my setlist, which clocked in at just about 25 minutes:

  1. What This Poem Will Do
  2. Ten Years
  3. It’s Not the Heat, It’s the Mortality
  4. Lucky
  5. Sleeping in Space
  6. The Roar the Day After
  7. Free Hot Breakfast, Free Dreams
  8. Seventeen/Forty-Seven: Darkness and Magic
  9. Relax with Song of the Whales
  10. O

 

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