Reunion residency – welcome!

Friday morning, my poet-friend Jessica picked me up for the drive to North Adams to begin the Boiler House Poets reunion residency at MASS MoCA. (To check out my blog posts from the original Tupelo Press/Studios at MASS MoCA residency, use my archive dropdown list entry for November 2015.)  It is a reunion for me, but not for Jessica whom I invited to fill in a slot for one of our original group who was unable to attend.

In the MASS MoCA parking lot, we ran into residency coordinator Emily with Ann and Kyle, who are my and Jessica’s apartment mates for the week. Emily gave us our keys and info and showed us our apartment, which is on the third floor of a building kittycorner from the museum complex, just across the hall from the apartment I stayed in last year. (My header photo here at Top of JC’s Mind was taken from that vantage point.)  We each have our own bedroom, with shared kitchen and bath.

Emily also showed us our studios. Last time, I was in studio seven, but this time I am in studio two, with a view of the Airstream trailer art installation which is connected by walkway to the top of the Boiler House which gives our group its name due to this video we made during our inaugural residency.

One of the special moments yesterday was when Ann gave us copies of the new book she edited of poems we created in an exercise with Jeffrey Levine of Tupelo Press during our 2015 residency.  It is called Verse Osmosis and is available here. I am honored to be a part of this book and this group!

In the couple of hours before our welcome dinner, I had the chance to catch up with our other apartment’s returning poets, Marilyn, Kay, and Gail and to meet our other new addition this time, Catherine. I was sad to learn that Donna, one of our original members who had hoped to come visit us on Saturday, was taken ill and wouldn’t be able to come see us. I am consoled, though, to have a copy of her new chapbook <Periodic Earth>, published by fellow Boiler House Poet Kyle’s Casa de Cinco Hermanas Press and available here.

Since we were in North Adams last year, a new Italian restaurant, Grazie, has opened on the first floor below our apartments and it was the site for our welcome dinner. We were happy to have another of our Boiler House Poets, James, join us, along with a friend who was celebrating her birthday. Like me, James is from the North Adams area and was back visiting. We had a long dinner with lots of lively conversation. I was happy to have James sign my copy of Verse Osmosis and we passed James’s copy around the table to sign for him. Unfortunately, Vicki, another of our inaugural group, was also unable to make the trip to North Adams for the reunion, so her signature will be missing from our books, too.

By the time dinner was over, it was after ten o’clock and I was too tired to join in the additional visiting that was going on and too tired to write this post. At least I am able to get this out early this morning. I hope to be off to my studio soon…



Author: Joanne Corey

Please come visit my eclectic blog, Top of JC's Mind. You can never be sure what you'll find!

2 thoughts on “Reunion residency – welcome!”

  1. Dear Joanne,
    Reading your post just now unfurled many joyful daily memories of my participation in last year’s residency, my first ever. We quickly built a solid trust which proved exponentially productive in the many fluid, creative ideas and writing that would come of it. On a formal level, I think that the Tupelo Press publisher ,Jeffrey Levine’s style and experience in guiding and creating workshops, was a invaluable boon to our group dynamics. What a fruitful year it has been since we last met: Gail’s 30-30 poems for Tupelo Press, Marilyn’s new poetry book, your own reading to a very large audience, Kyle’s excellent publishing and editing skills culminating in my new chapbook, and Ann’s indefatigable communication, publishing, and editing skills poured into what emerged as the new poetry anthology, “Verse Osmosis” by the Boiler House Poets, as you mention above. Our Boiler House Poets!! I hope with all my might that I have a chance to join all of you again, that there will be a third time! I just know this time, even without me there (self-deprecating chuckle), your second residency will be just as great as was the first. My love to all us BHP, the new participants, and to James.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Donna, we miss you so much! Yes, definitely, next time you must be here with us in whatever constellation we find ourselves. I do hope you are feeling better. Thank you so much for reading and for the long, lovely comment. I need you to sign for me.


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