Last MASS MoCA moments

I posted my final MASS MoCA reunion poetry residency piece right before the Boiler House Poets’ last lunch together, but wanted to add a postscript.

The marvelous Marilyn McCabe had already completed a first draft of our Boiler House videopoem and gave us a viewing before we departed.

It looks fantastic and I am anxious to share it with you all, which I will do as soon as Marilyn puts the finishing touches on it and releases it to the public.

Stay tuned!

Poem for the Boiler House Poets!

I am so excited to share this blog post from my poet-friend Gail Dimaggio!

Gail is one of the Boiler House Poets, the inaugural group of poets who gathered at MASS MoCA for a poetry residency in collaboration with Tupelo Press. It was my privilege to be part of this intrepid group of nine poets who shared an amazing, complex, rich, and creative week together.

This month, Gail is participating in the 30/30 fundraiser for Tupelo Press. She is among a group of poets writing and posting a new poem every day. Poems and sponsorship information is available here:  https://tupelopress.wordpress.com/3030-project/.

Today is day 11 and Gail has posted a poem that I sponsored, asking her to write about our experience together. She wrote an amazing poem using the technique of found poetry, in which the poet uses words from another source to create a new work. Here, Gail uses fragments of poems from the Boiler House Poets’ video in her poem “Poets Gather in the Boiler House to Read Their Work”.

Most of the Boiler House Poets will be gathering this fall for a reunion at MASS MoCA. Gail and I will both be there.

I can hardly wait!

SoCS: art, poetry, and 30/30

Last November, I attended my first-ever poetry residency/workshop/conference at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, known as MASS MoCA. It was held in conjunction with Tupelo Press, a non-profit independent press located just down the road in the Eclipse Mill loft.

It was amazing, difficult, intense, valuable, exhausting, overwhelming, and dozens of other adjectives. (Poets don’t use many adjectives. Bloggers are allowed.) Anyone who would like to read more about my experience can check out the November 2015 posts in my archive.

One of the many lasting benefits is that I have written a series of poems about art. I had written a few before that residency, but not nearly as many as afterward. There is a fancy name for poems about art, ekphrastic. Note:  spell check does not know what to do with the word ekphrastic.

Some of these poems, along with other poems about North Adams, the city where MASS MoCA is located, and the surrounding towns, will become my first-ever-attempt-at a poetry collection.

It’s complicated.

I grew up in a town about twenty miles from North Adams and went to high school in North Adams. We went there to shop and to visit relatives. The city has changed a lot over the years. I’ve changed a lot over the years. The poems deal with generations of our family, small towns and a small city, home, change, geography, and art.

It’s a lot.

It’s also a new experience.

I am about to print the poems that are completed and assemble them into sections and a manuscript, leaving space for some poems that aren’t yet written. I’ll look for holes that need to be filled.  And try to fill them.

I am hoping to have a reasonable working draft by the time our group of poets, who were the first group to experience the Mass MoCA/Tupelo collaboration, return for a reunion residency in October.

We call ourselves the Boiler House Poets, after an art/sound installation at MASS MoCA where we made a video of us reading poems.

I am giving a shout-out here to one of the Boiler House Poets, Gail Dimaggio, who is embarking on another exciting collaboration with Tupelo Press. She will be one of their 30/30 poets in August. She and a small group of poets will each write a new poem every day for thirty days, which will be posted on a special section of the Tupelo Press website. Everyone is invited to follow along! Gail has a new blog to accompany her journey:  https://gaildi.blogspot.com/.

Come join the poetry/blogging fun!
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Linda’s prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday this week is “art.” Come join us! Find out how here:  https://lindaghill.com/2016/07/29/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-july-3016/

SoCS badge 2015

 

Marilyn McCabe’s Glass Factory

I’m pleased to share the news that poet-friend and fellow Boiler House Poet Marilyn McCabe has a new book of poems available.  This link:   https://marilynonaroll.wordpress.com/glass-factory/  will take you to her blog post about it with videos of her reading two of the poems, link to a readers’ guide, and more! Ordering information is included in the post, so go there right now and check it out!

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M is for Marilyn (and MASS MoCA)

Poem by Marilyn McCabe

I’m sharing this link to a blog post from one of the Boiler House Poets, Marilyn McCabe. She loves sharing poetry in a multimedia way as she does in the short video here: https://marilynonaroll.wordpress.com/2016/01/25/word-up/

Check it out!

The Boiler House Reading, Tupelo Press/MASSMoCA Residency, November 2015 on Vimeo

Another chance to share the awesome video the Boiler House Poets made at Mass MoCA during our residency there with Tupelo Press in North Adams MA. Re-blogging this from fellow Boiler House Poet Donna Fleischer’s blog. Hop on over there and enjoy!

word pond

The Boiler House at MASS MoCA poetry reading on November 18, 2015 was given by Tupelo Press Writing Conference poets in the order of their readings: Kyle Laws, Donna Fleischer, Gail Dimaggio, James Sneed, Kay Morgan, Victoria G. Smith, Marilyn McCabe, Ann Dernier, and Joanne Corey, with James Schley, Managing Editor, Tupelo Press books.

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Re-entry

The poetry residency/workshop with Mass MoCA/Tupelo Press was amazing, but it’s a bit of a jar being back home. It is especially hard to come back to a week that is so far removed from my usual routine.

I spend most weekdays able to arrange my own schedule.  This week, with the Thanksgiving holiday and both B and younger daughter T on vacation, I don’t have my usual solitary time, so I am having to trust that I will be able to go back to processing all the poetic goodness from last week – and get to work on writing and revising I want to do. (Reassurances welcome in comments.)

Today, I got to see all the elders of the family. This morning, I got to share the video of the Boiler House Poets’ reading with my parents and talk a bit about my experience. I also got to play the recording of the piece (begins at about 12:40) on which my poem “Lessons from Mahler” is based.  It was lovely to share this with them.

The afternoon was back to reality, bringing my mother-in-law to a medical appointment. Things aren’t worse, but they aren’t better either. Sigh. At least, she is doing better than she was when she came over for Thanksgiving dinner a year ago.

And tomorrow morning, I will facilitate the spirituality class at church. Poetry may come up…

Mass MoCA Poetry Residency: video

This morning, we resident poets all had to pack up and say good-bye to each other, Mass MoCA and Tupelo. We shared breakfast and as much conversation as we could cram into our last hours together.

We are going to miss each other, but we did have some important consolations, with promises to stay in touch, visit each other, and to attempt a reunion at some future date to be determined.

Best of all, the video of our Boiler House poetry reading has been uploaded to vimeo:  https://vimeo.com/146389749 . Enjoy!

This experience has been so instructive and moving for me, I know it will bear fruit for years to come. I have a lot of work ahead and hopes that I can refine my work to merit publication. I have a lot more tools in my kit now and send out my sincere thanks to Tupelo, Jeffrey, Mass MoCA, and the Boiler House poets.

Father Daughter Wedding Dance – I Think My Husband Dislocated a Hip

For anyone who needs a smile or chuckle today, watch this father/daughter wedding dance video!

Travel Tales of Life

Our daughter’s wedding to her Prince Charming exceeded all expectations of celebration. The traditional Father Daughter wedding dance was no exception. For those of you convinced I am the wild and crazy one of the duo the illusion shall now be shattered.

Calgary Peace Bridge WeddingPhoto credit – Bretton Dyte Photography

Below is a video of the Dad and Daughter shenanigans thanks to our son.Things really get shaking at the 55 second mark. Watch for the well choreographed Macarena – Spice Girl transition. The big finale of the Gangnam style extravaganza is my personal favorite. No matter how many times I watch it I end up snorting with laughter.

Many of you were very kind as to do a dance to the sun gods for the wedding and we extend our sincere thanks for your efforts. The rain did stop late in the day, and turned to snow. Perhaps you were facing the…

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