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New Head

Had a great time hanging out with Tony Tost and his girlfriend Leigh. We ate on a balcony overlooking the big city of Greensboro and speculated about whether or not the passing clouds would break into storm. The talk of clouds seemed appropriate before Tony's reading at the Green Bean.

Tony started by reading some new poems. I am excited to see them on paper. The use of footnotes in his new poems were fascinating. The footnote for head sticks out for some reason.

A few of the highlights for me were: the beard poem (pg.17 in Invisible Bride) and the absolutely take-the-roof-off "unawares." I want to re-read that poem at least fifty times.

Tony and I did a little book swap. He borrowed the Geographics and My Life and I borrowed Frank Stanford's The Battlefield Where the Moon Says I love You. I want to jump into Frank Stanford. The thickness/denseness intrigues me rather than repels me. But I haven't started reading yet. Maybe I need to be locked away for a few days and just read it straight through.

Leigh was intrigued by some trimmed plants to the side of our house. Apparently Tony and Leigh have a nice house in the country with an organic garden left behind by the former tenant. Sounds like an exciting gardening adventure.

Naming, discovering, eating.

For a large part of the night leigh was engaged in a conversation with a poet about international economics/political science. From what I could tell (I was engaged in conversation about A.R. Ammons among other things) it seemed like the conversation did not allow for listening on the part of the poet (especially since Leigh obviously knows a lot more about the subject. She's doing a Phd in it). Sometimes people like to pretend to know more than they know. Although, I get frustrated with that stance. Hopefully Leigh wasn't too annoyed.

I've a bit of buzz at the back of my head this morning. A little beer; a little absinthe. I can still taste the absinthe. Unfilted absinthe with bits of wormwood floating around.

The reading altered, intrigued, lit, astonished, knocked me for six. If Tony comes anywhere near a town where you live, drive drive drive. Your head will be altered permenantly.

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Another Ireland: Part Two
Maurice Scully, The Basic Colours. Durham, UK: Pig Press, 1994.
Geoffrey Squires, Landscapes and Silences. Dublin: New Writers' Press, 1996.
Catherine Walsh, Idir Eatortha and Making Tents. London: Invisible Books, 1996.

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I began the first half of this article (Notre Dame Review #4) by mentioning some of the limits to the legendary hospitality Ireland has shown to its poets. If you arrive in Ireland from any point of departure outside of Eastern Europe, you will indeed find a public far more willing than the one you left behind to grant poets the recognition all but the most ascetic secretly crave. However, this hospitality has never extended to Irish poets w…