how queer is this queer.

“That’s one of the things that “queer” can refer to: the open mesh of possibilities, gaps, overlaps, dissonances and resonances, lapses and excesses of meaning when the constituent elements of anyone’s gender, of anyone’s sexuality aren’t made (or can’t be made) to signify monolithically.”
― Eve Kosofsky SedgwickTendencies

The way this is makes me want to remove all my skin and knit every page of every dictionary to my bones and then we can spend a lifetime learning words off each other.

Brooklyn Performance.

Tonight, a swarm of poets in Brooklyn! I’ll be reading alongside some excellent poets including Poetry Teachers NYC faculty members: Dan Dissinger and Megan DiBello, plus Emanuel Xavier and Peter Rugh and many others. Curated by artist and poet Sam Jablon.

Interested in reading as well? Come along and bring a poem to share!

Come to Wayfarers @ 1109 Dekalb Ave between Broadway and Malcolm X Blvd. from 7-10pm.

For more info, go to: Wayfarers’ reading

a tale of several beautifuls

Thank you to Craig Scott, publisher of Luciferous for publishing my poem, a tale of several beautifuls:

Blame it on symmetry.

How near are her eyes to carefully constructed bridge of nose. Does she starve. Are her hips like the horizon, without fault or curve. Is her skin more mocha than medium rare. What blooms in the months outside of spring or autumn and when the leaves go away, how sturdy are the branches. Does your grass wilt or does it arrive like green erections plunged out of earth’s pores.

Blame it on what distracts us. Call it brushed air. Call it removed particles of mistake.

Her smile is white and heterosexual. His hair is without recede. That home is window’d and gorgeous due to its skylights and built-in 401K plan. Does her cellulite show. Does your health plan cover the creams you will need to rub it away. What is your routine. How many chemicals have attempted to peel away your skin; I think you might be beautiful under that fifth layer. Keep ripping at yourself. Scoop out and where there is tunnel, there is possibility for better.

Blame it on tents and drawers and the tenacity of lies. Collocate implant withimbalance.

Remove your girdle now. Help the redheaded dancer with her zipper and linger your looks at the way she folds like love letters. Quietly ask if you can dance your language into the cleavage of her mind. And the other one with painted eyebrows, thicker than the remorse from your 20s. She is beautiful too. And that graffiti’d church that might be a bank now or was but has become a collaborative celebration of dripped paint now. And her nipples. And that cloud that kind of looks like your best friend from tenth grade. And that fence, painted turquoise. And your neck. And that meal you fed me when my palms were too tired to lift and curl. And that Wednesday you fell asleep inside me. And that rooftop garden. And the smell of patchouli you snuck inside magazine. And your sodium. And my blood. And that too.



oh body…

“Laugh and cry and tell stories. Sad stories about bodies stolen, bodies no longer here. Enraging stories about the false images, devastating lies, untold violence. Bold, brash stories about reclaiming our bodies and changing the world.”
― Eli ClareExile and Pride: Disability, Queerness, and Liberation

We are full of elipses….these bodies go on and on and when we are lucky, we find an other. A semi-colon body. A body that pauses and ends at the same time. A body that introduces and independently speaks. A body that can be conjoined with another. A body that can climb its stories and shiver its way out from the compulsion to hide. These are the bodies that cause maps to change because we are introducing new constructions, new villages, brand new roads and bodies of waters. These bodies are salt stream lakes and sand dunes. These bodies are speaker boxes and musical accompaniments to the rage of (disrobed) silences. We reclaim each time we boldly exist.

what to call this: gender.

Imagine body as a tree. It begins as a shape that never remains just that. It hardens and expands. It changes color and thickness. It lets go; it disrobes; it houses other living things inside it; it mourns like a weeping willow; it has many names and occupations.

This treebody drips its sap into mouths and palms. This treebody exists in various ways all over the world. This treebody has no gender and it has many genders and it loves through shots of slurped up sun and rain and is rooted through the rings which wrangle it open.

We’ve got all of these options now of what one can be called and ways to bend and love and present. What happens when we exchange our customary outfit from masculine or feminine garb to something else.

How to harvest the hybrid of genders within us.

It is a Monday. I am suited in tie and vest and button-down shirt. My pants are tight, but could be worn by any human in search of warmth down there. I’ve got boots on with unnecessary laces and a zipper on one side. My hair is messy and unbrushed. It houses several yells inside each knot that are stored up from the ones who cannot seem to understand why I have decided to wash my hair less. I wear no make-up, nor does my skin glow. I might feel comfortable if you called me androgynous or even boundless.

I present a vocabulary of stereo-types in front of a room full of learners. We disrobe what we expect boxes to look like. I ask them to remove their swiss army knives from pockets (for those who carry them). I ask them to cut open the ninety-degree angle squares that force us to choose. I tell them that suddenly, we are no longer expected to choose from just two options or [gasp] other. I said that now we have options that represent the spectrum in which humans have always been but never had the opportunity to announce.

I want to out myself as the type of human some people have a difficult time understanding. I try to explain to my mother later on that day that gender is not something we should wait for people to learn. In order to remove the hate from speech, we must educate each other as to the impact of understanding one another.

As humans we come out many times in our lives. Sometimes it is just our names we change. For some, it is more bodily. Shapes and voices and language of parts change. Some of us change our sexual orientations.

There is not just one closet that we come out from and then IT is over.

I have been closeted by lovers; I have been closeted by myself. I understand the impact and necessity to be as loud as I can in order to pave the roads beside me for others to come out and make noise.

I have intentionally surrounded myself with humans who are gender construction workers. Smart, sexy humans who have taken these boxes into their hands, crumpled them up and turned them into other shapes. I have fallen in love with the ones who celebrate hybridity.

This earth may be over-populated, though it is big enough to hide. But who would want to do that when there are so many ways to seek out the truths and translations of our selves.




Breathe. For twenty-one days, you proved to your body you could go without. You gave up ritual of caffeinated steamed lover pressed into french kiss glass with almond or oat milk stirred flesh. Throat mourned for days into weeks, yearning for that feeling of burnt tongue because some things are too hot for patience.

For twenty-one days, you went without fermented drunk. Poem’d in bars with breath of seltzer and lime. Did shots of question marks and annotations, flirting with humans housing whiskey within the curves of their cavities. You realized booze is not always necessary to loosen your limbs and fall in lust.

For twenty-one days, you dug fork into enough chick peas to refer to skin tone as legume’d. There was no cheese or bread or animals. Turned the inside of your body into an ocean of Brooklyn water.

For twenty-one days, you reflected. Forgave.  Told the ghosts to gather elsewhere. Let in new ones. Let go of patterns of fear. Forgave your secrets and spoke them out loud. Threw away runners; recognized the beauty in remaining with an/other. Found new entrances to your body. Changed the locks and swept up the parade of winter outside your bones to prepare for the roots of spring to expand.

Poetry Teachers NYC Workshops in May/July

Writing begins in the body. It grows like a dislocated pattern of weather beneath skin and wraps around bones like a thunderstorm of messages.

How to translate the urgency of mind? What does a poem look like in fetus form? Without bones and still maturing into a shape that can be identified. How to wrestle it onto a page and watch it perform off the lines or restriction of notebook?

Poetry Teachers NYC is excited to announce the next round of workshops in May. This will be a triple explosion of poetics, taught by a collaborative of writers and performers. Three classes to choose from and if you call yourself indecisive, then you can sign up for all three!

Class Dates: Sunday, May 8, 11, 18th (times below).

Performance Date: Saturday, May 24th (6PM-9PM).

Class Location:
Shelter Studios
244 west 54th St.
12th Floor & Penthouse
Between Broadway & 8th Ave.


Taught by Thomas Fucaloro and Todd Anderson

Is performance poetry just about walking on stage and reading your poem in a booming voice or can it be more? Can it also inspire in a visual way not just auditory? Can we use media or images or film to add another layer to what we have written. In this workshop we will focus on getting around performance stereotypes and work on developing your words as visuals using video and computers. We will be looking at the visual text of a poem, making the audience read not listen. How does composing it this way change your process? Todd Anderson will focus on and workshop the technology aspect then Thomas Fucaloro will lead us through performance techniques. As visual as you are, there is still room to enhance performance of your work. We will also be examining classic poetry in order to enhance stage performance. We will be looking at Shakespeare, Dylan Thomas and more.

Taught by Caitlin Gill

What happens when we sit still? What happens when we move from sitting still? When does it happen? The decision from stillness to movement? The act from mind to the moment of creation? In this three week course, we’re going to explore making our art from a place of stillness/movement with these questions in mind. It’s an exploration. An experiment. We will employ all of the curiosity in our artist bodies and perhaps try something new. Something weird. Something scary. Something beautiful. Something.

We will make the studio and our time together a sacred space. Everything is welcome. We will work as an ensemble to support each other in the vulnerable space of process. Whether you’re creating something new or working on an existing project, we’re learning how to create while being with others and using their strengths to support our own process. We’re also learning how to be with our fellow artists on their journeys from a place of openness and support. Most importantly, we will play. And we’ll see what comes of these curious endeavors.

Taught by Megan DiBello, Dan Dissinger and Aimee Herman

Our unique, three-instructor approach sets PTNYC workshops apart, bringing multiple poetic perspectives to the table and serving to spark open dialogue.

In addition to receiving writing prompts and weekly assignments, students are challenged to get to know their own work through performance, both in class and on stage. Students are also encouraged to contribute to open discussion of one another’s writing and readings. The three instructors also address the needs of individual students, focussing in on writing craft, performance style, and self-editing.



PTNYC is ecstatic to announce our summer writing program!!!!


Immerse yourself for the month of July in New York’s historic poetry scene, drawing on the rich lineage of the the city’s downtown creative community.  Cultivate your craft under the guidance of professional New York poets and celebrated guest lecturers. Absorb the city’s signature entrepreneurial spirit and emerge equipped to publish, perform, and succeed in your own creative endeavors.


During the 4 weeks of the Summer program, students will learn what it takes to plan a Poetry or Multi-disciplinary event in New York. The venues we have chosen are The Sidewalk Cafe and The Cornelia Street Cafe. Both of these iconic venues are downtown staples to the performance community.  Students will be tasked with choosing student readers, creating  programs, finding a host, as well as marketing and promoting their events. Each event will need a title and a theme. Students will learn about managing logistical aspects such as time constraints, content, scripts, and pricing. They will also be able to figure in other creative aspects, such as music, visual art and dance.


There will be 3 student-run panels, each with 4 presenters, held on Wednesdays, starting on July 16th. Each student will write their own paper in defense of a theme that the panel’s moderator will choose. After each student presents his or her paper (max time 15 minutes, including any tech needs), there will be a Q & A. The panels will each run for 2 hours total, from 6PM-8PM.


Each week’s round table discussion will feature a new theme built around relevant topics such as publishing, entrepreneurship, life in New York, creative process, submissions, and New York City’s distinct history. Guest writers, publishers, and people in business will be visiting the table to offer ideas and encouragement and spark open discussion.  This is a great opportunity for students to ask questions and to network with creative influencers.  Guest Writers: Kristin Prevallet, Lisa Jarnot, Brenda Coultas, Advocate of Wordz, Joyce LeeAnn, Peter Rugh, Daniel Dissinger, Aimee Herman, and Megan DiBello along with other guests. Guest publishers will include Great Weather for Media, Three Rooms Press, Fact-Simile, and Monkey Puzzle Press.


Throughout the 4 weeks, each student will have the opportunity to meet with each of our 3 teachers individually, outside of class. We do this so that each student has a chance to showcase and discuss his or her work and receive personalized feedback and advice. We also chat with students about their personal and artistic goals and help them plan the next steps in their creative lives.


Workshops will be held on Wednesdays, Saturdays, and Sundays. We will provide a comprehensive source book to accompany the workshop series, containing information about local resources, open mics, and events. Reading and writing exercises will be assigned. Students will write letters to one another regarding their work. The focus of these workshops is to cultivate a students’ distinct creative voices, both written and performative. Voice, stage presence, eye contact, and diction are all performance aspects that will be covered in these classes.


Week 1:
July 5th: 9:30AM-12:30PM
July 6th: 9:30AM-2:30PM
July 9th: 9:30AM-5:30PM

Week 2:
July 12th: 9:30PM-2:30PM
July 13th: 9:30AM-2:30PM
July 16th: 9:30AM-5:30PM

Week 3:
July 19th: 9:30PM-2:30PM
July 20th: 9:30AM-2:30PM
July 23rd: 9:30AM-5:30PM

Week 4:
Performance at Governers Island Poetry Fesival:  July 26th & July 27th (ALL DAY)
July 30th: 9:30PM-5:30PM
August 2nd: Closing Reading/ Party 6PM-12AM







They were there all along. These roots. These birds panelling the sidewalks like decorative creatures flying in and out of the NYC trash heaps. These feelings of something new brewing.

Winter is long gone, even though it refuses to exit stage left, so it remains like a stalker, fondling the wind that fondles you. Even so, it is Spring now. Windows unlatch and humans disrobe.

Head to the tree where you wept last spring, letting twelve pounds of salt exit from your body that you fed to the ducks that they leaked into the lake.

Carve your name into the sunlight.

Kiss the one who arrived on a Sunday and smells like every book you ever fell in love with because each chapter revealed itself in increments and the glossary practically impregnated your mind.

Eat something from the ground. Do not wash it. Risk a tickled throat from some New York soil.

Dig nude toes into the bark of that tree. Tell it your dirtiest secrets; it will hide its giggles in each knot of wood. Sing out loud even if others surround you. Do not apologize for being off key or mispronouncing instrumentation.

Take something away from here to last you until summer. Let it come apart in your pocket. Give it permission to become something else….

…as you are.

finding what you forgot you were looking for.

Yesterday, I crashed into a photograph…down on eastern parkway…it was just me and a woman in white.We enter and exit moments, some of which belong to us and some of which belong to others.

On a Tuesday, I biked my way into a snapshot of a woman wearing the garb of approaching wedding. Her hands were hidden by a bouquet of flowers and I never got to see her face, just that body clothed by fabric that looked like January sky. I wanted to ask her so many questions, but instead I spoke them out loud into the wind:

What are you hoping for?
How necessary are rings? Do they come with a guarantee?

On a different day, I speak about love with another poet. He asks me: So, what’s going on? Are you in love?

I smile because this gives me time to approach such a question. I tell him: I’ve had some immense loves in my life and if it never happens again, I think I’ll be ok. And then I add: It’s too fucking scary to get into again.

Bike rides tend to lead me toward discovery of self and place.  So do these conversations with poets and musicians.

Where are we going and how are we getting there.

I haven’t owned a car in over three years, so I’ve been getting places through the transportation of my body. It can roll and honk and brake and signal. None of my parts are borrowed, but they don’t all exactly belong to me. I’ve torn off my rear-view mirrors; no need to see what is behind me anymore. I study the cracked windshield of my soul and allow it to veer me forward.

I almost got married once, though I doubt I would have worn white. I’ve been in love 4 and a half times. There may be more ahead of me, but for now, I am working on the one who keeps trying to get away: me.




pay attention.

Eventually you can’t help but figure out that, while gender is a construct, so is a traffic light, and if you ignore either of them, you get hit by cars. Which, also, are constructs.”― Imogen BinnieNevada

Your limbs have become flesh-covered ticker tape messages telling others around you how you want to be r(e)ad. You’ve stretched out your politics to wrap around you like binding, but in a different way, and when others call you miss or lady, you wonder if you could find a word that can detach from the feminine/masculine trope. You search for a human to love who houses various genders in their body; you wonder if someone were to dismember the scaffolding of your bones, what conjugation would dominate. Maybe you are looking to get hit. You test the concrete with your scuffed-up boots and as traffic drives by, you tease windshields and rotating wheels with your blur.