letters which have yet to be mailed.

Last week, someone mailed me a book of Proust. As I slowly read it, I think that he and I could have been lovers because if his limbs are anything like the length of his sentences, I might be curious to learn how many times he could wrap them around me. He utilizes semi-colons like breaths. They keep happening. And between each one is oxygenated imagery.

Dear Proust, I am reading you slowly. Between bites of Fanny Howe, Carole Maso and Vera Pavlova (always). Many nights ago, I turned my body into medicine. Offered up shots of my tongue and unzipped what I bind each day to another. And could this lover be called notebook. And could this lover be called photographer. And could this lover be called self. Proust, you searched for lost time and I am searching for lost body parts. And I am searching for therapeutic ways to (re)enter myself. 

I keep a folded piece of paper in my notebook full of addresses. And I keep track of every letter that I send, never waiting for one back. I just write. And mail. And write and send.

Humans are forgetting about paper. And pens. And stamps. And the beauty of envelopes like folded treasure chests. They are too often distracted by fancy phones and internet access. We text and skype and email and swipe faces to the left and right through online dating applications. But what about the mailboxes just outside our doors? What about scratched out words and the curvature of letters in inked handwriting. The lover who lays beside you…would you recognize their handwriting in an alphabetical line-up?

One of the most magical love affairs I found myself in began with letters. One summer of back-and-forth exchange of days, evenings, moon sightings. I wrote over forty letters that summer to one human, who reminded me that stories find their meaning when given to another. I wrote on scraps of tree bark found in Prospect Park, postcards, receipts, cardboard and leaves. I fell in love with this human through our matchmaker: the mailbox.

Tonight, I perform a piece full of letters. A letter to my cervix, to my breasts, my cellular structure, future lover, my body. In these letters, I find my way back into myself by unraveling stories, memory, sensations.

I’ll take the stage at Tammany Hall @ 152 Orchard St, NYC / Doors open at 7:30pm/ Show begins at 8pm/ 21+ / $15

This is an evening featuring magnetic performances by poets, singers, and comedians. I’m not sure which category I fit in anymore. But I’ll be there with my letters. And my uke. This is all to celebrate The Inspired Word’s four year anniversary. This series has grown into a movement of collaborations, community and artistry. I am honored to be a part of this celebration.



to celebrate body engulfed in text and ISBN

Dear Body,

You are the longest relationship I have ever had.

I stopped calling you. You remained.

I used you (sometimes) when there was no one else. You remained.

You grew around the scars I dug into your flesh and got close to the bone a few times. You remained.

photo by Jun Liu

See me live life out loud on computer screen.

Everyday, I question your arrival.

How do bruises fail our body?

If I set myself on fire, will you extinguish away the sores?

I want. I want. I want to fold against you, body, and rewind the snort of veins and crinoline-dressed decisions all spread out and itchy.

I’ve asked you how to love. How to keep it. How to be better at this.

I’m trying to be like you, body. I am trying to remain.

And now, I celebrate you in binding and numbered skin. Call you book, now. Call you titled.

to go without blinking

On Wednesday, March 28th, I speak you into a microphone. Just a little bit louder. Holding you up. Holding you in.

Body, I’ve launched you through windows, bedframes, over bridges and mountaintops. Now I launch you in book formation.

116 MacDougal St. (formerly the Gaslight Cafe) NYC
(between Bleecker Street and Minetta Lane)
Downstairs Lounge

Doors open for open mic sign-up @ 6:30pm
Show starts @ 7pm

Cover Charge: $10


Co-featuring Willie Perdomo and Eric Alter

thank you, thank you, thank you, body.

Next Performance @ The Inspired Word!

Mike Geffner Presents The Inspired Word features poets Jesús Papoleto Meléndez (of the Nuyorican Poets’ Movement) and Aimee Herman + a 15-slot Open Mic open to ALL types of artists.
Hosted by 3-time HBO Def Poetry star Gemineye.
$10 cover

@ The One and One Bar & Restaurant (downstairs: Nexus Lounge)
76 East 1st St. (corner of 1st Ave.) NYC
Doors open at 6:30pm
Showtime at 7:30pm


Jesús Papoleto Meléndez is a performance and visual poet, and one of the remaining original founders of the Nuyorican Poets’ Movement. His poetry publications include Casting Long Shadows (1970), Have You Seen Liberation (1971), Street Poetry & Other Poems (1972), and Concertos on Market Street (1994). His play, The Junkies Stole the Clock (1974), was the first production of Joseph Papp’s Public Theatre, New York Shakespeare Festival’s Nuyorican Playwrights’ Unit. He also formed “Nuroyrican School Original Poetry Jazz Ensemble” with Americo Casiano.Meléndez has received “The Rev. Pedro Pietri Hand Award in Poetry/Playwriting” (2006); “The 2004 Louis Reyes Rivera Lifetime Achievement Award” from Amherst College; a 2001-NYFA (New York Foundation for the Arts) Fellowship in Poetry; the Artist for Community Enrichment (ACE) Award from the Bronx Council on the Arts in 1995; and a COMBO (Combined Arts of San Diego)-NEA Fellowship in Literature. He has performed his poetry with El Reverendo Pedro Pietri at the Folger-Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC. ” My poems are written in a stylized technique of word-visualization, which I refer to as ‘Cascadance,’ because the words seem to cascade down the page in a form of dance,” he says. “The words ‘play’ with their associations to the words around them, becoming a visual statement that the words are making as images upon the page; a kind of visual poetry.”

Aimee Herman is a performance poet who has been featured at various NYC reading series including In the Flesh Erotic Salon, Hyper Gender, Sideshow: Queer Lit Carnival, and Red Umbrella Diaries. She can be read in anthologies such as: Best American Erotica 2010 (Cleis Press), Nice Girls, Naughty Sex (Seal), hell strung and crooked (Uphook Press), and Focus on the Fabulous: Colorado GLBT Voices. Beyond poetry, Aimee edits erotica for Oysters & Chocolate and also has a column called: notes from a dirty young woman. She is deeply inspired by Charles Bukowski, gender deconstructors, and alphabetized book shelves. She can next be seen at the HOT! Festival on July 22nd at Dixon Place.