Coming Up: A Dada Performance

Three Rooms Press presents The Tenth Annual NYC DADA Poetry and Performance Salon
featuring Maintenant 11: A Journal of Contemporary DADA Writing and Art


Le Poisson Rouge
Monday, June 5th, 7-9:30pm
158 Bleeker St/ NYC
FREE ADMISSION!

With performances and readings by:

Aimee Herman, Jane LeCroy, George Wallace, Jane Ormerod, Joel Allegretti, Puma Perl, Heide Hatry and so many more!!!!

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Performance on March 18th: Night in the Naked City

I’m excited to perform a new piece exploring subway love this coming Saturday, March 18th, at Cornelia Street Cafe, alongside some of my favorite NYC poets: Steve Dalachinsky, Matthew Hupert, Jane LeCroy, Puma Perl, Thomas Fucaloro, and George Wallace.

Cornelia Street Cafe: 29 Cornelia Street/NYC  @ 6pm   $10  (includes a beverage)

 

Thank you to Puma Perl for writing this excellent article on Queer Art Organics!

See the original article on Chelsea Now HERE   by PUMA PERL 

 

Aimee Herman, a performance poet, writer, and educator, is very clear about her reasons for founding Queer Art Organics, a monthly series held at Dixon Place.

“I wanted to create a space specifically for LGBTQ writers and performers, and to celebrate the immense range of talent in this city,” she told me. “We’ve had new writers and established ones as well. I wanted this series to be less about one’s bio and more about having an encouraging space to share work with a welcoming audience. I started going to open mics at age 18, and I still remember how it felt to be given three minutes to untangle my soul onstage.”

As host and curator, she selects people she’s seen perform, but also responds to queries from people wanting to be featured, and to recommendations by friends and participants. Some of the artists are as new to her as they are to the audience. “Amazingly,” she told me, “I have never been disappointed.”

The stripped-down, one-hour show, which Herman calls “a beautiful teaser of infinite talent,” consists of three or four performers, and does not limit itself to poets. Storytellers, comics, musicians, and performance artists of all kinds — including belly dancers and sword balancers — have been featured. My recent visit to the series demonstrated Herman’s success in presenting performers who vary widely in their experience. One of the artists, Charlotte Marchand, was reading in public for the first time. She enjoyed great support from the friends she had brought along and from the listeners, as she read excerpts from letters written by her late father. The prose piece was titled, appropriately, “Coming Out to My Dead Father,” and referenced the author’s experience in the women’s movement of the late ’60s and with the Weatherman, two topics that don’t often arise at readings.

June23_Organics_Durica

Trae Durica, another of the night’s features, describes himself as “genderqueer masculine.” Although he’s had some experience reading in public, Durica said he still feels like “a ball of anxiety and introversion wherever I read. But I do like reading in a queer, safe space, since I often write about my big queer life. I feel so much support in these spaces, where my story resonates with many others.”

Trae Durica reading from his 2014 chapbook, “Cacophony Worth Remembering.” Photo by Linda Rizzo.

Accompanied by Herman on ukulele for the first few poems, Durica’s reading included work from his 2014 chapbook, “Cacophony Worth Remembering.” I was particularly moved by one of what he calls his “Decisions” pieces, in which he asked the questions “normal” people never get asked. “When did you decide you were straight?” it began. “When did you decide you were the same gender as what’s on your birth certificate? When did you decide to wear clothes that make you look straight?”

“I feel that we need to keep creating these queer spaces where it’s safe for us to tell our stories for as long as it’s unsafe to be queer anywhere in the United States,” he said. “But at the end of the day, I want to read in any space where people are paying attention to performers instead of their cellphones.” 

The third feature of the evening, John J. Trause, opened his set by announcing, in a deadpan tone, that he wished to pay homage to Sappho — then, in a hilarious high-pitched voice, recited one of her poems in the original ancient Greek Aeolic dialect.

June23_Organics_Trause-

“I’m a performance poet,” Trause told me, “but I hate being labeled that way. I am also a visual poet, a conceptual poet, a metrical poet, a spiritual poet.” Trause is the Director of New Jersey’s Oradell Public Library and his list of writing credits and published books is long. On this evening, he read some pieces from his brand new book, “Exercises in High Treason,” (great weather for MEDIA, 2016). He describes it as “a work of fictive translations, found poems, and manipulated texts.”

Sappho tribute artist John J. Trause, with his latest book. Photo by Puma Perl.

In keeping with his self-description, the book is playfully arranged with a highly visual and conceptual appeal. “Even though I am a writer and librarian,” he said, “I love to reveal how words betray us. Since I have some real and some fake translation in my book, as well as other verbal transformations, I am committing high treason.”

Queer Art Organics started at Brooklyn’s Branded Saloon in October of 2014, and moved to Dixon Place in February of 2015. “Dixon Place, which is all-encompassing, is my favorite New York City venue,” Herman declared, “because of its resiliency and incredible support to the queer community and to artists in general. I love that they offer free and low-cost shows.”

Charlotte Marchand’s “Coming Out to My Dead Father” referenced her experience in the women’s movement of the ’60s and the Weatherman. Photo by Linda Rizzo.

June23_Organics_Charlotte-

This summer, the HOT! Festival, which is the world’s longest-running LGBTQ festival, returns to Dixon Place — and Herman is thrilled to have the series included in it. As usual, Queer Art Organics will offer what she describes as “a myriad of language.”

“I want to continue to be inclusive and never feel elite in any way,” Herman said. “Any queer humans out there reading this who would like to perform are welcome to contact me by email: aimeeherman@gmail.com. Sometimes the very best are the ones who’ve never taken the stage before. That’s so often when the magic happens.”

 Queer Art Organics is held at Dixon Place (161A Chrystie St., btw. Rivington & Delancey Sts.), usually on the second Wed. of every month. It is a free one-hour event and starts at 7:30pm. The next show is Tues., July 19, as part of the HOT! Festival (which runs July 5Aug. 6). The series skips Aug. and returns in Sept. For more info, visit dixonplace.org. Recent work by Aimee Herman and John J. Trause can be purchased at greatweatherformedia.com.

TONIGHT: Night in the Naked City 3: An Evening of NYC Writers Writing About NYC

Join us for the 3rd annual celebration of New York Voices. There are 8 million stories in the Naked City – come hear 10 of them

Celebrate this badass city and its surrounding boroughs at Cornelia Street Cafe, located at 29 Cornelia St, NYC / 6-8pm / $8 (includes a drink!)

FEATURING:

Eric Alter, Peter Carlaftes,Steve Dalachinsy, Thomas Fucaloro,Puma Perl, Fred Simpson, George Wallace, Aimee Herman (with Pancetta the ukelele), Matthew Hubert, and Jane Lecroy.

day 26: read (some more)

Reading a book is like being in a relationship. There are moments you do not want it to end, yet there are also times when you feel more than ready to walk away from it. There are disappointments, but also surprises. Sometimes, there are sequels, which just elongates the pleasure.

I’ve had entire summers dedicated to writers, unable to say goodbye to their language: Mary Gaitskill, Haruki Murakami, Charles Bukowski, even an orgy of Pablo Neruda, Kazim Ali and Hafiz.

It is easy to use the excuse: there is just no time to read a book, but time must be paved and watered.

When I read, I travel to countries and territories I may never get the opportunity to discover. I meet characters who help me to understand myself and the world around me. I read poems that expand my vision. Reading reminds me to always believe in magic.

Here are just a few great books I read this year and highly recommend:

Nevada (Topside Press)  by Imogen Binnie. Throughout this book, I felt like I was part of the bike gears turning over bridges as the narrator, Maria, traveled toward and away from herself. I was significantly blown away by this novel and the honest, funny and emotional writing of Imogen Binnie. After reading this book, I purchased, The Collection, which is a phenomenal anthology of transgender writers, including Binnie. I just didn’t want to let go of her yet.

Man Alive (City Lights Publishing) by Thomas Page McBee is a memoir exploring masculinity and a highly focused dissection of the past. It is poetic and brutal and exploratory. I found myself folding over the corners of pages in order to go back to his words. I even underlined some things, faintly, since it was a library book. This one I need to purchase, so I can reread and rediscover.

Prosperity, A Novel (Dog Ear Publishing) by Jenna Leigh Evans. I was blown away by Evans’s vocabulary and cinematic approach to the ways in which debt can be overpowering and (oddly) funny. It is beyond relatable, since I want to believe that everyone is slathered in some form of debt. The entire time I was reading this book, I felt like I was watching it. Her mind is so illustrative and she crafted a place that I could see in every scene, down to the color and smell of it all.

For Today I Am a Boy (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)  by Kim Fu explored the complex relationship of gender and culture. I fell in love with the protagonist, Peter Huang, and loved being a part of his journey away from and toward home. Kim Fu brings such dynamic characters together up until even the very end of this novel.

An Untamed State  (Grove Press) by Roxanne Gay has infiltrated my dreams and has sewed itself to my palm. I am forever changed by the horrific accounts of the protagonist, Miri. Roxanne Gay already had me with “Bad Feminist”. I fell in love with her frankness. Here, in this novel, she captivates my core. I feel bloodied and battered from the scenes she creates.To write that I could not put this down is not exact enough. Even when I put it down, I was reading it. I want to ask Gay: How did you leave these scenes while writing them? How were you able to move through the world (eat lunch with friends, watch a television program, sleep) with these images crafted by your mind and fingers. This book MUST be read.

Retrograde (great weather for MEDIA) by Puma Perl surprised me in such marvelous ways. I’ve been a fan of Puma Perl’s since moving back to Brooklyn almost five years ago. Her poetry is gritty, like rock-n-roll slurs of graffiti against the page. I’ve seen her perform many times and she slides her words out seductively and authoritatively. I have read most of (if not all) of her books and find that this collection shows such immeasurable growth that makes me an even bigger fan than I already was.

the pedestrians (Wave Books) by Rachel Zucker feels like a walk through the subconscious mind. This is what I imagine it might feel like to hold hands with another’s frontal lobe, interlocking fingers with mood and behavioral status. There is a saltiness to her prose. A desperation drenched in almost-stale tears. It is a unique experience to read a book of poetry and want to call it a ‘page-turner’, but this one definitely is.

Here (Mariner Books) by Wislawa Szymborska became my travel date on a long walk through Greenpoint, Brooklyn one day. I carried her words around and could feel the seep of her line breaks saturate my skin; her words drip. I feel full when I read her, like I’ve just eaten a meal full of protein and starches and my insides feel bathed. There is an optimism in her writing that also reveals a bit of loneliness as well.

Performance: WORD (brooklyn)

Tuesday, November 4th, Books are cracked open, read and discussed!

Come to WORD bookshop for an evening of poetry and prose with Richard Levine, Aimee Herman, Jenna Leigh Evans, and Puma Perl

Time: 7pm – 8pm, reading/talk/Q&A; 8pm – 8:30pm signing
Location: WORD Brooklyn, 126 Franklin St, BK NY 11222

 

Poetry Teachers NYC Presents: Poetics Explosion!!!

Tonight join PTNYC for an evening of poetry and music at Cornelia Street Cafe, located at 29 Cornelia St. NYC

I am excited to host this great event, which will feature:

Puma Perl, David Lawton, Chloe Sky, Steve Dalachinsky, Steve Herrera, Bryan Eich and PTNYC faculty members, Dan Dissinger and Megan DiBello.

Meet us at 6pm. $8 gets you in and includes a drink.

For more info, go to:      https://www.facebook.com/events/724370910937930/?ref=22