how to pay attention to a body.

all photos by mike geffner

all photos by mike geffner

Here’s the thing: I’m not always so present in my body. We’ve had a tumultuous relationship over the years and although we are on speaking terms right now, there was about a decade where we just ignored each other. Passive-aggressively passed by, barely making eye contact.

Sometimes it felt like a language barrier, not quite having the right words to say, unable to connect. This tends to happen. We had a few interventions, even started collecting dictionaries in order to search for more words to speak out. But it’s been a long, long journey toward understanding the ‘right’ ways to pay attention to each other.

On a Friday in Queens, I walked from the 7 train toward an art gallery where poets, music makers and performers of various disciplines gathered for an event produced by The Inspired Word performance series. I was not going as poet, rather performance artist, lending my skin out to strangers and friends to be referenced as The Human Canvas  (Graffiti’d Body).

Here’s another thing: It’s difficult to present a piece where much of your body is exposed with the intention not to titillate. What I wanted people to contemplate were the various ways in which bodies are like buildings. Buildings which we tag with our name or images or bits of contemplations. How skin can be weathered like bricks. What one would write or draw if given the opportunity (with pen, ink, marker) to tag another’s body.

The humans were shy at first, but so was I. None of these people knew how deeply uncomfortable it was for me to be dressed in such drag. Red sequined tube top worn as skirt. Chest scooped into a black bra, a contraption I haven’t worn for almost two years. Bra has since been replaced by a binder, training my tits to flatten and disappear. All beneath yellow police caution tape.


The rules were: You may write or paint anything and anywhere. Some wrote their initials. One wrote a sound: ZOINK!. Another wrote part of a poem. There were designs, declarations (will you gay marry me?) and symbols.

People were shy at first; perhaps we are just not used to people saying: hey, want to write on my exposed flesh?

Throughout the night, people timidly approached my skin. Many asked first (which I appreciated, though it was certainly not necessary; the permission was granted the moment I walked through the door). One said, I don’t know how to paint. I responded, yes, you do. And then, I put some paint on the end of a brush and handed it to her. Just……put this color on me and see what happens, I said.

She painted: Let’s make love, not war.

I smiled and said, Hey, you’re a painter now!

273At the end of the night, my partner arrived, and he approached my skin quietly, using paint and marker to tag me.

Being the only one who knows my gender in its entirety, he said, “I’ve never seen you like this.” (This meaning skirt and fluffed-up breasts).

This piece is political, but in a space like this where I speak only if the audience asks questions, its more about being silent and observing the ways in which people approach a body.

I could feel myself being ogled at times, and I knew this was part of human nature. Outside of spaces like this, I practice androgyny. I am far less and more of the in-between.

Here’s how I pay attention to my body now: I enforce encourage dialogues. With myself. With others. I ask questions of myself. How does this feel? How do I want to be today? 

What felt comfortable yesterday won’t always feel that way today.

So, I encourage my body to be more open. To be more out loud. To speak up and out. To perform on and off stages. This reminds me that the silent treatments only prolong stagnation in a body.

My body has housed me for over three decades. The shape has changed and I’ve got quite a few scratches and signatures on it now, but it is also a speaker box. And I intend to project.



It’s Raining Words!

Tonight! A very special collaboration of performance series, poets, music makers and artists.

Po3try NYC Presents Raining Words: A Spring Poetry Extravaganza @ The Pomegrante Gallery – The Dawning of a New Era in Big Apple Poetry

3Po3try NYC is a ground-breaking alliance between three of New York City’s most prominent poetry influences – great weather for MEDIA: (poetry publishing, events, open mics), Poetry Teachers NYC (poetry workshops, readings, festivals) and The Inspired Word (poetry open mics, slams, showcases).

Our mission: to build like never before strong connections between the poetry performance, publishing, and educational communities; to celebrate unity, diversity, and excellence through poetry; and to revitalize the city’s poetry scene with something strikingly different.

We will produce quarterly all-star showcases (featuring a dynamic mix of NYC’s finest poetry and spoken word, spiced with original music and live art) hosted in the most gorgeous settings around New York City (galleries, gardens, and performance spaces).

Raining Words is 3Po3try NYC’s debut event and will be held on Saturday, April 12 at the Pomegranate Gallery, 137 Greene Street, Manhattan, 6pm-9pm. Doors open at 5:30.

Hosted by Aimee Herman.

General Admission: $10

Reserved Seating: $12



Billy Cancel has recently appeared in Futures Trading, Cricket Online Review, and Counterexample Poetics, and the first two great weather for MEDIA anthologies. His latest body of work Innocent Teeth was published in January 2014 by Hidden House Press. Video poems, membership details, and other aberrations can be found at

Born in Boston, poet Alessandra Francesca has been inspired by a range of artists, from T.S. Eliot to Humphrey Bogart, and her family feared she would run off to New York since before she could walk. She can be found mumbling poetry to herself on the L train and her work will strike you its raw honesty and lasting poignancy. She lives in Brooklyn.

Amy Leigh Cutler was born in Staten Island, raised near the Catskill Mountains, and lives and writes in New York City. She is the author of Orange Juice and Rooftops and a few chapbooks. Some of her recent work can be found in In Earnest where in 201 she served as artist in residence. Look for her in Jonathan Weiskopf’s For Some Time Now and Wooster Collective’s Graphite, and the great weather for MEDIA anthology The Understanding between Foxes and Light.  She tours, facilitates workshops, and is a teaching assistant and MFA candidate in Creative Writing at The New School.

Born, raised, and still residing in Brooklyn, Graham Willner is a pre-school teacher and poet. He says he “braids together semantics and syntax” to “rhythmically, metaphorically, and meaningfully point something out.” He finds himself most influenced by the “simple complexities of being human.”

Megan DiBello founded Poetry Teachers NYC in 2010. She holds a M.F.A from Naropa University, in Writing & Poetics and a B.A. from Marymount Manhattan College. She has been published in Fact-Similie, Flanour Foundry, The Bathroom, & Monkey Puzzle Press. Megan has performed at the White Box Gallery, The Bowery Poetry Club, The HOWL Festival, The Socrates Sculpture Park, The Center of Book Arts, Columbia University, and the DUMBO Arts Festival.

John W. Snyder is a Staten Island poet. His work can be found in Ardent and in the great weather for MEDIA anthology The Understanding between Foxes and Light. When he’s not busy writing, John can be found skipping into oblivion.

The creature that humans call Julie Bentsen is a Surrealist Illustrator from the floating island of Staten. She has studied architecture, engineering, psychology, and ancient religions. She hopes to someday return to her home dimension. In the meantime, she spends her days doing Dream work, for dreams inspire most of her visual expressions. Some say she is in her 30′s, but her actual age and blood type are unknown. She works with pen, ink, oils, metal-working, jewelry design, small-scale sculpture, and nightmare tributes.

Daniel Dissinger is a New York born poet who is currently a second-year Doctoral student at Saint John’s University, where he teaches American Literature as part of his Doctoral Fellowship. He is also an Adjunct Lecturer in the English Department at SUNY College at Old Westbury in New York, where he teaches a wide variety of literature and writing courses, and the creator and Editor of, an online audio zine.

Yeti is bass-driven philosophical dream-punk with cute killer harmonies. This New York-based trio reeks of feral femininity, fermenting in the forgotten woods of Staten Island. Their music fuses Sleater-Kinney sensibilities with The Cranberries’ emotional power. Yeti can be found playing at various venues throughout the New York City area, or in very cold, dark, remote caverns from which few have ever returned.

Giga Herbs formed three years ago. It was in a fluorescently lit donut shop or a YMCA sauna that Paul and Steve asked Eric, “If you could picture yourself playing any instrument, what would it be?” His answer was the bass. The band had a guitarist a drummer and a bassist but something was missing. Elsa Josephs’ signature quirky piano sounds migrated from Panama four years ago. When all four of us met and we found out that Elsa had been taught in piano, we had to ask her to play. After jamming a few times we realized we created music together in a fun and natural way. It was in our 3rd or 4th month together that we had the opportunity to rent a practice space for a fair price in the creative part of Staten Island. That’s when everything really took off.

Native New Yorker Danny Matos is a spoken word poet who began performing in the fall of 2012. Since then, he has featured and performed at various venues and schools throughout New York. In 2013, he was the winner of the $1000 Poetry Idol contest and the co-winner of The Inspired Word Poetry Slam Championship. He believes words and expression give us all a purpose bigger than ourselves, as well as foster one of humanity’s most precious needs – a sense of genuine connection to ourselves, each other, and the world at large. He released his first book of poetry late last year, Scratching the Surface.

Saroya Marsh works as a preschool teacher and youth mentor, but has always had a passion for writing. As a spoken word poet, she brings a heartfelt intensity and deep beliefs to the stage, brandishing a saber of light that will penetrate those dark pockets of prejudice, injustice, and hurt, that lay buried deep within each of us. In 2013, she was the co-winner of The Inspired Word Poetry Slam Championship, a finalist in the Poetry Idol contest, and placed runner-up in the Nuyorican Poets Café Grand Slam finals. She has been featured at a slew of venues and college throughout New York and New Jersey, as well as in Pennsylvania and DC. Marsh hopes her poems will spark change. “If you want to leave an impact deep enough for future generations to see,” she says, “start now.

Angelo Daniel Giokas is a hybrid painter and aesthetic voyager from Queens, New York.  His raw and unique style is the result of his combination of appropriation, collage, mixed media, and visual poetry.  He enjoys exploring the synergistic relationships between images, prints, photographs, and magazines, and works in effort to associate artistic process with product, and insight with magical thinking.   Though he graduated Cum Laude from Siena College, his artistry and theories were mostly self-taught.  His experience studying intermedia art at University of London, Goldsmiths College was the most enriching and inspirational time in his young career. He is an independent artist who has never having been represented by any gallery. Found out more about his interests at, and follow his work on Instagram @artbyangelogiokas.

Poet Shane Hanlon is a Long Islander who graduated from Queens College, then served in the Peace Corps. Home now, he’s an atheist searching. He writes in gratitude or to express conflicts as a way of understanding them better. It’s hard to be an idealist in New York City these days.

HOST: Aimee Herman is a performance artist, poet and teacher with an MFA in Creative Writing from Long Island University in Brooklyn, as well as a longtime Inspired Word host. She teaches at Bronx Community College and is a faculty member with Poetry Teachers NYC, offering affordable poetry workshops and creating spaces for other performers to lift their words off the page. She has been published in various journals and anthologies such as:Troubling the Line: Trans and Genderqueer Poetry and Poetics (Nightboat Books) and The Understanding Between Foxes and Light (great weather for MEDIA). Her full-length book of poems to go without blinking was published in 2012 by BlazeVOX books. She can be found wrapped in caution tape in Brooklyn or at


oh, love…

I fell in love with a girl. Then a boy. Then a girl. Another girl. A girl who is a boy. Love has found me at my place of employment, at university, at the corner of a small town, at a bar where the queers gather, at a center for writing. None of it was easy. Some lasted longer than others. Learned new recipes and songs, picked up hobbies and habits, faced fears and fondled time.

Nowadays, love can be found on computer screens and fancy phones. We swipe and click our way toward the one, but I still hold out for magic.

Like that time, a few years back when I would have missed my flight for one more minute of conversation with the one who confessed his addiction to coffee and testosterone. Even in his hard angles, I noticed softness seeping out of the ridges of his smile.

Here, there are bodegas on every corner and whether I need okra or oranges or cold remedy or condoms, these things never run out. Some are even open twenty-four hours. But love….love is not shelved or stocked in places we can easily find. There are all those intentional spots to find someone, but this doesn’t mean it will last or be any easier, just because you answered some preliminary questions.

OK Cupid, I am ready. And also, I am not. But what I am open to is the unexpected gathering of stories and trust. Not all of us are easy to love and I can furnish a reference sheet of all those who (tried to) love me and called me difficult. But so is opening up jars that house the most amazing flavors of preserved food. Learning a language isn’t easy either, but the benefits often encourage travel and expansion of mind.

At this point, I feel gratitude that I have felt it. More than once. And each time was more magnificent and painful and stunning and tragic. But we go back. There is a reason for this.

For now, I’ll buy my own chocolates and write poetic love notes on my body. Until I can find the one who can sound out my skin without mispronouncing the jagged interruptions of scars. Then, I’ll head into the city and storm a stage.

Tonight, I ask cupid to remain in the air and tend to the ones in search of a stab wound. I’ll be on stage with Pancetta, my ukelele, some words, and (perhaps) a special appearance by some peanut butter.

Hear fantastic performances of poetry and music at The Inspired Word’s Stuck on Cupid at Tammany Hall / 152 Orchard St. NYC / Doors open at 6pm / Show begins at 6:30pm / $10 / Featuring Essence Revealed, Jherelle Benn, Nichole Acosta, among other thought-provoking artists.

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.

Titillating Tongues

The Inspired Word Presents
Titillating Tongues: NYC Erotica in Poetry & Prose
w/ host Aimee Herman

(le) poisson rouge | 158 Bleecker Street | 212.505.FISH |
Mon., January 09, 2012 / 7:00 PM
21+ w/ open mic

The first one went so well, we have decided to keep the erotica alive!
This reading series in downtown Manhattan features the best poets, spoken word artists around the country as well as showcasing new talent with an open mic.

Featured readers/performers to be announced soon!!

Titillating Tongues: NYC Erotica in Poetry & Prose

Titillating Tongues: NYC Erotica in Poetry & Prose

The Inspired Word presents a hot night of sexy fun, lip-licking words, and utter debauchery – Titillating Tongues: NYC Erotica in Poetry & Prose, featuring some of New York City’s best erotic writers: Rachel Kramer Bussel, Janice Erlbaum, Uche Nduka, Jennifer Blowdryer, Aimee Herman, Kathleen Warnock, Puma Perl, Elizabeth Rivera De Garcia, Jane LeCroy, and Sam J. Miller.

There will also be a 12-slot open mic open to all types of artists, where you can bring your own heat to the party.

Hosted by HBO Def Poetry star Gemineye.


When: Thursday, Nov. 3, 2011

Where: One and One Bar & Restaurant (downstairs Nexus Lounge)
76 East 1st Street (corner of 1st Avenue)
Manhattan, NYC
Phone: (917) 703-1512

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

Show starts @ 7pm

Cover Charge: $10

Must be 21 years old or older.

“The Inspired Word isn’t just a series, it’s a movement.”


For more info on The Inspired Word series, please check out:

To pre-purchase tickets:


Aimee Herman, a queer performative poet, has been featured at various New York venues such as the Happy Ending Lounge, Dixon Place, Wow Café Theatre, Public Assembly, and Sidewalk Café. She has performed at reading/performance series such as: In the Flesh erotic salon, Hyper Gender, Sideshow: Queer Literary Carnival, and Red Umbrella Diaries. Her poetry can be found in Clean Sheets, Cliterature Journal, Pregnant Moon Review, InStereo Press, and/or journal, and Polari Journal. She can also be read in Focus on the Fabulous: Colorado GLBT Voices, hell strung and crooked (Uphook Press), Best Women’s Erotica 2010 (Cleis Press), Best Lesbian Love Stories 2010 (Alyson Books), Nice Girls, Naughty Sex (Seal), Women in Lust (Cleis), and the upcoming Harder She Comes: Butch/Femme Erotica [Cleis]. She currently works as an erotica editor for Oysters & Chocolate. She can be found writing poems on her body in Brooklyn. Her full-length book of poetry, to go without blinking, will be published by BlazeVOX Books in Spring 2012.

In 1988, Ms Jennifer Blowdryer founded Smut Fests, a show that mixed sex workers performing their own material, however they saw fit, along with some burlesque, spoken word, and other ephemera. She took it on the road to London, Chicago, Hamburg, and Baltimore, Maryland. London was the most crazily good show, but Hamburg’s red light district offered the best theater on earth, the Schmidt Tivoli. JB’s currently working on a documentary called The 86ed Project, and an ebook called The Bitchez Guide to the Lower East Side. She resides on East 2nd Street, which is still Sport Bar free. For more info, please visit

Rachel Kramer Bussel is an author, editor, blogger and event organizer. She is the editor of 40 anthologies, including Women in Lust, Obsessed, Orgasmic, Gotta Have It, Fast Girls, Best Bondage Erotica 2011, Spanked, Bottoms Up, and more. She is Senior Editor at Penthouse Variations and writes a sex column for SexIs Magazine. She writes widely about sex, dating, books and pop culture, and blogs at Lusty Lady ( and Cupcakes Take the Cake ( For more info, please visit

Janice Erlbaum is the author of Girlbomb: A Halfway Homeless Memoir (Villard, March ’06), and Have You Found Her: A Memoir (Villard, Feb. ’08). A founding member of the now defunct performance collective Pussy Poets, her poetry and prose has been featured in anthologies including Aloud: Voices from the Nuyorican Poets Café, The Bust Guide To The New Girl Order, The Best American Erotic Poems From 1800 To The Present, The Autobiographer’s Handbook: The 826 National Guide to Writing Your Memoir, and Verses That Hurt: Pleasure and Pain from the Poemfone Poets.

Nicknamed SoulSistaRican (by artist/activist Earline Fisher) and Lovely Liz (by host Angel G of The Nuevo Latino Radio Show when sharing her erotic poetry), Elizabeth Rivera de Garcia is a poet, spoken word artist, actor and founder of MyPeopleProductions. She made her poetic debut at The Nuyorican Poet’s Café in Lady l for Banana Puddin’ Jazz and was invited again for Lady ll. Elizabeth has collaborated with Jazz singer Rome Neal for The Brooklyn Jazz Festival and has performed with Jazz Mojo at The Bowery Wine Co. She featured for Heaven on the Hudson at The Hudson River Café and is currently a resident poet of La Familia and company member of The Haiku Empire.

Jane LeCroy is a poet and performance artist, home-birthing mother of three, teacher, atheist, vegetarian, hedonist, who fronts the avant-pop band Transmitting with Tom Abbs. Her last book of poetry, “Names” was published by Booklyn (no “R”) as part of the award winning ABC Chapbook series. Her work has appeared in many publications including: Mudfish, Frank 151, Vector, and Teachers & Writers Magazine. LeCroy’s last CD, Transmitting “Dark and Full of Life” was released on the European label, Delphy Records. She is a teaching artist working in New York schools through Teachers & Writers Collaborative, Global Writes and DreamYard, she does literacy advocacy through Read To Me. LeCroy has many books and recordings available at where you can request to be put on her e list and receive free poems hot off her brain with every show invite.

Sam J Miller is a writer and a community organizer. His work has been published in The Minnesota Review, Fiction International, Arts & Letters, West Branch, Washington Square, and The Rumpus, as well as anthologies like Best Gay Erotica 2006 & 2008. He’s the co-editor of Horror After 9/11, forthcoming from the University of Texas Press. For more info, please visit
Born and raised in Nigeria, Uche Nduka is a collagist, eroticist, and songwriter. He is the author of eight books of poems and winner of the Association of Nigerian Authors Poetry Prize in 1997. Some of his writings have been translated into German, Dutch, Romanian, Serbo-Croat, and French. He currently lives – and writes constantly – in New York City.

Puma Perl is a poet and fiction writer, producer, and performance artist who believes strongly in the transformative power of the creative arts. Her work has been published in over 100 print and online journals and anthologies. Her first chapbook, Belinda and Her Friends was awarded the Erbacce Press 2009 Poetry Award; a full length collection, knuckle tattoos, was published in 2010. She lives on the Lower East Side and has facilitated writing workshops in community based agencies and at Riker’s Island, a NYC prison. She is a founding member of DDAY Productions, and curates monthly shows at the Bowery Poetry Club.

Kathleen Warnock is series editor for Best Lesbian Erotica. Her own erotica has appeared in BLE, A Woman’s Touch, Friction 7, and Best Lesbian Romance. She curates the reading series Drunken! Careening! Writers! at KGB Bar the third Thursday of every month (since 2004). For more info, please visit

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.