Monday, July 31, 2006

Tonight I'll Be Swooning

for Christopher Salerno, Sandra Beasley and Karl Parker at the Burlesque Poetry Hour -- 8 p.m., Bar Rouge.


From Kim Roberts:

Sunday, August 20 at 4:00 pm

Part of the Sunday Kind of Love Reading Series: featuring poets from Beltway Poetry Quarterly's DC Places Issue, Belle Waring, Kenneth Carroll, Andrea Wyatt, Brian Gilmore, and Terence Winch. Followed by an open mic (please bring place poems about Washington DC by yourself or others). Hosted by Sarah Browning.

Free. Busboys & Poets, 14th & V Streets NW, U Street/Cardozo neighborhood, DC. (202) 387-POET.

The DC Places issue showcases 52 authors whose poems name specific sites in the city (streets, neighborhoods, parks, monuments, buildings), along with an interactive map. Edited by Kim Roberts and Andrea Carter Brown, the DC Places Issue is available for free.

About the featured authors:

Kenneth Carroll is a native Washingtonian. He is the author of a book of poems, So What! For the White Dude Who Said This Ain't Poetry (The Bunny and the Crocodile Press, 1997). Carroll is the DC Site Coordinator for WritersCorps, an arts and social service program founded by the NEA and AmeriCorps that was honored in 1999 by the national Coming Up Taller Awards. He is the past president of the African American Writers Guild, served on the board of directors of the Poetry Committee of Greater Washington, and was a founding member of the 8Rock Writers Collective.

Brian Gilmore is the author of two books of poems: Elvis Presley is alive and well and living in Harlem (Third World Press, 1992), and Jungle Nights & Soda Fountain Rags (Karibu Books, 1999). He was born and raised in Washington, DC.

Belle Waring is the author of two poetry collections: Refuge (University of Pittsburgh Press, 1990), which won the Associated Writing Programs' Award in 1989 and was cited by Publishers Weekly as one of the best books of 1990; and Dark Blonde (Sarabande Books, 1997), which won the Larry Levis Prize in 1998.

Terence Winch's most recent book is That Special Place: New World Irish Stories, a collection of non-fiction pieces growing out of his life as a musician. He is also the author of three books of poems, The Drift of Things (The Figures, 2001), The Great Indoors (Story Line Press, 1995, winner of the Columbia Book Award), and Irish Musicians/American Friends (Coffee House Press, 1985, winner of an American Book Award), and a book of short fiction, Contenders. He has been the recipient of a poetry grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. Also a musician and songwriter, Winch recorded three albums, all featuring his compositions, with Celtic Thunder, an Irish band he co-founded in 1977.

Andrea Wyatt was born in Brooklyn and now lives in Washington, DC with her husband, bookseller Lansing Sexton. She works at the University of the District of Columbia. Her books of poems include Three Rooms (Oyez Press, 1970), Poems of the Morning, Poems of the Storm (Oyez Press, 1973), Founding Fathers: Book One (LLanfair Press, 1976), The Movies (Jawbone Press, 1977), Jurassic Night (White Dot Press, 1980), and Baseball Nights (Renaissance Press, 1984). She is coeditor of Selected Poems by Larry Eigner (Oyez Press, 1972), Collected Poems by Max Douglas (White Dot Press, 1978), and The Brooklyn Reader (Random House/Harmony, 1994).

To read poems by these authors:

This Week at No Tell

Jessy Randall massages the groom’s shoulders the whole while, practically sticking her breasts in his ear and licking his cummerbund right off his tux this week at No Tell Motel.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Ok -- found some tech support. I have e-mail -- but there's a big backlog -- it may take a day or so to receive all of my e-mail. So if I don't respond to you right away -- please be patient.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

On my way back from yoga I decided to stop at Trader Joe's and buy some organic junk food. TB is always quick to point out that organic is code for rat hair and she's a lawyer and lawyers are very smart. So I'm about to enjoy a tasty plate of rat hair nachos. Bon Apperat!

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Pick up the Phone!

Molly Arden's and my interview is up at the HarperCollins blog.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Crazy Chapbook News

Issue #4 of Dusie has 42 Chapbooks!

dana ward * john sakkis * scott glassman * sawako nakayasu * hartmut abendshein * k lorraine graham * jonathan skinner * lauren levin * elisabeth workman * sheila murphy * betsy fagin * nicole mauro * jill magi * rick snyder * susan pike * sarah mangold * david goldstein * philip jenks * logan ryan smith * jill stengel * aaron anstett * jules boykoff * paul klinger * christopher rizzo * jared hayes * amy king * kari edwards * greg fuchs * william allegrezza * jen hofer * kaia sand * mark lamoureaux * jon leon * susana gardner * ellen baxt * cheryl quimba * jane sprague * mackenzie carignan * jared stanley * catherine theis * marci nelligan * boyd spahr *

Also, Dusie Press is pleased to officially announce the release of CORNSTARCH FIGURINE, by poet Elizabeth Treadwell!!!


Save Effing Press from resorting to dancing for chicklets!

From Scott Pierce:

The effing coffers are getting low and we'd really like to print some more books before the end of summer so I am offering a discount of effing stuffs to anyone interested.

Any 3 effing books in print plus a handful of b-sides, postcards, and bookmarks for a mere $12 (shipping included).

Consider that.

Also, if you already have all the effing books please consider making a donation of any amount and still receive effing ephemera.

Next Week's Burlesque!

Sandra Beasley, Christopher Salerno and Karl Parker

Gideon and I are suffering

from colds

He gave it to


Monday, July 24, 2006

This Week at No Tell

Jonathan Mayhew is beaten savagely in the back room this week at No Tell Motel.

Oh and Cause I'm Mad at Chris Right Now

Yinz from aht of tahn, n'at?

Boston: There Were Good Times and Times When Even This Little Piggie Could Not Soothe the Situation

(Alternate Title: "My Mom is So Fucking Annoying")

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Medical Explanation?

I've alway been one of those people unable to "roll her tongue" -- and I really tried as a kid, for years.

Today while Gideon and I were sticking our tongues out in the mirror -- I noticed I suddenly have the ability to roll my tongue.

So what does that mean? I thought it was a genetic trait? Has someone been messing with my DNA? Have I been exposed to radiation? Unknowingly part of a government experiment? Abducted by aliens?

What other strange new powers might I possess?

Am I an X-(wo)man?

Friday, July 21, 2006

We're leaving in the morning for a weekend in Boston. It'll be Gideon's first time on a plane. Tonight we checked in online and were offered an upgrade to 1st class. So baby's first airplane ride will be in style. I'm 33 years old and have flown on at least 50 flights -- this is my first time flying 1st class.

Yep, we've ruined him already. Next he'll be demanding higher thread count for his crib sheets and asking if they make walls at Wal-mart.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

First Downward Dog . . .

. . . this year, I think. Yowsa. Started yoga back up. Last year I had to make a choice. Chris could only go into work late once a week to watch Gideon in the morning so it was either pilates or yoga. Yoga made me feel better, but pilates generated better physical results. Naturally I chose vanity over sanity. Now I don't have to choose. I hoped pilates would make my transition back into yoga easier, but I'm not so sure. Weird muscle pulls in my right hip and calves. Will feel that tomorrow.

My new instructor's name is Olga. I was afraid that she'd suggest I go back a level because I'm so out of practice, but she didn't. I believe I'll be spending the rest of my life in Yoga 2. Motherfucking hamstrings.

Someone just sent a series of poems dedicated to me and one of those poems implied I had a mustache. Untrue. I have no mustache. The poem is a lie.

As a kid, I had a friend in summer camp named Olga (different Olga, not yoga-instructor Olga). Summer camp Olga had a little mustache.

I do not.

That's the truth.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

MiPO is Open for Submissions

Guidelines are here

This Morning's Disagreement

The fate of a Pitt Sucks but . . . Marshall Swallows tee gifted from TB during her undergrad days at WVU.

Chris argued against tossing it, but my position was it's old and ratty and we're somebody's parents now.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Sweet Jesus, now something loud is crawling around in our vents. Our home has been under assault from flooding, flies, raccoons, cheerios and now . . . what plague could this be?

An army of evil elves coming to cornhole our souls, I fear.

I live in one spooky townhouse.

I'm going to bed.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Fun With Camera Phone

New Poems! New Coconut!

Hot off the palms, a brand new Coconut! Coconut Five features exciting new poetry by Lyn Hejinian, Mong-Lan, Ashley VanDoorn, Ada Limon, Scott Glassman, John Cotter, Joshua Marie Wilkinson, Katie Degentesh, Gina Myers & Dustin Williamson, Johannes Goransson, Noah Eli Gordon, Kristen Hanlon, Matt Hart, Kirsten Kaschock, Jennifer Moxley, Sarah Mangold, Carly Sachs, Joshua Edwards, Michael Rerick, Jen Tynes, Albert Flynn DeSilver, Maureen Seaton & Neil de la Flor, Hal Sirowitz, and Robyn Art.

Bruce Covey
Coconut Editor

This Week at No Tell

Ron Klassnik is reduced to bones in the stomach of a shark this week at No Tell Motel.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Overheard "Help Wanted" Wisdom

"Energetic" is code for hot young chick.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Now that I can leave the house for two hours -- back to yoga! Class starts next week. Maybe it'll help me deal with this latest bout of insomnia. It has in the past.

Signed up Gideon for swim classes in August. He's an aquarius so I'm expecting he'll be a natural.

These are the expectations parents create so they can be assured their disappointment.

Sleepingfish issue 0.875

The latest issue of Sleepingfish has poems from PF Potvin's upcoming The Attention Lesson (No Tell Books 2006) in addition to fictions, texts and art by Brian Evenson, Rob Walsh, Peter Markus, Norman Lock, Lance Olsen, K.S. Ernst, Kim Chinquee, Kathryn Rantala, Justin Torres, Julianna Spallholz, Joshua Cohen, Trevor Dodge, Toshiya Kamei, Thomas O’Connell, Stephen Graham Jones, Rochelle Ratner, Robert Majzels, Noah Eli Gordon, nick-e melville, Nelly Reifler, Michael Boyko, Malcolm de Chazal, Liesl Jobson, Joseph Salvatore, Anne Pelletier, Allison Paige, Ali Aktan Aşkın, Alexandra Chasin, Aaron Cohick, Carlos M. Luis, Joseph Musso, Jonathan Dixon, John Olson, Jason Bernard Claxton, James Sanders, Irving Weiss , Guy Beining, Grace Vajda, Girija Tropp, Edward Kim, Eduardo Recife, Edgar Omar Avilés, Dana Kooperman, Cooper Esteban/Renner, Claire Huot, Christian TeBordo, Carolyn Kuebler, Doug Martin, David-Baptiste Chirot, Daryl Scroggins and Danielle Dutton.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

What's worse than buying your own book off Amazon every hour to artificially raise your ranking?

Admitting you bought your book every hour off Amazon to artificially raise your ranking.

Recently in My Mailbox


The Art of Reading Poetry by Harold Bloom (Harper Perennial)

Stack by Edwin Frank (Ugly Duckling Presse)
The Song of Igor's Campaign translated by Bill Johnston (Ugly Duckling Presse)
Flight Test by Lewish Warsh (Ugly Duckling Presse)
Osip Mandelstram: New Translations edited by Ilya Bernstein (Ugly Duckling Presse)


Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Long, Rambling Post About AOL

This weekend I tossed out a lot of AOL related crap.

Things I kept:

* coffee mug with my screen name (RebLiv) -- when hot liquid is poured, the computer screen displays AOL 2.0
* desk tag
* crystal AOL triangle
* AOL Varsity-style jacket (size XL, I was gonna order a medium, but a co-worker suggested I get it "big" -- in hindsight, that was a favor, if it had fit, I might have worn it)

Things I still had and tossed:

* teabags I kept in my desk (I left in December 1997, you do the math)
* a prosperity rune necklace (hope I didn't jinx myself)
* AOL disks (I fear my grandchildren will still be finding them when they clean my house after I die)

The thing about working for AOL in the mid-90's, or at least how I recall those days, is that the "now you have it, now you don't" experience harmed certain people. Some worse than others and yeah, you can say what a bunch of jackasses they were with their money and their expectations (and yeah, I can add tales of acquaintances and friends to that fodder). One of the reasons was that most of these folks were young, clueless about the stock market, economy, business, etc. Cycles, bubbles, I don't recall ever hearing any of those words when I was at AOL. It's not like there were many people there over 50 to make the connection to their parent's time during the depression, or people over 40, or many over 35. Not that we would have listened to any of those old people anyhow.

I was 21, fresh out of college got a job making $11 dollars/hour (which seemed like good money coming from Pittsburgh, although it didn't go far in Northern Virginia). They mentioned something about 200 stock options that made absolutely no sense and I tuned out that part of the HR presentation, as I did when they talked about a 401-what? and health insurance and all the rest of that stuff. All I cared about was that Chris and my combined salaries were over 26k so we could get the apartment we wanted. If they would have said: "you can trade those options for an extra 50 cents an hour," I would have leaped for those pennies.

By 1995 and 1996, I came to learn a lot about stock options -- but what I want to write about isn't the money and debauchery and mismanagement. Everyone's heard those stories and it's difficult to garner much sympathy, youth and folly aside. I was close to a number of Internet millionaires and don't have much sympathy. I'm not one of them. I was close. Really, really close, like six months close. But I chose to leave at the end of 1997 and start an MFA program in 1998. I left with money, a lot for a 25 year old and there's still some to start No Tell Books and go towards college for Gideon. If I stayed six months longer I would have cleared somewhere in the park of 2 to 6 million dollars. I don't know exactly, I couldn't bear doing the math to figure out exactly how much. What started out as bitterness has long changed to gratefulness -- thank god I didn't get all that money. There's no reason to believe I wouldn't have gone bat shit like the rest.

I don't claim that at the time I knew anything about an Internet bubble. But let me tell you what my smarty-pants, immature, mouthy, cranky, I-scoff-at-your-MBA, mid-20 something self did know and was always bitching about (which earned my reputation as a negative nelly):

If you're going to charge people $19.95, you have to actually offer them something, an added value to what they can already get for free. They didn't need us to link to what was on the web -- most people can use a free search engine just fine.

If you're going to write copy that promises something wonderful behind behind that button, it has to be there -- else it's a trick and people only fall for that a of couple times.

When I started there, it was all about the art -- trying to come up with new and interesting technologies, offering unique services, partnering with providers who offered compelling and/or useful content. As far as online content went, there were some pretty wonderful flops and mishaps. I spents months working on a student handbook for the 1996 election, what a labor of love, what a comprehensive resource! What a disaster! I thought kids across the country would be writing papers on presidents and the electoral college. Oh well, it was really well organized. It probably could have landed me a job at PBS.

The Cool Team (yes, there was a group officially named "The Cool Team") put together an area celebrating the Pope's visit to America -- and it had (gulp) sound, church bells! It was beautiful.

There was a weekly online comic strip that took 45 minutes to download over a 14.4 modem. That wasn't particularly popular either. Go figure.

It was a horrible business model. We weren't making any money and couldn't go on like that much longer.

So they recruited business folks to fix us. There was the Federal Express executive who only lasted a couple months after he suggested an employee dress code (fuck dat!). He also said something about us being in serious financial trouble, but who could get past the idea of not being able to wear shorts to work? Off with the geezer's head. Then there was the guy that created MTV and saved Century21. He had a socialite ex-wife who was in some mountain climbing scandal where climbing instructors died lugging her expresso maker down Everest. She forgot to thank them when they dragged her ass to safety or something like that. I forget the details -- there's a book about it. Anyhow, that guy was all about slick advertising and these New York types descended upon us with their sneers. Those folks sure knew how to shine a turd. I worked in a field of sparkling turds. It stunk.

That's when I became not so pleasant to work with. I was the queen of "that's dumb, why would you want to do that?" I didn't have the maturity and wisdom to sit in those meetings and act like somebody just sprayed Channel 5. See, since this was my first "real" job those first couple of years developed my expectation that my job was supposed to be fun and fulfilling and creative. I took it all way too seriously, when I should have realized it was just a job and in comparison to most jobs, it was pretty damn good.

That's when I started crying every evening on my way home (as opposed to crying on my way to work when I first started).

Looking back, I truly enjoyed my experience during 1995 and 1996 (my two non-crying years), before people got crazy rich, before we had to grow up and consider the bottom line and profit. Not because it's fun to be irresponsible (well, sometimes it is), but the early focus was on something I could get behind and work. It wasn't poetry, but I was creating things and it felt good. Feeling good doesn't attract the investors.

But that doesn't mean I don't want to feel good about what I create. It just means I don't want to have to answer to investors or boards or those with interests that conflict with my own -- not when it comes to my "art" -- whatever that may be.

Thank god there's no money to be had in poetry.

I think I read earlier this week that AOL is considering offering its service for free. They should have listened to the grumpy girl mumbling in her cubicle, she might have been wearing overalls (oh the shame) -- but she was an online content programmer for the people!

Monday, July 10, 2006

My calves are killing me from going up and down the stairs a zillion times. This morning I had a bizarre dream that I was back to work at AOL. Bags of potato chips shooting out of the fax machine, my desk was a swing, then it was a hospital bed, the woman in the next cubicle was watching Jim and Tammy Faye Baker sing Rolling Stones hits on the TV, that kind of stuff.

Sometimes it's good to be awake and back in reality.

This Week at No Tell

Evelyn Posamentier steps under the sign which directs you nowhere this week at No Tell Motel.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Found # 2 - My Going Away Card Signed by AOL Co-workers (circa 1997)

"Reb, we will certainly miss your pessimistic face. Just kidding!"

Um, no you weren't.

Things I'm Finding in My Old Studio

A series of journals from the early 2000's that I have no recollection of writing or the events/feelings chronicled inside. This is especially disturbing because I have a really good memory. Or so I thought.

My submission index cards. C. Dale totally rejected me in 1998!

My long lost political pin collection! Some of the gems:

I Believe Anita Hill
William Jefferson Clinton 53rd Inauguration: Inhale in '97
Socks Clinton 2nd Term: The Comeback Kitty
Clean-up Politics -- Elect Women

And a bunch of This Insults Women stickers. I promptly stuck one on Chris.

Weekend project: office swap! (i.e. lugging thousands of books up and down two flights of stairs)

I'm trading Chris my large office in the basement for his small one upstairs. The old trade off of space for location -- and natural light.

Wow, airfare to Bali is insanely expensive (and like 36 hours of travel). I guess I won't be tagging along with Chris in February. Sigh.

Friday, July 07, 2006

For Just $1 You Can Feed A Village of Hungry Poets

Save Observable Readings from a life of crime and desperation.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Some Days I Should Stay in Bed

TB e-mailed the following distressing news:

"Nicole Richie is reportedly making her romantic dreams come true following her split from fiance DJ AM - enjoying dinner dates with her lifelong crush Jeff Goldblum. The odd couple has been spotted out and about in Hollywood following the socialite Simple Life star's recent interview confession that she's had a crush on The Fly star since she was 13. At 24, Richie is almost 30 years younger than the actor, who was once married to Geena Davis and engaged to his Jurassic Park co-star Laura Dern. Until recently, Goldblum was engaged to dancer Catherine Wreford, 24, following a whirlwind romance after the couple met during a touring stage production of The Music Man. After splitting from DJ AM, real name Adam Goldstein, Richie was romantically linked to Crash star Matt Dillon. Representatives for both stars denied the rumors."


Yesterday somebody found my blog by googling "jeff goldblum underwear."

Coincidence? I think not.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Oh and what part of "please refrain from sending "sex act" poems" is confusing?


It's gonna be an interesting July.

p.s. For those of you who submitted for the 2007 Bedside Guide, you'll hear from us by mid-August, hopefully sooner.

Just got my EIN number for No Tell Books -- eeee, iiiii, eeee, iiiii, oooooo. (snort snort)

On the fast track to legitimacy now, baby.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

On Being The Asshole

I almost forgot, I'm guest blogging today at The Happy Booker.

Happy Independence Day!

Monday, July 03, 2006

This Week at No Tell Motel

Mathias Svalina removes the camera from his eyes this week at No Tell Motel.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Special Fourth Of July Weekend Broadcast of The Goodnight Show

The Next Battleground

Friday I packed away all the bottles, nipples, the bottle warmer, the bottle rack, the nipple brushes and all other paraphernalia. They're not coming back.

I forgot what my kitchen counter looked like. When I walk into my kitchen I feel 100 times better not seeing that clutter.

The sippy cup battles have been raging for several months and now I've declared all out war. Gideon doesn't like sippy cups, but will accept one if someone else holds it while he drinks. I've received reports that he's held sippy cups when Chris and I aren't around.

Gideon denies these reports.

If you can open the bathroom door and sneak attack your poor unsuspecting father, you can hold your own damn sippy cup.

You're not the boss of me!

Oh, but I am. The only reason I signed up for this was so I could have someone of my very own to boss around.

And guess what, your thirst is on my side.

Saturday, July 01, 2006


The DC Places Issue, an online anthology of poems that celebrate Washington, DC, by naming specific sites in the city (streets, neighborhoods, parks, monuments, or buildings), is the first issue of the journal to go beyond the Mid-Atlantic region and include poets from all across the United States.

The DC Places Issue was co-edited by Kim Roberts and Los Angeles poet Andrea Carter Brown.

Contributors: Karren Alenier * Elizabeth Alexander * Joseph Awad * Naomi Ayala * Elizabeth Bishop * Star Black * Derrick Brown *Fleda Brown * Sterling A. Brown * Sarah Browning * Kenneth Carroll * Philip Dacey * Peter Desmond * Thomas Sayers Ellis * Martin Galvin * Simki Ghembremichael * Brian Gilmore * Barbara Goldberg * Patricia Gray * Michael Gushue * Scott Hightower * Bernard Jankowski * Rod Jellema * Fred Joiner * Rosemary Klein * Joe Lapp * Mary Ann Larkin * Lyn Lifshin * Robert Lowell * Greg McBride * E. Ethelbert Miller * Sami Miranda * Miles David Moore * Kathi Morrison-Taylor * Yvette Neisser * Kathleen O’Toole * Linda Pastan * Richard Peabody * Patric Pepper * Carly Sachs * Gregg Shapiro * Evie Shockley * Dean Smith * Mark Tarallo * Hilary Tham * Belle Waring * Josh Weiner * William Carlos Williams * Terence Winch * Baron Wormser * Andrea Wyatt *