I went to Lit Hop last evening, with my friend Karen, who is down for Rolf's birthday.
I know a fair number of writerly folks, and I'd hoped to get to see more than one reading, but the night was oppressively HOT, and the friend I'd come to see was from out of town and it felt tacky to listen and dash off, so we stayed for the last reader, a bombastic fellow with black curls and a LOUD voice.
His poetry was catchy.
He may have a future in advertising.
He writes hooks.
My friend is eloquent and smart and humble and he mumbled.
Way more writer, than reader, I suppose.
I sat at the bar between my oldest childhood friend, Julia, a woman I adore, but see rarely.
She has children.
There are women for whom motherhood builds community.
For me, and maybe for Julia, motherhood has shrunk us.
Boiled us down to the barest of bones.
Tony read a poem he wrote for me.
He read it last.
It wasn't sentimental, or lovely.
It was sturdy and a little homespun, I suppose the way he may see me.
The crowd was two hours into drink, and craved bombast and volume.
My poem with it's water, trees, and small town, was a little flat.
I had to drive, so I sat soberly, sweating, my arm touching Julia's cool bicep.
A glass of water would have been welcome, but I would have lost my seat, if I got up, so I sat, blocked in by a very tall woman, who was waiting for space to walk up the stairs.
A woman, who gave not one fig about poetry, or courtesy, her pointy elbow, nearly touching my face.