Happy New Year & Hot Times in the Cold New Year
New Year's is always my favorite time -- not the New Year's Eve thing (usually unpredictable (though I think I've got a good shot at a very good one this year)) just the whole new year, fresh start, flip the digis, sort of thing. I like, for example, that people (myself included) often add to their usual good-bye routine around this time "Happy New Year!" There's just something nice about that, right? Usually, it's just "bye", "see ya", "kiss my ...." But at New Year's we get to wish each other a little extra something -- it's just nice. And I like nice. I always notice when that point comes that the New Year doesn't get the happy wish anymore. So there's that thing -- the other thing is that Christmas is stressful, right? Presents, shopping, giving, traveling, visiting -- then it's all over and we get a whole fresh new year. Lastly, my birthday is in January (the 29th) so maybe it's just that I'm excited about my birthday. I dig January -- it's probably my favorite month.
So aside from the above reasons for my deep love for January, I have two more reasons to love January this year:
Ed Roberson & Todd Sandvik
Reading their poems in the Desert City Saturday, January 14th, at 8pm at Internationalist Books.
Ed, like John Taggart come to think of it, is one of those people that has flown around the edges of various poetic communities and camps for many years, putting out work that feels driven by something quite a bit larger than stylistic trends.
Here's a link to a paper on his work published a while back in Poetics Today.
Todd Sandvik is one of my very favorite local poets -- a dynamo in the Carrboro/Chapel Hill poetry scene, the host (with the delightful Mrs. Laura Sandvik) of the Blue Door Events, and currently six months into his tenure as Carrboro's Poet Laureate. Todd works really hard on his poems and has extremely high expectations for himself. As a result he hasn't published much, but his poems are really wonderful -- like Roberson's, Todd's stuff is in a slightly different land than the norm (in a different way from Roberson.) Also, Todd is a really good reader of his own work. Lots of heart in those performances.
At any rate, I'm very excited about the reading and will post more about it soon.
In the meantime, some other good news:
Christopher Davis, author of History of the Only War among others, will be reading February 11th, Saturday, with Claudia Rankine.
Selah Saterstrom, author of The Pink Institution, will be reading March 25th, Saturday, with Ron Silliman.
And the last reading of the '05/'06 Desert City Series:
Emmanuel Hocquard & Rosmarie Waldrop Saturday, April 22nd.
If I hadn't scheduled all this stuff myself, I wouldn't hardly believe it could be this good....