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spacer.gif   Chicago Poetry Gossip: Alive and Well
Posted by : cj on Friday, October 30, 2009 - 01:16 PM
Poetry Gossip: Click On Headlines .
Wow, I could have sworn that David Hargarten agreed to a general truce with So why is he still going on about the “green zone, dude.” In case you didn’t know, the poetry “green zone” basically means, CJ Laity is not invited. The Waiting 4 The Bus folks try to make it out as something else, but just ask them the very simple question: is CJ Laity invited to “green zone” events? It’s some kind of sick, fascist power trip. What Hargarten is basically saying is, “See, I can ban you from a reading that features your friends.” What it also means is that you will never get listed or reviewed from me during a “green zone” event. It’s really rather sick and childish. Hargarten started up his “green zone” in protest of the Chicago Poetry Neutral Zone (, of which about 800 poets and poetry organizations are members. He did this because he was pissed that ChicagoPoetry helped start up a myspace page after he started up a myspace page. Good Lord! It’s a myspace page! Are we in Junior High or something? I only explain this just in case you wonder why I don’t list events from the “green zone,” dude. Here are some readings that I’m not banned from simply for expressing an opinion:

On Thursday, November 19, 2009, there will be an Even Deadlier Book Launch Party featuring author Frances Hwang and hosted by The Great Books Foundation, from 7 to 9 PM at The Book Cellar, 4736 N. Lincoln Ave. Come and join the editors in celebrating the sequel to The Seven Deadly Sins Sampler, including 14 short stories that spark reflection on the ancient concept of sin. Hwang is the author of the short story collection Transparency and has held fellowships at the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing and at Colgate University; she was the recipient of the Sue Kaufman Prize for First Fiction from the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 2008. She graduated with a master in fine arts in creative writing at the University of Montana and has taught English at Saint Mary’s College in Indiana.

On Wednesday, November 18, Columbia College Ferguson Theater, 600 South Michigan, will present Sandra Lim and Cecily Parks at 5:30 PM. Sandra Lim’s Loveliest Grotesque (Kore Press) was published in 2006 and her poetry has appeared in American Letters & Commentary, Denver Quarterly, Boston Review, and other journals. Cecily Parks’ Field Folly Snow (University of Georgia Press) was a finalist for the Norma Farber Prize and the her poems and reviews have appeared in Boston Review, Kenyon Review, Octopus, Tin House, Virginia Quarterly Review, The Yale Review, and elsewhere.

There is word on two new poetry open mics. Keep your eye on the Rockbox, 2624 N. Lincoln Ave, possibly the first Monday of every month, with the first one happening on November 2, 9 PM, hosted by Joe Bly. Joe says, “We are making sure this isn't going to be your typical open mic. On top of having fantastic featured readers every month, we are asking readers to bring their own work as well as pieces by their favorite artists to share." The first featured readers come from the best feminist press in Chicago, Switchback Books.

Also, Vito Carli is attempting to keep the defunct Mercury Café momentum going with something happening in a “storefront” at 3609 W. Wrightwood. The first one happens on October 30 and features Lee Groban, Elizabeth Harper and others. He is thinking of doing a bi-monthly show there, whatever “there” is.

This has been CJ Laity, reporting the poetry news for ya'.

There will be yet another Granta Chicago Issue Reading on Wednesday, November 4, at 7:30 PM, at Barnes & Noble,1441 W. Webster. I think it’s hilarious that Chicago’s “experimental” poets are whining about how none of them got featured in Granta. Hopefully that will be a wake-up call to them that they are no more important than any of the other poets in Chicago.

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