Sunday, May 24, 2015

200 on…supporting writers writing

A colleague of mine said in a recent interview that if we’re really interested in supporting literature, be it poetry or fiction, we should be prepared to support at least ten “writers writing.” That support could take many forms. We could buy their books, invite them to read with us, share their successes on our social media spaces. We could offer them a place to stay if they read in our towns. We could share hotel rooms with them at expensive conferences. A creative list is endless.

I took a hard look at my own support of writers writing and I wasn’t too impressed with myself. I have, like many of us I imagine, fallen too firmly on “lack of finances” as a reason not to be a writer actively reading/supporting/championing. I am determined to change that.

The first step is to assemble my ten. I want to invest in writers whose work I respect and enjoy reading. I’m up to three so far. Three writers who are new to me and whom I support purely on the strength of their writing

If you were to put together your own stable, whose names would you paint on its stall doors?

Monday, April 06, 2015

200 on...public displays

Consider life's shop windows: all manner of lures from cheap white-flour iced buns and drowsy wasps to worn women sweating under the world’s red lights.
Consider the online window, the tablets’ and iPhones’ screens: how Zillow’s houses in the country call to me: “Come home, come home, leave the city for the black of Rustburg’s nights, shot through with stars, with the howls of hunting dogs ripping across corn fields.”
Consider window shopping: how I coveted the Bally heels in the high-end store at the top of Watford’s High Street in 1978 and bought them with my first pay packet, wore them with fishnets to work at the ink factory so I might stand before Frank who laboured within the process blue mill in shed #3; how I am always refurbishing this house, the atriums of this heart.
Consider windows we open to our lives: how we pull strings to crack blinds just enough to slice the world; on better days, we tear down the blinds, open the windows wide on everything we have inside: this is who I am; this is who he was; this is who she was. How I never knew—not really knew—any of them.

The store: Galaxie Moderne, 1225 Main St #303, Lynchburg, VA 24504.(434) 846-0077
The poem: mine…and his…and hers.