August 12, 2012

Michelle Naka Pierce, Chris Pusateri, & Stephen Vincent


Sunday, August 12
7:30 pm

3120 N. Williams Ave
503-367-3182

$5.00 Suggested Donation

Born in Japan, Michelle Naka Pierce is the author of seven titles, including She, A Blueprint (BlazeVOX, 2011) and Continuous Frieze Bordering Red (Fordham, 2012), awarded the Poets Out Loud Editor's Prize. Pierce has collaborated with artists, dancers, and filmmakers and has performed internationally. Her work has been translated into French, Spanish, Japanese, and Hebrew. Currently, Pierce is associate professor and director of the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at Naropa University.

Chris Pusateri is the author of several books of poetry, most recently Common Time (Steerage Press, 
2012) and Molecularity (Dusie, 2011). His work appears in many journals in the US and abroad, 
including Chicago Review, Fence, Jacket, Verse and others. In spring 2012, he was a visiting artist at 
La Kunsthalle Mulhouse in France, where he performed as part of their Locus Metropole exhibition. A 
librarian by trade, he has lectured on poetry and poetics at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, 
Naropa University, Wittenberg University, and the École Polytechnique in Paris.

Stephen Vincent, poet, essayist, photographer and artist, lives in San Francisco. He will read from his most recent book, After Language / Letters to Jack Spicer (BlazeVox, 2012). In addition he will read poems by Barbara Moore Vincent from "Art, Poetry & Dementia: Conversations with My Mother in Her 10th Decade," an extended essay in progress. Vincent's haptic drawings and commentaries can be viewed on his blog
.


from Continuous Frieze Bordering Red 

As you sleep metaphorically, you try to understand the dorsal aspect of the body. Though not your first crossing, you are on the outside, inside this once removed zone, just beyond the city. Underground you hear languages not easily recognized, and the sounds are muffled, as if submerged. Hold yourself underwater, placed ever so gently in the hand, like an uncompromising narrative. If objects contain the infinite, then you are only a shade of red. The hues rise, and you visualize [quite unexpectedly] a scene where red meets yellow meets sky. Scatter effect. In other words, thirst approximates water. You are in place and displaced simultaneously. The result of being horizontal in a vertical city. You are other overcoming otherness. You are different in the corners under the same shade, under a protested focus. Winter glides along the force of sacrifice. All room in shadow. In this unkempt sentence, in this lattice of vagueness, lies violence. Stain upon stain upon tender withering letter. You are an ordinary color. A neglected Tuesday. A notable degree of claret in immaterial exchange. Hold yourself, as though some thoughts for water, but here in this syntax, red on red on black offers no solutions. Someone, somewhere must understand the loss and the shallow water that hovers. And so you must move closer then farther away in order to understand what it means to border the borders.

Michelle Naka Pierce


from Common Time

We have it all on videotape:
him at the bar, saying how, the plotting,
the memory (which stands in for pictures),
just like in the old novel by the young author who died.

He says Japan, but this is a Nihon
where Roland Barthes is selling frankfurters
on an underground level of Shinjuku.

He is walking off in the same body as before,
even though it is differently accessorized.

In a moment, he will come calling; in a second, he'll come
asking after.

They liked the sentiment without liking the point.

Don't tell him you're going--just go.

The website says, "You have entered the Navajo Notion."
The Local's Special and the Tourist's Special are exactly the same price on the menu.

Chris Pusateri


From After Language / Letters to Jack Spicer

The ecstatic is not built on an echo
  The corrugated skin of the heart
Dappled thoroughly in red, a small vowel
   Released, a flooded gorge:
Throw those rocks to the wind
   What you shout is about nothing -
When your mother - eyes closed -
Fingers the triangle across the Ouija board
Numbers like Michael Jordan's baskets
(swish, swish) fall into place: A 3
And a 2 and a 3. The Coach
Is a Cherokee Werewolf, Tiger Woods
Is a caterpillar: transformation falls apart
At the line of scrimmage. What we tackle
Between vowels is the incision
The stone carnage: the way I melt
   Trembling - my tail wing in flames:
My head buried and born before you.

Stephen Vincent