Friday, February 13, 2009

AWP Day 2

Started the day with two great panels. Slam / Academia had some good thoughts from the panel (I was particular struck by several phrasings from Jasmine Cuffee that connected biracialism to the slam/academia divide and a potential marriage of the two to produce, as she put it, a beautiful baby). A woman in the audience named Treasure offered up a very smart comment regarding racial assumptions and presences as they play out in this debate. Several audience members offered uninformed/non-useful thoughts afterwards, but it was still a great session all in all.

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The Reconstruction Room performers were awesome. Awesome. If you live in Chicago and can go see a show, do so. Just do it.

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Bookfair shmoozing was productive. I picked up my copy of Sentence, saw people at various magazines to which I've submitted work and whether published or not have some kind of email relationship (hi again Rhett over at Cave Wall), and saw Logen get a few requests for work. Much yay.

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No sketches today. Though Logen and I did have a two-page conversation consisting largely of puns during the one boring panel of the day. I will not share it here. Think of the children.

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Larry Heinemann tells great stories. He obviously writes great stories, what with the National Book Award and all. But I love a good storyteller. A&M, I'm glad you're hiring him for a more permanent position!

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I'm tired. Grammar is failing me. I have to be energetic to feature at the Afterhours Slam tomorrow night. Plus: visits to the Art Institute, at which Herr Doktor Professor Heinemann, Mick White, Logen, and I will pose provocatively in front of famous works of art and have our pictures taken.

3 comments:

Oscar Bermeo said...

Thanks for the reports from Chi-Town.

Very curious about the "potential" marriage between slam and academia when we have examples like Patricia Smith (Multiple National Slam Championships followed by widespread National Academic recognition), Taylor Mali (MA in English/Creative Writing followed by multiple National Slam Championships), Susan B.A. Somers-Willett (Pursued and acquired an MA in Creative Writing and a Ph. in American Lit while slamming in the Austin and National Poetry Slam stages). You can also add Justin Chin, Daphne Gottlieb, Marty McConnell and others who seem to have already connected the divide. Were these names mentioned or were there other examples of Slam/Academia unity cited?

Karin said...

Nice to get your updates! I wish I could be there. Best wishes for the slam tonight!

JeFF Stumpo said...

Karin - Hi and thanks. Slam wasn't what I expected/was told originally, but had fun. Tomorrow night I slam (as in compete) at the Green Mill. Wish me luck on that front!

Oscar - Glad to report :-)

I'm with you 100% regarding all this talk about "potential" connections. I'd add Ragan Fox, Robbie Q. Telfer, and Jeffrey McDaniel to your list (not as a one-upper, but really in the spirit of adding for anybody visiting this blog). The connections are there.

I'm trying to be careful to not add too much to what Jasmine said so as not to misconstrue her words, but filling out the context would have been useful. The panel appeared to be under the assumption that its audience would not be familiar with crossover poets/poetics. Because of that, so I suspect, they used phrases like "future" and "potential" to refer to a state that does exist, but might not be on the radar of the attendees.

I'm pretty sure that Danny Solis mentioned Patricia Smith and Susan B. Anthony Somers-Willett as excellent examples of academia/slam crossovers.

I've rewritten something trying to clarify why I liked Jasmine's metaphor, but I'm exhausted at this point. The update for Day 3 will go up tomorrow. Thanks for your patience.