Wednesday, August 11, 2010

10. Reading } Brookline Booksmith

First, an anecdote: overheard at the college bookstore, two students talking, one of whom I realized was related to that former student of mine who was killed when a motorcycle lost control and careened into her. The relative said, “…what was weird was some of her organs were found partially crystallized. The doctors said she might have been dead before the accident. One of the doctors said, ‘dead on her feet.’ My mom couldn’t take it, she freaked out, she was so angry, I thought she was going to sue them or something.” The other student asked the question I would have asked—at this point I stood hidden behind a bookshelf, listening intently: “What do you mean, crystallized?” The relative said, “Like, encrusted with crystallized blood? I don’t know. I couldn’t ask. My mom was freaking out.”

I debated whether or not I could introduce myself to the relative; by the time I decided I would the two students had gone. I went outside to see if I could spot them, but the parking lot was crowded with freshman (it’s orientation week). I checked on a book order (Richard Rolle’s Fire of Love), and left.


Tonight I’ll join Andrea Henchey, C.S. Carrier, and other Hartford-area poets for our monthly Inescapable Rhythms reading at Real Art Ways. The featured poet is Lisa Olstein. That the reading begins at 7pm is a lie.

Tomorrow I’ll be in Brookline (MA) reading with John Cotter. That reading does start at 7pm, and since I consider myself to be John’s opening act, I’d appreciate it if you were there on time. John will read from Under the Small Lights, his new book (steadily gathering praise). He’s an excellent reader, and he’s been reading all summer so he’s in shape.

This is the last reading I’ll do before Color Plates is published (look for it in mid-September). My publishers have arranged a pre-order setup (which somehow includes autographs), and I’ll have copies of my old (though recently re-promoted) book Worse Than Myself on hand. But tomorrow night I’ll read something with the desperate scent of unpublished all over it.

John says he’ll buy you drinks if you go.

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