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Odd Words November 1, 2012

Posted by Mark Folse in Toulouse Street.
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“I was born to hustle roses down the avenues of the dead.”
— Charles Bukowski

It was a quiet Halloween, with two trick-or-treaters and my incredulous son trying to appreciate Bela Lugosi’s Dracula without lapsing into MST3K mode. He didn’t know who Bela Lugosi was so I thought he needed to see at least one movie, although I probably could have queued up Nosferatau with some Bauhaus in the background if I really wanted a gothic atmosphere. I went to bed and finished Matt Johnson’s fascinating Pym, which takes Edgar Allen Poe’s tale for a new, post-colonial spin. It’s a fascinating book and will get four stars on Goodreads but at the end I discovered that he is also the author of a couple of graphic novels including Dark Rain: A New Orleans Story. I just started a new to-read stack after the Louisiana Book Festival, I am one broke-ass mothasomethin and here I am figuring a trip to the comic store into my weekend. I think Johnson’s tale of two ex-cons who decide post-Katrina chaos is the perfect time to rob a bank belongs on my shelf next to Josh Neufeld’s After the Deluge.

See you at the cemetery.

& so to the listings….

& Thursday, Nov. 1 at Garden District Books Peggy Sweeney-McDonald is discussing and signing her book, Meanwhile at Cafe Du Monde: Life Stories About Food, with with special guests and contributors Nell Nolan, Drew Ramsey, Margarita Bergen, Janet Daley and special guest bartenders: Chris Hannah and Kimberly Patton-Bragg.These foodie monologues invoke your own special comfort foods, accompanied by candid photographs of the many people involved, from speakers to audience members, will be a treasure trove of delightful and delicious memories for all. Karen Benrud, a member of the Café Du Monde family of New Orleans, provides the foreword that celebrates the 150th anniversary of the landmark café and its history.

& Katherine Soniat will read from and sign her sixth collection of poetry, A Raft, A Boat, A Bridge, on this Thursday at 12:30 at the UNO Sandbar. This event is free and open to the public. A Raft, A Boat, A Bridge is recently out from Dream Horse Press. The Swing Girl, published by Louisiana State University Press, was selected as Best Collection of 2011 by the Poetry Council of North Carolina. A Shared Life won the Iowa Poetry Prize. Her work has appeared recently in Women’s Review of Books, Hotel Amerika, and Crazyhorse. She teaches in the Great Smokies Writers Program at UNC-Asheville.

& Thursday evening at 6 p.m. at Octavia Books also hosts Soniat. “Within the composure of Katherine Soniat’s phrasing in A Raft, A Boat, A Bridge something unsettled emerges and will not rest. She presents us with a richly conceived world ‘given to see through.’ But the seeing is rigorous. These poems are revelatory.” —Ron Slate

& Tonite, Nov. 1 17 Poets! features 17 Poets! Literary & Performance Series proudly presents featured readings with poets Tracey McTague plus a brief presentation by San Francisco / New Orleans poet Don Paul on his current cultural work in New Orleans through poetry. Our features will be followed by OPEN MIC hosted by Jimmy Ross (Sign-up for Open Mic begins at 7:30pm, limit 14 readers). Brendan Lorber was on the schedule but can not get out of New York due to the hurricane. Sign-up begins at 7:30, the feature at 8 pm. McTague organized the Battle Hill Poetry Marathon, the New Zinc Bar Reading Series, and served as both editor & consigliore for Lungfull! Magazine from 2001 to the present. Her forthcoming book, Super Natural, from Trembling Pillow Press, is due out in the winter of 2012

& Friday, Nov. 2 join Room 220 for an evening of discussion between media theorists Joy Fuqua and Michele White at 6 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 2 at the brand new Press Street Headquarters (3817 St. Claude Ave., at Pauline). Both authors have recently released books via Duke University Press that examine, respectively, the history of hospital televisions and television’s role in “hospitalizing” American households, and some social ramifications of eBay.

& Saturday, Nov. 3 at 2 pm. its the Poetry Buffet at the Milton Latter Memorial Libriary, hosted by Gina Ferarra and featuring Danny Kerwick, Melanie Leavitt and Jimmy Ross.

& Also on Nov. 3 Micheal Zell reads from and signs his novel Errata at Faubourgh Marigny Art & Books 3-5 p.m. (signing), 6-8 p.m. (reading & signing). Picture a neo-noir Nabokov using Stern-like disgressions directed by Joycean movements of the mind. This book, with its sultry darkness of city and soul, teaches the reader how to uniquely read it.

& Every Saturday it is Story Time with Miss Maureen at the Maple Leaf Bookshop, with a new children’s book, crafts and more.

& Sunday, Nov. 4 at Maple Street Bookshop’s Healing Center location, Ken Foster presents his book I’m A Good Dog at 1 pm. “A beautiful book about some of the most beautiful and big-hearted dogs in the world—dogs who’ve been misunderstood and discriminated against for far too long. Ken Foster and his rescue work are a gift to animals and people alike. Everyone should read I’m a Good Dog to learn the truth about pit bulls, and celebrate them.”
—Rebecca Skloot, author of the #1 New York Times bestseller The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

& Sunday at 3 p.m. at the Maple Leaf Bar Reading Series is an Open Mic, preceded and followed by the usual poets-and-alcohol frivolity. Intererested readers should contact Nancy Harris about featuring at New Orleans’ longest-running poetry reading series, founded by Everette Maddox.

& Maple Leaf at the Healing Center hosts the release of I’m a Good Dog by Maple Street’s own Ken Foster, at 2 p.m. Perhaps more than any other breed, the pit bull has been dogged by negative stereotypes. Setting the record straight, Ken Foster sings the praises of pit bulls in his new book, a gorgeously illustrated, tenderly written tribute to this most misunderstood of canines.

& On Sunday evening at 7 p.m. Spoken Word New Orleans presents Speak Easy Sundays Poetry at the Club Caribbean 2441 Bayou Road. Cover. Visit their website for updates on other spoken words and visiting artists all around town.

& Susan Larson, the former book editor of the former Times-Picayune newspaper and member of the National Book Critics Circle hosts The Reading Life on WWNO (89.9 FM) on Tuesdays at 1:30 p.m. repeating Sundays at Noon. She features interviews with authors of local and national interest.

& On Tuesday, Nov. 6 the student-run 1718 Society hosts another installment of their reading series, featuring Carolyn Hembree reading from her most recently published poetry collection, Skinny (paperback, $14.00). Individual poems have appeared in Colorado Review, DIAGRAM, Gulf Coast, Indiana Review, jubilat, and Witness, among other journals and anthologies. Her poetry has received three Pushcart Prize nominations, a PEN Writers Grant, a Southern Arts Federation Grant, and a Louisiana Division of the Arts Fellowship Award in Literature.

& Also on Tuesday, Maple Leaf Bookstore hosts The First Tuesday Book Club at 5:45 pm at the Uptown location to discuss Gabrielle Hamilton’s Blood, Bones & Butter: The Inadvertent Education of a Reluctant Chef. Newcomers welcome.

& LadyFest hosts two days of literary readings from women writers this year: Wednesday, November 7th from 7-10 pm at 1501 St. Roch Ave, and Friday, November 9th from 8-11 pm at Buffa’s Lounge. This is a tremendous event that brings out a wide spectrum of local writers in all genres to read, so you want to book at least one of these dates in your calender. For a complete line up of art and music events visit ladyfestneworleans.org.

& Ed and Susan Poole present Louisiana Film History at Garden District Books Wednesday at 5:30 pm. This is the first such reference book listing ALL the films shot totally or partially in Louisiana since the inception of cinema, with descriptions and movie posters to match. The text deals with chronological periods, starting out with a general history of film in the U.S. and moving through various decades in Louisiana, the films made then and background information. It is filled with interesting facts and stories and well illustrated with posters of the major films of that decade. The last decade is 2000 to 2012 with a final chapter that details the boom in filming in the state, Hollywood on the Bayou and how that came about. An appendix lists all films alphabetically, and there is a full index to the book itself.

& Also, when you think turkey I think Faulkner Society’s Words & Music Festival at the turn of the next month. Watch this space and the society’s website for updates on this year’s event.

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