Thursday, May 27, 2010


Gosh, 19 readers! Everyone did a great job, as usual. Before I go into them in detail there are a couple of announcements to be made.

First of all, the contest has been indefinitely delayed. It will be happening the the near future, though, so make sure to write your open letter to the BP about the oil spill. The new voting date will be announced at the next open mic.

Secondly, the Anomic Press website's skeleton is up. Patrick and I are working on the important things as we speak, but they probably won't be up for a week or so. Check it out at

So, without further adieu:

Davi–Troubadour – This was Troubadour’s first night, but not David’s. He shared a poem about “maggot words,” “words made digital,” and other generally angry words.

Clayton Cooper – Clay dropped his usual Cat in the Hat on Viagra persona tonight to read some older poems about love and Zoloft. “It’s like a shroud, or a veil, even…” He also pitched a new gum to us, which apparently had the ability to turn you into “a badass, rad mother fucker.”

Kevin Koontz – This was the first time I had heard anything from Kevin, and it was quite interesting. Among his poems were introspective poetical spits that danced with both balance and nature.

Jonathan – “Herb has an H in it.” A nice, BP-based rant followed by a realistic kick in the ass.

West – The only new reader of the night. His name was very fitting, for he was from the West Coast. He sang some songs to us that would probably have made him famous if he lived in the 70’s. “Absence of essence.”

Quincy – “Potato chips were invented in 1965.” We found out that Q is raptose intolerant. Apparently artists like Ludacris and Nelly make him sick… “They say death only hurts the living. What about the living dead?”

Kent – “I don’t want to pay for your bullets no more.” He delivered a very moving political piece.

John Ellis – John talked about spring cleaning and read some Haiku. “Are we living in a never ending story? If you’re offering.”

Matthew – We were blessed with three poems, the most memorable one was about some inhumanly disgusting beard; another spoke of very hellish jelly beans; and the final was a very beautiful piece about butterflies and flowers, which contrasted pretty well with the others.

Dustin Toney – Dusty laid down a freestyle-poem hybrid that, for one reason or another, was a lot like jazz… On a side note, he is no longer attracted to white women.

Stephanie – Stephanie gave a eulogy to an angelic child. She also gifted us with a very accurate portrayal of a confusing (is that word a bit redundant?) dream.

Charles – We were told some very touching and saddening things about his father. “When did a father become a villain? Worse than a villain! When did a father become apathetic?” “Is it my job to hang myself on the gallows of my family tree?”

Barrett “ ” White – The usual, wordy, epic poems came from poor little Blank, but how can one ever tire of them? “If we died on a thousand mile highway, there would be a spot for us in heaven.”

Erika – “Today is butterfly day, just so you know.” She left us with a marvelous and depressing description of modern life.

Jill – Jill dedicated deep, feminist-esque a poem to her nieces. “Your mother has been afraid to be a woman. So have I.”

Anna Hubbard – “I could already feel my knees bruising up with geometric patterns from the tile.” Anna shared a story about a rather awkward experience with us, but it was very well written, nonetheless.

Travis “Mariah” – I read, but wished that Pat, Alex Colston, or Travis Cummings were reading instead.

Jimi – Her poem was titled “The Last Time I Read at Poetry Night, it got Me Pregnant.” She shared a poem about motherhood, or so it seemed. “Leaking love through tender tits.”

Meghan – She read some Haiku. “Haiku on a Racist Alabama Rest Stop.” “Michael Moore is a Fake Socialist.” Very enlightening, to say the least.

See you guys next week,

Travis "Mariah"

Sunday, May 9, 2010

5/4/10 (5/9/10)

Good morning and Happy Mother's Day to all of you mothers and mother figures out there in the world. I appreciate those of you that showed up last night and celebrated my early birthday with good times and good music (for a few short, fleeting moments). Last week, I wrote down some of my favorite lines from the readers that I heard. Here they are.

S' Mayo- "drag your devils to heaven to be destroyed"
Erika- "filled to the brim with liquid memory eraser"
Stephen- "a time of courage in an age of fear"
John Fravel (my personal favorite of the night)- "not a Willie Mays, but a Willy will" & "the defendant's penis was an oxymoron"
Travis- I wanted to write the whole poem down
C. Cooper- "hours lost to blind man's theory"
Alexz- "flair and excessive wall ornamentation"
Dusty- "alligators ate antelopes because they can't eat cantaloupes"
Q [stillblacksee]- "I'm seeking 12 disciples armed with hammers, not Hummers, but hammers"
Naja- "some people have faith in the chains that hold them back"
Meghan K- "Michael moore should give / his movies away for free / capitalist pig"
Cole- "3.141592653"
Spirit {aka the Poet?}- "our multiculturalism is coming in the state of animalism"

If any of the above quotes are completely incorrect, I is hard to catch up with some of the faster readers. See you all on Tuesday, 5/11, where we can discuss the inaccuracies and express our frustration


Tuesday, April 27, 2010

April 20th- The real contest night.

Battling the obligations to my scholarly duties, I will now recount the events surrounding the mystical night of April 20th, 2010 that has been, until now, shrouded in secrecy.

The night began as any other, but what night is different when distilled to its purest parts?

There happened to be no new readers this week, but the majority of the wonderful regulars that the frequenters of Poetry night have come to know were there. The list of readers and my brief summaries of their performances are mirrored below.
  1. Morgan- Spoke of Rwandan & Afghan victims. Provided audience with a POV that many never consider.
  2. Erika- My favorite line was, "Horticulturally speaking, i'd be a root."
  3. Rylan- Always provides simple, but thought provoking prose. A tale of two blind, hungry bats.
  4. AKA- More focus and emotion this week. "...The same people that smile in your face and hate you round the corner..."
  5. Naja- Even unprepared, her poetic performances are strong.
  6. Steven-The third performance I have witnessed from him. Has a unique, solid style that is strongly rooted in a, for the lack of a better word, classical sort of poetry.
  7. Barrett White (contest winner)- Up to his new/old hi-jinks with his bag of tricks. Looking forward to his future work.
  8. Dusty- Read something that a friend had written titled, "Letter to America from an Iraqi Woman"
  9. Mariah (contest participant)-Presented an Adderall-inspired poem about genitals and his contest piece was a clever poem based off a work by Jackson Pollock. The poem definitely reflected Pollock's style.
  10. Jonathan- A different side was shown this week. Read an honest and emotional poem about growing up without a mother.
  11. Iceiz-I was most impressed with her ability to write a piece DURING Poetry night and present it just as well as her prepared poems. Even off the cuff, she is still incredibly passionate.
  12. Travis- read a number of contemplative haiku. I wish I could hear from Travis more often.
  13. Q-Read his cleverest poem to date. Using the elementary structure of nursery rhymes and
  14. Cole (contest participant)- Presented a great piece that, upon reading in print, was meticulously crafted.
  15. John Fravel (contest participant)- John Fravel read a piece that was unmistakeably John Fravel. I do not recall the title, but it very well could have been titled, "One million brown bunnies".
  16. Patrick Hudson (contest participant)- "A flower in reverse is palindromic, A seed in reverse is palindromic again."
As far as the contest, it goes without saying that all the poetry presented during the contest was particularly good. Alas, the audience was required to vote, and Barrett White walked away this week's winner.

Afterwards, everyone went to their respective homes and went to sleep, I am sure. Except for those that might have observed a particular holiday celebrated this time every year. Of that, I am not.

Looking forward to tonight NPS,
John Ellis.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Update for April 13th, 2010

Hello Blogosphere!

THE APRIL CONTEST has been post-poned til TOMORROW due to low participation.

The rules are simple, most of you probably have a piece like this already.
Present a poem inspired by another work of art, EXCLUDING POETRY.
This can be music, film, photography, painting, or anything else you can portray as a piece of art in the contest.

Moving on now, the slam on the 13th was still a successful one. 15 readers in total, although the original count was 17 - it seems a couple jokers thought it would be funny to sign each-others names on the list. Well, it was funny. But, next time - sign the names as Simpsons-esque pranks; such as,

"Amanda Huggenkiss" or "Hugh Ass" or "Oliver Clothesoff"

otherwise you embarrass yourself much more than me
and that simply
will not do.

Oh yes, did I mention that Ty Cummings surprised us with an appearance?

He read from his recently completed novella, but beforehand--he relayed a message from 2 (out of 6) original New Poets: Trevor Griffith and Alex Colston.
However, circumstances as they are, neither audio nor photographic evidence was taken; so, it could be a big rumor I made up. Still:

It set the stage for an evening of prevailing emotional urgency.

Barrett followed Ty, recovering from his recent experiments into prop interactions.
Which made his poem slightly less memorable, in my opinion.
I mean, really, it's hard to follow up smashing a porcelain clown with a hammer with big glasses, low decidable projection, and questionable Jewish ethnicity. (I'm just joking on _____!)

Next came Isis, who split her set into three, beginning with a newer poem -
so new, she had yet to memorize it. It was a different side to the often crowd favorite; something that everyone, I'm sure, desired to see.

Two new readers graced the stage, David Wade and Poppy (last name).
Having known David a little over two years now, it came as a delightful shock--not like the masochistic, mad enjoyment one might derive from electrotherapy--but more intune with the after affects of successful defibrillation.

Poppy read a poem inspired by a painting his cousin Austin did. Called White Bullets, Austin actually brought the painting--presenting it before the audience. This was somehow unrelated to the contest.

Even Clay Cooper somehow managed to get serious on stage, recounting a trip to euthanize his father's dog. The experience, which occurred earlier in the day, seemed to have a rather profound affect on Mr. Cooper. He stood on stage without a poem, blue wristwatch n'all, simply speaking--a direct message intertwined with rarely seen earnest words.

As is often the case on Tuesday Night, we ended with a poem of gratuity.

Isis read one of the more loved pieces, a poem every poet must write:
a love song for words. In context to the evening, it came as a culminating force rather than a personal explanation. Where life finds each of us in hardship, ecclectisim seperates our situations by social standards. Cultures often celebrate how different they are from one-another, but what I saw in Isis' poem was an ardent adoration for similarity.

To assert our differences requires us to use that which connects us all, the foundation of civilization, an ineffable idyll every person in End of the Line on any given Tuesday can share in.

To me, she was saying: "we can always find each-other in words."

Friday, April 2, 2010

NPS update for 03/3/2010--"NOPEN MIC NIGHT"

Patrick, your faithful emcee here to extend the update.

4 we move on, be sure to read our article in the Independent News.
Our very own Hana Frenette wrote the superb piece
and somehow managed to make me sound intelligent.

Also, next week we announce contest rules for April.

With 17 readers and a packed night, emotions were running in every direction.
Oh yeah, we had no mic (pardon the pun I stole from Morgan)

Scott Mayo read a prosey piece, split into two parts through the night. It detailed an adventure which took place as much in his head as it did in the world (in this case, the world was a day-trip he took to Pensacola before
establishing residency in this fine city)

Barrett continues to experiment with the effects of props on his readings; albeit, this time proving to be much more subtle than a brown bag over his head. Hookers and cryptic word play aside - this guy writes with an honest eye on everything.

And, the same goes to John Fravel - who returned tonight from a month and a half hiatus from reading (He still showed up every Tuesday, though!). The Watermelon Man, as he says: Just came to him. It was reminiscent of

John's early writings, like those included in PS--PENSACOLA.

Which, speaking of, Meghan K and her husband Joe brought to the stage towards the end of the night. By request, she read the title poem of our anthology in its entirety while Joe drummed along (as he did several times that night). It was easy to remember why she won that contest in November. That powerful piece is the 3rd page of PS--Pensacola, which anyone can pick up on Tuesday for $7.00.

Clay Cooper, a relatively new poet, read for his 3rd consecutive week. He has an interesting style. It seems he takes poetic cliches, as well as cadence to their only logical end -- satire. Clay's poem spoke of life's river, and how he drinks alcohol too much. Still, before the expected giggle fit Clay's known to induce in the crowd; he illustrated his own originality in a poem about his dog.

Renaud returned with a rendition of a favorite poem: 'down' by j ivy.

Quentin Taylor, Renaud's partner in crime (in his band Red Shoes), joined us on the stage. I'm not sure if he's a new reader or not, but he was treated with the love we give to all first timers. Reading from a cell-phone, however, inevitably produces technical issues. Luckily, Quentin didn't let his message get lost in the stumble.

Our old friend Spirit is gone, instead replaced with AKA the Poet. He seemed very clear headed on Tuesday - his poems were direct, sharp. He seemed more intune with the crowd, or perhaps they were just more responsive.

Something which has become more and more common in the past two to three months.

Morgan continues to practice on his Sonnets. If you'd like to see his progress, check out Mr. Hamilton's blog. (Which I will post up as soon as I find the link)
He's got a certain charm which never escapes the crowd, or maybe it's just the goof. Either way, he's a damn good writer - and he's only getting better.

Finally, Priya Lin wandered into the set about half-way through, requesting a spot (which I could never say no to).
She stood on stage speaking, holding her mac-book one handed so her fingers could entangle with every spirit in the air, a bombshell spit out on the first sentence. With only subtle warnings, Priya has decided to move to Hawaii. There were equal distributions of lament and excitement in those several silent pauses between her final address.

A note on Priya: she's been a constant with NPS since almost the beginning. When we first moved to EotL with the open-mic, Priya found the first and only flyer I put up for months. In the most random of places, too - a Gulf Breeze StarBucks. Thinking back, I'm not too sure why I decided to put it there. Or, why I put my own phone number on there.

Maybe for this exact reason. That's a downplay of a beautiful providence, though; I could write a million poems, but none of them would mix words together as perfectly as reality has mixed our lives.

Priya, your elegance and grace have inspired me more times than I can count, because - as is often the case with inspiration - sometimes you don't even think about it. Until you do. And, believe me when I say that you taught me something I'll never forget:

sometimes the simplest beauties are the most profound.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Late Blog

This blog is roughly a week late, so I just want to briefly bring back some memories from last week. We had another crowded audience gather to listen and contribute. The doors of End of The Line were left open, allowing a comfortable breeze to enter the tight cafe...also, a mysterious visitor came and loudly attempted to give away a bar of chocolate. If you read last Tuesday, please post some of your contributed work along with this post. See you all tonight.

B. White

Sunday, March 14, 2010

03/09/2010- A night nothing short of...

As the first time emcee for possibly the largest number of readers that Poetry Night has seen to date, I am pleased that this night was nothing short of colossal. Including the readers who read for the haiku contest, the audience was treated to performances by TWENTY-FIVE different poets of which NINE were new readers. The sheer number of voices heard at End of the Line on Tuesday night demonstrated the diversity of thoughts that characterizes every Poetry Night. Poetry Night consistently proves to be a night nothing short of beautiful, and so, this particular night, too, carried the energy which feeds all those that come to End of the Line on Tuesday nights.

Despite the briefness required from the poets as a result of the large turnout, every reader seemed to bring words that were thoughtfully and uniquely his or her own. The variety of emotions and topics ranged from the stirring recounts of a police brutality victim to the comedic solutions to the question of life. One reader even spoke of the worthlessness of poetry only to be answered with cheers and applause. To me, a night that can contain such an understanding for the vast array of ideas presented is a night nothing short of extraordinary.

Aside from the large turnout, NPS featured a haiku contest for the month of March. There were eight entrants, one of whom was Patrick Hudson, the NPS founder and customarily, the Poetry Night emcee. The voting was so close that March produced two co-winners. After discussion of a sort of tie-breaker, it was decided instead that Cole Amick and Stijl Calhoun would be the selected co-winners of the haiku contest. So congratulations to these two, though all the entrants brought incredible material.

Every week keeps me looking for the next Tuesday to hear more from such wonderful poets, and the role of guest emcee allowed me to further understand the time and effort put into organizing Poetry Night. For those who are regular attendees on Tuesday, be sure to thank Patrick Hudson for the sacrifices he makes for people to be heard. I thank everyone who has made Poetry Night nothing short of inspiring. That is all. Thank you.

Wishing Poetry Night, NPS, and EotL continued growth and success,
John Ellis