Monday, April 12, 2004

Back from California. Very. Tired. Fun family weekend, with an all-too-brief poetry break (the evidence is here). How I would have loved to have more time to talk with old friends like Cat and Nils and new virtual friends like Kasey, Alli, and Jim (I got to see the notebook in which he draws his cartoons! it was a real meet-the-Beatles moment). Sadly missed was the founder of the feast herself, Stephanie. The reading was excellent—Rae Armantrout is a superstar (buy her new book immediately); her poems become especially supple when she reads them aloud, and I experienced the pleasure of what seemd like all my neurons firing at once. She can also be quite moving. I also enjoyed the first reader, Kaia Sand, especially the last poem she read, a prose sequence called "Cognitive Dissonance." (Her book is available here.)

Still, it sounds like nothing can compete with Stephanie's shindig in Oakland the next evening. But my Saturday was hardly a total loss. The entire Corey family that had come out west for my sister's bat mitzvah (the temple calls it an "anshei mitzvah" when those involved are adults) had a fabulous Peruvian meal in the Castro at a restaurant called Destino and then moved on to the Mint for karaoke. It didn't take as much persuasion as you'd think before I was on stage singing "Don't You (Forget About Me)" by Simple Minds. Ah say lah, la-la-la-la....

Home now, exhausted and broke. And I can't seem to find that dissertation topic, though I know I left it lying around here somewhere.

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