Friday, May 28, 2010

Stefene Russell To Read on Monday, June 14, at Duff's in the CWE

The next •Chance Operations• reading will be Monday, June 14, at Duff's in the Central West End. Doors will open at 7:30 p.m.

Featured readers for June 14 are Gena Brady Allen, Eileen G'Sell, and Stefene Russell. Interested readers may sign-up for the open mic first come-first serve at the reading.

Stefene Russell grew up in Salt Lake City, in a hundred-plus-year-old house built by a notorious polygamist; it was full of spiders and secret trapdoors for hiding extra wives and children. She is the culture editor at St. Louis Magazine, former co-editor of the late and a member of Poetry Scores, a collective dedicated to translating poetry into other media. In 2007, Poetry Scores published her long poem, "Go South For Animal Index," as a beautiful little letterpress book with a full-length CD inside. She is currently working on an epic (EPIC!) work of prose-poetry that's titled, at least for now, "Orphanus."

Tune of Lilac

The watcher turned her face into the dark
with a werewolf's eye for splendor,
and what was there to find?
High as trapped gaslight
caught in trees, high on a kind
of phosphorescence
(White, purple, pink)
A vision of
Striated lives
gone unstrung. Foxholes,
teacups hung on hooks,
Shampoo sets, sinkholes
and conversation pits.
Little lavender?]colored mints
sitting in a dish
for twenty years.
Purple glass grapes
strung together with rusting wires.
What use do you have for your hands,
man? What use do you have for your
hands, woman? Why no more nosegays,
no more funeral wreaths woven
from backyard flowers?
Why won't you read the book
of spoiled petals, drunken tulips
hanging after rain?
Fear carried close, a dried
mouse heart hidden in the chamber
of a poisoner's ring.
These flowers trembled after sundown,
White lilacs visible after dark,
little boys riding bikes past curfew
and hanging from clothesline poles
in the bruisy dark, knowing
how their not?] knowing makes them tough.
Decades from now,
they'll notice some ticklish perfume
from yards away, a song they can't
remember the words to, or the way it ends.

-- Stefene Russell

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