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NauenThen

Maggie Dubris

I don't know why I haven't written about her & her work more. 

 

Our origin story: We were both taking Jim Brodey's workshop at the Poetry Project in 1977. At the end of the first or second session, I went up to her & said, "You're the only one who wrote a real poem. Want to be best friends?" I will never know what possessed me to say that. I knew NOTHING about poetry but somehow I knew that's what we had here. 

 

She said, "How about we go have coffee." So we did, along with this guy Charley, who was bantering like mad, & by the end of the night, without saying anything, we had settled the terms of our friendship, & it's been that way ever since. Now we live in the same building & until last month were in & out of each other's apartments all the time. (My recollection is that we named our building The Ezra Pound because we liked saying we live at the pound.)

 

Her new book, Brokedown Palace, is brilliant. Buy it!

 

I just stumbled on this terrific interview in the Believer from a year ago that somehow I never saw till now. But it was Apollinaire's grave at Pere Lachaise—"a modern grave for the first modern poet," I remember thinking at the time, with its jagged & large rock headstone. I think we also went to Mt Parnasse, where we stole flowers from a nearby grave & left them on Baudelaire's grave with a note: From the poets of New York to the Poet of France.

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From the vault

Joe Carey sent me this. I'd entirely forgotten this poster—but not New York Is Missing, a six-page novel I wrote with Maggie Dubris. I remember Steve in a bald wig as Mayor Kroch. Tim Milk & Johnny Stanton were supposed to be dancing boys, but Johnny & I had a big fight right before & he didn't show up & Tim wouldn't wear the little short-shorts alone.

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We were funny II

From the same issue of Exquisite Corpse, & a perfect example of our sense of humor. Maggie & I have always known why we thought something was funny, even if no one else does.
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When we were funny

This was in Andrei Codrescu's Exquisite Corpse in 1984. The days when it was a long skinny print mag.

Tomorrow I'll post another work from the same issue.
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Colony Day

I love my office/studio but familiarity means that sometimes I can't get anything done here, despite building (well, Albie did) an Elfa shelving system that includes a second desk in the middle room, where I don't have internet and do have my poetry books at hand. It's where I work on art as opposed to work-work in the front room but at times I just can't get started.

Not long ago, my friend Maggie & I were reminiscing about how great it is to be at artist colonies, where we can devote ourselves to art with no distractions (no errands, cooking, email, and on & on). From that we came up with the concept of Colony Day, where we take half a day or so & reproduce the leisure and expansiveness of time at a retreat. The best part is that we allow ourselves to explore, not just Get Stuff Done—to read, think, & feel like we have all the time we want to do what really matters.  Read More 
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