March 30, 2009

Pittsburgh Poetry Events March 29 - April 4

Tuesday, March 31 @ 7pm
91.3 WYEP Radio

Hungry Sphinx Reading Series
Tuesday, March 31 @ 8pm
feat. Angela Bayout and Bernadette Ulsamer
The Sphinx Cafe
401 Atwood St Pittsburgh, PA 15213

Alix Olson
Tuesday, March 31 @ 8:45pm
Folk Poet and Progressive Queer Activist
University of Pittsburgh
Kurtzman Room, William Pitt Union


Thursday, April 2 @ 7pm
Open Thread & Encyclopedia Destructica
A Reading and Release Event
Encyclopedia Destructica Studios
156 41st St, Pittsburgh, PA

Pitt Writing Series
Thursday, April 2 @ 8:30pm
feat. Paul Muldoon
Frick Fine Arts Auditorium

Gist Street Reading Series
Friday, April 3 @ 8pm
feat. Joseph Bathanti and Patrick Rosal
James Simon's Sculpture Studio
50 Holt Street, Pittsburgh, PA

March 23, 2009

At the A & P Meridiem by Jessie Carty

The poems in “At the A & P Meridiem,” Jessie Carty’s first chapbook, concern the nature of time: the past, the present, and the future, a coalescing of memory and hope.

Each poem in the chapbook is named for an hour, from the “7pm” of one day to the “6pm” of the next. But this arrangement is less straightforward than it may seem. Reading around in the chapbook, you’ll see that the poems/hours do not necessarily flow directly from one to another. “6pm” may take place in the present day, while “11pm” takes place years earlier; other poems take place at other times. The chapbook’s disjointedness is, in the end, immensely satisfying: it’s an expression of the simultaneous eternity and singularity of each hour.

In “10pm,” this eternity of the singular is unfortunate: the speaker asks “How many times have we had this conversation?” and the reader gets a sense of her despair. But in other poems, the sensation of forever-fleeting time is tender and lovely. “5am,” for example, contains this memory:

Last winter we had rolled papers,
together, for the evening delivery. That was
before she also took on a morning shift, before
we measured the cold by the number of socks
layered on each foot.

References to popular culture abound, including a sly Dr. Seuss allusion; you may never think of two lines from Fox in Sox the same way after reading the prose poem “2am”:

we wait for late night HBO – Real Sex IX – I giggle as you look, once in a while, over the top of your copy of Space. You’re reading the ending, again. […] I try to stay quiet, but the particular position they are practicing on the screen makes me call out, “I would not, could not with a fox!”

“4am” takes place at Denny’s and contains the lines

we wait
over waterlogged sweet-tea
for the moment when we’ll
tire of getting to know one another.

The growing confusion of past, present, and future culminates (for me) in “3pm” in which time is simultaneously compressed and expanded:

While I was eating cold
pizza and watching reruns
of “Life Goes On,” my car
was evaporating and I
will be breaking down tonight
on a dark semi-suburban road
near the airport.

One is reminded of Kurt Vonnegut’s idea of a “timequake,” a sudden jump in time similar to the physical upset of an earthquake.

The book ends with a moment involving (fittingly for this collection) both language and time:

I set a timer for 45 minutes.
As I wipe down the counter
and scrub the sink, I stop
once in a while to flick
the light inside the stove,

With that drawn-out charm word, Carty calls attention to the power of language, and once again time is deliberately mixed up: the word comes after the magical moment, so that it expresses magic rather than causing it. This is the “spell of domesticity” Carty refers to in the third line of the poem, the everyday magical moment, the potential for poetry and art inside each hour.

Jessie Carty runs Folded Word Press, with projects including Shape of a Box, a YouTube-based literary magazine.

At the A & P Meridiem by Jessie Carty was published by Pudding House Publications and can be purchased from their website. Review written by Jessy Randall.

March 22, 2009

Pittsburgh Poetry Events March 22-28

Tuesday, March 24 @ 7pm
91.3 WYEP Radio

Hungry Sphinx Reading Series
Tuesday, March 24 @ 8pm
feat. Irene McKinney, RJ Gibson & Aaron Smith
The Sphinx Cafe
401 Atwood St Pittsburgh, PA 15213

Te Cafe Reading Series
Thursday, March 26 @ 7pm
feat. Lynn Emanuel & Karen Lillis
2000 Murray Avenue, Pittsburgh

Jim Tolan Poetry Reading
Friday, March 27 @ 1pm
Mellon Living Room, Lindsay House
Woodland Road Pittsburgh, PA 15232
Event Contact Information
Sheryl St. Germain

Celebration of Women Artists: A SWAN Day Event
Friday, March 27 @ 7:30pm
Sponsored by No Name Players
Grey Box Theatre
3595 Butler Street, Pittsburgh, PA

March 13, 2009

Pittsburgh Poetry Events March 15-21

Sunday Poetry and Reading Series: Rebecca Fousts
Sunday, March 15 @ 2pm
Quiet Reading Room - Main Library First Floor
4400 Forbes Ave Pittsburgh, PA 15213

TypewriterGirls Try Drag
Sunday, March 15 @ 7:30pm
feat. Aaron Kunin, C.A. Conrad, and Magdalena Zurawski
Your Inner Vagabond $5
4130 Butler St Lawrenceville, PA

Tuesday, March 17 @ 7pm
91.3 WYEP Radio

Hungry Sphinx Reading Series
Tuesday, March 17 @ 8pm
The Sphinx Cafe
401 Atwood St Pittsburgh, PA 15213

Steel City Slam
Tuesday, March 17 @ 9pm
Shadow Lounge $5
5972 Baum Blvd Pittsburgh, PA 15206

Reading & Book Signing: Alicia Ostriker
Wednesday, March 18 @ 7:30pm
Carlow University Kresge Auditorium
3333 Fifth Ave Pittsburgh, PA 15213

TNY Presents
Wednesay, March 18 @ 8pm
feat. Michael Kimball, Kelly Ramsey, and Andy Mulkerin
4919 Penn Ave Pittsburgh PA, 15224

March 10, 2009

Weave Magazine Seeks Your Help!

Weave Magazine has recently decided to accept applications for summer internships. These internships will be part time and unpaid in cash, but paid very well in gratitude and the occasional pint. We are looking for people who are passionate about art and literary pursuits, as well as people who have experience/interest in the following:

- Web design
- Graphic art design
- Feminist political leanings
- Event promotions/PR
- Social networking skills

Interested parties should apply to with "Summer Internship" in the subject line. Please include your resume/CV and a cover letter. We strongly recommend reading a copy of the first issue before applying.

March 5, 2009

Weave Magazine Issue 02 Contributor List

Weave Magazine: Issue 02 Contributors & Titles
Check out Issue 02 Review on


Greta Aart
Snapshots from a Siamese Banquet
Mary Alexandra Agner
First Frog
Jon Ballard
Lending an Ear
Ahimsa Timoteo Bodhrán
from Other Love Poems
Jon Borcherding
Kelly Davio
Frank DePoole
Night Shift
Nicolle Elizabeth
Sweet Potatoes
Kristina England
Hot Surface
Nava Fader
She'll be Driving Six White Horses
Brent A. Fisk
Winter Passage
Alayna Frankenberry
Pet Project
Sean Patrick Hill
Laura Hirneisen
Justin Hyde
only waitress at the truck-stop who never uses the cash register
Dane Kuttler
When Boughs Break
Jeffrey H. MacLachlan
Rachel Mallino
The Arrow of Time
Richard McLaughlin
Andrew A Mulvania
Morning Song II
Kristine Ong Muslim
Niina Pollari
Serpent Tells Creation Story
Ren Powell
A Request for Sound from a Televised Report from Afghanistan
Octavio Quintanilla
Two Skins
Michelle Layden Stoner
Karen J. Weyant
The Girl Who Could Catch Echos
Sleeping with Dead Saints
Jill Crammond Wickham
Without My Pearls and Apron, I Am Nothing But A Creature Out of Season: An Excerpt from June Cleaver’s Secret Diary
Angela Veronica Wong
Turnips 2
Brian R. Young
In Praise of the Cow


Naoko Awa (Trans. Toshiya Kamei)
White Mufflers
Dave Barrett
Damian Dressick
What We Don't Talk About When We Talk About Your Cousin Who's in Prison
Rosanne Griffeth
The Cancer Woman's Beautiful Daughters
Valerie Z. Lewis
Eric McKinley
Bob Strother
Tellico Plains
Rhian Waller
Earth Bubbles

*Creative Non-Fiction*

The Violence of Peace on a Summer Day Yesterday
Sunshine LeMontree
Letter to the Little Blue House
Henry F. Tonn
Snapshots from the Asylum
Devon Ward-Thommes
Becoming the Pelican


Scott Bulger
Anatomy of a Piano
Sunrise Chain
Water Spirit
(cover art)
minutes after eating the apple, moments before kissing the snake
Allison M. Healy
Aquatic Engine
Emma Scott Schaeffer
Glass Trees
from MoMA
Andrena Zawinski
Lakeshore Walkway
Summer Hush

March 2, 2009

In the Voice of a Minor Saint by Sarah J. Sloat

When winter gets too cold and you find yourself daydreaming of the slow heat of a late summer day, I suggest making some tea and curling up with Sarah J. Sloat’s “In the Voice of a Minor Saint” for a warm buzz.

A persuasive collection of poetry, Sloat hooks you in, opens a window and beckons you to climb through. “Opportunity” leaves you hungry for more with lines like

For a second the radio wavered between stations / and I was so busy making myself marvelous.

Sloat manages to be bound to both the reality of the mundane, like trips to the gas station and morning coffee, with poems like “Pursuit” and “Shady” but then shines when she makes the mundane magical. In the poem, “Grasslands”, Sloat discusses fertility and waiting;

When I could not get with child I swallowed the egg of the meadowlark who eats the daylight, the mother of untangled grasses.

There is a slowness to the overall tone of this book, but the intention is not stagnation, but rather savoring moments and details. The book’s title poem demonstrates this attention to detail that makes you want to let each word melt in your mouth again and again,

My heart is small, like a love of buttons or black pepper.

My favorite poem appears next to last and truly showcases Sloat’s ability to be both gentle and dreamlike, as well as a fiery instigator for movement. “Ghazal of the Bright Body” unravels its message with increasing speed and ends with,

I dream joy’s a cheetah on a highway I pull off, ditch my keys and run with it.

Sloat does what she does best in this collection of poems – she gently compels the reader to slow down and digest the small things, observe life’s tiny influences and then realize they are the biggest after all.

In the Voice of a Minor Saint by Sarah J. Sloat was published by Tilt Press and can be purchased from their website. Review written by Laura E. Davis.

Pittsburgh Poetry Events March 2-8

Tuesday, March 3 @ 7pm
feat. Michelle Stoner
91.3 WYEP Radio

Hungry Sphinx Reading Series
Tuesday, March 3 @ 8pm
feat. Susan Sailer, Lori Wilson, Ellen McGrath Smith
The Sphinx Cafe
401 Atwood St Pittsburgh, PA 15213

March 1, 2009

Fiction: Issue Two

Rosanne Griffeth

The Cancer Woman's Beautiful Daughters

   Long ago and far away, we believed in magic. We believed in spells, totems, prayer, positive thinking and wheat grass. We believed the force of our will and sunny smiles could light the dark corners, banish evil spirits, bend enemies to our will and defeat death. We danced the special dance around her bed and nothing our mother said or did dissuaded us from our belief--and as long as a smidgeon of this came true, the smallest iota, we believed in the magic we wrought.

   In the Andes, the mummies of child sacrifices sleep on mountain peaks where they have rested through the centuries. Millennia ago, children hiked up the mountain to honorable deaths in a drugged haze. My sister gave me a handful of Valium, because I didn't want to offer my childhood on the altar of Mother's cancer.

   In Australia, the aboriginal people explore the dreamtime, disappearing into the bush for weeks and months and years. After delivering the child sacrifice to our mother's bedside, my sister disappeared into the wilds of Europe and Asia, emerging now and again without warning to tell us of macrobiotics, coffee enemas and juicing--wonders to behold--and say, here I bought a juicer and two thousand dollars worth of vitamins you are to give her these five times a day with the wheatgrass juice.

   Then she disappeared. I tended the mummy of my childhood, packing it in bitter salts. As it dried up, I resented my sister, though the sacrifice of her sanity was just as devastating. My days passed in darkness while I tried to see through my shrunken eyes, lids sewn shut. The sounds of parties and foreign men murmuring were room tone for my sister's phone calls. She came, she left, she came, she left, and she came--each time being less of what she had been…

   The beautiful cancer doctor with his blue eyes and Sloan-Kettering tresses attended our mother, weaving in and out of our lives, the tails of his white lab coat flying behind him as he ran. My sister and I sat in his office hanging on his every word, flirting with him, offering ourselves to him. We both slept with him, our mother's cancer doctor. His hands were so clean they smelled of chemotherapy.

   He left Mother's room one day and our hungry eyes followed him, certain he was our hero, undressing him, devouring him. Mother cranked the hospital bed to a sitting position. Her bedroom eyes, even more hooded by morphine, pierced us weakly.

   "I wish you two girls wouldn't be so promiscuous," she said.
With enough drugs, we could smile and my sister and I would dance around our mother, The Cancer Woman, singing and performing the ritual of daughters begging their mother to not die.

Poetry: Issue Two

Brian R. Young

In Praise of the Cow

Star watcher, source of the Milky Way, unflinching gazer,
you are The Thinker not carved by human tools,
the patient mother and father, the worrier of cud, the muller.

You are the choir of gently humming mills,
the thunder cloud, the observer
of the sun as it falls and rises.

You are exposed to the elements, yet impervious.
You are the restless chorus the crickets ignore.
Blessed giver of fecundity, it was you

who conceived the first numbers—one
and two—it was you who kept count—one two,
one two—of the steps, and though others

have gone on to count higher, it is you
who keeps the first numbers
for when they return. Your heart

of iron knows they will. You are
the cliffs by the ocean of clover.

If the spirit can be returned to the cut,
put it back. If the calf

can be reborn, re-forge her bones,
re-curl her coat, re-lift her ears.

If she can breathe again, re-flare
her nostrils, re-raise her head,

re-open her eyes, and re-straighten
her knees as she attempts to re-stand.

Unfurl the plastic wrap like the flag
of a country that no longer exists.

Let the blood re-pour through the veins.
Let the mind re-claim its consciousness.

Let the muscle return to the shank,
the tongue remember how to taste.

Let the hoof feel its place in the mud,
the skin be tickled by the brush of the grass.

It is not too late for the part to start living
again, like it wants, in the whole.

Poetry: Issue Two

Karen J. Weyant

The Girl Who Could Catch Echoes

It's easy, she explains, of her collection:
a snap from a single twig, a Strike!
from a little league umpire, a crack
of thunder ten seconds after the flash,
everything displayed in the hollow

of a tree trunk, moss clinging
to the damp bark. She pins down
a child's secret with a pine needle,
police sirens with old thumb tacks,
piano lessons with a bent guitar pick.

She demonstrates each capture,
her right arm above her head, hand
curled, or sometimes both palms swinging
ahead of her, cupped low. She doesn't talk
of the battles – the noon whistle that bit

her left wrist, the screech of tires
crushing her knuckles, the whispers
lodged in the back of her thumbnails,
the ones she scrapes out, tearing,
with the edge of her teeth.

Cover Art: Issue 02


minutes after eating the apple, moments before kissing the snake