Woodstock Poetry Society
Featured Reading and Open Mike
Saturday, August 12th, 2017 at 2pm
Golden Notebook (Upstairs)

Paul Nash and the "Palisades Poets"
(John J. Trause, Denise La Neve, Josh Humphrey,
Susanna Rich, Mort Rich, ...)

Paul Nash and the "Palisades Poets" (John J. Trause, Denise La Neve, Josh Humphrey, Susanna Rich, Mort Rich, ...) will be the featured readers, along with an open mike when the Woodstock Poetry Society & Festival meets at Golden Notebook (Upstairs), 29 Tinker Street on Saturday, August 12th, 2017 at 2pm.

Note: WPS&F meetings are held the 2nd Saturday (2pm) of every month at Golden Notebook (Upstairs).

Golden Notebook (Upstairs)
29 Tinker Street
Woodstock, NY 12498

The reading will be hosted by poet Phillip X Levine. All meetings are free, open to the public, and include an open mike.


Paul Nash and the "Palisades Poets" - 7-8 poets whose work appears in the major new anthology: META-LAND: Poets of the Palisades II will be reading at the Golden Notebook on Saturday, August 12 at 2 PM! Meta-Land, published by The Poets Press, assembles 121 works by 58 poets, arranged in 11 themed sections, as well as original artwork from the same community of artists and writers. Copies of the book will be available for purchase and signing.

All of the pieces that appear in the anthology are by authors who were featured in the on-going North Jersey Literary Series held at the Classic Quiche Café in Teaneck, New Jersey between 2010 and 2015.

From the book jacket and Foreword:
”Viewed in geological time, poetry is a recent phenomenon, even in an ancient outcropping like the New Jersey Palisades. After five millennia of recorded history, toward the end of the 20th Century, writers begin to gather together, to coalesce in cafes, libraries and other literary watering holes upon or near the ancient basaltic fastness of the Palisades. This post-geological phenomenon has been collectively named "The Palisades Poetry Movement." This new volume, Meta-Land, assembles 121 works by 58 poets, arranged in 11 themed sections. All of the pieces that appear in the anthology are by authors who were featured in the on-going North Jersey Literary Series held at the Classic Quiche Café in Teaneck, New Jersey between 2010 and 2015. This collection delves deeply into our 'metaperceptions:' how we see ourselves, the universe, and what we question, feel or think. Diverse voices that represent a modern world of both natural beauty and cosmopolitan sophistication explore the fundamental nature of reality, existence, knowledge, values, reason and mind. We find ourselves in a 'Meta-Land,' where symbols of symbols are nested like matryoshkas, and meaning’s reach extends past all horizons.”

Poets at this event will include Paul Nash, John J. Trause, Denise La Neve, Josh Humphrey, Susanna Rich, Mort Rich, and possibly one or two others (TBD).

META-LAND: editors and publisher

Poets: Denise La Neve & Paul Nash


Thinking too much about amphibians
jounces and jumbles my thoughts,

and they scatter into tiny islands —
each a lily pad trampled
beneath viscid webbed toes ...

An entire flotilla of pond lilies,
bearing their squatting demons,
sinks slowly out of sight

until all that remains above water
is pair after pair of bulbous,
luminescent unblinking eyes

that stare with the spectral frigidity
of remote Jovian moons.

-Paul Nash


In columned lean-tos
made of sandstone
with terracotta roofs

fed by Rivière La Lanterne,
were constructed
to wash cloths by hand

not in a portable tub,
stationary sink,
or with chlorinated water

rather at a fountain
on the rue de la Mairie
as long-standing as Paris or Rome

shirts, pants, dresses
are immersed in
this crystal spring

here, women gather,
converse about neighbors:

yvonne                   her raspberries

recipes for preserves;

simone                   price of milk  of eggs

her husband’s farm

Reine                     her daughter, her son

family news.

laughter ripples
on waves of conversation
generation after generation

till one day
the town closes off the water,
leaving stone basins still.

decades would pass,
and the flow of water resumed
but its usage lost in time.

now a home for algae,
minnows and tadpoles,
cavernous and quiet

laughter emanates from the television,
seldom heard outside,
no longer face-to-face

women’s voices are silent,
echoes … fading into the past,
the past itself washed away.

-Denise La Neve

Spontaneous Poem for the Actor John Garfield

They called him a Communist, but he was
no Communist. The girls knew better
just by looking at him, the soul inside the eyes
where our mothers told us it would be,
although we never saw it inside anyone else.
Just John. Just John could look out at us
from a movie screen, from inside a character
we didn’t care about, and tell us
everything we needed.

He died in bed with a woman. Our husbands
joked about it on our lawns. He died
in the saddle, they would say in that knowing way.
But they didn’t know.

Every one of us, their quiet wives quietly
making dinner, forbidden by our mothers to go
to the funeral because we were married and silly.
Any of us would have traded our lives
to have been that woman there at the end,
even if he would have died afterwards
in our arms.

We were just girls but we still knew better.
We knew how the love was different, how
we would never love anyone the same way
ever again. We would have kissed him, kissed
the last breath from his mouth and been
the happiest of our lives.

-Josh Humphrey

Blank Verse
for a Shakespearean Actor

You were the tops as one would say in yore,
But did you bottom out so soon upon
Your fall from grace or ice or from a curb,
One’s fall from grace implicit in your fall?
One played a Bottom to your top Titan-
ia or Ariel to Prospero,
and fixing top to bottom on your charm
or Mary statue in recovery,
nay, goddess statuette, the more the merry,
Recovering this verse and nary more.
O prosper you, who take the topping too:
One’s met with ice and icy silence blank.
And now a verse adverse to you for you
Who shoot blank verse at friendship’s code
And answer blankly to one’s blandishments.
You act and mime and try to top again,
But gain no grace to get on top once more,
So sinking to the bottom in both ways,
You’re versed in neither way in this blank act.

-John J. Trause

Beware the House with No Corners —

the round house, like a massive breast
suctioned to a knoll;
the eyes and skull of a buried giant.

Enter this cyclotron to braille the inner wall,
never to know where you entered
or if you can leave.

Wings embed broken china floors,
wooden fish gossip in the inverted bowl of air
breathing itself like a sponge.

Nothing meets itself.
No right angles corner spirits.
Don’t ask doors to shut or open
in jambs meant not to true.

An orange paper jellyfish hangs,
clitoral, at the center,
to vacuum you into the glass dome.

Sling your quilt over your head
to spiral on Escher stairs —
wander your sleep among distant thumps

and whistling goats.
This mandala is all a basement
and attic, with no between.

Ghosts loll their tongues, thick as boots;
ride you like a zebra,
as the calliope plays.

-Susanna Rich

Night Sky, March 23, 1996

We step off the porch, barely look up
and there it is — Comet Hyakutake,
clearly visible below the handle
of the Big Dipper and near Arcturus,
a tailed fuzzball in the sky where
nothing had been before. I say,
How kind of you to drop by again
after only twenty-thousand years.

Behind the house, making its own hammock,
the new moon reveals its craters
and shadowed bulk comfortably,
at rest above the roof, at ease
in the knowledge of its familiarity,
knowing that when the exciting intruder
is gone, we will look for our moon,
near companion in the inscrutable sky.

-Morton D. Rich


Developing WPS 2017 Schedule - all readings at Golden Notebook (Upstairs)

01/January 14th – Elizabeth J. Coleman; Lee Slonimsky
02/February 11th – Janet Hamill; Pauline Uchmanowicz
03/March 11th – Perry Nicholas; Peter Coco
04/April 8th – Matthew J. Spireng; Richard Levine
05/May 13th – Joel Lewis; Kate Reese Hurd
06/June 10th – Karen Corinne Herceg; Mike Jurkovic
07/July 8th – Donald Lev; Howard J. Kogan
08/August 12th – Paul Nash and the "Palisades Poets"
(John J. Trause, Denise La Neve, Josh Humphrey, Susanna Rich, Mort Rich, ...)
09/September 9th – Mary Makofske; TBA
10/October 14th – John Amen; Ken Holland
11/November 11th – Cate McNider; Laurence Carr
12/December 9th – Dante Kanter; Otis Kidwell Burger; and Annual Business Meeting

Also, why not become a 2017 Member of the Woodstock Poetry Society & Festival?

Membership is $20 a year. (To join, send your check to the Woodstock Poetry Society, P.O. Box 531, Woodstock, NY 12498. Include your email address as well as your mailing address and phone number. Or join online at: www.woodstockpoetry.com/become.html). Your membership helps pay for meeting space rental, post-office-box rental, the WPS website, and costs associated with publicizing the monthly events. One benefit of membership is the opportunity to have a brief biography and several of your poems appear on this website.

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