Sunday, May 4, 2008

Two to note

Two terrific encounters I've had lately:

Bob Holman - how could I have not heard of him before!? A perfomance poet who's been doing it for years in New York and everywhere else. Here's some bumpf from his website:

Recently dubbed a member of the "Poetry Pantheon" by the New York Times Magazine and featured in a Henry Louis Gates, Jr. profile in The New Yorker, Holman has previously been crowned "Ringmaster of the Spoken Word" (New York Daily News), "Poetry Czar" (Village Voice), "Dean of the Scene" (Seventeen), and “this generation’s Ezra Pound,” (San Francisco’s Poetry Flash).

From Slam to Hiphop, from performance poetry to spoken word, Bob Holman has been a central figure in the reemergence of poetry in our culture. The series he produced for PBS, the United States of Poetry , features over sixty poets including Derek Walcott, Rita Dove, Czeslaw Milosz, Lou Reed and former President Jimmy Carter, as well as rappers, cowboy poets, American Sign Language poets, and Slammers. USOP lives on as an anthology from Harry Abrams Publishers (in its second printing), a home video from KQED, and soundtrack CD from Mouth Almighty/Mercury Records, a label Holman co-founded. He has appeared widely on TV: "Nightline," "Good Morning America," "ABC News Magazine," MTV's "Spoken Word Unplugged," and "The Charlie Rose Show," among others. The NEA has announced major preproduction support for his new poetry media project, the World of Poetry (, the world’s first digital poetry anthology. Check out

Last night at the TalonBooks launch in at the Calgary Art Gallery - where - in Calgary of course! Several readers, but here I want to mention one - Fred Wah's terrific new book 'Sentenced to Light'. Bold and innovative at every 'turn'.

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