Sunday, February 10, 2008

The following is the e-mail reminder regarding our Skip Renker celebration:

On Tuesday, February 5th, four of us met at the Barnes & Noble Bookseller on Tittabawassee Road in Saginaw, MI to enjoy the poetry of Lisel Mueller out loud. I joined Mr. and Mrs. David Romatz and Maureen and we talked about Lisel Mueller and her life, and we read a few of her poems. We signed a store flier for the River Junction Poets’ ‘history’ section, and we sent another store flier with a birthday card to Ms. Mueller c/o the Poetry Center of Chicago, 37 South Wabash Avenue, Chicago, IL 60603. (The flier mentions the Lisel Mueller event hosted by the River Junction Poets.) Maybe Ms. Mueller will write back.

Now, a few words for the 98+% of people who receive this e-mail and will NOT, due to ongoing conflict(s) with the space/time continuum, be joining us at the Barnes & Noble in Saginaw, MI this Thursday night: Steal this idea! Start a Birthdays of Poets Reader’s Workshop in your area. Research shows that better readers make better writers.

This week we have a poet joining our group in the flesh! Yes! Our poet teaches at Delta College and has a book titled ‘Sifting the Visible’ which is available now from the publisher, Mayapple Press . If you haven’t had a chance to meet Skip Renker then come on out on Valentine’s Day 2008 and say hello. We’ll be able to ask him questions and hear a few of his poems.

A poetical celebration of Skip Renker’s birth and poetry.

Thursday, February 14, 2008 at 7:00 PM

Barnes & Noble Bookseller
3311 Tittabawassee Rd.
Saginaw , MI 48603
989 790 9214

Who should come
Join us if you love poetry or are curious as to what poetry is all about. Join us if you'd like to talk to people whose hearts and minds are more open than closed. Join us if you can agree or disagree with someone's opinion respectfully. Join us if you’re not afraid that Cupid might show up and shoot you in the back.

Find out what poems sound like out loud. Listen in on the group and then find a place where you can jump in and read something yourself. Join in our informal discussion of poems we know and love and poems we are only just discovering. Speak up now and forever share your peace. Better readers make better writers.

How to find the organizer(s)
We are in the Poetry section, near the window. The staff at Barnes & Noble will put up a sign that says 'This space reserved for The River Junction Poets at 7 p.m.' We'll be getting a few folding chairs to add around the table there.

Skip Renker teaches at Delta College in Central Michigan. He is the author of the chapbooks Birds of Passage and Sifting the Visible.

Skip Renker's poems are grounded, quiet and elegant, reflecting the thoughtful, humorous and meditative style of the man himself.

Fierce Talisman
by Skip Renker

Sooner or later you will need me.
You'll be lost. Unfamiliar
trees, thick waxy leaves, a sound
like crying when the wind
kicks up. Press your back
to a trunk. Hold me

to your face with a light
but firm grip, leave
the feathers free. Turn me around
three times. Your body
still stands, but that other
you enters me. Use my eyes,

black blossoms on short stalks,
to see with. Fly up
through the leaves, which close
around your wrists and ankles,
your neck. You must
push through their cries, until

you're above the forest in the dark,
black wings beating in rhythm
with the movement of the stars.
The dried branches you hold
catch fire. By its light
you might be free, but first

you must burn something, you must.
fly low over the long dry grass.

From accessed 1/3/08.

While you and I may not have met in person, I have added your e-mail address to the growing list of people known to have an interest in poetry. Did you know? Research indicates that better readers make better writers. Maybe this is why, in the Poet's Market, editors of literary magazines often recommend poets read more poetry.

Legal stuff: Your e-mail address will not be sold or used by me for any purpose other than to contact you regarding these special events. If you prefer to not receive these messages, reply to this e-mail address and include the word ‘unsubscribe’ in the text of your message.

Are you not aware? You are a cultural event, and so is everyone else. Exercise your cultural inventiveness at Saginaw’s Birthdays of Poets Reader’s Workshop. If you have a smile to share be sure to bring it. If you don't, be sure to join us so you'll have one afterward!

Thank you and may God continue to bless us mightily one and all. Be sure to thank a veteran for his/her service. Remember: only you can improve the audience for poetry. Please read, discuss and share responsibly. And vote.

All best and see you Thursday,
Andy Christ

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