I'm gettin' my groove back. Yesterday was exhilirating, even if by 7:00 P.M., I was thoroughly exhausted...
The Decatur Book Festival, brainchild of Darren Wang, was everything it oughta be:
informative, entertaining, thought-provoking, inspiring...at the Robert Olen Butler appearance, he regaled us with bits from his 2006 book--"Severance"-- a collection of pieces-- all written in 240 words.
(why 240? That's the number of words one could say in a heightened state of emotion-- in one and one-half-minutes-- the time one can still function after being beheaded.)
He also read some very witty and very dark excerpts from "Intercourse", his new book which will be out next May(2008).One highlight was the interaction between Walt Whitman, and Oscar Wilde--it was delightful to hear each man's voice.Other highlights included a "wealthy Spaniard of independent means" and his new bride, only 17 years old, just before midnight--honeymooning on the Titanic.
Oh, Mr. Butler also read as Laura Bush, and George W.(!)
I'm most excited about Mr. Butler's "Intercourse".
From there, I went about the courtyard area, listening to dozens of children screaming in delight near the Target Stage.
Then it was off to the Local Authors' Stage, at Java Monkey Coffee House, where I was thrilled to hear all the authors who spoke between 2:45 P.M. and 6:15 P.M....
It was especially exciting to see and hear Theresa Davis, and her Mom, Alice Lovelace. Both ladies set the heat to blazing!
One poet who read with a kind of zaniness was Karen Head.I'd not heard her before, and I was tickled by her many references to Paris.
She has a theory that all poets are liars--but since she's a poet, and she said it, then that means--she's lying about the rest of us poets.
Another poet I'd not heard read before yesterday, was a brilliant young man, with dark eyes and a reverent regard for a grandmother who he said was a great influence in his life. It was moving, and heartening, to see such respect from such a young fellow. The poet's name was David Barnes, (I think I have his name correct).I'm sure we'll be reading more from him, soon.
Karen G. recounted love and being OUT;I read after her, and included a few new pieces of my own-"Giving Halmeoni A Manicure" and a double-haiku on "Two Views of Christianity", as well as reading a few older, previously published pieces....
I was so happy to hear some new pieces from Rupert Fike, Franklin Abbott, Blake Leland, Travis Denton, Stephen Bluestone, Beth Gylys(come check out her Book-Release at GSU, on Friday, September 21st!!) and of course--Collin Kelley, who tops himself every year in terms of his time, and talent!!
By 6:45 P.M., I was-- as my Indiana kin say-- "wore plum out"...
I did not make it over to the Filmmakers' meeting I've grown to love every month. "Dailies" is a spirited group of filmmakers, and I'm sorry I had to miss out last night, but look forward to working with them, soon.
In the meantime,you'll find me at more Readings.The Communion I felt at Java Monkey was palpable, and real.
To all who shared their work, and to all who came out to listen--especially ol' pal,Colin C.,and Lynne & Beatrix, and Penny, Isabo and Ciello-- Thank You.