Sunday, April 29, 2007

Introduction for Charles Bernstein (by erica kaufman)

Charles Bernstein's most recent books are Girly Man and With Strings (University of Chicago Press), Shadowtime (Green Integer), and Republics of Reality: 1975-1995 (Sun & Moon). Author page at He teaches at the University of Pennsylvania.

When I first read Charles Bernstein’s work I remember thinking to myself, “wow, this changes everything.” The book I’d read was Islets/Irritations—a volume full of fluctuations visually, formally, and in its vocabulary. (To quote from the “Klupzy Girl,” “his parables are not singular”).

Bernstein’s prose redefined how I think about essays (to quote from “Revenge of the Poet-Critic,” “a modular essay form that allows for big jumps from paragraph to paragraph and section to section. it becomes possible to recombine the paragraphs to get another version of the essy”). His poems redefined how I think about poetry (to quote from “State of the Art,” poetry tosses up into an imaginary air like to many swans flying out of a magician’s depthless black hat so that suddenly like when the sky all at once turns white or purple or day-glo blue, we breathe more deeply.” or from “A Particular Thing,” “I want in my writing a texture of wordness opaque and alone”).

Bernstein’s newest gem, Girly Man, is a book that proves that “there are no thoughts except through language” (to quote his seminal essay, “Stray Straws and Straw Men”). These poems range from blues to ballad to litany to lament to irony to hilarity to likeness—what a range! To quote “Sign Under Test,” “everything in the world exists in order to end up as an opera.”

Please welcome Charles Bernstein.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

The Segue Reading Series presents

Charles Bernstein and Tenney Nathanson
28 April 2007, 4 PM
Bowery Poetry Club,
308 Bowery at Bleecker, NYC
$6 at the door

Hosted by Tim Peterson and Erica Kaufman.

Charles Bernstein's most recent books are Girly Man and With Strings (University of Chicago Press), Shadowtime (Green Integer), and Republics of Reality: 1975-1995 (Sun & Moon). Author page at He teaches at the University of Pennsylvania.

from "Self-Help"

Lake Tang Woo Chin Chicken with Lobster and Sweet Clam Sauce still not served and everyone else got their orders twenty minutes back.—Savor the water, feast on the company.

Subway floods and late for audition.—Start being the author of your own performance. Take a walk.

Slip on ice, break arm.—In moments like this, the preciousness of life reveals itself.

Wages down in non-union shop.—You're a sales associate, not a worker; so proud to be part of the company.

Miss the train?--Great chance to explore the station!

Suicide bombers wreck neighborhood—Time to pitch in!

Nothing doing.—Take a break!

Partner in life finds another partner.—Now you can begin the journey of life anew.

Bald?--Finally, you can touch the sky with the top of your head.

Short-term recall shot.—Old memories are sweetest

Hard drive crashes and novel not backed up.—Nothing like a fresh start.

Severe stomach cramps all morning.—Boy are these back issues of Field and Stream engrossing.

Hurricane crushes house.—You never seemed so resilient.

Tenney Nathanson is the author of the book-length poem Home on the Range (The Night Sky with Stars in My Mouth) (O Books, 2005) and the collection Erased Art (Chax Press, 2005). Recent work appears in issue 3 of EOAGH. He is the author of the critical study Whitman's Presence: Body, Voice, and Writing in Leaves of Grass (NYU Press). A native New Yorker, he has lived since 1985 in Tucson, where he teaches American poetry and, from time to time, creative writing in the English Department at the University of Arizona.

Recent work at

from "One Block Over"

What the eyes sees;
Four bottles full of capsules
huge vistas under the hippie's outstretched arm
Utah signed Laszlo Kovacs my name is Emerson what am I
salt crystals splintered ice mounting in the precious miniature the contact lens

it does my laundry. Which is family values:
see, the scones. My terrier
crosses the gingko-lined street
with your biscuit, says Wittgenstein
so I am dead: in private language
weep for the investigations trails jam
I'm sorry that's impossible
Bruckner singing under the larches in the Botanical Gardens
Is an instance of this and I am your bus
if it please your lordship
by the lower instenstine.
and plectrum
it's in Brooklyn. The poodle just sat there and wept
it's an Arp retrospective
I'm no cockney

But we are your bodies.

* * *

For the rest of the Winter/Spring Segue Reading Series,
please visit

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

(photo by Aya Karpinska)

The Segue Reading Series presents
E-Poetry 2007 NYC Performances
And A Symposium for the LEA New Media Poetry Special Issue
Event Guest-Curated by Loss Pequeño Glazier.
Featuring Aya Karpinska, Elizabeth Knipe, and Jim Rosenberg. Shawn Rider,Respondent.
21 April 2007, 4 PM
at the Bowery Poetry Club,308 Bowery at Bleecker, New York City
Hosted by Tim Peterson and Erica Kaufman.

Live performances, talks, and discussion about New Media art forms, issues, and poetics in a cordial setting. Poetry is on the move ... catch a glimpse of present poetic forms in action! This event seeks to further conversation about poetics through its sampling in digital forms. Join us for an historic presentation of digital poetics featuring an engaging mix of foundational and emerging digital poets!

About the participants
Aya Karpinska ( is a digital media artist and interaction designer. She is the 2006 recipient of the prestigious Brown University Fellowship in Electronic Writing.

Elizabeth Knipe ( is an engaging interdisciplinary artist. She is digital poet and experimental video artist who entertains an interest in physical electronic installations.

Jim Rosenberg ( has been working in non-linear poetic forms in one medium or another since 1966 and is one of the foundational figures in digital poetry. His best-known work is Intergrams.

Shawn Rider ( is a writer, artist, teacher and programmer, currently working as a Web Technologist for PBS TeacherLine. He is also the owner and Editor in Chief of, a long-running independent videogame review website.

Loss Pequeño Glazier ( ) is a digital poet, professor of Media Study, and Founder and Director of the Electronic Poetry Center. He is the author of the digitally-informed poetry collection Anatman, Pumpkin Seed, Algorithm (Salt Press) and the digital theory treatise Digital Poetics: The Making of E-Poetries (Alabama UP).

Tim Peterson ( is the author of Since I Moved In (Chax Press). He edits EOAGH: A Journal of the Arts and currently curates part of the Segue Reading Series in New York.

About the LEA New Media Poetry and Poetics issue
Guest edited by Tim Peterson, the issue features Loss Pequeño Glazier, John Cayley with Dimitri Lemmerman, Lori Emerson, Phillippe Bootz, Manuel Portela, Stephanie Strickland, Mez, Maria Engberg and Matthias Hillner. Don't forget to scurry over to the equally exciting gallery, exhibiting works by Jason Nelson, Aya Karpinska, Daniel Canazon Howe, mIEKAL aND, CamillE BacoS, Nadine Hilbert and Gast Bouschet. Click here to access the LEA New Media Poetics Special (LEA Vol 14 No 5 - 6). URL:

Join us on April 21st for this celebration of LEA, the poetics of the present, and the diversity of digital forms!

* * *
For the rest of the Winter/Spring Segue Reading Series, please visit

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Introduction for Craig Watson by erica kaufman

Craig Watson is the author of Secret Histories (Burning Deck, 2007), True News (Instance Press, 2002) and Free Will (ROOF Books, 2000). He works as a producer and dramaturge at Trinity Repertory Company, a professional theater in Rhode Island.

Craig Watson's newest collection of poetry, Secret Histories, begins with a quote from the great Bob Dylan song, "Visions of Johanna"—"this must be what salvation feels after a while" ( Blonde on Blonde, 1966). This song is one of many examples of Dylan's mastery of both rapid fire long image songs, as well as stories of the current political climate (in this case "Visions of Gehenna" or hell). Watson accomplishes these things and more in his work—a lyric "documentarian" of "political unrest" or a mapper of images via cyclical phrasing so tight not a word escapes the eye or ear.

In Secret Histories, Watson presents us with several serial poems, each written in a visual structure that mirrors the social climate he explicates. To quote from "Steppe Work--#7), "to be human [the lying animal]/ to believe a soul [made of mud]/ to whisper ["I belong to no-body"]" The call and response format of these box-like numbered left justified poems is one that lends itself to being heard as an argument, while also echoing bleak musings often found in blues songs or folk music. In the poem, "Pre-Science," a roman numeraled sequence that appears as triads of steps, Watson writes, "there's no limit to limits," and this is indeed proven true as he continues to bring to the ear and the page that "Language is a process, as well as a product of those very processes of social and economic change" (The Radical Syntactical Forms of Language Poetry by Susan Brill). Watson writes in "Last Man Standing—December," "OK fiction/ this is what happens/ what if one knew/ the outcome/ of every event/ in advance."

Watson's Free Will also begins with a Dylan quote, "here's your throat back thanks for the loan" (from the song "Battle of a Thin Man")—again appropriate in how it mirrors what Steve Evans refers to as Watson's "uncowered ability to face and state truths we'd prefer to avoid." Or, to quote from "persuasion & judgement," "this is what we want/ what we paid for/ a world of property alternating with entertainment/ a statuatory cradle simplified for users/ one culture: inductive and pure."

It is my great honor to introduce to you, Craig Watson.

Friday, April 13, 2007


The Segue Reading Series Presents


Saturday, April 14, 2007
4PM (sharp!)
at the Bowery Poetry Club
(308 Bowery, just North of Houston)
$6 admission goes to support the readers

hosted by Erica Kaufman and Tim Peterson

Ron Silliman writes, "Beverly Dahlen is the most enigmatic American poet since Laura (Riding) Jackson. Not that Dahlen is unnecessarily difficult or obtuse, but that – like Riding – she writes brilliantly, but has also proven exceptionally reluctant to letting her work into print...Dahlen had helped to co-found HOW(ever) (now How2) and was already well into writing A Reading, an "endless" – the term she has used more than once – poem that is, to my mind, one of the masterworks of the 20th century."

Robert Duncan said of Dahlen, "The psychic life she draws in writing may be drawn from her own psychic life, but here its body is the text and it speaks to the psyche of the reader as a reader." Dahlen is the author of The Egyptian Poems, Out of the Third and 4 volumes of A Reading. A native of Oregon, she has lived and worked in San Francisco for many years.

from A Reading 18

"therefore I'd be a shadow freed of former hands and execute this mission of destruction on past lives.
there is nothing that can be safely brought in to the arena. the body question. the Frankfurt school in
a loose coalition with strippers and wombats. he raised the antenna and the picture cleared. wherever
two or three are gathered together in my name the project prospers. ego is now supposed to have
given way to mercy and light. cracks through which you could drive a needle

whatever was the point of organizing the world in this way: the helpless baby. further evidence: my
father thought me up fully armed. no consolation there. where does she arise from the sea or in the
mountains beyond reason."

Craig Watson is the author of Secret Histories, True News , and Free Will. He works as a producer and dramaturg at Trinity Repertory Company, a professional theater in Rhode Island.

Andrew Joron writes, "Craig Watson's engaged lyric continues to discover "more songs in the gaps" of the system; as he traces the antinomies, his long poems build toward an almost orchestral scale and ordonnance. Fiercely and deliberately, Watson redesigns the echoes inside such hollow abstractions as Reason and Free Will, and so allows us to hear, even with "ears knotted into the wall," the real music of thought."

from "Last Man Standing"


hello mutant
welcome back
horses are falling
birds freeze under the bed

god told the first lie

excess is not a weakness


the distance between
seeing and thinking
is everything else

what we hated
was expression