Poetry At Fergie’s Pub

On Wednesday, December 22, I’ll be with other poets and their followers at the live in-person poetry reading of the Moonstone Arts Center (https://moonstoneartscenter.org/) for a live poetry reading, at Fergie’s Pub, 1214 Sansom Street (https://www.fergies.com/) . The featured readers will be Lynn Levan, Jim Mancinelli, and Elijah B. Pringle III, after which will be an open mike, where I’ll perform. Do come in and enjoy great poetry, and food and drink to match. See you there?

Hemperiffic Card



My novel


Moonstone Still Rocks!

I continue to be active in the activities of the Moonstone Arts Center, https://moonstoneartscenter.org/. They continue to hold their poetry readings and other events over Zoom, and they continue to publish poetry chapbooks and anthologies centered around important topics, such as the January 6 rampage on the Capitol, the former regime (whose leader doesn’t need mentioning), the Black Lives Matter movement, the #MeToo movement, the war in Iraq, and the COVID pandemic; they also publish poetry anthologies around famous poets, like Toni Morrison, Walt Whitman, Gwendolyn Brooks, and Amiri Baraka. They also continue their Poetry Ink celebrations, with the publication of the anthology and readings by poets in the anthology (like me), as well as the New Voices series honoring new and young poets.

On February 20, there will be a virtual poetry reading of New Voices, featuring the poets Wes Matthews, Colby Bellman, and Rose-Marie Athiley. (https://moonstoneartscenter.org/event/virtual-poetry-reading-for-new-voices-emerging-poets-rose-marie-athiley-colby-bellman-wes-mathews-with-larry-robin/) On February 21, there will be “Philly Jawns: For women Revisited,” a tribute anthology to Nina Simone. (https://moonstoneartscenter.org/event/virtual-poetry-reading-philly-jawns-for-women-revisited-poetry-anthology-tribute-to-nina-simone/) On February 24, there will be an online reading, featuring the poets Ahmad Amallah and Grant Clauser, and and Larry Robin, founder of Moonstone and proprietor of the old Robin’s Books chain in Philadelphia, which was a great outlet for non-commercial books. ( https://moonstoneartscenter.org/event/virtual-poetry-reading-ahmad-almallah-grant-clauser-with-larry-robin/)

Please check these events out, and support Moonstone and other local poetry programs. The arts, like poetry, are not a luxury, they’re for all of us.

stack of books placed on seat of wooden swing
Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

My Upcoming Events

This is a reminder that I’ll host an author’s night at A Novel Idea On Passyunk, 1726 E. Passyunk Avenue in South Philadelphia, at 6:00 PM, on Tuesday, August 6, 2019. There I’ll have my books for sale, read my poetry, and talk about my life. https://anovelideaphilly.com/

I’ll also have an event at Ray’s Happy Birthday Bar, 1200 East Passyunk Avenue in South Philadelphia, at 6:00 PM, on Monday, August 26, 2019. Also there I’ll have my books for sale, read my poetry, and talk about my life. https://www.thehappybirthdaybar.com/. I hope you see you and both places.

Poetry Reading, May 6, 2019

This evening, my friends at A Novel Idea on Passyunk, 1726 E. Passyunk Avenue (https://anovelideaphilly.com/) will hold a poetry reading at the Lucky 13 Pub, 1830 South 13th street in South Philadelphia (https://anovelideaphilly.com/ ) Please come and watch fine area poets-like me-read their material.

Writing Tips I’ve Learned

Over my writing career, I’ve picked up advice for my writing work, through classes and my reading. I want to share them with you:

Keep a pen and notepad on you at ALL times. You never know where and when an idea for an article, poem, or story could come to you. Don’t trust your memory to work for you to retain the idea, you might not remember the idea later.

Watch your environment-the diner you eat at, your neighborhood, your favorite spots, you place of worship, etc.-and take down on paper the scene, the furniture, the sounds, the aromas from the kitchen, the conversation going on. Pick up on what people say, what they wear, their gestures, etc. Give a physical description of what you see, don’t put down what your mind says, don’t editorialize.

Go to places where writers are-conferences, conventions, groups, classes, cafes, bars, etc. Talk to writers and network with them, and learn from them, pick up ideas. Editors and publishers would be in the room where they meet, and they might hire you. Also, subscribe to writers’ media-websites, magazines, manuals, etc. All of that has inspired me to write out drafts of poems and stories.  

Practice the art of writing. Write a diary, write letters, take notes of what goes on around you, what you attain with your senses, maintain a blog. Just write anything, when your mind will trigger, and the words will flow freely, and you can find a story or poem in those scribblings.

Read! That tops them all. Read the classics of fiction and poetry, of journalism, newspapers, magazines, blogs-from the classics to the crappiest pulp stuff. Again in my experience, reading triggers in me the urge to do my own writing, right then and there.

Here are a couple of fine writing guidebooks in my life:

The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr. and EB White. This little book is a classic for learning to write with clarity, taking a less-is-more attitude.

Wild Mind by Natalie Goldberg. Goldberg is an advocate of free-writing, just putting down whatever you must, just let the pen run free on the paper.

Monday Poets at The Free Library of Philadelphia

every first Monday of the Month, the Parkway Central Branch of the Free Library of Philadelphia (http://freelibrary.org) holds its Monday Poets Reading Series; last night I took part in an open reading, along with other fine regional poets. The next reading, on May 6, will be on the theme “Whitman@200: Art and Democracy,” featuring Leonard Gontarek and poets from the Poetry in Common Workshop. Please look into this, and please support your local libraries and other educational venues.

Moonstone, January 16, 2019

On Wednesday, January 16, 2019, I attended the poetry reading at Fergie’s Pub, 1214 Sansom street in Philadelphia (https://www.fergies.com/), sponsored by the Moonstone Arts Center (http://moonstoneartscenter.org/) , one of the great promoters on poetry and poets in Philadelphia.

Larry Robin, Director of Moonstone and great promoter of poetic talent in Philadelphia, who hosted the open mic.
Jason Mitchell, featured poet
Joe Roarty, poet who read in the open mic, like I did.

Next Wednesday, January 16, the next Moonstone poetry reading will feature Jennifer Anolik and Amy Barone. Jennifer Hook and Anila MacNeal will host the open mic.This will again take place at Fergie’s.

On Sunday, January 27, Moonsoone will host a tribute to poet JC Todd, featuring her new book, Damages of Morning. The event will take place at 2:00 PM at Fergie’s.

On Wednesday, January 30, Moonstone will host Hive Night, Apiary magazine’s celebrate of local poets, which will include an open mic. This will also take place at Fergie’s.

Upcoming, November 17, 2018

I will take part in the swap-meet tomorrow, starting at 3:00 PM, taking place at my favorite bar, Dirty Frank’s, on 13th and Pine streets in Philadelphia. There I will sell my books of poetry and my anthology.

I will also be at Fergie’s Pub, 1214 Sansom Street in Philadelphia, for the Wednesday evening poetry reading of the Moonstone Arts Center, http://moonstoneartscenter.org/ . On Wednesday, November 21, the featured readers will be Hanoch Guy and Lisa Grunberger, with warren Longmire as host; on Wednesday, November 28, the featured readers will be Lynn Levin and Joan Roberta Ryan, with Alina MacNeal and Jennifer Hook as hosts. Following the featured readers will be the open mic, where I and other fine Philadelphia poets will read their material.

Moonstone Arts Center, July 25, 2018

I will attend the reading of the Moonstone Arts Center, to be held at Fergie’s Pub, 1214 Sansom Street in Philadelphia, on Wednesday, July 25, 2018. (http://www.fergies.com/) The featured readers will be Clinton Smith, poet, prose writer, and musician; and poet Elijah Pryor. There will be an open mic reading, which I shall take part in. (http://www.moonstoneartscenter.org/).