Hello everyone, after a near 3 year reading aloud hiatus I have set up 2 poetry & music appreciation reading events. Poetry, music, essay style pieces, book discussions, a book signing & more. These readings will be based on the Fevers of the Mind brand. Poetry based on anxieties, social justice and appreciation and inspiration from stories/music/poetry about Leonard Cohen (2nd Anthology coming out in February from Fevers of the Mind “Before I Turn Into Gold” with artwork from Geoffrey Wren) Bob Dylan inspired pieces (hoping for a Dylan Anthology coming out by Summer) readings from my book “Bending Rivers” a poetry and short stories collection, pieces from the Cohen anthologies, and from a manuscript currently being reviewed “Before the Bridges Fell” pieces.
*With any pieces read please no racism, homophobic, sexist or sexually explicit material”
The 1st reading will be Saturday April 16th at Your Brother’s Bookstore in Downtown Evansville, Indiana 504 Main Street 47708 https://www.yourbrothersbookstore.com/ Readers are subject to change but we are hoping to have Kentucky poet/legend Ron Whitehead coming in for a set, Author of “Kin” Shawna Kay Rodenberg to discuss her wonderful book, Joan Hawkins, Peggy Pirro, Snow Mathews, Rob Z, Jon Koker, Joseph Fulkerson, possibly Joe Kidd & Sheila Burke coming from Michigan and more.
The 2nd reading will be Friday May 20th after 5 p.m. at BlueStocking Social Bookstore on 606 B S. Weinbach Avenue Evansville, IN 47714 A reading with a book signing, Q&A and more. Other readers will be announced over the next few weeks. Dr. Lorna Wood, Midwest Writer’s Guild Members and Tony Brewer are hopeful guests. Themes will be a continuation of what the Fevers of the Mind brand brings and a celebration of the music/writing of Cohen & Dylan. Anxiety, Social Justice pieces & more.
Dark hole sucks
me in suddenly,
and I'm lost
falling, falling, falling.
No bottom, no end,
until time passes
while others stand
they know not what.
to the future.
The one in pain
restrained from stopping.
There is a switch
I cannot find
inside of me.
PANIC! PANIC!! PANIC!!!
It sounds alarms
I know it's happened.
Train thunders by
pulling me along.
Far down the way
steam has decreased
and my brain
can think again.
Others say: “Insane,
not fit...” No.
Just mental wiring.
Reading, I come
to jumbled letters
on the page.
A word, I think,
Makes no sense.
I close my eyes,
let the letters sort
Open my eyes:
there is now a word
and I continue
Less, this happens
as age becomes
my pain, yet
I remember still
A mind contesting
with its brain
over what the body
will do –
The daily, hourly,
struggle of one
so graced with dys-
on the page don't
stand still, or
stay in order.
Others have no clue.
Child doesn't know
all others aren't the same –
this, the normal
he only knows.
When your grip is slipping
off the rope
and there is no length left
for another knot
to hang on to....
What do you do?
What do you hold on to?
What can you do?
What will hold you up?
will set you free!
you didn't know you had.
of unknown power.
WINGS to fly!
Bio: Duane L. Herrmann, a reluctant carbon-based life-form, was surprised to find himself on a farm in Kansas. He’s still trying to make sense of it but has grown fond of grass waving in the wind, trees and the enchantment of moonlight. He aspires to be a hermit, but would miss his children, grandchildren and a few friends. His work has been published in real places and online, even some of both in languages he can’t read (English is difficult enough!), in over a hundred journals and over fifty anthologies. He is known to carry baby kittens in his mouth, pet snakes, and converse with owls, but is careful not to anger them! All this, despite a traumatic, abusive childhood embellished with dyslexia, ADHD (both unknown then), cyclothymia, an anxiety disorder, and now PTSD. He’s still learning to breathe and do human at the same time.
There was a boy nearing graduation,
With great acceleration, college on the horizon,
First in his family to
--he was pulled from one side
Of the gravel, down into the ditch
& never made curfew.
Mom and dad cried and tried to find
Meaning and with an open heart
They gave the body of his car
To the graduating class.
The mangled frame sat on the back
Of a flatbed’s slow tow around the town,
In the homecoming parade, as boys and girls
Hammered the broken body without the joy
Or excitement of tires or glass
Or an engine’s rush of gas.
Candy was tossed to the children,
The football game was lost or won,
But the blind eyes of spraypainted metal still
Lets the sound come to you.
More Than a Carnivore Could Bear (as told by my grandma about her husband's childhood)
He had a dog, part-wolf,
Whose hunger was epic,
As his family had little to eat.
It had been weeks
Since they had meat,
More than a carnivore could bear.
So they collected wages
To calm their craving.
Upon the block, his family watched
The Butcher stuff hot dogs,
And decided on one each.
Mother carried the paper package
In her coat, and unwrapped
It in the kitchen.
Imagine Part-Wolf’s suspicion
At the scent of fresh meat.
Mother took the plate away.
Her trip to the hot plate
Was smooth, so much that
She slid and the meat flew
Up and into the eye
Of Part-Wolf’s teeth,
Snap and swallow, before
A scrum or tug-of-war. So went
The meat drought,
Along with the Depression,
Until it didn’t matter
What dog they ate.
Climb the Heights
We were just
Standing, watching either end
Of the Valley
Of a barren marriage.
And in the Valley, walls so tall
Only a whisper of dreams
Could climb the heights
To pass where escape lies
As a basin,
Lush with sap sweet
Water, if only enough to skim,
In this impossible proportion
To the dry, flat clime
Where time pulses like the night sweats
Of a neon saint with a circus in tow
Medics and Missing House Numbers
The passage of choice is a memory mirrored,
Not a hallway necessity like a locked firehose cabinet.
I regret not having a pass but had to see
The red lights on the ceiling that are still squealing.
Smash glass? No, sir. It’s no funhouse really,
Just an extinguisher taking advantage
Of the frame’s weak woodgrain. I don’t know
What you found, I can’t attest to that anymore
Than the worm tracks on autopsied back fat.
The distance between alone and together?
The greater the better, bigger pills with more color.
How can you swallow a photograph taken
At the moment of decision? There’s no map
To get back, even to itself– useless.
Yes, there was a camera but don’t mind the process,
Exposure and acid and… Relief in the form of a Note:
There’s no need for numbers in real life. There,
Did you hear that? The sirens have been lost for hours,
Spaced out, in motion like an excellent illusion, even
If it’s too good to be true, just know there’s no framework
For feeling, true for daily dosage, one by one
I’ve watched the house numbers fall as the ambulance
Drones around in concentric circles and I can still see you.
The Corpse Flower
The Botanical Center is a replica of the terrestrial,
Feeling lunar, artificial, a big bubble off the freeway.
The attraction was the bloom of the Corpse Flower,
A giant, imported and set far enough away
To be bothered by only a live feed camera.
We paid admission and waited days,
Married all the while.
Standing on a footbridge in a controlled
Climate, I felt like an astronaut
On a movie set.
While away, we checked in on the live stream,
Awaiting the hamburger-scented bloom.
Can a camera capture other senses?
We watched in case her jaws would fall open
Like the maw of a busted melon.
With uncertainty, time grew slow and meaning swelled.
Attention to the plant became a sheen
To preserve the moisture of memory,
Like the head of a room-centered bust.
And the live stream crept as though our watching
Would beckon a gardener, to unmask this plant
And reveal the great flower’s teeth. It wasn’t to be.
Pictures were taken to preserve the day
And populate dating profiles, there was great momentum
For leaving, then there was the gift shop
But I only wanted to put my face to the bloom,
And Inhale the scent of our abortion’s birth.
Bio: Aaron Wiegert has published two poetry chapbooks 'Evil Queen' and 'The Last Railroad Spike' both from Budget Press. Aaron's works have appeared in literary journals and anthologies throughout the U.S. as well as Australia, Canada, England, Scotland, Austria, and Nigeria.
The Rose Garden
I was the rose garden
that you left unattended.
I still bloomed despite the weeds
Wild and free,
I had to find my way through -
Every now and then, a passerby
would stop to admire my beauty.
It was the thorns that
kept others from getting too close-
even to give me water, I thirsted for.
I suppose I don't mind wailing for the rain
as I have weathered plenty of life's storms.
The Rose Garden II
You can't understand this world -
but just know
that not everyone abandoned you.
You often let the thorns stand in your way. I tried
reaching out, but I got so tired of standing there -
hoping that you'd see your beauty.
You always said Father Time waited for no one, but I'm not
going to either. Don't let irony get the best of you.
You were always wild and free
So why are you here
in your rose garden?
It was a lollipop dream. There
were monsters in their tiny
castles made of sand and
rattlesnakes with diamond eyes.
The paper tigers chased playfully
while the bears frolicked in the
daisy fields. It was a lollipop
dream. Where the sour hid behind a
The Funeral Man
No one knows his real name,
but they called him the Funeral Man.
Tall and slender,
with a dead stare, he'd appear
in dreams out of nowhere, in a hearse.
His skin was
Was he a shadow of his former self?
He kidnapped unsuspecting victims
and then would disappear,
as fast as he had appeared,
leaving a trail of smokey fog -
that didn't lead anywhere.
Who was this creepy -
strange dream drifter
While those who dreamed of
him didn't know who he was,
it was said that his
arrival meant trouble
was to come.
Take me back
to that night
on a cold October
I would have held your hand
I would have listened
I would have loved you
I would have danced
with you under the moonlight
and the blanket of stars
would have kept us warm
The Rotten Apple
She had an ugliness
couldn't see it right away -
like a slowly rotting apple.
Bright and wholesome
on the surface -
you didn't know what was
underneath her facade
Until it broke down
and she had wormed her way -
to your core.
Unknown # 2
danced with the moon
with the wolves.
Unknown # 3
She stares at her reflection in the mirror
Barely recognizing the woman staring back at her.
Time worn skin
Her beauty has faded gradually over the years
like a faded rose petal
dried and pressed -
in the pages of a book long forgotten.
Her memories are no different
sharp and dull
Scattered like broken glass
She then hears music playing at a distance.
"On a dark desert highway
Cool wind in my hair
Warm small of colitas
Rising up through the air"
A faint smile crosses her lips
To a memory that croons inside her soul
She sways to the music
and drifts to a time lost
Yet, not completely forgotten.
Young, naive, and in love with love
and a childish notion that time was limitless.
I'll Say Goodbye Tomorrow
I'll say goodbye
to everything I ever owned
I'll let my fingertips brush
against the books I'll never read.
I will look at the pictures
I will burn
that will never give you solace
the same solace that I needed
When I was here
I thought I'd call everyone
but I didn't think anyone cared
My voice one last time.
I wish that I had all of
the answers and this one
makes the most sense.
I'll be fine and so will you.
The Drunken Ballerina of the Night
The pine trees swayed
Whispering a song
to the night
A chorus of animals
as I drunkenly walked
deeper into the forst
with the moonlight
being my only guide.
like a drunk ballerina
Singing my own song
and the crickets
Past Parades Fade Through All Your Egos
You marched up and down
the Kentucky roads in your own narcissistic
parade. You waved the red flags,
but no one seemed to notice as they
caught up your broken boy charm.
No matter how many times I tried
to save you from drowning in your
thought, I always ended up being
the one to blame. You let your folks
talk about me as I was nothing.
Every time there was a problem,
You'd waltz right to your mom's apron
strings. My feeling was invalid when I
tried to turn to you. You turned the
cards around and I was the crazy one.
I always stood alone whenever I stood up
for myself. You let me drown in despair,
and the one that ended saving me was myself.
2 new poems/writings by HilLesha O’Nan : “In Patagonia” & “These Walls”Poem/lyrics by HilLesha O’Nan: “The Preacher’s Wife”Poetry by HilLesha O’Nan : “Small Town Hearts” “Two Wolves” & “Living with the Mirrors”
A year gone by, another spring.
Again azaleas appear.
We are still behind our glass walls,
but now our arms are needle-sore,
our hearts filled with intoxication.
At first glance, nothing could reflect
our flight from fear to hope better
than a bank of azaleas
gaping at us through our windows,
even more riotous than last spring.
But there is something aggressive
in these crowded, fuchsia blossoms
growing nearer every year,
something that warns against too much hope.
Their glory draws me, but I stand
helpless before their intrusion,
If they are eyes, what do they see?
If mouths, what are they screaming?
I cannot trust their mad joy now.
Yet later, when they are drooping
pathetically after a storm,
I will recall with sadness
how brief their frenzy was.
Bio: Lorna Wood is a violinist and writer in Auburn, Alabama. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in 2% Milk, Angel Rust (Best of the Net nominee), Coastal Shelf, Escape Wheel (great weather for MEDIA), and Poetry South (Pushcart nominee), among others. She has also published fiction, creative nonfiction, and scholarly essays. Find out more at amazon.com/author/lornawood
A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Lorna WoodHearing “Hallelujah” at the Women’s March, 2017 by Lorna Wood (poetry for Leonard Cohen Week)