Las Vegas, NV
May 20, 2020
Garrison Keillor hits Las Vegas with a new solo show!
April 18, 2020
Garrison Keillor comes to the Rochester Civic Theatre for a night of stories, songs, poetry, and humor. Tickets $50 and up
February 19, 2020
Garrison Keillor with Heather Masse at the Dakota. Night 2 of 2. Tickets $30+
February 18, 2020
Garrison Keillor with Heather Masse at the Dakota. Night 1 of 2. Tickets $30+
History of Love
by Paul Hostovsky
Because he loves the way she has
of touching him
and because she loves the way he has
of loving her
each has learned the other’s
way and the other’s touch
so when love turns
and the world turns
and the lovers turn from each other and go
to other lovers they take
they take all they know
of love and of touch
and they give it to another
and in this way love grows rich
and wise and wide among us
and in this way we are also
loving those who will come after
and those who came before
we ever came to love
“History of Love” by Paul Hostovsky from Is That What That Is. FutureCycle Press © 2017. Reprinted by permission. (buy now)
It’s the birthday of graphic novelist Jessica Abel, (books by this author) born on this day in Chicago in 1969. Growing up, she liked the Wonder Woman comics, but she thought that most comics were just for boys, although she liked to sneak into her stepbrother’s room and read his Daredevil and Electra books when he wasn’t there. As a kid, she didn’t exactly write comics, but she did illustrate a book about a monster that ate her favorite teacher. Her first real comic was for her freshman year at Carleton College, when she drew a comic book of Medea in outer space for her final on Ancient Greek literature. After that, she couldn’t stop, and she attracted quite a few readers between 1992 and 1999 with her self-published comic Artbabe, about young hipsters in Chicago. Then she worked with Ira Glass to write and illustrate Radio: An Illustrated Guide (1999) about making This American Life. She also wrote La Perdida, published between 2001 and 2005, about a naïve young American hoping to find her roots in Mexico and become more like Frida Kahlo.
She said, “One thing I’ve figured out as I learn to teach art students to make comics is that my own method of making comics is at least unteachable, if not just plain unadvisable.”
It’s the birthday of novelist Brock Clarke, (books by this author) born in Springfield, Massachusetts, in 1968. He wrote An Arsonist’s Guide to Writers’ Homes in New England (2007), the story of an 18-year-old named Sam who accidentally burns down the Emily Dickinson house and kills two people, and spends some time in jail. When he gets out, he finds that along with a lot of hate mail, he has received letters from people all across the country asking Sam to come and burn down the houses of other dead famous writers from their local towns, writers whom for whatever reason they do not like. Soon, writers’ houses across New England start getting burned down, and Sam gets blamed. So he goes on a mission to try and find out who is doing it, and why.
Brock Clarke is also the author of The Ordinary White Boy (2001), What We Won’t Do (2002), Carrying the Torch (2005), and most recently Who Are You, Calvin Bledsoe? (2019).
It’s the birthday of artist Georgia O’Keeffe (books by this artist), born in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin (1887). In 1923, she said, “One day seven years ago I found myself saying to myself — I can’t live where I want to — I can’t go where I want to go — I can’t do what I want to — I can’t even say what I want to … I decided I was a very stupid fool not to at least paint as I wanted to.”
It’s the birthday of science fiction writer J.G. Ballard, (books by this author) born in 1930 in Shanghai, where his father was working on business. During World War II, the Japanese occupied Shanghai, and Ballard and his family lived in an internment camp for three years. He gained a cult following for his novels, sometimes labeled science fiction, most of which are disturbing dystopias of a society obsessed with celebrities and sex and car crashes, novels like The Atrocity Exhibition (1969), Crash (1973), and Millennium People (2003). In 1984, he wrote Empire of the Sun, a novel based loosely on his own childhood in Shanghai, and it was a huge success, and in 1987 it was made into a movie starring John Malkovich and Christian Bale.
It’s the birthday of columnist Franklin Pierce Adams (books by this author), born Franklin Leopold Adams in Chicago in 1881. He started his newspaper career in 1903, at the Chicago Journal. He wrote a weather column and, later, a humor column called “A Little about Everything.” His column “The Conning Tower,” syndicated in several New York papers beginning in 1914, and signed with his initials “F.P.A.” made him one of the most-quoted columnists during its long run. He occasionally featured the work of other writers in his column, including Edna St. Vincent Millay, Groucho Marx, and Robert Benchley. “The Conning Tower” is credited with launching the careers of Dorothy Parker and James Thurber after Adams featured their verse. Parker dedicated Not So Deep as a Well, her 1936 poetry collection, to F.P.A. and said, “He raised me from a couplet.”
Adams wrote: “Years ago we discovered the exact point, the dead center of middle age. It occurs when you are too young to take up golf and too old to rush up to the net.”
It’s the birthday of American poet Ted Berrigan (books by this author), born in Providence, Rhode Island (1934). He was part of the second-generation New York School of Poets, which included Ron Padgett, Anne Waldman, and Jim Carroll. He earned his master’s degree at the University of Tulsa in 1962, but he returned his diploma as soon as he got it, explaining that he was the “master of no art.” He returned the diploma as part of a road trip he took from New York to New Orleans with Dick Gallup, Joe Brainard, and Ron Padgett.
Berrigan had several “errands” to run on this road trip, of which returning his diploma was only one. He also stopped by the Library of Congress to see if they had a copy of his first collection, A Lily for My Love (1959). They did — and Berrigan stole it and destroyed it, because he was embarrassed by his earlier work. As a result, The Sonnets, which he published in 1964, is officially his first book, and it’s the book that made his reputation as a poet.
It was on this same trip that he met 19-year-old Sandra Alper. They were married six days later and, in an attempt to have the marriage annulled, Alper’s parents committed her to a mental institution. Berrigan went back to New York, but he wrote her letters almost every day, and two months later, he helped her escape the asylum. “I think that all the choirs of heaven and all the saints rejoiced,” he wrote to her, “when we made our marriage vows in the park in New Orleans when you first looked at me seriously, and I first touched your arm. Your father and mother have forgotten that kind of truth. All the people around you have forgotten it.” The marriage didn’t last the decade, but the letters are collected in a book called Dear Sandy, Hello (2010).
Berrigan married again in 1972, to the poet Alice Notley, and the two of them were active members of the poetry scene in Chicago and New York City. Ted Berrigan died of cirrhosis of the liver in 1983; Notley and their sons, Anselm and Edmund, collected all his poems — published and unpublished — into a single volume in 2005.
Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.®