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Event Calendar
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exhibitions
August 25 - Oct 1

Exhibition: Vicki, with an i, organized by Michelle Grabner

performances
September 21

Formations presents Steve Nelson-Raney & Binder-Mollerskov-Schlei-Westfahl

film & video
September 22

aCinema: // In Silence Arrives the Tempest // Waiting on Paradise //

exhibitions
September 23 -23

Reception: Vicki with an i, organized by Michelle Grabner

readings & workshops
September 28

Poetry Reading: Stacy Blint, Rebecca Eland & Mark Tardi

readings & workshops
September 30

100 Thousand Poets for Change MKE

readings & workshops
October 5

Poetry Reading: Feliz Lucia Molina

exhibitions
October 11

Exhibition: Jen Bervin, Tactile Lanuguage

readings & workshops
October 12

Offsite Event: Justice for All: Selected Writings of Lloyd A. Barbee

readings & workshops
October 13

Poetry Reading: Caitlin Scarano, Paula Carter & Freesia McKee

performances
October 22

Alternating Currents Live: Tom Rainey & Devin Drobka Percussion Duo

readings & workshops
October 26

Urban Echo Poets

readings & workshops
November 8

Poetry Reading: Matt Cook

Archived readings & workshops
Jun 2 Thursday, June 2
7:00pm, FREE

A reading in celebration of recent poetry publications - 100 Chinese Silences (Les Figues Press) by Timothy Yu & Red And White Balloons (Adjunct Press) by Mike Hauser. 


Timothy Yu is the author of 100 Chinese Silences, the editor’s selection in the Les Figues Press NOS Book Contest, and of Race and the Avant-Garde: Experimental and Asian American Poetry since 1965 (Stanford), winner of the Book Award in Literary Studies from the Association for Asian American Studies. He is also the author of three chapbooks: 15 Chinese Silences (Tinfish), Journey to the West (Barrow Street; winner of the Vincent Chin Chapbook Prize from Kundiman), and, with Kristy Odelius, Kiss the Stranger (Corollary), and the editor of Nests and Strangers: On Asian American Women Poets (Kelsey Street). He is associate professor of English and Asian American studies and director of the Asian American Studies Program at UW-Madison.

 

Mike Hauser has lived in Milwaukee since 2002. He has curated reading series such as Too Close For Comfort, Salacious Banter, and Ineluctable Place. His work has appeared in West Wind Review, Bright Pink Mosquito, and Delirious Hem, among other places. His most recent book is Red And White Balloons from Adjunct Press.


 

Chinese Silence No. 1

after Billy Collins, “Grave”

 

What do you think of this poem

I asked the tomb of my unknown grandfather

with its livid quiet marble.

 

A Chinese silence fell.

It dropped from a glowering tree

to perch on my shoulder.

 

We looked at each other.

It would have been hard for a stranger

to tell one of us from the other.

 

We both looked like monks or scholars

or like piles of drowned bones

laid softly on the loamy earth.

 

My grandfather said nothing.

His Chinese silence coiled its tail

into the shape of a long-lobed ear,

 

one of the one hundred American signs

for anxious virility.  

Then the silence fell

 

into a cardboard box full of other silences.

Like blind puppies they squirmed

and snuffled for their mother.

 

OK, I made that last part up.

But you must admit it was a fabulous metaphor.

No?  Oh, now I see

 

you are just as Chinese

as all the other silences—

the Silence of the Heavily Armed Gunboat,

 

or the Silence of the Drunken Mariner,

or my grandfather’s silence, like the Liberty Bell,

only cracked right through.

 

—Timothy Yu

 

 

Hang With Me

after Robyn & automatic writing

 

What’s next is not always most available

to redress, coaxing, little kinks worked out,

little begging, little sanctioning. What’s next give it

a work out in form of fabulous incumbent circular

and menacing change, hope that it proves soft, blissfully

painful insanity, if we agree, recklessly, heedlessly, make

now the punky portion, I got your big back. an inventory of the day’s

sound wilts, willis reeds some, wiling, coyote, cuyanga

mixing magic, magical thinking, made manic in the

waning, wistful, wanky wang.

 

The portentous manic, wanky wang, wanky, wangful,

put in there told us the bench-players. We want real solutions

of the moments, but we ain’t gotta

ascribe WWII to all our happy thoughts.

Happy thoughts criminally insane or not, become big and lack a

support for big banks, having got big, middle ground sense,

tertiary sense. what occurs to you next, here, a burden to freaky, freaky

meek and meek. An ass kind of wanking thing.

 

Add to the ass kind of wanking thing, mania fumbling,

pertrified relations, mortgaged futures, further farts in innovations

fathered by beltless goofs in bumpy relatable let. Relatable

pure suplex, stories we tell each other, and stories we fumble

in relation, stories gotten in systemic intrigue. Bubbles that peter out,

that pop in unison, that assemble impressive chorus in sensible dawning on you.

Beats don’t break the law, little sheep sleeping on turntables, that’s us,

before we got there. Before we got there, dandled some wild combination.

Unannounced believability fills the room, you have no way to remove the system

you no infantile duress to sufficiently trucks with credible bench players.

 

I move closer to the keyboard. I don’t know about leading walks with

troublesome dogs and their owners, I don’t know about any of this either.

There is no reason not to lead walks, lead being “lead”, with troublesome dogs and

their wonderful owners, these godly dogs with wonderful owners.

Now lean in, to Robyn, dance to the beat, dance to the

beat of a distant mogul, a different mongrel, a more likely that

I hear words in their distortion no birth day longer than this any way. Sup. Zup. I lead dog walks, it would be very simple. I say, “hi everybody”, I simply imagine how it might go,

but there is also the concern. I’m uncomfortable with the term “leader”,

maybe escort is better. Also, I don’t know how to prevent dogs, really

how to handle dogs very well.

 

I mock, how does a big boy handle a big dog.

A big, temperamental boy. A boy-dog

with a drivers license. Even the French know betta

than t’ fuck wit me.

—Mike Hauser