Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Tin House Dorm

At Reed College, the dorm where Ted & I stayed reminded me of the school in _Harry Potter_ as well as Flowers Hall at Huntingdon College, my teaching post previous to SBCC. Gothic architecture with big redwood rooms. Mike Land, dear friend & also a participant at Tin House, took this photo with me & poet Susie Dunn in the foreground.

Friday, July 21, 2006

D.A. Powell

I just spent a week studying with the imminent poet, D.A. Powell, at the Tin House Workshop in Portland, Or. He is a wonderful teacher as well as poet. In appreciation of the week in his workshop, I post the following poem from his most recent collection, _Cocktails_:

[the cocktail hour finally arrives: whether ending a day at the office]

the cocktail hour finally arrives: whether ending a day at the office
or opening the orifice at 6am [legal again to pour in californica]: the time is always right

we need a little glamour and glamour arrives: plenty of chipped ice
a green jurassic palm tree planted. a yellow spastic monkey swinging

a pink classic flamingo impaled upon the exuberant red of cherries
dash of bitters. vermouth sweet. enough rye whiskey to kill

this longing: I take my drinks still and stuffed with plastic. like my lovers
my billfold full of rubbers. OPENs my mouth: its tiny neon lounge

From Cocktails by D. A. Powell. Copyright © 2004 by D. A. Powell. Reprinted from Poets. org.

Sunday, July 02, 2006


Like Marilyn in her glory
an upward draft
catches Mama’s hem
at forty-first and twelfth
raising it in waves
around her knees and over her thighs
a pink-striped dress
dances like the awning
at Lida’s Cantina
when a man at the corner
clutching a boy’s hand
sees Mama naked
under her flying skirt
and I see he sees
wondering why
she doesn’t hold it down
and he sees me see him
before the light turns green.

"Second Memory" by Chella Courington appears in _Permafrost_ (vol. 28, summer 2006), published by the University of Alaska Fairbanks.