Saturday, November 24, 2012

winter river: atkinson / horáček / cotman reading + open mic

winter river : featuring first-time river-ers adam atkinson, josef horáček, and elwin cotman. 

plus: river open mic. 

see you at 8 PM.

Friday, November 9, 2012

MA fellowships to be rivered...

November 2012


I am writing in hopes that you will forward the information below, regarding
the writing and visual arts Fellowships at the Fine Arts Work Center in
Provincetown to any visual artists or writers associated with your agency.
The Fellowships are a unique and wonderful opportunity for emerging
artists and writers to spend seven months working at our Cape Cod facility. 

We'd be grateful for your help in passing on word of these opportunities for
artists and writers in your state.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.


Salvatore Scibona
Writing Coordinator

Fellowship at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts

For the last forty years, the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown has run 
the largest and longest residency Fellowship in the United States for 
emerging visual artists and writers.  Artists who have not had significant
recognition for their work and writers who have not yet published a full-length
book of creative work are welcome to apply.  Fellows receive a seven-month
stay (October 1­­-April 30) at the Work Center and a $750 monthly stipend
Fellows do not pay or work in exchange for their Fellowships in any way. 
Fellows are chosen based on the excellence of their work. Former visual
arts Fellows include Ellen Gallagher, Jack Pierson, Lisa Yuskavage,
Angela Dufresne, Geoffrey Chadsey, and Lamar Peterson.  Former writing
Fellows--nearly all of whom came here before the publication of their first books--have won every
major national award in writing including the
National Book Award and seven Pulitzer Prizes.  Former writing Fellows
include Denis Johnson, Louise Glück, Jhumpa Lahiri, and Yusef Komunyakaa. 

The postmark deadline for the 2013-14 Writing Fellowships is December 1, 2012.
The deadline for the 2013-14 Visual Arts Fellowships is February 1, 2013.

For details, please visit:


Sunday, November 4, 2012

RIVARIETY: performance & poetry 11.13.12

We interrupt our regular river programming to bring you: 

RIVARIETY: poetry & performance, featuring members of LSU's Performance Studies Studio!

With performances by Kaitlin Cannava, Emily Graves, Eddie Gamboa, Benjamin Haas, and Bonny McDonald. 

A spectacle not to be missed!

Same river time (8 PM), same river place (Boudreaux & Thibodeaux's).

Thursday, November 1, 2012

A Poet's Diagnosis

One of the best rivers ever Tuesday past! Never-satisfied, River Writers proudly provides a thought-provoking piece from the poet Christopher Shipman; this diagnosis speaks more to the larger context of reading series in general, not specific, and the trouble contemporary poets experience independently traveling the nation to publicize and sell their work:

A Poet’s Diagnosis

A friend mentioned the other day that poets seem to undervalue themselves because they will often read for free. This friend is a great poet himself, but fails to see the source of the problem. Perhaps some poets really do undervalue themselves and their art, and maybe this is the real reason why they don’t expect compensation for their talents. But why do something you don’t appreciate yourself?

The real issue here is that the majority of the American public undervalues poets, which is of course the biggest problem, but what’s more is that poets undervalue other poets, forcing those who really love writing and reading poetry to be more pragmatic about what kind of compensation they can expect from venues and their guests.

There are 3 major indicators that reveal the nature of this problem:

1.) Sometimes poets drive or fly hundreds and hundreds of miles for readings in cities that are known for having good literary scenes and good MFA programs to find maybe 3 people in attendance.  Sometimes the room may be packed with twenty to thirty listeners; then poets will sell maybe two books. And there is always at least one person in the crowd that approaches the poet after the reading to say how much they loved the work...But instead of buying a book, for maybe 15 bucks at the most, the congratulator finds his way to the bar and never considers he could have bought the book while buying his third beer for 6 bucks. In other words, instead of saying it, buy the shit you like.

2.) Oftentimes the poet who has driven the hundreds of miles and has maybe sold two books and has said thank you to the congratulator, becomes that very congratulator at another reading. Why does this happen?  I know a lot of poets, some are good poets and most are good people, who don’t go to readings and don’t buy books. Why not? What new poetry are they supporting? Or valuing? Many poets go to their own readings and apparently don’t care about what other people are writing. This is a way to build a community that is valued by other communities or in the very least its members. If I like what is being read to me, and I am not on the verge of starving, I will purchase the book the poet has so lovingly brought along, and at some point in the near future I will actually read the damn thing. In other words, contemporary poets aren’t  buying and reading enough poetry.

3.) An interesting and perhaps more detrimental indicator of this problem is that poets today have such narrow tastes and styles that they seemingly don’t acknowledge poetry that doesn’t fit into the confines of their own niche. This makes poetry stagnant.

What I really want to say is that I love poems.  I fucking love the poems, and the possibly of publishing and interacting with poets. I can live with the whole world not loving poems so long as poets themselves love them. Support them, read them, hear them, throw them in the river, bury them, and stuff them in your breath. Let’s value each other so others will value us. But if you don’t love poetry, maybe you should just stop fucking pretending.               

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

delatte/kari/hembree river 10.30.12

Anne Delatte recently graduated from LSU with a BA in English/Creative Writing. Her poems have appeared in delta journal, and she is currently working on various projects of language and poesy in the Baton Rouge and New Orleans area.

Jackie Kari is a poet, translator, and amateur printmaker. Her work has appeared in The Cambridge Literary Review, Lana Turner, RealPoetik, and elsewhere. A chapbook of translations is forthcoming from Sardines Press.

Carolyn Hembree’s debut collection, Skinny, was recently published by Kore Press. Individual poems have appeared in Colorado Review, DIAGRAM, Gulf Coast, Indiana Review, jubilat, and Witness, among other journals and anthologies. Kore Press published her debut collection, Skinny, in 2012.  Her poetry has received three Pushcart Prize nominations, a PEN Writers Grant, a Southern Arts Federation Grant, and a Louisiana Division of the Arts Fellowship Award in Literature. Before completing her MFA, she found employment as a cashier, housecleaner, cosmetics consultant, telecommunicator, actor, receptionist, paralegal, coder, and freelance writer. Carolyn grew up in Tennessee and Alabama. She teaches at the University of New Orleans.
Skinny by Carolyn Hembree

Monday, October 15, 2012


join us tuesday 10/16, 8 PM @ Boudreaux & Thibodeaux's for an evening of RIVERCOURSE with some of our favorite river-regulars:

carrie causey, whose chapbook is forthcoming from Ampersand Books

ben lowenkron, author of Preacher's Blues (Ampersand Books 2009)

eric elliott, author of The Graves We Dig (Ampersand Books 2011)

christopher shipman, co-author of Romeo's Ugly Nose (Allography Press 2012) with Benjamin Cockfield, Super Poems (Kattywompus 2012) with DeWitt Brinson, and author of Human-Carrying Flight Technology (BlazeVOX 2011).

vincent cellucci, river-founder, author of An Easy Place / To Die (CityLit Press 2011) & editor of  
Fuck Poems: An Exceptional Anthology (Lavender Press 2012)

Monday, October 1, 2012

River "bye" week 10.2.12

like every well-oiled machine, this writing series must cool its jets from time to time.

in honor of this "cold" snap, take to your warm, warm beds tomorrow night ... for poetry-making.

not to worry: this is a "bye" week, not a bye bye. 

the river returns October 16 w/ fabulous readers & familiar faces. same river time (8:00, 10/16), same river place (boudreaux & thibodeaux's).

Sunday, September 16, 2012

o river! my river! 9.18.12

every once in a while, the river requests some fiction--short fiction--along with its poetry. 

well, river--your wish is our command.

sean green, a fiction writer from San Jose, reads his short fiction for your pleasure. 

followed by a poetry reading from river-regular sarah hulyk maxwell, who promises to offer up unconventional, delightful gifts of poetry to the river.

meet us at the river! Tuesday, September 18, 8:00 PM, Boudreaux & Thibodeaux's

Sarah Hulyk-Maxwell 
Seah Green

Saturday, September 1, 2012

tender river 9.4.12

our upcoming river, TENDER RIVER, showcases both editors of the poetry magazine tenderloin, Mel Coyle and Jenn Marie Nunes, and their most recent supplicant, Min K. Kang, whose work is currently LIVE @

Min K. Kang was born in Busan, South Korea and grew up in Texas. She is a graduate of Texas A&M and San Francisco State. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Asia Literary Review, Santa Clara Review, Transfer, and the anthology for Thymos, an organization for Asian American Activism and Awareness. She currently studies creative writing at Louisiana State and lives in Baton Rouge for most of the year.

tenderloin editors, Mel Coyle and Jenn Marie Nunes, speak of their corrupted art:
"the meat is weird; the poet speaks of this. when speaking of the meat try not to make sense of the loin of making sense. not about weight. but about balance. or weight. we speak of weight in our product. who we take down with us when we go is always an art."

drag the river w/ us, this Tuesday, September 4, 2012, 8:00 PM, Boudreaux & Thibodeaux's, 214 3rd St # 2D  Baton Rouge, LA.

Saturday, August 18, 2012


river's back for another season of readings from the best
of baton rouge and the louisiana literary community:

we are officially changing the times to tuesdays at 8pm and still the same supporting location boudreaux + thibodeaux (downtown, 214 third st.).  last but most important piece of news to release is that john david harding will be managing the series for the forseeable future so everyone please contact him for reading slots and event suggestions.  as always, i will be aberrant in the riverever, vincent cellucci, now conceding to this year's inaugural readers:

Victoria Mansberger, a uber-talented poet rising in baton rouge; also pursuing her mfa @ lsu

Carrie Causey, another baton rouge poet teaching at baton rouge community college with an outstanding publication record.

and another teacher_poet joining us from down river:

Brad Richard, who will be giving the river his second only sneak peak of his new book: butcher's sugar

Brad Richard’s books include Habitations (Portals Press, 2000);  Motion Studies winner of the 2010 Washington Prize (The Word Works. 2011); and Butcher’s Sugar, forthcoming from Sibling Rivalry Press (2012). He has also published two chapbooks, The Men in the Dark (Lowlands Press, 2004) and Curtain Optional (Press Street, 2011). His poems and reviews have appeared in American Letters & Commentary, Barrow Street, Bayou, Guernica, Hunger Mountain Review, The Iowa Review, The Laurel Review, Literary Imagination, The Massachusetts Review, Mississippi Review, New Orleans Review, Passages North, Prairie Schooner, and other journals. Recipient of fellowships from the Surdna Foundation and the Louisiana Division of the Arts, and 2002 Poetry Winner in the Poets & Writers, Inc., Writers Exchange competition, he is chair of the creative writing program at Lusher Charter High School in New Orleans. He is also co-director of the New Orleans New Writers Literary Festival, a festival for high school writers, and the Scholastic Writing Awards of Southeast Louisiana, a regional affiliate of the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers. 

Friday, August 10, 2012

we believe in bill

* * * * * * * * 

outraged to be informed of this on rivervacation and was compelled to get back on the grid and type up something for my friend bill. it's not nearly enough--

“Nothing gold can stay”—this is particularly evident in NOLA day after day. This
is a comparable sacking to the literary scene of NOLA as your girl Katrina hitting the city seven years ago. Bill has been a friend and mentor for many years now. I cannot imagine someone more intrinsically connected to poetry and the city of New Orleans to lead UNO Press. He is approachable, fearless, and learned, and this is a devastating loss to literary LA. Hopefully we at LSU or one of the other nearby universities will be smart enough to scoop Bill up and provide him with the resources he needs to keep LA unpretentiously pertinent and publishing the poetry emanating from the state and elsewhere with gusto for the people (readers and writers) not the pedigree. All it should take is one look at the UNO table (the titles, authors, and camaraderie) during AWP to note what Bill has achieved on the national scale. BRING BACK BILL!!!!
* * * * * * * * 

Dear Friends,
Today the news from the New Orleans poetry community is very, very bad.

Poet BILL LAVENDER, director of University of New Orleans Press has been SACKED by the administrators at University of New Orleans.

Bill Lavender not only resurrected UNO Press, but under Bill's stewardship these past four years, UNO press has published an astounding 80+ excellent books nationally and internationally; and the press is by no means strapped for funding. UNO Press is currently regarded as one of the most prestigious and  financially self-sustainable university presses in all of the United States.

Be assured, this so-called "elimination" is purely POLITICALLY motivated, not otherwise.

Dean Susan Krantz of the University of New Orleans informed Bill Lavender of his "elimination" recently via email while Bill was still in Scotland fulfilling his duties as Director of UNO's Abroad Program.

Stand with US!
SPEAK out!
Let them hear your VOICE loud and clear!
Pressure is mounting from all sectors near and far to EXPOSE the corruption and unethical conduct at the University of New Orleans at the very highest levels!

Bill Lavender's so-called "ELIMINATION"  is a devastating blow which will be felt deeply by poetry communities everywhere-- from New Orleans to New York to California to Brazil to Zimbabwe--and everywhere in between!

Let higher ed charlatans know you DETEST of their actions!
INFORM fatcat administrators that their professed soulessness toward POETRY is indeed a high act of treason to the art we LOVE!
They must answer for this singular INJUSTICE to POETRY and to poet Bill Lavender!
We need every nano of LOVE and SUPPORT you can give!
YOUR voice will be LEGION!

Love, Strength & Peace Through Poetry Always!

Sincerest Regards,
Andrei Codrescu and Dave Brinks
* * * * * * * *
Dear Friends: This just in from Andrei Codrescu:

Andrei Codrescu thinks that Bill Lavender's firing is a disgrace, but the text sent out by Dr.(Dave Brinks) Sleepadelic is, in my opinion, over the top. UNO is bad, but what I really hate is Iran's nuclear program. Andrei Codrescu
* * * * * * * *
Please send a personal letter of objection to ALL email addresses listed:
University of New Orleans Provost Louis Paradise:
University of New Orleans President Peter Fos:
University of New Orleans, College of Liberal Arts, Dean Susan Krantz:
University of New Orleans, Director of Creative

* * * * * * * *
Sign Petition site:
(You may have to copy and paste the above address into the appropriate place, unable to get hot-link to work.)

* * * * * * * *
Links to media reports covering this outrageous act (please post your personal comments to articles):

[NOTE: If you tweet, post and use hashtag #UNOpress to get these articles trending]
[NOTE: if you're on FB, check posts there]