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Remembering Chuck Shandry

By on Feb 21, 2021 in Blog, Featured | Comments Off

This weekend, I learned of the sudden passing of Chuck Shandry, who contributed interviews to Wild Violet in our early days, and who was a fellow staffer at the annual anime and East Asian cultural convention, Otakon. I met Chuck about 30 years ago, when I was an officer and newsletter editor for the Penn State Monty Python Society. He occasionally attended meetings, not performing in skits like the rest of us hams, but laughing in the audience and cheering us on. Nearly 20 years older than us, a Navy veteran, he genially turned down our offers to join us for a run to the College Diner after...

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Featured Works: Week of Feb. 22 (The Arts)

By on Feb 21, 2021 in Featured | Comments Off

In trying times, the arts provide refuge. Whether escaping into a fictional world, or finding relief through laughter, or simply being inspired, the arts improve our lives. That concept is as true today as when Wild Violet was founded to provide a “place for the arts,” as this week’s contributors illustrate. In “The Wrong Kiiid Died,” actor, writer and artist Raymond J. Barry provides an impressionistic account of his experiences shooting a scene in a comedy film.  “Rehearsals” by R. Steve Benson uses the language of dance and theater to relate a life...

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On The Island of No Internet, We Went to Listen to Poetry

By on Feb 21, 2021 in Featured, Poetry | Comments Off

Poems sprinkle out from the spice canister High yellow vowels, sand scarred s’s, Antigua blue cocktail beaches, Montserrat Black rivers of ash, small consonants And heavy wet k’s with clicks and slides. The sounds gather round the bonfires And the dancers, the drummers, the singers, The storytellers and women of poetry. Trade winds lift the soft vowels And thick consonants high into the air. Words form into imagery and breath, Into word tones, natural rhythms, themes Of courage and love, joy and hope, Greatness and happiness, and somewhere A rope breaks and the poem sets us...

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Aria

By on Feb 21, 2021 in Featured, Poetry | Comments Off

Not once have I wept over art in the Louvre, Uffizi or Met. Well, almost over van der Weyden’s Descent in the Prado, Mary’s grief, but that may have been indigestion after Madrid’s tapas, the Museum of Ham. A lithograph in Chelsea, Kathe Kollwitz’s dead mother and child splayed, stiff, discarded on the curb, brought a single, quiet tear. At the reception, the gallery on Water Street, I am at first preoccupied with drawings, paintings, prints, porcelain; delicate, curious assemblages, diminutive Constructivism; with wine, cheese and those gooey sweets with marshmallows, coconut and...

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Rehearsals

By on Feb 21, 2021 in Featured, Poetry | Comments Off

Why do I hold my clean hands under hot water until they sting? My tongue aches from rehearsals. Silver chutes shoot my open eyes. Stiff slanting wings lift our bodies resting above clouds — breathing, dreaming. Trust loosens our shoes, unpegs belts cinched around our expanding profit motives. Trust will settle us down to Earth. Bright shields of elastic goose flesh. Wet maps wrinkle in my hot palms. I would dovetail all my hinges! Lets love our flaws above each wave. Counting freckles until we land...

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The Wrong Kiiid Died

By on Feb 21, 2021 in Essays, Featured | Comments Off

Four o’clock in the morning before the world wakes up; freshness in the air, the light beginning to peek through the darkness of night, headlights on, radio off. Mumbling my lines, I drive reasonably fast. Sixty miles per hour is reasonably fast; no tickets for me. Wind tossing my hair, gray by now, slight elevation of spirit, a sense of purpose in the air, driving to work; not any kind of work. Film work, the movie business, so different from the usual notion of work, offers a certain degree of adventure that most jobs do not. Meanwhile, plenty of time; nerves aren’t frazzled,...

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