Thursday, March 7, 2013

Fast Food Psychology, Doves Murdered By Fastballs, and the rest of Thin Air Magazine

Inspiration comes from anywhere.
I'm always amused by the random phrases that my musician friend Doug Bale posts on facebook. One of those two-word status updates was "Kentucky Freud." It caught my imagination and I couldn't stop thinking about "Eleven Herbs and childhood traumas" until it grew into an entire poem.

Thin Air Magazine  published this "Kentucky Freud Chicken" poem in their latest issue, so I went on a little day-trip up to Flagstaff to read at the volume 19 launch party. I loved the cover art.

Of course I first had to wander around some of the bookstores and coffeeshops to get in a Flagstaff state of mind.

It was held at a cool billiards bar and I read for about 12-15 minutes, before the Thin Air staff shared some of the other pieces from contributors who weren't in town.

The entire issue is wonderfully eclectic.

It begins with two companion pieces from Michael Martone titled WOW and MOM.
Some of the other poems that immediately grabbed my attention include:

Kirk Schlueter   - 14 Ways Of Watching Randy Johnson Kill A Dove With A Fastball

Through a television's eye
a dove is a cloud of feathers
that glues itself together and flies.

*** If you're not familiar with this infamous incident, here is the spring training footage:

Caylin Capra-Thomas   - I Could Tell You Again

He lost his ears in the fire. Let me
tell you again how luck's reserved
for prom night & rented like tuxedos.

 Ross Losapio   - I Knew (after Malcolm Browne's photograph of the burning monk)

In the moments before, I knew
the quiet sigh of cushion on asphalt,
which is no comfort,
& the smell of gasoline

Chloe Warden   - To The Woman Who Died After Being Electrocuted While Crossing A Las Vegas Street

Maybe the moment before, you were happy --- maybe restless
thinking about how many times you'd thought to call the babysitter
but didn't.

Jia Oak Baker   - You Who Are Getting Obliterated In The Dancing Swarm Of Fireflies

and the next. Fireflies expand into stars. Who are we
to find in infinite spaces but ourselves?

*** the title is from my favorite instillation at the Phoenix Art Museum by artist Yayoi Kusama, where you wander through a dark mirrored room, alone except for all of the LED lights.

Kate Rosenberg   - All Night Architecture

My second death: when the last person who knows me dies.

There are also Mad-Libs For Politicians by Martin Ott, a Frida Kahlo poem cycle from Robin Silbergleid, and much much more.

So if you're at AWP, stop by and see Thin Air Magazine at table N21.


  1. That cover photo is brilliant. Have you posted Kentucky Freud Chicken anywhere?

    And Flagstaff looks like it needs to go on my list of places to visit.

  2. Yes, your camera should accompany you to Flagstaff one of these days! Just let me know if you need a bumbling guide who barely knows anything more than you already know about Flagstaff. Haha.

    I have a video of me reading Kentucky Freud Chicken at a recent Encyclopedia Show that focused on the theme of Fast Food. It's always so hard to tolerate hearing my own voice and seeing my own face, so I'm still contemplating whether or not I should upload it for teh interwebz.

    If I chicken out and decide to never share that, I promise to send you the text in a message or email, of I still have your address.