So Newfangled 6 happened back on Friday, May 29, and I'm finally getting around to commenting on it here, for the occasional person who happens to check out my blog. Above is a photo of the sign outside the doorway to the Bureau of General Services--Queer Division, where Newfangled happens every three months. Unfortunately this is the only photo I have from that evening. I typically pilfer photos from the BGSQD Facebook page for these posts but they haven't posted any photos. I never take my own photos at the readings because I'm just so focused on the readers that I can't even think about snapping photos. Perhaps I'll attempt to get one good photo of each reader at the next Newfangled before each one really gets into it.
The first reader that night was Chase Berggrun. Chase was an absolute treat. The poems they read were from a collection of erasure poems from Stoker's Dracula concerning gender identity (this is a very basic summary of what Chase presented and what my memory is allowing me to describe, but really, Chase captivated the audience). I need to finally read the copy of Dracula I've owned for many years, and I cannot wait for Chase to get this collection published and make it available to the public.
The second reader was Tom Capelonga. His poems were more on the narrative side and checkered with pop references--similar to the majority of my own work, which is probably why I asked him to read in the first place. These poems were a pleasure to hear, and Tom was a pro at delivering them. I hope he keeps at it.
The third and final reader was Paul Tran. Paul has a more spoken-word style to his work and performance that is explosive, dynamic, and gripping. The end of his poem focusing on Vietnamese women working as nail technicians at nail salons was so cutting and emotionally charged, I nearly fell over out of my chair. All of his poems blew my head clean off.
Please please try to keep up with these three poets and familiarize yourself with their work. You will not be sorry.
And now to the future: the next Newfangled, which is the seventh in the series will be happening on Saturday, 8/22, at 7:00 p.m. at the BGSQD, which is located at the LGBT Center on 13th St. in Manhattan. The three readers will be Ricardo Hernandez, Tommy Pico, and Charif Shanahan. You do not want to miss this.