BigCityLit New York Edition

the rivers of it, abridged
New York Edition

a p h i l o p h o n e m a™affiliate


Big City, Little
Bridge City Lit
Twelve - 12
Series on Series
Series Reviews
Free Expression
Legal Forum
Print Series
Audio or CD
Other Arts
Special Events
Advertiser Index

Bridge Photo

"Disillusionment of Ten O'Clock"
Photo: George Kunze (


"lyre and tuba together joined"

Gregory Corso

(March 26, 1930 - January 18, 2001)

Ah, yet well I know that were a woman possible as I am possible
then marriage would be possible -
Like SHE in her lonely alien gaud waiting her Egyptian lover
so i wait - bereft of 2,000 years and the bath of life.

Trading Tigers with Slovenia

Poberesˇ kamen, ga tezˇkasˇ v dlaneh,
in odsotno zamrmrasˇ: Tu je bil tiger.

You find a stone, you weigh it in your palm,
you murmur absently: There was a tiger here.

(Gregor Strnisˇa -- Transl. T. Lozˇar)

Only, here and there, an old sailor,
Drunk and asleep in his boots,
Catches tigers
in red weather.

(Wallace Stevens)

Live Performances

On January 22, Enid Dame, Jan Clausen, Chocolate Waters and others from last month's "Because They Did" feature recorded the complete collection at Caffè Taci for CD and proofed galleys for inclusion in the Big City Lit™ Print Series.

On February 12, Big City Lit™ will sponsor a staged reading of "The Fox and the Ocelot," an erotic verse fable in one act. 9:30 p.m., The Underground Lounge (107th at West End).

On March 19, a dozen award-winning poets and musicians from Lyric Recovery Festival™ at Carnegie Hall 2000 appear at Caffè Taci in multilingual performance as part of the United Nations project, "Dialogues Among Civilizations Through Poetry" ( On March 29, James Ragan, who featured with Galway Kinnell at LyR Carnegie and has read for four heads of state, reads at the UN itself along with Yusef Komunyakaa and Joyce Carol Oates.


In This Issue

Note: Big City Lit™ Call for Submissions - Deadline, March 1 - Consult Submissions Page


We've chosen to mark Valentine's Day on the Twelve-12 page, with a venture in risk we call "Roughly Love," featuring a remarkable trilogy by Tobias Deehan, plus poems by Nicholas Johnson, Brant Lyon and Amanda Ysamp. The mid-winter shadow play known as 'Groundhog Day' (February 2) derives from a pagan German ritual whose Urprognosticator was the less compliant (and reportedly less edible) badger ("Dachs"). Work in our feature smorgasbord, "The Occasional Groundhog," includes Beowulf translator Bertha Rogers wielding her Anglo-Saxon skills and artist's brush to depict the groundhog as Grendel, as well as retakes on the shadow from Thom Ward of BOA Editions and others. Our "Global Poem Zones" series continues, with pink prose on Jaipur alongside poems by Robert Minhinnick of Poetry Wales and Patrick Henry of Yorkshire. Ron Price hits the road-from-nowhere despair, while Peter Chelnik sets two hearts off on criss-cross-country anywhere transcendance. The Big City, Little page focuses on Prague, with work by Pulitzer-nominee James Ragan and by Viktor Tichy. Yves Ros reopens his carnet on Bridge City Lit/Paris.


We inaugurated the Fiction page in January with shorts. This month, our own George Dickerson contributes "The Cause," a feature-length return to the Fifties, when Americans, black and white, first took the crash course of Brown v. Board of Education. The story recalled to mind these lines by Galway Kinnell:

Did I come all this way only for this, only
to feel out the world-braille of my complicity,
only to choke down these last poison wafers?

"The Last River" (Body Rags))


Part Two of Senior Essayist Maureen Holm's "Ego-Free, The Poem Aloft" is complemented by Thom Ward's "A Little Primer on What & How," which reaffirms that "[t]he poem is the cry of its occasion / Part of the res itself and not about it." (Wallace Stevens), exposes the relationship between what and how, and that between poetic surfaces and poetic temperament, concluding with imagination and surprise.


Martin Mitchell, veteran editor (Pivot, Rattapallax) and recent Cambridge (England) resident, cycles bridges and brews in near-by Grantchester, with a wave to poets Rupert Brooke and Wilfred Owens. Whatever Robert Dunn, co-editor of Medicinal Purposes and originator of NYC's "Poet-to-Poet" circuit, cannot re-engineer of Pennsylvania's infrastructure he happily re-covers in, "The Bridges of Moccasin County."


"A great poet poses unity within diversity, synthesis within apparent analysis. The good poet's song drones; the great poet's song modulates." So writes Michael T. Young (Transcriptions of Daylight) in his review of Derek Walcott's Tiepolo's Hound, whose mutations reflect the various assertions of the artist's power over the authority of history. Maureen Holm's review of Mark Nickels's Cicada has been reclaimed from our former cyberspace to reappear here. Tireless Tim Scannell briefly reviews chapbooks by Patricia Wellingham-Jones, William Hart and Donna Cartelli.


Vic Schermer's long interview with poet Elaine Schwager (I Want Your Chair) has garnered so much positive feedback that we have left it in place for the convenience of new visitors to the magazine (Hello, Singapore!) and of those who may not have finished reading it.

Series on Series: The Cornelia Street Café

"What sets The Sunday Series at Cornelia apart from other readings is its intimate cabaret atmosphere. New networks, friendships, alliances form as first-time listeners wind up shoulder-to-shoulder with heard-it-all circuit veterans." (Curator, Angelo Verga)

Series Reviews:

Sherod Santos and Charles Wright at the 92nd Street Y (January 8)

The Chelsea Hotel Tour (January 14)

New Page Loads:

This month we've loaded three new pages, Letters, Free Expression and Other Arts. Appearing on Free Expression is "Advice and Consent," an article which argues forcefully against Senate confirmation of John Ashford (Sen. Mo.-R), George W. Bush's nominee for Attorney General, based on Ashford's 25-year record of right-wing extremism. The author, journalist Marty Jezer, also warns against Gail Gordon, Bush's choice for Secretary of the Interior, an advocate of corporate "self-regulation," whom even Republicans denounce as the ally of polluters.

Note regarding font selection:
The magazine is intended to appear in Palatino.



Copyright/Trademark Notice: All text, visual, audio, and graphic material contained herein is proprietary. Any unauthorized use or reproduction thereof subjects the user to significant civil and/or criminal penalties under Title 17 of the United States Code, the Berne Convention and corresponding individual national statutory schemes. "Big City Lit", "the rivers of it, abridged", "Big City, Little", "Bridge City Lit", "Twelve" and their visual representations are trademarks entitled to statutory, common law and international protections.


Masthead | Big City, Little | Bridge City Lit | Twelve - 12 | Poetry | Fiction | Essays | Articles | Reviews | Interviews | Series on Series | Series Reviews | Free Expression | Legal Forum | Print Series | Bookshelf | Audio or CD | Letters | Other Arts | Special Events | Archive | Advertiser Index | Submissions | Self-Listing | Classifieds | Links