Monday July 25th – 12:42PM
MASQUERADE – aftermath/anatomy
So here’s how it went. On Friday afternoon, I got a haircut, then I got together with Lynne to rehearse our duet part of the show. The rehearsal involved a coupla beers and re-running the duet about five times, and running parts of the show with the inter-stitials read by Lynne, one time.
Lynne left, I napped. It was about 95 degrees. I awoke around 8PM and went to the gym. I left the gym at closing time – 10PM. I felt good. Part of my time in the gym was spent running on the treadmill which I normally can’t do for very long because I get distracted and start to woder about all sorts of other things and then I have to stop around the 2-mile mark. This time, I ran the show as I ran, rehearsing the pieces I needed to know better, so by the time I was done I had covered about 3 miles and had an excellent sweat going.
I went back home and showered and took myself out for dinner. Martyn met me after dinner and we hung out with my ex-roommate, Sam.
On Saturday morning, I awoke, did my sit-ups, got on my bicycle and pedaled the long three minutes over to Samantha Thornhill’s house. I performed the show for her in its entirety, completely muffing at least three of the pieces and giving me some cause for panic. That was soon squelched when we left to have some banging hole-in-the-wall Mexican food, round the corner from Samantha’s house.
I headed back home, bought tapes for the video recorder on the way, bought an electric razor, some anti-razor bump cream and bottled water on the way. I make a few more CDs, get my check-list ready; chapbooks, CDs, scripts, notebook, iron my clothes (I still wasn’t sure what I’d wear so I ironed two shirts; both of them white, and two pairs of pants, both of them white), comp list for the door. I nap. I awake at 4:35PM. Doors open at 7:30. I’m seized with an initial panic, so I do sit-ups, brush my teeth, go to the gym. At the gym, I run three miles while rehearsing the show. Every now and then, folks would look at me funny because I’m running and my mouth is moving as though I’m talking to myself.
I could care less.
After the gym (6:00PM), I feel a lot better. I return home, eat some cereal, make a couple of phone calls and take a shower. I meditate/pray for a while, then try on about 7 different configurations of clothing before settling on off-white trousers, a white linen shirt and white shoes. I pick up my bag and head for the Bowery Poetry Club. I’m feeling comfortable and I realize that this is probably the most thoroughly I’ve ever prepared for a show. It is also (perhaps not coincidentally) the most I’ve ever been able to let go and let others handle the details. Marty functioned as my stage manager, so I didn’t even have to talk to the sound guy, Misha (who did a great job) or the door person (George McKibbens who is always really really supportive and great at his job) or the manager (Matt – ditto what I said about George). I go back stage, the crowd fills in. My drummer, Amon gets there and we iron out some last minute details, like, I say “Amon, the stuff you’re accompanying me on, how about we stay in 4/4 timing since we haven’t had a chance to practice together that much?” Amon says “Cool – no problem…” Last minute details are ironed out.
Show begins and Amons opening solo is dynamite. The crowd is clapping along and in a great mood by the time I hit my first poem, the first one I’m worried about forgetting. But I’m already pumped and my energy is good and I’m hitting the stage at full-stride. This is an invocation, this is for the ancestors and it doesn’t matter if I forget because they are with me and I can make it up if I need to. I do not need to. I have prepared and I settle in to the show.
The show goes well. There are lots of folk there whom I don’t know, which is marvelous. Full house, a lot of merchandise sold and folks saying they really really dug the show. So for those of you who’ve given me love and support here on the blog and in person and quietly in your thoughts or to other people, thank you. It’ll happen again in the Fall at St. Mark’s Poetry Project. I’ll tell you the dates…
Patrick, island people rule!!!! thank you for the inspiration sll the time. Jonesie, the book’s title will be ‘tarnish and masquerade’…