Monday, October 3, 2011

BIG NIGHT 10/1/11

Here are some photos from the 2011 inaugural BIG NIGHT featuring Earth's Daughters 40th anniversary, one of the longest running poetry journals ever. Food by Msr. Gatza, music by La Marimba.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010


Big Night, Halloween Edition, OCTOBER 30th, 8 pm

  • Poetry by Carla Harryman
  • Buffalo Poets Theater presents Harryman's Memory Play
  • More poetry by Patrick Durgin
  • Food by Geoffrey Gatza
Free for members of Just Buffalo, CEPA, WNYBAC, Big Orbit and UB Students with ID. Free food, cash bar.

Memory Play
stars Morani Kornberg-Weiss, Robin Brox, Nava Fader, Tina Žigon, John Hyland, and Soma Feldmar, and is directed by David Hadbawnik.

Carla Harryman, is a poet, essayist, and playwright, known for genre-disrupting poetry, performance, & prose. She has published thirteen single-authored works, including Adorno's Noise (Essay Press, 2008). Open Box (Belladonna, 2007), Baby (2005), and Gardener of Stars (2001). She is co-editor of Lust for Life, a volume of essays on the novelist Kathy Acker and special issue editor of Non/Narrative forthcoming from the Journal of Narrative Theory. Her poets’ theater and interdisciplinary performance works have been performed nationally and internationally. She is currently working on a new play, “Romanian Play,” and a text/music collaboration with the Jon Raskin Quartet, which will be released as a CD in 2011. A frequent collaborator, she is co-contributor to the multi-authored experiment in autobiography The Grand Piano, a project that focuses on the emergence of Language Writing, art, politics, and culture of the San Francisco Bay area between 1975-1980. The Wide Road, a multi-genre collaboration with poet Lyn Hejinian is forthcoming from Belladonna. She lives in the Detroit Area and serves on the faculty of the Creative Writing Program at Eastern Michigan University. “Reading Carla Harryman,” a special feature on her work can be found in the most recent issue of HOW2.

Patrick F. Durgin teaches cultural studies, literature, and writing at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. His latest publications include a hybrid genre collaboration with Jen Hofer, The Route (Atelos, 2008), and essays on "post-ableist" poetics in Contemporary Women's Writing and the Journal of Modern Literature; also, poems in Aufgabe and Jacket. He is concluding work on a critical monograph entitled Indeterminacies and Intentionalities: Toward a Poetics of Critical Values, as well as a play on the subject of failed bilingualism entitled PQRS: A Drama. As series editor and publisher, he has just finished work on The Kenning Anthology of Poets Theater: 1945-1985, edited by Kevin Killian and David Brazil, recently published by Kenning Editions (2010).

Geoffrey Gatza, a Gulf War veteran, is a poet and the publisher of Blazevox Books. A former sous-chef at the Mansion on Delaware Ave., he has a degree from the Culinary Institute of America (C.I.A.)

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Hoa Nguyen, Poets' Theatre, Gut Flora, Gatza du Jour this Saturday!

We'd be foolish not to include this great photo of our upcoming BIG NIGHT poet and January's BIG NIGHT poet, Linh Dinh.

Robin Brox's stellar preview for Saturday's events:

On Saturday (Feb. 27), Just Buffalo Literary Center presents an art-party designed to entertain: poet Hoa Nguyen, music by Gut Flora, and Buffalo Poets Theater doing Jack Spicer’s Troilus and Cressida.

“One of America’s best contemporary poets that you may not have heard of,” Hoa Nguyen, born in Saigon, grew up around Washington, D.C. and earned an MFA from New College of California. Describing her work, she says, “I don’t dispense with the wacky! I like humor in poems…I think about audience a lot and I want poems that I would want to read and one of those things is to risk saying something…even if that honesty is about how you and everything feels [messed] up.” (Her name is pronounced “Hwa Win;” she says it with an American accent.) Nguyen’s Hecate Lochia (Hot Whiskey)—from which she’ll read—and Kiss a Bomb Tattoo (Effing Press) came out last year; she lives in Austin and co-edits the small press/poetry journal Skanky Possum, from which Robert Creeley selected poems for The Best American Poetry 2002. An essay is forthcoming in Poets on Teaching (University of Iowa).

Buffalo Poets Theater is an amalgamation of city and academic talent that continues the tradition of poets working with drama begun in 1950s New York and still thriving in San Francisco. In 2009 BPT staged an excerpt from Eileen Myles’s Hell to honor her Big Night reading and hosted Kevin Killian at the Burchfield-Penney. Spicer’s Troilus takes a comical, contrarian stance to issues of resistance, change, understanding reality—Zeus says in the prologue, “The Trojan War has been going on for the last 3,000 years and it hasn’t stopped yet. All the stories you’ve heard about the destruction of Troy are just daydreams Ulysses invented to keep himself sane. You’ve probably dreamed like that yourselves, waiting for a war to come to an end. One thing, though—the people in the play don’t seem to know how long the war has lasted. They have the idea that it’s only been going on for nine years or so. I don’t know why. Human beings don’t have a very good time sense.”

Gut Flora makes music on spare parts, rusty tanks, weed-whacker line, bells, whistles, even toys. Members Gabriel Gutierrez and Patrick Cain say, “The aim of our music is to be music. We sound out into sound. We birth the possible from cans and strings, metal and wood.” Experimental but crafted, Gut Flora uses instrumentation to construct an improvisational ambiance that invites and challenges to one listens.

Geoffrey Gatza, a Gulf War veteran, poet and publisher of BlazeVOX [books] with a degree from the Culinary Institute of America (C.I.A.), concocts feasts of epic, edible beauty, connecting with featured artists in delightful, delicious fashion. Big Night’s buffet, cash bar, live music, theater, and poetry, begin at 8pm at the Western New York Book Arts Center, 468 Washington Street at Mohawk. Only $5, free for Just Buffalo, WNYBAC, Big Orbit, and CEPA Gallery members.

robin brox

Thursday, December 10, 2009

I'm excited about the final reading of 2009 and having more Canadian poets come into town. I feel lucky over the years to be at great readings from Kemeny Babineau, John Barlow, and Rachel Zolf, among others.

It's convenient to draw from the regional pool at this time of year so people don't have to deal with weather while flying. But this storm were under now in Buffalo gets me thinking that driving around the Great Lakes in these months is often an adventure.

I really admire Sam Kaufman's chapbook, Two Three Four, published by Kemeny's "Laurel Reed Books." Here's a selection:

I was blue in the bathroom
reflection so sad
the bubbles synchronized abnegation
of essence and relation
here, there, pop

well if Albright or Knox
wants their 8 bux
they can come get it

the centre of attention
too easily disturbed

a new neighbour, a garden soon
five rooms
a corpse, and a balcony

What more can you ask for? Defiance, language bubbling up to the surface clumsily, ethnic spellings of center and neighbor . . . So I asked Sam to come down and invited him to bring company of his choosing and so he chose.

And I'm tremendously excited to see what Scott Puccio projects for us as well. I feel like it's been years since he's shown his films, like it's his little secret no one gets let in on.


Sponsored by: Just Buffalo, Talking Leaves Books, Western New York Book Arts Collaborative
Saturday, December 12, 2009 @ 8:00 PM
Big Night Presents Poet Sam Kaufman

  • Poetry by Sam Kaufman
  • Films by Scott Puccio
  • More poetry by Rebecca Houwer and Thom Olsen
  • Food by Geoffrey Gatza

Made in Toronto ca. 1981 by parents who - he hopes -- will loan him the van to bring us to Buffalo. Sam has worked as a tutor, textbook editor, collator of public opinion, researcher, & hobby bookseller; has renounced several beginnings at high-altitude education (artificial intelligence, math, law, recreative writing) but is euphemistically taking another stab at the summit (English lit). Kemeny Babineau of LaurelReedBooks published his chapbook "twothreefour" in June 2008; poems or their mutilated fragments can be gathered from the New Chief Tongue and Literal World mags.

Scott J Puccio is a filmmaker; he lives in Buffalo. He like sharing his films with the people he loves.

Friday, November 20, 2009


Check Robin Brox's write-up in the Artvoice.

Sponsored by: Just Buffalo, Talking Leaves Books, Western New York Book Arts Collaborative
Saturday, November 21, 2009 @ 8:00 PM

Big Night Presents CA Conrad and Simon Pettet

  • CA Conrad will read from Advanced Elvis Course and The Book of Frank
  • Simon Pettet will read from Hearth
  • Chef Geoffrey Gatza will cook
  • Plus, video & performance by Kyle Butler

CAConrad is the recipient of THE GIL OTT BOOK AWARD for The Book of Frank (Chax Press, 2009). He is also the author of Advanced Elvis Course (Soft Skull Press, 2009), (Soma)tic Midge (Faux Press, 2008), Deviant Propulsion (Soft Skull Press, 2006), and a forthcoming collaboration with poet Frank Sherlock titled THE CITY REAL & IMAGINED: Philadelphia Poems (Factory School Books, 2010). CAConrad is the son of white trash asphyxiation whose childhood included selling cut flowers along the highway for his mother and helping her shoplift. He invites you to visit him online at and also with his friends at

Simon Pettet is an English poet long-time resident in New York City. HEARTH, his most recent book collecting three decades' worth of work, came out earlier this year from Talisman House. "I highly recommend Simon Pettet's new collected, Hearth", writes poet Joanne Kyger, "His poetry is always insightful, ardent, playful, right on the spot, and ahead of the current". Pettet is also the author of several collaborative volumes (including, significantly, Talking Pictures, and Conversations About Everything, with filmmaker-photographer Rudy Burckhardt). He edited the Art Writings of James Schuyler, and is currently co-editing, (with James Meetze), Other Flowers: The UnCollected Poems of James Schuyler, due out, from Farrar,Straus, Giroux, in the Spring of 2010.

Geoffrey Gatza, a Gulf War veteran, is a poet and the publisher of Blazevox Books. A former sous-chef at the Mansion on Delaware Ave., he has a degree from the Culinary Institute of America (C.I.A.)

Kyle William Butler was born and raised and is a product of rural Michigan. He earned his BFA degree from Central Michigan University in 2008, and has since moved to Buffalo to begin teaching and pursuing his MFA degree in Visual Studies at the University at Buffalo. Having not yet fully emerged, Kyle is, at the moment, an emerging artist working in painting, video, and audio, and is in preparation for becoming a toiling mid-career artist who will anticipate gaining a meager reputation after achieving the professional status of dead artist and/or collegiate professor.

Venue Information
Just Buffalo @ WNYBAC
Western New York Book Arts Center, 2nd Floor | 468 Washington St. @ Mohawk
Phone: 716.832.5400 | Email:

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


Sponsored by: Just Buffalo, Talking Leaves Books, Western New York Book Arts Collaborative
Thursday, November 12, 2009 @ 8:00 PM
Big Night Presents David Meltzer, Michael Rothenberg and Terri Carrión

Poetry by Meltzer, Rothenberg, Carrión
Food by Geoffrey Gatza
Jazz by Other Side

A leading poet of the Beat Movement, David Meltzer was raised in Brooklyn during the War years; performed on radio & early TV on the Horn & Hardart Children¹s Hour. Was exiled to L.A. at 16 & at 17 enrolled in an ongoing academy w/ artists Wallace Berman, George Herms, Robert Alexander, Cameron; migrated to San Francisco in l957 for higher education w/ peers & maestros like Jack Spicer, Robert Duncan, Joanne Kyger, Diane DiPrima, Michael McClure, Lew Welch, Philip Whalen, Jack Hirschman, a cast of thousands all living extraordinary ordinary lives. Beat Thing [La Alameda Press, 2004] won the Josephine Miles PEN Award, 2005. Was editor and interviewer for San Francisco Beat: Talking With The Poets [City Lights, 2001]. With Steve Dickison, co-edits Shuffle Boil, a magazine devoted to music in all its appearances & disappearances. 2005 saw the publication of David’s Copy: The Selected Poems of David Meltzer by Viking/Penguin, a collection spanning over forty years of work that paints a vivid portrait of Meltzer’s life as a poet through poems taken from thirty of his previous books of poetry. With a versatile style and playful tone, Meltzer offers his unique vision of civilization with a range of juxtapositions from Jewish mysticism and everyday life to jazz and pop culture.

Michael Rothenberg is a poet, songwriter, and editor and publisher of Big Bridge magazine online at He is a recent recipient of a grant from the Creative Work Fund, a program of the Walter and Elise Haas Fund. His poetry books include Man/Woman, a collaboration with Joanne Kyger, The Paris Journals (Fish Drum Press), Monk Daddy (Blue Press), Unhurried Vision (La Alameda/University of New Mexico Press), and most recently CHOOSE, Selected Poems (Big Bridge Press). His poems have been published widely in small press publications including, 88: A Journal of Contemporary American Poetry, Berkeley Poetry Review, Exquisite Corpse, First Intensity, Fish Drum, Fulcrum, Golden Handcuffs Review, House Organ, Prague Literary Review, Tricycle, Van Gogh’s Ear, Vanitas, Zyzzyva, JACK, and Jacket. He is also author of the novel Punk Rockwell. Michael Rothenberg has edited the selected works of Philip Whalen, Joanne Kyger, David Meltzer and Ed Dorn (Penguin Books). He has recently completed the Collected Poems of Philip Whalen for Wesleyan University Press.

Terri Carrión was conceived in Venezuela and born in New York to a Galician mother and Cuban father. She grew up in Los Angeles where she spent her youth skateboarding and slam-dancing. Terri Carrión earned her MFA at Florida International University in Miami, where she taught Freshman English and Creative Writing, edited and designed the graduate literary magazine Gulfstream, taught poetry to High School docents at the Museum of Contemporary Art in North Miami and started a reading series at the local Luna Star Café. In her final semester at FIU, she was Program Director for the Study Abroad Program, Creative Writing in Dublin, Ireland. Her poetry, fiction, non-fiction and photography has been published in many print magazines as well as online, including The Cream City Review, Hanging Loose, Pearl, Penumbra, Exquisite Corpse, Mangrove, Kick Ass Review, Exquisite Corpse, Jack, Mipoesia, Dead Drunk Dublin, and Physik Garden among others.

Geoffrey Gatza, a Gulf War veteran, is a poet and the publisher of Blazevox Books. A former sous-chef at the Mansion on Delaware Ave., he has a degree from the Culinary Institute of America (C.I.A.)

Other Side is a jazz trio with Kelly Bucheger on sax, John Werick on bass, and Albright-Knox curator Doug Dreishpoon on drums.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

eileen myles ekrem serdar

Saturday, October 24, 2009 @ 8:00 PM

Big Night Presents Eileen Myles!

  • Eileen will read from her new book, The Importance Of Being Iceland
  • The Buffalo Poet's Theater will present excerpts from Myles libretto "Hell"
  • Chef Geoffrey Gatza will present his culinary creations
  • Ekrem Serdar will screen his short films

Eileen Myles is a poet (Sorry, Tree, Not Me etc.) who writes fiction (Cool for You, Chelsea Girls) and whose The Importance of Being Iceland/travel essays in art, for which she received a Warhol/Creative Capital grant, will be out in July from Semiotext(e)/MIT. Of Sorry, Tree, her most recent volume, Chicago Review says: “Her politics are overt, her physicality raw, yet it is the subtle gentle noticing in her poems that overwhelms.” She ran St. Mark's Poetry Project in the 80s. She conducted an openly female write-in campaign for President of the US in 1992. She is a Professor Emeritus of Writing at UCSD. She writes for Parkett, The Believer, Vice, The Nation, The Stranger, AnOther Magazine and is blogging all summer on the Harriet site. The Inferno/a poet's novel will probably be out next year. She lives in New York.

Geoffrey Gatza, a Gulf War veteran, is a poet and the publisher of Blazevox Books. A former sous-chef at the Mansion on Delaware Ave., he has a degree from the Culinary Institute of America (C.I.A.)

Ekrem Serdar was born in 1983 in Abu Dhabi. After completing high school in Ankara, he finished his B.A. in Media Study at the University at Buffalo, SUNY and is currently doing his M.F.A. in the same department. He mostly shows his work at Rustbelt Books in Buffalo and has also shown at the 2nd Electric City Spectacular (2007), the !f Istanbul Film Festival (2008) and in the Pera Museum in Istanbul (2009). He works in film and video and is a member of House Press, a poetry-centered collective of artists.