Odes to Tools public reading — April 10

Odes to Tools poetry reading flyer

Download the flyer [PDF]

As the flyer says, I’m doing a reading and multimedia presentation in support of Odes to Tools on Saturday, April 10 at 3:30 p.m. at Webster’s Bookstore Café, 128 South Allen Street, State College, PA. Webster’s was an obvious choice for a reading since they’ve always been very supportive of local authors and performers, and they have a great poetry selection with a regular turn-over. Not only do a majority of the books in my poetry collection come from Webster’s, but I also buy almost all the coffee I drink there. So my own poems owe their inception to Webster’s in more ways than one.

If you’re from anywhere in central Pennsylvania, I hope you’ll consider attending. I’ll be projecting texts of the poems I read onto a screen for those who like to follow along, and also showing a few of my videopoems — that’s the multimedia part. I’m planning to bring along examples of some of the tools that may be less familiar to people, which should help keep things fairly entertaining. In between poems I’ll talk about how the book grew out of blogging and online publishing, which will I hope provide enough of an excuse for me to expand beyond just the tool odes.

If you do live in the area and would like to help spread the word, I’d be grateful. Know of any community bulletin boards or other likely spots where you can post things without getting us into trouble? Please feel free to print out copies of the above flyer on a color printer and post them, or hand them out. You can assure anyone who asks that the reading will not last longer than an hour (not counting questions and book signings, if any), and that they will not be bored. I am a fairly dynamic public speaker, and I do not mumble, intone, or indulge in literary in-jokes. I try to introduce my poems with the general reader in mind.

If you can’t attend the reading, you can still help by suggesting content you think I should include. “Poems and poem-like things” is the most populous category here at Via Negativa, with 664 posts so far, most of which I’ve long since forgotten about. By sheer chance, I just discovered a poem called “Hollow” that would be perfect for the reading, because it helps tie the tool odes into where I live. So if you’ve been reading for a while and happen to remember other obvious (or not so obvious) candidates for inclusion, do let me know, and if you’ve read the book or the series, let me know which are your favorites; I won’t have time to read them all. Any other suggestions for how I should conduct the reading would be welcome, as well.

Finally, if you know how to play the musical saw, or know someone in the area who does, please get in touch.

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Dave Bonta (bio) crowd-sources his problems by following his gut, which he shares with 100 trillion of his closest microbial friends — a close-knit, symbiotic community comprising several thousand species of bacteria, fungi, and protozoa. In a similarly collaborative fashion, all of Dave's writing is available for reuse and creative remix under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. For attribution in printed material, his name (Dave Bonta) will suffice, but for web use, please link back to the original. Contact him for permission to waive the "share alike" provision (e.g. for use in a conventionally copyrighted work).

14 Comments


  1. Oh boy, how I WISH I could be there! What a fantastic event. You’re going to be great Dave. No doubt about it. I love the way you read your own poetry. I wish you such good fortune with this.

    Reply

    1. Thanks, Clive. As you can see, we did use a sentence from your unsolicited praise on the flyer — much obliged for that.

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      1. Oh crumbs! I hadn’t noticed THAT! Well that’s made me grin. Does this mean I’m a literary critic? Because if I am I must remember to put it on my C.V. Now if only someone would make me into a fridge magnet, then life would be almost complete.

        Glad to have been able to contribute Dave. But if someone with real literary clout comes along with a handsome line or two about your work, I won’t mind being replaced. Truly!

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        1. Actually, I think it’s better to have one blurb from a poet/literary critic (Todd is both) and one from somebody prominent in another field. The only way we’d bump your quote, I think, is if we got one from a civil engineer, building contractor, or some other expert on tools.

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    1. Thanks. Should turn out O.K., barring unforseen circumstances with superstition prevents me from even contemplating.

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  2. The ‘Saw Lady’ (a.k.a. Natalia Paruz – http://www.sawlady.com ) is a professional musical saw player. She organizes the annual NYC Musical Saw Festival.
    Hope this helps.
    Your event sounds great!

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    1. Thanks! Yes, I’ve corresponded with her. Unfortunately, I am kind of far from NYC.

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  3. Great news! Love that the promo-pic prominently displays the hand into which the tools fit.

    OTT copies will be prizes next month for those book-group kids who agree to read poems aloud during our NPM events. Admittedly, the bribe will include the added component of Easter chocolate. Hey: we fight dirty in the literacy trenches.

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    1. Julia, that is awesome that Odes will be used as a prize. I am deeply honored, even if chocolate has to be thrown in to literally sweeten the deal. Best of luck to the kids who are brave enough to read aloud in front of their peers. That takes moxie.

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  4. Dave,

    This sounds wonderfully ingenious–hope you get the musical saw! May you have great good luck and many books to sign. You’re certainly better known than most people with a first book-in-paper to hawk.

    Reply

    1. Am I? Known in more, different kinds of circles, perhaps, thanks to this blog and qarrtsiluni. At any rate, thanks for the good wishes.

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  5. Dave, I’m so glad you’re promoting your excellent book in such a creative way. I too wish I could be at your presentation – maybe you can take it on tour, right across the ocean? To London??
    There are some good poetry-reading venues here where you’d be very welcome. Now all you need is a deep-pocketed sponsor.

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    1. Thanks for your enthusiasm, Natalie — it means a lot. If I ever do make it over there, we will have to try and set something up.

      Reply

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