As you may or may not be aware, before I gave my life over to the go-go world of queer bar picture taking, I was an accomplished poet. I was published on a few occasions and even used to run a weekly poetry open mic ( which is NOT the same as a slam, which, in my opinion, ruined popular poetry ). I don't write much anymore; my creative energies seem to have strayed in different directions, but I still possess the soul of a poet ( regardless of how much this sentence resembles bad poetry ).
My fascination with Elaine Stritch began around the same time that my poetic career really took off. I discovered the '70s British sitcom Two's Company, which starred Ms. Stritch as an ex-pat American writer contending with her stiff British butler. Hijinks ensued, yes, but mainly I was struck by the power of her presence. She could fill a room.
And as I spent this past week compulsively listening to Ladies Who Lunch, her signature song from Stephen Sondheim's Company, I am awed by two factors. One was, of course, the sheer honesty and ferocity of her performance. The other was the pure beauty of the poetry of the song itself. I'm swept back to the days of standing on stage, shouting my truth while the understanding eyes of the crowd shifted with recognition. The energy. The electricity. The roar of the crowd ( as much as a poetry crowd can roar ).
So it's a shame and a damn loss that Elaine Stritch has passed, but I'm finding myself inspired by her example. I'm itching to rediscover my power, my poetry, my person. Thanks, Elaine. One finds inspiration in the oddest of places.
Anyway, I did attempt to sing Ladies Who Lunch at Bobby Love's on Saturday, but Creaoke's track of it is some mash-up with a far-inferior song. Creagh, I'll be looking for a better track because I plan to sing it again. And again and again!
Farewell to 3160, which is closing its doors Tue., July 29, after 28 years ( including its time as Annex 3 ). Stop in with me for the last call.
And see you at Berlin, Fri., July 25, for the 19th anniversary of Cosmix, which is the longest running bar party anywhere in the city. Like, wow!