The VGP Flashback #4

Headbanging

Thunder fizzles out—
Hector the room mechanic selling strawberries
on the corner of Jones & Tropicana, off white Bentleys roll by…

Heavy metal strippers sliding down silver poles
to greet salacious mobs—

cheap beer & buzz cuts, fake tans & spandex dreams
over-compensating alpha-morons swingin’ bullshit shovels.

Clinking bottles of Cristal,
wowed by an artificial horizon,
lime green suits snorting coke off a Waterford candy dish.

Tweekers are cooking breakfast in a meth lab on
Washington—
Marijuana & Bananas, al fresco: fry
until golden brown (extra crispy).

From an eastside veranda—pink flamingos fading plastic:
“Incognito Sun”—shiny new foreclosure signs.
115° & even the lizards stop doing push-ups & hang cool
in the cracks of unfinished retaining walls…

cruising by the Desert Breeze Dog Park, kids revving engines
skateboarding by the Old Mormon Fort in North Las Vegas:

one kite left… under cloud’s anvil dome… it’s getting late.

Flip flops & cut offs, a half-assed line forms in the express lane.
The cashier sweats, the register fails.

Playing with questionable canned goods in aisle 5
“Sweet Sue—Whole Chicken in a can” –fill up the cart.

Price-fixed oil, gouge-out gas erases any beer money.

Leftover teen angst
invested in His & Hers ATVs (custom air-brushed)—
a well-endowed pink lady in thick black mascara

thrashing south down I-15,
subwoofers blasting angry double-bass
“Cookie Monster on PCP”
glass-garglin’ rock-salt & razor growl

“just tune down the axes & crank up the distortion, dudes!”

sky opens up—grindcore in a melancholic minor key.
Ancients spew judgment
in thunder crack & staccato zigzag flash.
Run for cover, duck & roll behind the rock…

Man-boobs bouncing along Death Valley dunes.

 

“Headbanging” was written by Chris D’Errico and published by Virgogray Press in his 2008 chapbook, Vegas Implosions

 

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A Chris D’Errico Perspective

Chris D'Errico: Poet, Writer, Musician
Chris D’Errico: Poet, Writer, Musician

One thing I always enjoy about my visits to Las Vegas are my visits with poet and writer Chris D’Errico, as well as writer and international man of mystery, the Mag-Man, Peter Magliocco. To be honest, though, Peter, though ever cordial, proves to elude this writer more often than not, but I am remiss not to remark that we real artists have personal lives and secular jobs to attend. Alas, however, my visits with Chris D’Errico are always fun and interesting, if you find literary and political banter entertaining. Imagine a well read, Democratic-sympathizing, philosophical, ultra-realist Nor’Eastern yucking it up with an ultra-idealist, Libertarian-sympathizing, liberal Texan in a dark bar in Las Vegas. The shared appreciation of being able to speak ones opinion with no fear of recompense is always an assuring thing. Exploring various views and perspectives while taking the ride, so to speak, is always encouraged. Still, the man has been much up to things in the meantime.

Readers may recall, Chris D’Errico is author of two, count ’em, two volumes of poetry and poetic lunacy published by this humble little press. The first volume, Vegas Implosions was the landmark publication of Virgogray Press and the key to unlocking the doors to authors far and near. Vegas Implosions brought humurous, witty, and insightful verse revolving around what’s captured in the city of sin.  Minsistry of Kybosh, presented four years later and after a second printing of Vegas Implosions which included the additional text, The Exterminator Chronicles, was a slightly reminiscent, though a much more experimental manuscript. Here we find poetic prose in seeming stream of consciousness across a vast array of topics. The manuscript also includes “Other Poems” which is a selection of traditional free verse with its own dynamic and style.

Vegas Implosions (2011) Second Edition
Vegas Implosions (2011) Second Edition
Ministry of Kybosh (2012)
Ministry of Kybosh (2012)

Still, the apparent randomness does conjure up vivid scenes of thought. Take for example this segment from part one of Ministry of Kybosh: 

Let’s compare doctrines. Punched a clock and proselytized in the break-room, drinking decaf. Talked bullet points. Coarse flurries of inane jabber. Your heart bleeds green, mine blue. Argued inside a cafeteria of white noise, You spiked your tuna with salsa, mine with mac-n-cheese. “Implausibility of permanence, infidelity of peace.” Heads hurt. Agreed. What’s wrong with these sheeple. Everybody on the left get out. Everybody on the right go die. Soul beats money. You little yellow monkey, you silly long-snouted trickster. Hardwired to lie and believe lies. “Big reality in rooms for little ideas.” We read aloud handwritten passages by a dead “poet” whose obscurity tickled our fascination with the underdog: Firm as Ignorant Blood, Nature wants to run Amok. Emblazoned by the Ethereal, Oblivion smiles to fill the Vast Hollow. Savage and Exulted, as always: Power wins. Back to work and answerable to each other with which we must collaborate. The Commission to Investigate Hiring an Outside Agency (CIHOA) decided that sustainability is the new progress, the mundane is the new excellent, exclusivity is a marketplace, entrepreneurship is the new existentialism, and resistance is new-reactionary–so just stop it already.

Just thoughts and writing is what Chris would say. Still, I think there is the underpinnings of some deeper thought intriguing enough for those readers that want to grasp a deeper meaning.  At least, that’s a reason why I like to make it available. You can keep up with Chris D’Errico and what all is going on in his pocket of the universe via his website http://www.clderrico.com. The site includes links to latest published work, including appearances in Counter Punch and Otoliths, as well as his personal Vegas Implosions Blog where  you will find random type thought entries at the blog on topics like marijuana laws in Nevada, appreciations of Charles Bukowski, information and opinion regarding Monsanto and other interesting tidbits. There is more to come from this eccentric Las Vegas writer, I’m sure, so stay tuned and be sure to pick up a copy of his books, Vegas Implosions and Ministry of Kybosh, both available from Virgogray Press. C’mon, all the cool kids are getting them!

Closing 2012 – Intentions for 2013

 

Good evening. I hope everyone is well at the time of this writing. It has been a crazy year, 2012, that showed very fruitful for poetry and Virgogray Press. Having released several collections, and gratefully with the humble returns of poets like Suzi Olmsted, Justin Blackburn and Chris D’Errico, a core has begun to form. The remainder of 2012 and moving into 2013, Virgogray has plans for the release of only a few more titles of poetry from poets such as Michael Fitzgerald-Clarke and Ayne Francis de la Cruz. The newest collections, A. Molotkov and John S. Williams’ “The End of Mythology” and Mary B. Harrison’s “Beneath our Feet” are virtually upon us.

 

Nothing. No One. Nowhere. No. 5 is still waiting in the wings. Do not fear. We will move forward with the magazine as soon as we are able to. Do not forget, issue number 6 shall be edited by Sonnet Mondal. To have your work considered for publication please be sure to e-mail Sonnet Mondal (sonnetmondal@gmail.com). We will be accepting poetry, short fiction, non-fiction. Carcinogenic Poetry is still publishing and shall anthologize for the third time very soon. The Occupy Poetry Project shall publish through the end of the year and will be laid to rest in 2013. We’ll probably anthologize the series to send it off. It is with great thanks to the writers and readers of the web series that I reflect on it as it has been a fun and interesting ride in publication. That could be said the same for Virgogray in its entirety.

 

Virgogray is producing the Austin Salon Poetic, a free community-based poetry open mic in downtown Austin, Texas at a bar called Headhunters Club, that recently underwent a remodel by Spike TV reality show, “BarRescue.” The Austin Salon Poetic features local and regional poets to raise awareness of local poetry and also features a poetry open mic. Poets we’ve featured so far include, Thom Woodruff, Juan Manuel Perez, Bill Shute, Devorah Winegarten and others.

 

There is certainly more to look forward to, including re-issues of previously out of print collections, such as Marc Olmsted’s “Fresh Lotus Rehab” and A. J. Kaufmann’s “Broke Nuptial Minds.” That is all that can be said. To all others involved, I thank you for your patience and understanding in all matters of the press. Virgogray could not promote and share such vital work without the loyalty and integrity of the poets, artists and readers who support us.