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.

 

The Hideout Closes the Monday Night Open Mic after 10 Years of Poetry & Spoken Word

Photo by Undercover Mexican Girl

After a decade of poetry and free speech, the weekly Monday night Open Mic at The Hideout is closing its doors to spoken word enthusiasts. Thom Woodruff, host at the Hideout open mic for the better part of six years, is reluctant to see the venue closed, but is confident about the state of poetry in the Texas capitol. For many years with an inscrutable diligence and integrity, poets, writers, spoken word artists, musicians and comedians met on Monday evenings from 6 PM to 10 PM and entertained on the front stage in the coffee shop. The best part is it was a free and open service to the public, and quite frequently hosted featured poets and writers from Austin and around the world. So the question is, why after all these years has the decision been made to pull the plug? It seems that management of the theater and coffee shop have decided the open mic is an event not to have, or as it was put to me, “They are tired of the noise, and we’re the noise; they have the money.” And so it goes.

It is a shame to see a venue that so competently stood by the poetry and spoken word participants and creators of Austin (and so graciously hosted Virgogray Press readings) shut down. At the same time, those who attended the Monday night open mics will always cherish and remember a staple in the Austin poetry scene. With poetry readings and open mics occurring just about every day of the week, we now have a gaping hole to fill—but one thing for sure is, where there is Thom, there is poetry and an open mic close behind.

We encourage all in the Austin area, whether writers, poets or listeners, to make it out to their local open mics, support the scene, support the venue through purchase and raise awareness of these gems of free speech.

The final open mic to be had at The Hideout will be held on Monday August 29, 2011 and will feature the spoken word talents of Element 615. The event as always is free and open to the public and starts at 6 PM. Bring your poetry, bring yourself, bring your soul and indulge one last time in poetry and verse at The Hideout.

The Hideout
617 Congress Ave
Austin, TX  78701