May 7th: Cosmic Spelunker Theater Reunites

Stone Soup Poetry meets from 8-10 p.m. every Monday at the Out of The Blue Art Gallery at 106 Prospect Street with an open mike sign-up at 7:30 p.m. On May 7th, we celebrate the 41st anniversary of Stone Soup as three long-time fixtures of Stone Soup reunite as Cosmic Spelunker Theater.

Cosmic Spelunker Theater is a Boston based collaborative performance art troupe that has been presenting its fusion of spoken word and movement since 2002, appearing at Mobius (Boston, MA), Puppet Showplace Theatre (Brookline, MA), Artists at Large, Inc. (Hyde Park, MA), Casa Nia, Zeitgeist Gallery, Out of the Blue Art Gallery (Cambridge, MA), The Revolving Museum (Lowell, MA), AS220 (Providence, RI) Warwick Museum of Art (Warwick, RI), and Bowery Poetry Club (New York, NY)

William J. Barnum is a stage actor whose long career began at the age of 17 playing Valentine in a production of Twelfth Night. His roles often had him sharing the stage with George C. Scott, Dustin Hoffman, Paul Bennedict, and Spaulding Gray. As a mime, he received training from Étienne Decroux, the father of modern mime, Tony Montanaro, and Samuel Avital, he was also one of the leads for Paul Curtis’ American Mime Theatre. He danced with the Boston Ballet and with José Limon. Barnum began to synthesize his stage skills as a performer with his own poetic compositions to form his own body of work. His poetry was collected in the volume Of Rare Design (VB Press.)

James Van Looy has been a fixture in Boston’s poetry venues since the 1970s and performed with the Mirage Mime Theater from 1980 to 1987 during which time he was also taught classes offered by Mirage. From 1987 to 1988 he was a member of the Collective Mime. His poetry has been anthologized in Out of the Blue Writers Unite. He has run poetry workshops for Boston area homeless people at Pine Street Inn and St. Francis House since 1992 and regularly reads at Bay State Prison as part of their poetry program. Currently, Van Looy leads the Labyrinth Creative Movement Workshop. Van Looy also has second degree black belt in Karate and is a Vietnam War era veteran.

Ian Thal‘s poetry grew out of his participation in Boston’s post-punk “spoken word” scene of the late 1990s before studying mime with Van Looy. His blog about his work with Bread & Puppet Theater was recently placed on the reading list for a course at the University of London. He is a member of the commedia dell’arte troupe, i Sebastiani, where he serves as both an actor and choreographer. He studies kathak, a classical dance form of Northern India, at the Chhandika Institute of Kathak Dance, and also serves as the mime and commedia dell’arte instructor at Open Air Circus, a Somerville based youth circus.
April 30th: José Gouveia Features

Stone Soup Poetry meets from 8-10 p.m. every Monday at the Out of The Blue Art Gallery at 106 Prospect Street with an open mike sign-up at 7:30 p.m. On April 28th, we have the long awaited return of José Gouveia.

José "Joe" Gouveia is a first-generation Portuguese-American poet & writer who lives on Cape Cod where he is Poetry Curator at the Cultural Center of Cape Cod; author, the Meter Man poetry column for the Barnstable Patriot newspaper in Hyannis; and host of the Poets Corner radio show out of WOMR-FM Provincetown. He has 3 chapbooks published and has edited 3 poetry anthologies, including Rubber Side Down, the biker poet anthology. Gouveia is also a member of Presença, the group of Portuguese-American authors that travels to Lisbon, Portugal every year for the Disquiet Festival. He has won awards for both his written verse and spoken word genres of poetry, including the Cambridge Poetry Awards Poet-of-the-Year 2001. Gouveia is also the Founder of the Biker Poets & Writers Association, former National Secretary of the Highway Poets Motorcycle Club, and a former Cantab Slam Champion 2000 and former Poet Laureate of Cape Cod, 1999. He has an MFA in Poetry from New England College.


April 23rd: Martin Willitts Jr. and Linda Griggs

Stone Soup Poetry meets from 8-10 p.m. every Monday at the Out of The Blue Art Gallery at 106 Prospect Street with an open mike sign-up at 7:30 p.m. On April 23rd, we have the return of New York poets Martin Willitts, Jr. and Linda Griggs, fresh from their visit from the Massachusetts Poetry Festival.

Martin Willitts Jr retired as a Senior Librarian in upstate New York. He is a visual artist of Victorian and Chinese paper cutouts. He was nominated for 5 Pushcart and 2 Best Of The Net awards. He has print chapbooks Falling In and Out of Love (Pudding House Publications, 2005), Lowering Nets of Light (Pudding House Publications, 2007), The Garden of French Horns” (Pudding House Publications, 2008), “Baskets of Tomorrow” (Flutter Press, 2009), The Girl Who Sang Forth Horses (Pudding House Publications, 2010), Van Gogh’s Sunflowers for Cezanne (Finishing Line Press, 2010), Why Women Are A Ribbon Around A Bomb (Last Automat, 2011), Protest, Petition, Write, Speak: Matilda Joslyn Gage Poems (Matilda Joslyn Gage Foundation, 2011), and Secrets No One Wants To Talk About (Dos Madres Press, 2011).

He has two full length books The Secret Language of the Universe (March Street Press, 2006), and The Hummingbird (March Street Press, 2009). His forthcoming chapbooks include “How to Find Peace” (Kattywumpus Press, 2012), Playing The Pauses In The Absence Of Stars (Main Street Rag, 2012), and “No Special Favors” (Green Fuse Press, 2012). He will be providing a poetry program at the 2012 Massachusetts Poetry festival.

Linda Griggs has a BS in art education and a MPS degree in the Applied Work of the Humanistic Psychologists. Currently an adjunct professor at SUNY Empire State College, Syracuse Unit, she worked as an art teacher and private mental health counselor, and she has worked with at-risk youth in Syracuse. She is a Conscientious Objector Counselor, a past member of an anti-racist response group, and a member of Syracuse Interfaith Works. Linda was published in anthologies Poetry From Art (2008) and Poetry From Nature (2010). She has been a featured reader at Mud Puddle Cafe (New Paltz, NY) and Cubbyhole Cafe (Poughkeepsie, NY), and was a guest reader at Veela Festival (New Paltz, NY) and the Strathsmore Art Festival (Syracuse, NY). She wrote the chapbook Love Poems of the Universe. She wrote and illustrated a children's book The Night of Starfish People. She is the host and founder of the Palace Poetry Group (Syracuse, NY).
April 16th: Adam Stone Features at Stone Soup

Stone Soup Poetry meets from 8-10 p.m. every Monday at the Out of The Blue Art Gallery at 106 Prospect Street with an open mike sign-up at 7:30 p.m. On April 16th, we welcome longtime poet and performer Adam Stone for his first ever Stone Soup feature.

Adam Stone is a veteran poet from the famous Cantab Lounge in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He has featured all across the country and competed in the National Poetry Slam eleven times, representing Boston, Cambridge, Cape Cod, Vermont and Worcester. He also writes The Insafemode Blog (a biographical journal), and masters The 900 Year Diary, where a group of six writers have set out to watch and review every episode of "Doctor Who" from 1963 to present. In his increasingly spare time, he also works for a comic book store, Million Year Picnic, and has a graphic novel selection that worries many potential suitors.
April 9th: Sam Teitel Features

Stone Soup Poetry meets from 8-10 p.m. every Monday at the Out of The Blue Art Gallery at 106 Prospect Street with an open mike sign-up at 7:30 p.m. On April 9th, we welcome the return of poet and venue host Sam Teitel.

Sam Teitel is a poet and performer based out of New England. His first published collection, SURVIVE SURVIVE SURVIVE was released in 2011 by Bicycle Comics. He has participated in four National Poetry Slams, thrice as a poet and once as a coach, and two National Underground Poetry Invitational Championships. He has been a featured performer at many theaters, bars, cafes, lecture halls, libraries and basements across the country, spanning thirteen states and including The Cantab Lounge in Cambridge, The Bowery Poetry Club in New York City, The Mercury Cafe in Denver, The Green Mill Jazz Club in Chicago, Hampshire College, Sarah Lawrence University, Emerson College and Northeastern University. He has been a part of the No More Ribcage and Two Sensitive Guys ensemble tours and is currently serving as co-slam master for The Slam Free Or Die series in New Hampshire.
April 2nd: Stone Soup Presents Head to Head Haiku, Featuring Sam-R-I

Stone Soup Poetry meets from 8-10 p.m. every Monday at the Out of The Blue Art Gallery at 106 Prospect Street with an open mike sign-up at 7:30 p.m. On April 1st, Stone Soup hosts the Head-to-Head Haiku.

Please consider this a call for participation as Stone Soup and Michael F. Gill host the Head-to-Head Haiku to kick off our celebration of National Poetry Month.

Stone Soup is looking for a minimum of 8 poets to participate in his friendly competition. Interested persons should email Stone Soup at stonesouppoetry@yahoo.com or post on this Facebook event page.

There will be prizes for the Winner and Runner up.

Admission is a suggested $3-5 donation.

Haiku is a traditional Japanese poetry form consisting of 17 syllables, commonly with syllable line counts 5-7-5 and normally includes a reference to nature. These pithy poems can be witty, whimsical, and wise. Head to Head Haiku is a performance poetry competition featuring standard and "modern American" haiku. The form was originated by Daniel Ferri (heard often as a commentator on NPR) at the National Poetry Slam in the 1990s
as a demonstration event. The tradition has been continued by devotees of the Haiku form including Samantha Jane who was a member of the 2004 National Slam Poetry Team representing Boston. She studied with Ferri
in New Mexico in 2005 and developed her Haiku Slammaster character Sam-R-I who has hosted Head to Head Haiku at the Individual World Poetry Slam and who first brought this "new" form of slam poetry to New England.

Just as the "poetry slam" was created to get more audiences excited about hearing poetry, the "Haiku Slam" pays special attention to this short form, with controlled clapping rituals that show influence from the martial arts and are meant to allow the Haiku to be heard distinctly and appreciated. The formula is simple. 4 pairs of Two Competitors affectionately known as
"Haikusters" are given the chance to perform a series of Haiku in series of knock out rounds, judged by "randomly" selected audience members who are trained in front of the audience in the art of reverent judgement. Winners must get the best 3 of 5, 5 of 9 and 9 of 17 in the series of rounds.

Sudden death matches are commonly used as tie breakers or if more than 8 want to compete. The whole show can be quite humorous at times and there is no strict rule other than the poems must be 17 syllables. Purists should rest assured that traditional Haiku often outscore the sarcastic slapstick, but like any slam it depends on the judges and it's more about entertainment and
providing a unique environment for the work be heard.

This will be televised, so no X rated Haiku. Sorry.

I double dare you
Come to Head to Head Haiku
You know you want to



March 26th: Julie Batten at Stone Soup

Stone Soup Poetry meets from 8-10 p.m. every Monday at the Out of The Blue Art Gallery at 106 Prospect Street with an open mike sign-up at 7:30 p.m. On March 26th, we welcome poet and MassPoetry volunteer Julie Batten. For her efforts, Stone Soup will be making a donation that night to benefit the two-day April event.

Julie Batten is a graduate of Bennington Writing Seminars and one of the many volunteers that makes MassPoetry (and the Massachusetts Poetry Festival) happen every year. She has most recently been published in Drunken Boat and Theodate. When she isn’t writing, she is riding her bike at break-neck speed around Cape Ann, blurring all the noise to white.


Stone Soup Stanzas

A trio of podcasts by Stone Soup open miker Andrew Pezzelli regarding the Gloria Monaghan reading this past December.

The first of three is an interview with host Chad Parenteau.

The second stars last week's feature, Gloria Monaghan.

The third focuses on last week's open mike.

Thanks to Andrew Pezzelli for the opportunity.