Friday, August 18, 2006

This is what I'm talking about

Just as I finished my last blog, about how no filmmakers focus on poets unless they're dead or drunk or mad, I come across a hilarious new animated poetry site, Blue's Cruzio Cafe. And guess what -- my firend David Alpaugh's on it, performing his poem about being a dead poet. Check it out. You've got to hear him doing "Electgronic Epitaph" as the Grim Reaper.

Send them something. Maybe you too can be on Poe-TV.

Mad Poets Society

America only seems to love its poets if they're mad. Or half-mad. Or dead-drunk. Perhaps that's why the only poets getting big screen-time this coming fall are Edgar Allen Poe and Charles Bukowski. Bukowski will be portrayed by Matt Dillon in "Factotum," opening in a few days. And the Poe film, "The Death of Poe," is to open sometime in the fall. Of course, there has also been a lot of stuff about Plath in recent years.

We love our poets suicidal, addicted or loony. But who's making a movie about Billy Collins? I think it would be a real Zen fest, a film about a man who sits in a room scrutinizing his bookcase and plants and writing poems that bend time and space in entirely relativistic ways. I'm serious. A cool movie to be made.

Okay, maybe they did make one tiny little film about Billy Collins, but can you rent it on Netflix? Forget it. A $45 DVD is available, however, at Amazon of On The Road with the Poet Laureate.
But that was in 2003. How soon they forget.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Perseids and Sounds

It's that time of year, for midsummer viewing of the Perseids meteor showers (am I developing a meteor obsession?). While I can't quite get up two hours before dawn in the next business day or two, I will stay up tonight to see a few shooting stars. The most spectacular Perseid viewing I ever did was lying on a lawn on Kauai at about midnight. The trick, we decided, was to unfocus your eyes and then your peripheral vision widens to near infinity. In that state you can react faster when it picks up a zip of light.

And Stumble has again brought me to one of my all-time favorite Web sites -- though I can't quite figure out what category to bookmark it in. Sounds has a wealth of ... well, sounds. From birds chirping to cicadas to train whistles. I actually collected a number of train whistles -- vintage to contemporary -- for a theater production I was working on. I recommend their collection of saws -- from hand to hack to chain. Also the kissing sounds. You can assemble your own collection, maybe use them as a soundtrack to a slide show or video.