I am pleased to co-host (with Nancy Klepsch) this monthly free event at the Arts Center of the Capital Region. A number of us had just been here the day before to participate in the Write Here! Writers Conference sponsored by the Arts Center & the Hudson Valley Writers Guild.

The very first reader of the day was a virgin, John O., who read an excerpt of a piece of prose fiction about a robbery, contemplating heroism. I followed with 2 poems from my January vacation in Florida, “Arts Festival, Delray Beach, FL” & the hot pants poem, “Southwest Flight 2095, Seat 8A.” Bob Sharkey began with an anaphoristic list poem, “Where is Baby Lisa?” then a poem about his decision as a youth to do alternative service to being in the military, “April 16.” Ron Drummond read from a long letter to a love in Portland, full of longing & angst.

Stephen Leslie drew from his experience working in hospice to read 2 pieces, “A Woman of Many Surprises,” & “True Story” (about Harold who sees a cow in his dining room). David Wolcott read from a chapter called “The Last Final Exam” from his ongoing memoir. D. Alexander Holiday just read 1 poem, not even his own, this time it was Joy Harjo’s “Strange Fruit” about a lynching in California in the 1980s. Reading from her handwritten notebook, Sally Rhoades continued on with the next installment of her prose piece “The Outpost.” & co-host Nancy Klepsch closed out the afternoon with the answer to “Why I Listen to Biggie Small.”

This open mic is usually the 2nd Sunday of most months, at 2PM at the Arts Center on River St. in Troy. However, in April it will be on April 1 (not fooling) because Easter falls on the 2nd Sunday. Please join us.