FROM THE BOOG ARCHIVES:
JiffyBoog #2, Jan. 14, 1995,
7 poets in Heaven
I’ve only loved a poet once. Well, I’ve loved many poets over the years, but only one of them loved me back.
(In 2020 my friend Jim Behrle did a December Project 2020, writing daily poems in correspondence with one another. Here are those poems:
Here’s a poem that tells our origin story, that is if we were superheroes, with your times, artistically, we were:
December 5, 2020
i was at my sister’s apartment in forest hills,
debating about whether to drive into chelsea for the halloween party Rachel and her roommates were throwing,
and my sister convinced me to, so i did.
I drove my 1980 Pontiac Phoenix to Rachel’s apartment on 16th between 7th and 8th aves,
the one with the spiral staircase joining the two floors.
Rachel had graduated from SUNY-Albany
and one of her roommates, Leanne, had gone to SUNY-Buffalo,
so the party was a meeting of the two crowds.
I met Candace Walsh,
who had been in the poetics program at Buffalo,
and we connected right away.
(weeks later she would tell me that she made sure to sit down next to me in the front seat
when I drove a bunch of us to the Ukrainian National Home on second avenue (by the church),
where i would hang out with Greg Fuchs,
her former classmate and another of the Buffaloians—is that a word?—for the first time,
before i drove her back to her fifth-floor walkup on 5th between C and D.
A few days later we went on our first date.
I drove in from Long Island to her place,
and left the Phoenix there
because there was no way we were going to get a spot in SOHO.
We walked from fifth to 72 Spring St.
It was the first time i had ever been to Poets House,
though i’d donated Boog publications there during their annual chapbook showcases.
Here I was, for the first time going out on a date with another poet,
to Poets House nonetheless,
how much more poet could you get?
It was the first week of November 1994,
and we were scribbling notes in my compbook back and forth to each throughout the reading.
during the breaks the conversation was of the first date exploratory variety,
which eventually turned to birthdays.
“You’re not born on December 20,” she said, “I’m born on December 20.”
“Fuck you,” I said,
and we each went into our wallets and took out our driver’s licenses,
finding out that the same day I turned six
was the day she turned born.
We’d write poems for, to, and starring each other, share them all the time, leave them hanging by strings in the apartment for when the other returned. But we also started a zine, taking my love of instant publications, creating a new one that we dubbed JiffyBOOG.
Being in love with a poet is one thing, being in love with a poet who’s also a zinester. I mean, if she liked baseball she would have been perfect.
Here is issue #2 of JiffyBOOG, put out in January of 1995 in conjunction with the first Boog event I ever organized in the five boroughs. (Yes, a poet, a zinester, and an organizer. Mmm.)