Next Year’s Words, a New Paltz reading forum, celebrates December with featured poets Grisel Y. Acosta, Joann Deiudicibus and Mike Jurkovic on Wednesday, December 21 at 7:30 p.m., live at the Elting Memorial Library’s Steinberg Room and via Zoom at https://cutt.ly/NYW-Dec-2022.
Afro-Latinx poet and professor Grisel Y. Acosta confronts contradiction in the world as she celebrates the life (and lives) we often take for granted or miss seeing entirely. In “(chiasmus) after Julia de Burgos,” she contrasts the urges to “dance with B-Boys and Baryshnikov, sing / with monks making chartreuse, Zola Jesus, and Bad Bunny / …dress your home in cheap velvet and expensive books.”
From Joann Deiudicibus: “Today I am not lonely but feel the peace / of emptiness, the longing for your voice / as deep and warm as the womb we’re without, / …Today, you fill me with need, with words / that must speak, sing sorrows of what / broke in us and what we shattered” (“At Home”). Deiudicibus’ poems shimmer with alliterative and assonant music and a rhythmic structure that engages the reader’s pulse.
On his website, Mike Jurkovic refers to himself as “Poet, Pundit, Provocateur.” He comments with the precision of bullet holes where the light sneaks in (“where the light sneaks in”) on the violent insanities and bursts of beauty in our lives in a voice that moves from noir detective to the ironic seeker. “i get it. / I just can’t cotton how / you get from A to B / w/o God, the cartographer, / drawing fuzzy circles” (“Fuzzy Circles”).