Shattered Wig #28

Shattered Wig #28
Coming In November!

Monday, May 30, 2011

"Yay Empty Spider Catches Fire" by Blaster Al Ackerman

I've been having too much fun with four out of town visitors a few weeks ago and then a glorious escape to Chincoteague Island, but it's made me fall way behind on posts. Here is a fresh morsel
from Blaster Al that came in the mail while we were away.

Yay Empty Spider Catches Fire

When empty spider crumpled in the gutter
gross this must be to those choosing sleep with my sweet clock choosing to eat
real clamor, real chamois, then over my kidney stone my sweet clock's blazing
and my drizzling bone on my desk
for the locker in my lap
let me fight them off with my Saturday afternoons
towelette when having sandwich reveal my paste hole
soon my squealing ladder mice go charging up the hill
but to be really out of it,
see how tongue shadow quivers on the page
and hopping toward the spat sardines
we'll be better too, better than your whistled eye, gasoline
helps taste the shadow in your sock that's friendship for you
but it's also obscure and nothing should be obscure when it's on fire

(thanks to JMB of 1/26/11 etc.)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

"Say It With Writing" At Barber's Salon Lafeyette

Yowzah, yowzah, yowzah what a weekend last weekend was. Great old favorite friends dropping from the skies like paratroopers with chocolates and well-trained French can-can dancers. First got word that Courtney "Camel" McCullough was flying in for a "Baltimore bachelor weekend" (thanks Sabra! Although it would have been great to see you, also. Reggie can man the helm), then got word that Nancy from Groovy Like a Pig and one of the co-founders of Shattered Wig Review was also popping in from Detroit.

As if all those sweet surprises weren't enough for one weekend Chris Mason, one of Baltimore's most seasoned and open-hearted experimental poets was reading at Stephanie Barber's Salon and he asked me to be his date. It is a neighborhood that sports about as many pieces of plywood as windows and Chris was afraid it might send him spiraling back to his early dark days of alley crawling in search for a long moist piece of jimson weed. I would be his puritan escort, leaving my thong at home and bringing along my King James.

Other than Chris, the lineup was comprised of well-credentialed New York folks, who were very sharp, fresh and accessible. My one criticism is that I wish the multi-media trio would have closed the show. My own personal prejudice with shows is that the acts should be layered by volume. That once the sound barrier has been pierced by drums and electronics it's hard to get back to a lone human voice. But then again I still like to watch "The Andy Griffith Show".

Part of it might also be that for me the trio was so successful. Often with that kind of setup it can feel like three disparate parts kind of working on their own at the same time, but these guys really enhanced each other. The story at its core was great and would love to read more by its author, which I think was Michael Barron. The lineup is posted below as Stephanie wrote it up.

Stephanie was a great host, crackling electricity as always, and the space left plenty room for psychic expansion despite local marauders The Smelling Salts from the Northside being there, yelling "Time for a beatdown" between each set.

Michael Barron, James Copeland and William Rahilly will be presenting “Hot Face,” a new performance of video, music, and text by the same arrangement of people that brought you “The Pigeon” (Poetry Time at Space Space, 2010) and “Horn One” (Bowery Poetry Club, 2010). See Aa description of their work at the Poetry Project website. Michael is an editor at New Directions and a member of Supermachine and Holy Spirits. James is Managing Director of Ugly Duckling Presse and the author of misc chapbooks, most recently Fax II, and he collaborated with Will on Fade to Fax, the first 7″ from Unicorn Evil Records. Will is a video maker and musician. Trailer for Hot Face.

Nicole Trigg lives in Brooklyn, binds and repairs books, and co-curates the CROWD reading series. Writing is (was or will be) featured in Flying Fish, Cap Gun, The Poetry Project Newsletter, Love Among the Ruins, and on the website Ink Node. View recent work at

Chris Mason has lived in Baltimore for 40 years, is the author of several books, and plays music with The Tinklers and Old Songs.

No finer backdrop for a reading than this Claus Oldenburg-like piece behind the saintly and brilliant Chris Mason.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

"Intact Animal" (Globetrotter Mickey Cutler) Presents a Night That Enters The Future Through The Backdoor

People under 30 often ask me as I attempt to wheedle some change from them outside a 7-11 or Dunkin' Donuts, "Gosh Mr. Cabbage Hat, what was Baltimore like in the '80s and '90s with all that crack and murder and lack of fabulous stuff?"

Well, let me tell you, it was just as fabulous, just in smaller quantities and you often had to drink or drug a lot harder to see it. Lots of cabooses went off the rails, aye, but many came back from the dark side and what they came back as makes the new zombies movie look like early Disney.

Then there are a few who ran and got far away and occasionally dip a teasing toe back into the brackish psychedelic city water to prove they still got the Crazy Bone. Queen of these Marauders, close personal friend of Nicolas Sarkozy, gym workout pal of Queen Latifah, frequent cocktail companion of Jose Merce and late night phone consolor of what's left of Pauly Shore is tiny Mickey Cutler.

Rumor has it that she's been visiting her old stomping grounds here in Baltimore for a week or so and she's rounding up some of the fiesty musical icons of Baltimore's '90s to come to Normal's and the Red Room to strutt their Nancy Sinatra-level-of-preservation-stuff. Here is the show spiel:

Tuesday, May 17 at Normal's Books & Records
425 E. 31st St.

An evening of live musique with The One And The Other (Eric Maroldo, Jefrey Leighton Brown, Alex Layne), Tony Agostinelli, Amanda Pollock, and the Ding Dong Daddy himself, William Marshall. Other guests TBA.

Entrance is FREE. The music will rotate throughout the evening. You can’t miss a thing unless you don’t show up. Normal’s will be open for browsing and shopping (a very hot clerk will man the register).

We will be recording the evening, and sounds of jubilant accord are welcome, as well as regular ol’ shout ‘out’s to my homies in San Quentin’ also encouraged.

More information to follow regarding the international INTACT ANIMAL project - email list to be collected on site.

Bring a camera, take a picture, enjoy enjoy.


This should be a fantastic night of entertainment and revelry whether yee be an old head or a new head.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

the hollow of the 4th

What is the special hollow feeling that comes on the 4th of July? My own personal beige demon leftover from suburban summers alone?

Walking through scorched brown baseball field. If only that soda machine worked.

Hammered zombies of Light Beer taunting folks? As if teetering on one braincell while jeering at differences is the main cultural heritage of independence.

A day usually pulsating with Camus' "The Stranger" overbearing bright light and broiling heat becomes the most popular day for glowing coals grilling meat out in a tree-less backyard.

Even when it's a peaceful one, my arm around my loved one on the banks of Chincoteague Bay, fireworks being set off from various points on the island, the membrane between worlds feels thin and pliant. At any moment either Red Skelton or The Red Skull could reach through and pull you into a dark gluey abyss.

Ghosts of war are not far from the surface. What does a nation mean and can it be defined without the conversation becoming a snake eating its tail?

Is it any wonder that at least one cable station always runs a Twilight Zone marathon on this day?

Sunday, May 8, 2011

its beginning and its end cannot be found

its beginning and its end cannot be found

like two strangers chained to pipes
in an underground bathroom
or neuro-theology practiced by
a largely ceremonial department
with a tiny budget and few
you may dance but
you may only dance
within a parameter
of a few square inches
like a little shack
built with floss
and discarded
board games.
Floss used by a
near toothless man who
lives on ballpark cigars
and fava beans

The little shack dances
O how the little shack dances
buffeted by wind in a field of
corn and despairing scarecrows as
you dance only with your inner mind
where feet are many and frog-like
and you and an old Ravi Shankar
record can be alone

Just then
when you tapped
the shoulder of the guy
in front of you
well, his torso is behind you
gladiator air freshener
tendriled your remains
meal worms shifting
in a dental chair, the
final prop left standing
on The Planet of the Apes

I thought today was
going to be the day
but it was another

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Goodloe Byron Renders Cort McMeel In Pen and Ink

For some reason at the last Shattered Wig Night - it's been a few months now, actually, time creeps on - I didn't take my usually handy camera. And it was a particularly memorable evening, what with Cort McMeel kind of levitating a few inches off the ground and his generous belly (an admirable worthy mound that I suspect is his secret seat of power, but it was slightly downsized here in Goodloe's otherwise inspired drawing) undulating like Gumby on roofies.

Not to mention the debut of Nathan Bell and Liz Downing playing out together and summoning the angels from many parallel dimensions. And Goodloe himself! AND the Go Pills.

At any rate, a few days after the show Cort emailed me and said that he was so ashamed at being involved with a Shattered Wig Night that he had gotten a hold of some old "Twilight Sleep" meds that they used to give middle class women so they would have no memory of the awful gooey mess of childbirth. Consequently, he had no memory of even being at the show, let alone his reading segment, and he was wondering if there were any photos.

Bummer. I had none.

I put out a Facebook distress signal fishing for some and generous enigmatic Sir Byron said his brother took some blurry ones of his Hush Puppies, but there were none extant of Cort, so he kindly whipped up this drawing.