By: g emil reutter
Philly Poetry Day was slated to kick off at 12:00 am in West Philly with over 30 events scheduled across the city, Delaware and Bucks Counties. Philadelphia is home to a diverse group of poets mirroring the arts scene across the city. Realism, Language, Spoken Word, Mathematical, Haiku, Confessional, Formal, Concrete, Dada, Modernist, Post-Modernist, Avant-Garde, call it what you want but in Philadelphia this day words flowed forth from porches, coffee houses, in front of buildings, parks, studios, on Septa buses, town halls and colleges, on street corners and backyard barbeques . We at the Fox Chase Review and Reading Series have a fondness for the parks in Philadelphia. Our Poets @ Pennypack was planned over six months ago and fell on Philly Poetry Day. We decided to add two informal events to the day. Diane Sahms-Guarnieri and I slated a reading in Lions Park in Fox Chase because that it is where it all started, the idea for the review and reading series. We also slated a reading at Gorgas Park in Roxborough where Diane graduated from the adjacent Roxborough High School and grew up just a block away where the elders of her family still reside.
Lions Park in Fox Chase, Philadelphia Philly Poetry Day
Our day began at Lions Park for an 11 am reading centered on reading our poetry about Philadelphia’s people and places. We enjoyed reading in Lions Park to the folks waiting on the 18 bus in the loop.
Diane Sahms-Guarnieri reads in Lions Park for Philly Poetry Day
g emil reutter reads in Lions Park for Philly Poetry Day
Pennypack Environmental Center on Verree Road – Philadelplhia – Philly Poetry Day
Following the Lions Park reading in Fox Chase we traveled down Rhawn Street to Verree Road and the amphitheater located to the rear of the Pennypack Environmental Center. This rustic setting set on a ridge high above the Valley of the Pennypack in the Northeast was perfect for a poetry reading. The reading began at 1 pm with our featured poets. B.E. Kahn, Peter Krok, Tom Mallouk, Bruce Kramer, Wendy Schermer, Diane Sahms-Guarnieri and J.C. Todd delighted the crowd with full 15-20 minute sets of poetry. The following poets participated in the open mic following the features: Mike Cohen and Rodger Lowenthal
Crowd Shot at Poets @ Pennypack Park- Philly Poetry Day
Crowd Listens to Diane Sahms-Guarnieri Poets @ Pennypack – Philly Poetry Day
Gorgas Park in Roxborough – Philadelphia- Philly Poetry Day
After a brief rest we traveled south on the Boulevard to the Fox street exit and down Henry to Leverington Avenue arriving at Gorgas Park which rests on Ridge Avenue. At 7 pm we completed the day much as we started, on reading our poetry about Philadelphia’s people and places. We were met by the elders of Diane’s family and a few neighborhood kids and enjoyed reading in Gorgas Park.
g emil reutter reads in Gorgas Park for Philly Poetry Day
Diane Sahms-Guarnieri reads in Gorgas Park for Philly Poetry Day
Philadelphia is blessed with possibly the most beautiful park system in the country. From the expansive Pennypack Park to neighborhood parks like Lions Park and Gorgas Park. The poet Joseph Brodsky once said, “Poetry must be available to the public in far greater volume than it is.” On this day, the 12th of April 2014 in Philadelphia, on Philly Poetry Day in over 30 venues, poetry was available in abundance. Photographs from our events are available at these links: Philly Poetry Day : https://www.flickr.com/photos/12065560@N04/sets/72157643749178684/ Poets @ Pennypack: https://www.flickr.com/photos/12065560@N04/sets/72157643749179114/ For other reports from across the city please visit: http://www.phillypoetryday.com/
More poetry? On April 27th @ 2 pm Dan Maguire and Ann E. Michael are reading at our Featured Poets/Writers Series at Ryerss Museum and Library. More information on this reading can be found at this link: https://foxchasereview.wordpress.com/2014/04/01/michael-and-maguire-april-27th/