Eshajori

 

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2017 has been a long adventurous ride.

What started out as a book launch for the “legends of doe hoe” project in Kansas City, MO has led me down many unique paths. I’ve been very fortunate to be able to touch both the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans in addition to crossing the Mississippi River, as well as giving readings in Missouri, Illinois, Tennessee, Ohio, Texas, California, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and California. I have enjoyed reading with most of the poets that I have met along the way. Overall, it has been a great experience.

I am sidestepping the “poetry tour” life a bit to work on some new projects and travel a bit. It’s more of a rejuvenation process really.

For those whom I have crossed paths with and read poems along the way, I wish you the best. For those who are continuing on a similar path with me, I hope it will be as rewarding for you as it will be for me.

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Legends of doe hoe book release event

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On February 13th, 2017 at the Uptown Arts Bar in KCMO, Legends of Doe Hoe was officially released. The evening began with an open mic hosted by Sharon Eiker. Crista Siglin was added as a guest reader.

To prep for the evening, I walked into a thiftstore and purchased a $25 tuxedo. I’m not really sure why this particular outfit spoke to me. Maybe it was I had to lose about 15 pounds to actually get into the thing that appealed to me.

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photo credit: Joan Koromante

Prior to the reading, I stood within the outside patio on a rooftop at the downtown public library in KC and ran thru my set list. I wasn’t concerned about the number of people who may attend the reading. I was more concerned which memory would resurface as I presented my work. The project is a collection of random events on my life that tend to cling to a universal theme within the shadows of my own thoughts. I simply didn’t know who would walk the the doors of the Uptown Arts Bar that had claim to each memory I depicted in the book.

The set list:

An open letter to the legends of doe hoe (a prelude to a suicide that is cheaper than you think)

The Nature vs Nature overdose

Click clack paddy whack the Baron needs a home

Present day

The winter of my discontent

An open letter to Lew Welch written by an answer to a question no one asked

An open letter from three plenty of fishes

Preface

Used to call this jail, used to call this home (From the “Recessions in Neverland” project)

Until the last tie is broken

Rides In

After the reading, I stepped outside to grab some air. Due to subject matter and private events in my life, this was an emotional reading. There was a brief pause in a couple of conversations and I realized that every shadow of the experiences of my former self were in attendance that night and will follow me on tour. Trail me everywhere I go.

Heaven and hell for sale at $12 a pop.

This was the life I had chosen.

It’s a life very few people rarely get a chance to follow.

I wouldn’t have it any other way.

The Guinness I consumed that night numbed the ache of memory for a bit.

Just for a bit.

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photo credit: Joan Koromante

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Recession in Neverland

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After a reading in Belle, MO last year, John Dorsey mentioned to me that Chris Lance of Paladin Knight Publishing had a new project for a table top book and encouraged me to participate in the anthology. After a few weeks of constructing my contribution, I submitted “used to call it jail, used to call it home” for possible publication. The title of my contribution was heavily influenced by Bombzillionaire , a song by Godzillionaire, a band based on Lawrence, KS.

Other poets who contributed to the project include Dianne Borsenik, John Dorsey, Theresa Göttl Brightman, Victor Adam Clevenger, Mike James, Jake St. John, Charles Joseph, Paul Koniecki, Ally Malineko, Shawn Pavey, Hannah Pemberton, Jeanette Powers, Rebecca Schumejda, Julio Montalvo Valentin, and James Benger.  Timm Wherry contributed to the photographic layout of the book and Chris Lance wrote the forward.

The book is available on Amazon.

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ARTSPEAK Radio interview

 

On February 8th, I has an interview with Maria Vasquez-Boyd in the studios of 90.1 FM for ARTSPEAK Radio to discuss the “legends of doe hoe” project.  Other guests of the program included Arzie Uhmali, Patty Reece, Suzi Aaron, Eve Ott, & Lori Bunten. I also briefly discussed other projects including the 2017 KC Poetry Throwdown and Poetrybay.

The link can be accessed here.

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Interview with Marcia Epstein

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On Feb 1st, I recorded an interview with Marcia Epstein, the host of “Talk With Me” based in Lawrence, KS on LawrenceHits.com. Originally scheduled as an in studio interview, we had to switch to a phone interview due to a substantial delay in public transportation (the Greyhound bus driver was an hour late). The phone interview was recorded while I was pacing the halls of the interconnecting walkways of the financial district of downtown KCMO. Without question, one of the most unique recording sessions I have had so far.

I discussed a reading I hosted at the Raven in September of this year, the “legends of doe hoe” project, Poetrybay, a few readings that are scheduled in the future, and I give a brief into to the 2017 KC Poetry Throwdown.

During the interview, I read the first piece in the book entitled “an open letter to the legends of doe hoe (a prelude to a suicide which is cheaper than you would think)” which is one of the most difficult pieces I’ve ever written.

The interview may be accessed here.

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Radio interview and book release of “legends of doe hoe”

Belated post…

On January 11th, I sat down with Eric Holcomb on 1320 KLWN in Lawrence to discuss poetry. Other guests of the program included Eric McHenry, the current Kansas Poet Laurette, and Iris Appelquist.  The interview can be accessed here.

On February 13th, I will be the featured reader at Blue Mondays at the Uptown Arts Bar. KC area poet Crista Siglin will graciously also be featured at this event. This reading will be the official book release of my first solo work in over ten years entitled “legends of doe hoe”(Spartan Press, 2017). Fifty pages of work consisting of 23 poems centering on my struggles and recovery of the death of the Muse in which the transitory act of passing and healing wasn’t determined or restrained by the concept of time.  It has been my most challenging work to date as I poetically documented my path of recovery and healing from multiple suicide attempts and my own struggles with depression.

Pre-ordering is available. Payment via Paypal, $12 + $1.50 shipping and handling to Jamesonbayles@gmail.com. Contact me for alternative ordering avenues as well.

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Current updates

Belated post:

Had a few pieces published recently: “preface” over at Rusty Truck and “an open letter from three plenty of fishes” over at Your One One Phone Call.

Participated in a couple of readings as well in Oct and Nov: Music-Poetry-Art at the Neon Gallery in October and Old Drum Open Mic in Warrensburg, MO as well.

Have a few events in January that I will be involved in including a radio interview in Lawrence, KS and a poetry event that I will be hosting at the Raven.

2017 will be a big year and I will be announcing a few things next month regarding all of that.

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