Archive for Sunday, February 28, 2010

Poet lugging bomb to every reading on cross-country tour

February 28, 2010


Submissions for the poetry bomb


SUBJECT MATTER: Previously published and non-published poems are acceptable, as are poems on any subject that don’t advocate violence.

LOGISTICS: Poems must be on a card or sheet of paper no larger than 8 1/2 by 11 inches. Poems cannot be sent on hard substances such as wood, metal or plastic. Printing or writing is allowed on both the front and back.

DELIVERY METHOD: Must be mailed.

WHERE TO SEND THEM: To S.A. Griffin, P.O. Box 29171, Los Angeles, Ca. 90029-0171. Do not put the word “bomb” anywhere on the outside of the envelope.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:, keyword The Poetry Bomb.

— Poetry readings have always been a blast for S.A. Griffin, but the tour that the venerable Los Angeles poet plans this spring may be his most explosive.

This time the author of such collections as “Unborn Again” and “One Long Naked Dance” will be packing his poems inside a Cold War-era bomb and taking them on the road. The idea is to create the constructive from the destructive.

“I’m taking one of the most iconic images of destruction of the 20th century and turning it into something positive,” says the strapping Griffin, who at 6-foot-3 is nonetheless dwarfed by the gun-metal gray performance-art companion that rises more than 7 feet tall when tilted on end. He found the dummy bomb, which contains no explosives, on the Internet and bought it for $100.

His plan: bring the bomb to a city near you, dropping rhymes and free verse by the hundreds on audiences everywhere from Atlanta to Montana, Oregon to North Carolina and points in between. His aim is to get people to wake up to poetry.

“What I’m really doing here is like publishing poetry in a journal,” Griffin says. “But when you publish poetry in a journal, usually the only people who pay any attention to it are other poets.”

He plans to go on the road for five weeks beginning in April, making more than a dozen stops around the country, but with just the bomb in tow this time.

He has collected more than 100 poems so far, many penned especially for the tour. Anyone, poet or otherwise, can send Griffin a poem and it will be included. He plans to take poems from the bomb and read them to people along the way.


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