First reading in Twenty Years

Suffern Poetry hosts an Open Mic in the community room, on the top floor of Suffern’s Village Hall. Rows of chairs, separated by one aisle, lead to the “stage”—an open space at the front of the room, facing the audience. A counter separates the main room from a small kitchenette. Florescent lights in a soft ceiling drown the room in light—unlike the performance lighting at Casa Del Sol, where the group hosts its monthly Poetry Slam.

 

poets’ hard breathing    the drone of air conditioners

 

Bryan, the founder and MC, calls my name. I follow a Binghamton slam poet that performed a brilliant, comic poem. Making eye contact with the back row, I breathe, then begin.

 

Three poems. Their stories arise with a life of their own. I deliver them all—to genuine, enthusiastic applause.

 

flushed face    Mira’s hands shaping a heart

 

Photo by Ilyass SEDDOUG

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Frank J. Tassone

I fell in love with writing ever since I wrote my first short story at the age of 12 and my first poem in high school. My free-verse has appeared in the literary e-zine Pif. My haibun has been published in Cattails, Haibun Today, Contemporary Haibun Online (CHO) and Contemporary Haibun, CHO's annual print anthology. My haiku has been published by the Haiku Foundation. My senryu has been published in Failed Haiku. I regularly perform haibun and other haikai with Rockland Poets. I am honored to be a part of the Image Curve community as a contributing poet. Visit my website www.frankjtassone.wordpress.com to see more of my poetry. Follow me on twitter @fjtassone2 and like my Facebook page American Haijin for updates on my latest work.

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