by on Mar.04, 2013



So a few nights ago I went to this bar in Bed Stuy where every time I go I have only the most ridiculous experience, even the time I went there for literally 15 minutes a few days before Halloween and ended up waking up the next morning having sent out a series of very well-composed 4 AM Facebook messages to my friends signed “Best, Carina Finn.”

Anyway I went the other night to hear Amy Lawless read at shitluck, which is the best and most fashionable reading series possibly in America right now, because I had never heard her read before but I have been drunk with her a few times. Her dress was really good and the skirt had this very in sort of flouncey thing happening. The poems she read were largely not from her forthcoming book, MY DEAD (which will be available for purchase from Octopus Books at AWP), and I liked that.

In the middle of her reading some guy was making a lot of noise taking money out of the ATM, which was right by the stage, and she called to him “How much are you taking out? $40 or $60?” to which the guy replied “$20” and the entire audience proceeded to sort of heckle the guy. Later, Amy justified the heckling by saying that someone who only takes $20 out of the ATM at such a bar is only looking out for themselves, and that’s messed up. I vowed that from that moment on I would read every book that Amy Lawless ever writes.


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You should read this really good conversation between Amy and James Gen, in which there are a lot of really great sentiments like “Poetry is a way to live, a way to talk about the world, a way for shit to matter” and “Formal restraints are super fun.” Then you should go to the Octopus Books table at AWP and buy MY DEAD.

Oh, and should you be at a bar where La Lawless also is, buy her a drink with your ATM $$$.


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6 comments for this entry:
  1. Dan Hoy

    consistently the best last name in po-biz

  2. amy lawless

    my head is normal sized IRL

  3. Kent Johnson

    Not quite as best as that of the fabulous young UK poet (another Amy!) Amy De’Ath…

  4. amy lawless

    In real life my head is NORMAL SIZED

  5. Carina

    De’Ath = bratty.
    Lawless = illegal.

  6. Kent Johnson

    Don’t think De’Ath has anything to do with bratty. Its very old origins probably stem to actors who played the figure of Death in medieval mystery plays. So an honorable name for a poet, no question. But Lawless, yes, is one of the best names, too, no question.

    There was a minor poet in England, in the mid-18th century, named Major Friendly Shufflebottom.