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Peers at the Lit Cafe

11/11/08 | by steveg [mail] | Categories: Poetry, Literary Cafe

Peer \'pir\
1: one that is of equal standing with another : equal ; especially : one belonging to the same societal group especially based on age, grade, or status
2: companion
3 a: a member of one of the five ranks (as duke, marquess, earl, viscount, or baron) of the British peerage
b: noble
— Merriam Webster

This thursday, November 13 at 9:30pm, the Literary Cafe will celebrate my peers. These are poets that I have shared the butterfly stomach, the cold sweat, the self-doubt of being on a stage. They have, with me, exposed themselves to the gaze and the gawk of strangers. Even more vulnerable than the nakedness from the deficiency or absence of adequate apparel, the flinging of verse directly from our hearts created a respect and comradery. These are my peers.

I had the honor of sharing the third prize in this years Hessler Street Fair Poetry contest with Steve Thomas. Born and raised in Old Brooklyn before it was called old Brooklyn, he graduated from J F Rhodes a long ass time ago. Steve started writing in high school, and while working for a print shop in Berea went to Baldwin Wallace College but got side tracked from writing for 20 yrs or so by children, his business, and (get this) by being a professional bowler. He finally graduated from BW in December of 2006. The better half of the "Third Steves" has been published in The Mill in 1984-85 and again in 2006-07, as well as in Split Whiskey Bag-o-Zines, and The City e-zine. His natural talent for reading has just begun to be recognized in the area and has performed at Insights and at Macs Backs with Wendy Shaffer and Russ Vidrick.

Rachelle Gallant shared the stage with me at this year's Tremont Art & Culture Festival. She is a modern poet for the new world. With twenty-five years of English and Literary experience, her uniquely poignant work, looks into the everyday human condition. She is a talent of both poetry and photography, which she
fuses into art pieces that strike at the heart of life’s randomness. "Ray" is one of the founding members of the Hybrid Collective Gallery in Tremont and her artwork has been featured at Edison’s Pub.

Though this pair's humility will argue the converse, I was honored to share the limelight with these two gifted wordsters. They truly represent the 3rd definition of peer, noble. so come to the Literary Cafe Thurs. November 13 at 9:30 and hear what fine words are supposed to sound like. The Lit Cafe is at 1031 Literary Road in the Tremont Peerage of Cleveland.

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