New Year’s Day Reading Debriefing


I began the week leading up to the 36th Annual New Year’s Day Marathon Reading feeling nonchalant and feeling worried about how nonchalant I felt, but after we got through the first few organizational hiccups I realized the uncomfortable feeling was that of confidence. I knew this year was going to be extraordinary and indeed it was. The performances were electric (Miguel Gutierrez’s dance harnessed the off-the wall energy of the day) and the community response was enormous. I have never seen the Sanctuary so thronged with people. As the great poet Sparrow wrote to us the next day, “The new was new, and so was everything else”. And, wow, we raised over $18,000 this year, which is about $5,000 more than the customary amount. These funds, as you know, allow us to pay the rent, continue our programming and plan for the Project’s future. Thank you for every dollar you spent on admission, food, books or Membership that day.

I made some opening remarks that invoked words written by Allen Ginsberg in his introduction to Out of This World about St. Mark’s being a culture church and a place where many people have been coming for decades to tap into the great accumulation of granny wisdom about poetry, familiarity and gossip. Ah, the true meaning of New Year’s Day! We hope that 2010 holds much promise for each of us and for the state of the world. We appreciate your devotion to our celebration and thank you, again, for being part of the Poetry Project.


Stacy Szymaszek


In the five years I have been working in the office, I have never met a marathon quite like Number 36. By 3pm we had over 300 people come through the door. The official head count of 1,250 exceeds recent memory, as does the profit… over $18 grand!

Needless to say, the marathon was and never is possible without the generosity of time and spirit given to the Poetry Project by you, our community-at-large. To the 150 “acts”, 80+ volunteers, dozens of food and book donors and to the attentive and lasting crowd of hundreds, we say thank you! We love you! High-five! Big hug!

Volunteers: Bob Rosenthal, Don Yorty, Douglas Rothschild, Betsy Block, Nick Morrow, Sue Landers, Natasha Dwyer, Christa Quint, Joe Elliot, Diana Hamilton, Eddie Hopely, Elinor Nauen, Will Creeley, Mina Pam Dick, David Kirschenbaum, Ian Wilder, Kim Wilder, Gary Sullivan, Nada Gordon, Joanna Fuhrman, Donna Brook, Tom Savage, Jennifer Keane, Vincent Keane, Van Zimmerman, Kendra Sullivan, Simone White, Barry Denny, Paolo Javier, Greg Fuchs, Jacob Burckhardt, CAConrad, Laura Elrick, Evelyn Reilly, Adeena Karasick, Safia Karasick Southey, Sophie Prevallet, Phyllis Wat, Gail Tuch, Stephanie Gray, Michael Scharf, Bill Kushner, Steve Rosenthal, Patricia Spears Jones, Ed Friedman, John S. Hall, Edwin Torres, Erica Kaufman, Paul Foster Johnson, Ana Bozicevic, Amy King, Geoffrey Olsen, Kimberly Lyons, Lo Gallucio, Akilah Oliver, Laura Jaramillo, Dixie Appel, Lauren Russell, Nicole Wallace, Thomas Seeley, Will Edmiston, Jim Behrle, Todd Colby, Gillian McCain, Kelly Ginger, Nathaniel Siegel, Jeffrey Perkins, Eddie Berrigan, Kathleen Connell, Cori Copp, Brett Price, Evan Commander, Chris Martin, Dee Dee Thompson, Jeremy Hoevenaar, Alice Whitwham, John Coletti, KB Jones, Mariana Ruiz Firmat, Derek Kroessler, Douglas Piccinnini, Erica Wessmann, Ivy Johnson, Dustin Williamson, Kari Hensley, Lisa Ozag, Geoff Mottran, Brenda Iijima, Rachel Levitsky, Nic Veroli, Frank Sherlock, Nicole Peyrafitte, Miles Joris-Peyrafitte, Pierre Joris, Robert O’Haire, and whomever else I may have forgotten!

Books: Wave Books, Meritage Press, Nightboat Books, Bootstrap Books, Ugly Ducking Presse, Libellum, BlazeVox Books, Belladonna Books, Futurepoem, Karl Gartung, George Albon, Ted Greenwald, Giovanna Frene, Federica Marte, Tracey McTague & Brendan Lorber, Larry Kearney, Narrow House, Gina Myers, Richard Hell, Rachel Zolf, Ryan Murphy, Natalie Lyalin, Matthew Thorburn, Susan Mills, Pierre Joris, Nicole Peyrafitte, Anselm Berrigan, Amanda Deutch, Simon Pettet, and day of donors!

Food & Services: Amy’s Bread, Momofuku/Milk Bar, Porto Rico Importing Company, Grand Daisy Bakery, Magnolia Bakery, S’Mac, Two Boots, Veselka, Curly’s Lunch, The Source, Unltd., Christa Quint, Gillian McCain, and Nicole Peyrafitte!

Davids: I would like to especially shout out the names David Vogen and Dave Nolan, the two tireless gents hunched over the sound board all day (and night) long. Heroes! Champs! Enablers of sound!

Cheers to the dawn of a new decade.


Corrine Fitzpatrick