1.                                      POETRY THURSDAYS at MIDTOWN SCHOLAR 
  2. Internet Cafe  
     Midtown Scholar Bookstore, 

    1302 North Third Street,  
    Harrisburg, PA 17102 
    Phone: 717.236.1680 

    The Almost Uptown Poetry Cartel hosts  
    a community reading series  
    every Thursday from 7:00 to 9:00 pm. 

                                                                       Open to all who'd like to share  or listen to the many varieties of spoken word                                         ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------               

August 6-- Featured writer: Theresa Rodriguez

The poetry of Theresa Rodriguez  has been called “electric” by Hiram Larew, and, she posesses an “almost brutal vulnerability” says Carla Christopher, who adds that  Rodriguez “moves with a brisk pace and beautiful style that leaves you empowered and uplifted."

Theresa Rodriguez holds a Master of Music with distinction in voice pedagogy and performance from Westminster Choir College and is a member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing.

She is a contributing writer for Classical Singer Magazine where she writes on a variety of subjects of interest to classical singers. She's also written for magazines such as Mothering, Parenting From the Heart. 

As a poet and performer "she tuly shines." Hank Whittemore calls her sonnets “truly magnificent,” writing with “honesty, depth and precision,” “achieving something rare and special,” with lines that “waste not a single word,  that carry the weight of strong feeling,” and calling Rodriguez  “an original and powerful voice for our time.” 

Evan Mantyk says, “If you are looking for something real, this is it.”

 Bob Wood calls her poems “heart-breaking, sometimes a bit shocking or grotesque, seldom gentle, but always a full-bore attack on the subject at hand” and “the product of a magnificent poet.” 

Mantyk adds “in fourteen lines, her sonnets in particular are able to communicate what takes essayists and writers thousands of words,” speaking “to the modern predicament” with a “strong, intelligent, and heartfelt voice that will resound 
into future generations of humanity.”  

 Theresa Rodriguez is the author of Jesus and Eros: 
Sonnets, Poems and Songs, and the newly-published 
Warning Signs of Abuse: Get Out Early 
                                                      and Stay Free Forever.

                                                                             Her website is www.bardsinger.com.

                                    A Rodriguez poem:
                                     Blessed Margaret Plantagenet Pole (1472-1541)
                                        Executed by Henry VIII 27 May 1541, Tower of London

                                   You ran around the room. The hooded goon
                                   Was chasing with his ax. In tears and cries
                                   You asked him “Why? What have I done?” But soon
                                   He reached your aged neck. But nothing dies
                                   Unless you kill it. Firmly, blood began
                                   To spew from wound, and wound, and wound, and more
                                   Than thirteen whacks and chops and strikes; a man
                                   Against a woman. Then the hacking gore
                                   Took off your head. The deed was done. Such strain
                                   Of royal blood was by a Tudor shed,
                                   Plantagenet and threatening and slain!
                                   Made martyress by him who made you dead.

                                   A coward and a tyrant, in the name
                                   Of bullied blood beatified the same.

                                                       -- Theresa Rodriguez 

    -------------------------        --------------------------       -------------------------------

June 25-- When Lady Glori hit Midtown Scholar


                                                            Christine O' Leary-Rockey, July 23

 Windows on the World

"People do not talk, they exchange links... --"
Open mic 6/4/15
   Poetry Thurdays, as seen through a Third Street window.

   When you look at a poetry gathering from the outside, through a window, it seems to be decidedly 
more visual than word-ly. People, poets, are faintly visible inside, but large reflected apartment buildings 
seem, clearly, to dominate the view.

And this could be a good thing if you're paranoid about apartment buildings sneaking up on you.

Anyway, poetry is mostly about rhythms and words, and these are difficult to hear from the outside 

of a poetry event.

So, why not walk boldly inside and listen to some poetry. Maybe even share some of your own verse? 

I mean there's two sides to every story, or poetry reading. Try both. 

Stop, look and listen, read a poem or two. Soak up some culture. 

Hey, be culture!

Everything's waiting for you. 
Every Thursday, 7--9pm. Midtown Scholar Bookstore.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Some sound poetics were used by poetry movements like the beat generation in the fifties, or the spoken word movement in the 80's, and by other art and music movements that brought up new forms such as text sound art that may be used for sound poems which more closely resemble fiction or even essays. Words are sounds. "Zing, went the strings of my heart!"

"Pocketa pocketa-pocketa pocketa." --James Thurber, The Secret Life ofWalter Mitty

"Zang-tumb-tumb-zang-zang-tuuumb tatatatatatatata picpacpampacpacpicpampampac uuuuuuuuuuuuuuu..." -Marinetti
                                                                             pix from earlier 2015 events:


 Jonathan Frazier


 E V E N T S   &   F E A T U R E S


June 4--  Open reading

June 11-- Michael Olimpi, 
                 Chris Fox, spotlight

June 18-- Open reading

June 25-- Ladi Glori


July 2-- Open reading

July 9-- John Destalo

July 16-- Open reading

July 23-- Christine O'Leary-Rockey

July 30-- Sultans of Swat



August 6-- Theresa Rodriguez

August 13-- Adam Fausey & Cassie VerBurg

August 20-- Open poetry reading

August 27-- Kwoteman



September 3-- 

September 10-- 

September 17--

Spetember 24-- Joelle Biele 


October 1-- 

October 10--

October 15--

October 22--


  May 14, our feature was Theresa (Ms. Reign) Taylor, conscious hip-hop artist, 
music producer and motivational poet from Queens, New York.                                            
   Known for her assertive voice and  poetic flow, she was the featured spoken word artist in Nike's Lunar Flyknit  
shoe commercial, appeared in dozens of shows across the East Coast including the Harlem  Book Fair and the 2014 
US Open Tennis Tournament. 
  Never one to forget her humble beginnings, Ms. Reign takes time to give back  to her community through the arts.  
Taylor also produces a monthly music & poetry  concert in New York called "Unspoken".  
   Donations from each show are given to non- profit organizations throughout the East Coast.                                                 
 pix from May 14 Scholar gig.          





"Fishing on the Susquehanna in July"

           by Billy Collins

I have never been fishing on the Susquehanna
or on any river for that matter
to be perfectly honest.

Not in July or any month
have I had the pleasure—if it is a pleasure—
of fishing on the Susquehanna.

I am more likely to be found
in a quiet room like this one—
a painting of a woman on the wall,

a bowl of tangerines on the table—
trying to manufacture the sensation
of fishing on the Susquehanna.

There is little doubt
that others have been fishing
on the Susquehanna,

rowing upstream in a wooden boat,
sliding the oars under the water
then raising them to drip in the light.

But the nearest I have ever come to
fishing on the Susquehanna
was one afternoon in a museum in Philadelphia

when I balanced a little egg of time
in front of a painting
in which that river curled around a bend

under a blue cloud-ruffled sky,
dense trees along the banks,
and a fellow with a red bandanna

sitting in a small, green
flat-bottom boat
holding the thin whip of a pole.

That is something I am unlikely
ever to do, I remember
saying to myself and the person next to me.

Then I blinked and moved on
to other American scenes
of haystacks, water whitening over rocks,

even one of a brown hare
who seemed so wired with alertness
I imagined him springing right out of the frame.

Billy Collins, “Fishing on the Susquehanna in July” from Picnic, Lightning. Copyright © 1998 by Billy Collins                 



          The Almost Uptown Poetry Cartel, a true American
       institution, has been at Harrisburg's Midtown Scholar Bookstore's
       Internet Cafe since September 2012. 
But we've been taking care of 
business much longer than that.
Poetry Thursdays has met (almost) every Thursday 
since April 1999. 
                                Venues? Well, just to name a few:
                                      Sweet Passions, 3rd St, Harrisburg, 1999--2001
                       Sparky & Clarks, 2d St, Hbg. 2001--2002
                     Gamut Theater, Strawberry Sq. Hbg. 2003
                    Susquehanna Art Museum, Hbg. 2003--2007
                       Crimson Frog, Cedar Cliff Mall, Camp Hill, 2007--2008
 Midtown Cinema, Harrisburg, 2008--2012
                                    Midtown Scholar, Harrisburg, 2012--present