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PLU Open Mic featuring Lisa Pasold

PLU Open Mic featuring Lisa Pasold

Write-up by JFMcG. Photos crowdsourced.

Just one week before the Launch Party of Paris Lit Up Magazine, Culture Rapide populated with poets and writers, local and foreign, for an intimate night of words and… Mojitos! That’s right, after one long month of quotidian discipline, I am proud to announce that I’m back #offthewagon. A special thank you goes out to Vlad, our favorite bartender, for supplying me with an abundant supply of happy host juice.

As tradition dictates, Kate Noakes kicked us off (and almost kicked me for making her go first again) with poetry about what I’ve been struggling with for the past 30 days: water. It was, after all, National Poetry Day on that little island that pretends to be European sometimes. Fortunately, Ana brought us back to shore with her first original poem, Nunca te he visto tan triste: y eso que no puedo verte. Jenna’s Jar returned (writing exercise: put scraps of paper with  random words written on them into a jar and then fish out two) with Sugar and Submarine.

After all those beautiful women on stage, it was time to get them swooning with the cool jazz radio voice of Moe Seager‘s Río escondido about dirty deals in Latin America. Next was David Sirois who flew in with varying degrees of love for a Pigeon convention. Pulling up a table and chair, famous comedy writer David Jaggard from ParisUpdate and MyFrenchLife slammed his fist demanding: STAY WHERE YOU WERE BORN! But French François defied him and performed Pacific Northwest Poet Richard Brautigan with an unlimited supply of .45mm. Michelle gave us a sneak preview of her new book to be launched at Poets Live, Roadkill.

Finally the first round ended with our special guest Lisa Pasold. Despite the fact she’s Canadian and my Yankee envy, we let her take the stage to give us Drown in the City of the Joyful Damned, The Phone only Goes One Way Tonight. Interesting factoid #4368: hotdogs are called “Coney Islands” in Michigan. Now who’s envious?

She came back after the break to give us some more of her maple love: My Phone Beeps and We Have Oprah and Watermelon (working title) and a stirring poem about journalism in Kenya, What’s Possible. Finally she let us have is with Vinegar Pig Meat Wolf and Menstrual Blood in B.C… See, I told you Canadians were dangerous.

Alejandro came in from Mexico and let himself go amongst poets and kindred souls. D, a virgin, read Love is too Soft and too hard to Let Go. Luis, also from D.F., dedicated new horizons in memory of his sister. Fuerza, compañero. Moe came back for more with Fitzgerald’s Pandemonium and an appropriate Bar Poem. Another Mojito, please! Michelle Rhapsodied with her Roadkill.

In the end, David asked: How much of my life for beauty? All of it, of course!

Lisa Pasold grew up in Montreal, which gave her the jaywalking skills to survive as a freelance writer. She is a poet, novelist, and occasional TV travel show host. Her first book of poetry Weave, was hailed as a masterpiece by Geist. Her second book of poetry, A Bad Year for Journalists, was nominated for an Alberta Book Award. The Globe and Mail called this new poetry collection:

“critical, darkly funny and painstakingly lyrical.”

Her debut novel, Rats of Las Vegas, was described as “enticing as the lit-up Las Vegas strip and as satisfying as a winning hand at poker” by The Winnipeg Free Press. And Freefall described the book as:

“the incredible experience of being told a story rather than reading a book. As if reading a fairy tale, you are pulled into Millard’s world, and it is a world so compelling that you can’t bring yourself to leave.”

Her most recent book, Any Bright Horse, was nominated for a Governor General’s Literary Award in Canada. She divides her time between Paris and New Orleans.
Lisa Pasold Reading from Weave

Trailer for Rats of Las Vegas

Download mp3