Fika With Vicky Radio Interview

On November 2 Vicky Young Bennison had me as a guest on her radio show, Fika with Vicky. We talked a lot about the poetry of Niagara Falls and this website. Click here to listen to the show – our segment starts at 1:32:00.Turn the sound up-as  usual  I’m  hard  to  hear!fika

Nickel Eclipse: Iroquois Moon: Poems and Paintings by Eric Gansworth

eric gansworth
Cover of Nickel Eclipse: Iroquois Moon

Although no poem or painting is included here, this book of poetry by Eric Gansworth is an important addition to the literature of Niagara. Gansworth,  who was raised on the Tuscarora Indian Reservation in Niagara County, New York, just outside Niagara Falls, still resides in the area and teaches in Buffalo, NY.

Publisher supplied:

“Nickel Eclipse is a merging of personal and cultural history. Structured in part like the alternating colored beads on a wampum belt, patterns emerge from this exploration of contemporary life on an eastern Indian reservation and the sometimes tenuous persistence of a culture after centuries of survival within another, more dominant, culture. The poems, while highly personalized, reflect the tension of speakers surviving within-though never fully of-that larger culture, where lives are formed and meaning defined by their inherent separateness.
Gansworth’s paintings complement the poems, using the metaphor of the cycle of moons identified in the traditional Haudenosaunee (Iroquois Confederacy) culture’s calendar. These paintings of the different lunar phases serve to organize the poems around a common image, breaking them into sections through the use of an eclipse. Additionally, the relationships indigenous communities have had with the United States-from thriving to near extinction to eventual re- emergence-are symbolized in the progression of that eclipse across the moon.
Symbols common to the culture appear throughout the cycles: the Three Sisters (Corn, Beans, and Squash), Strawberries, and Green Corn, from the ceremonies named for them, and more consistently, wampum beads-within which Haudenosaunee culture is iconographically documented-appear in various incarnations, from the earliest shell groupings, through isolated shaped beads, small strings, and full- belt formations.”

Run to your nearest library or book store to read this remarkable collection by Eric Gansworth.

Visit Eric Gansworth’s website

A Half-Life of Cardio-Pulmonary Function: Poems and Paintings by Eric Gansworth

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Cover of A Half Life of Cardio-Pulmonary Function

Although no poem or painting is included here, this book of poetry by Eric Gansworth is an important addition to the literature of Niagara. Gansworth,  who was raised on the Tuscarora Indian Reservation in Niagara County, New York, just outside Niagara Falls, still resides in the area and teaches in Buffalo, NY.

Publisher supplied book information:

“Echoing the muscular rhythms of the heart beat, the poems in this stunning collection alternate between contraction and expansion. Eric Gansworth explores the act of enduring, physically, historically, and culturally. A member of the Haudenosaunee tribe, Gansworth expresses the tensions experienced by members of a marginalized culture struggling to maintain tradition within a much larger dominant culture. With equal measures of humor, wisdom, poignancy, and beauty, Gansworth’s poems mine the infinite varieties of individual and collective loss and recovery. Fourteen paintings punctuate his poetry, creating an active dialogue between word and image steeped in the tradition of the mythic Haudenosaunee world. A Half-Life of Cardio-Pulmonary Function is the most recent addition to Gansworth’s remarkable body of work chronicling the lives of upstate New York’s Indian communities. ”

Run to your nearest library or book store to read this remarkable collection by Eric Gansworth.

Visit Eric Gansworth’s website

Niagara Falls Writer’s Festival Update

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Andrew Porteus reads a poem from his book Niagara Mornings at the 2016 Niagara Falls Writer’s Festival

The Niagara Falls Writer’s Festival is happening this Saturday, October 19, at three of the Niagara Falls Public Library Branches.  Niagara Now wrote an article about it – Niagara Falls Writer’s Festival gets help from some NOTLersThe program can be accessed through this link.

Poem of Tesla by Miloje Popović

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Statue of Nikola Tesla at Niagara Falls, Ontario. Photo by Andrew Porteus, January 23, 2007

Unique…
Carved from bitter cliffs of Lika peaks
Wonderous…
Passing along the miracles of shine –
he shared flames and grew to divine

Ten fingers –
released the forces of giants
His visions and grants –
pushed the torrents to Niagara plants

Wizard…
without hats and tricks
Witchcraft…
without canes and bricks

From caves, mysterious and frightening
he gifted the world with lightening –
Shoreham tower in the skies –
a hint of miraculous wireless device

Gentleman –
making company to sleepless dawns…
With a single move and step –
seven miles along the hills and lawns…
A golden heritage to mankind –
fascinating product of prodigious mind…

Prophet of upcoming time –
deceased in obscurity, without a dime
His soul in storms and clashes –
fortune for planet from his ashes

Source: Tesla Universe

Also published in Barkan, Stanley H. & Neale, Dorothea (editors) Americana Anthology, Volume I: Bicentennial Edition: 1776-1976.  Cross-Cultural Communications, 1976.