Tuesday, December 20, 2011

"To Be Continued" by Jamie Gaughran-Perez

Hope grew up on the East Coast and attended public school. She had great teeth.

Constance always said, “Want in one hand and shit in the other, and see which one fills up first.”

June was tough and quick-witted. She moved to Germany after college. Later she moved to Texas, I hear.

Will lived through his job. Late at night he could be found in his office, staring out the darkened window.

Charity was a serial monogamist. Some people habitually change up their style to match their partners. She was the kind of person you’d do that for.

Chastity was never very close to her family. She had to file multiple state tax forms year after year, too.

Happy was never very credible. Beyond the ridiculous name (what were they thinking?), he always had horrible breath.

April lived in a 70s-style split level ranch and came from a traditional “broken home.” She was good people, though.

Our heroine sees all these faces and more when she closes her eyes, and yet manages to get out of bed every day.

Jamie will be performing his work at WORMS at the Metro Gallery on December 20.

Friday, December 16, 2011

"Yelling Seance in a Crowded Theater" by Megan McShea

Dots gang up on lines in a tiny room, they go into a tiny room then something happens outside the room, and they stop what they were doing and do something different, until they are bigger than the entirety of whatever is outside the room. Then they relax, their dogs relax, their crabs relax, they become oysters and listen. Nearby, the jello salad is a world unto itself, a complexity going unnoticed within this complexity, until now, with the quiet oysters listening. Outside again, making something tall out of something wide, a thin scaffolding viewed from afar, where the laboring classes are getting agitated about it, taking turns being figure and ground, figure and ground, a groundswell of answers to questions no one has asked yet, and a final, wavering opening, like a tunnel flying. Like they borrowed a picnic and made a brain out of it. Like showing what’s going on in five different rooms of a house, and suddenly what’s going on is the same in all the rooms, and the house turns into a huge mechanical buzzard and flies off.

Quick lace everywhere, ornamenting silence with a tasteful quick lace everywhere, so a hundred thousand souls can laugh in peace.

Megan will be performing her work at WORMS at the Metro Gallery on December 20.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

"Instruction piece for a night in November" by Ric Royer

Stare at an object until it changes
becomes something different
something independent from you
its own thing.
Stare at the object until it becomes nameless
as mysterious as it was before
anyone had ever seen it.
Then walk away.

Ric will be performing his work at WORMS at the Metro Gallery on December 20.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Tuesday, December 20 — Jamie Gaughran-Perez, Megan McShea, Caroline Marcantoni, Ric Royer

Exciting new readers this time around, PLUS Baltimore ex-patriate back by popular demand! Jamie Gaughran-Perez, Megan McShea, Caroline Marcantoni, Ric Royer.

JAMIE GAUGHRAN-PEREZ lives in Baltimore, but spends his days working in DC as a creative director doing web-ish stuff. When he's not there, he's a co-director of Narrow House — an independent small press in Baltimore — along with Justin Sirois and Lauren Bender. He plays bass in the band Sweatpants and another band that may or may not be called Coach Taylor. He's serious about fish tacos and eating in general. He's been known to interview robots.

MEGAN McSHEA has been published in Shattered Wig Review, the i.e. reader, and Topograph and online at Everyday Genius, Superarrow, and On Earth As It Is. Her play, "Aldo is on the floor," was a part of the 2011 Un-saddest Factory's 10-minute play festival. She's currently working on a collection of collaborative writings written with Baltimore writers, tentatively called "Ancient Party." She works as an archivist in DC and spends a lot of time napping on the MARC train.

CAROLINE MARCANTONI has been living, dancing, and talking to people in the Baltimore area for almost 2 years now. After graduating with a sincere degree in philosophy, she woke up to dancing and drumming. She loves to read and write and sing. She loves to listen to music. Some of her favorite authors and artists and people that inspire the way she goes about things are; Fyodor Dostoevsky, Diane diPrima, Frank O'Hara, Virginia Woolf, Dina Kelberman, and Joan of Arc, among others. She is thankful for letting WORMS let her share. Thank you for listening.

RIC ROYER is a writer, performer, writer of performances and performer of writings. He makes Word Shows. It's like theatre, but with extra words. His works of literature include She Saw Ghosts, He Saw Bodies (Narrow House), The Weather Not the Weather (Outside Voices), There Were One and It Was Two (Narrow House), and Anthesteria (Bark Art Press). He is also a founding editor of Ferrum Wheel, now captained by Chris Fritton, and a PhD Candidate in Performance Studies at Brown University.

Tuesday, December 20 —— Doors 7:30, Reading at 8 —— FREE

(but bring $$$ for booze and books)
@ the METRO GALLERY (1700 N Charles St, Baltimore, MD)
RSVP to the facebook event
----WORMS is not responsible----

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Tuesday, November 1 — Joseph Martin, Chris Mason, Lola Pierson, Mike Young

is back for a third season at a new location — METRO GALLERY (1700 N Charles) — and it's on a TUESDAY now. But don't worry! Joseph Martin, Chris Mason, Lola Pierson, & Mike Young are going to be there to help us adjust to the FLUX inherent in the Univers.

CHRIS MASON grew up in Minnesota but has lived in Baltimore since 1970. He is a member of The Tinklers and Old Songs (an ancient Greek poetry song translation group). His book of poetry Hum Who Hiccup was published by Narrow House in 2011.

LOLA PIERSON is a self-producing playwright from Baltimore, MD. She is a founding member of The Un Saddest Factory, a Baltimore based DIY theatre company. She holds a BA in Human Rights and Playwriting from Bard College, and lives and produces work at The Bell Foundry, a performance space which specializes in live literary, theatrical and video performance. Her work has been performed at the Baltimore Museum of Art, The LOF/t, Access Theater, The 2640 Space and a number of smaller nontraditional theatre venues on the East Coast.

MIKE YOUNG is the author of Look! Look! Feathers, a book of stories, and We Are All Good If They Try Hard Enough, a book of poems. He edits NOÖ Journal, runs Magic Helicopter Press, and writes for HTMLGIANT. Find him online at http://mikeayoung.blogspot.com/.

Tuesday, November 1 —— 8 p.m. —— FREE
(but bring $$$ for booze and books)
@ the METRO GALLERY (1700 N Charles St, Baltimore, MD)

RSVP to the facebook event
----WORMS is not responsible----

Friday, June 10, 2011

NO IDEAS BUT WITH WINGS: A review of Chris Toll's " The Disinformation Phase"

In his new full-length book of poetry, The Disinformation Phase (forthcoming this month from Publishing Genius), Chris Toll offers up a vision of poetic enlightment. Within a deceptively minimal set of syntactic maneuvers, Toll presents a rich and varied world of boundless danger and boundless wonder.

Many poems parody teaser-trailers, setting the scene for some cataclysmic event, ending just before we get there. The book is heavy on foreplay, which is all for the better. Toll earns every climax:

"and my God is you."

"There is an ache where my heart used to be."

"Be light."

Etc., etc.

Counter to the bulk of the last few decades of American poetry—noncommittal, objectivist, compulsively brainy—The Disinformation Phase is aesthetically certain (almost a manifesto, in fact), imaginative, and emotionally fearless. Even when employing classic post-modern devices, Toll remains an enchanted practitioner. For example, puns, too often the frustrated purpose of idle poetic hands, here act in the service of an ongoing, fruitful investigation of a secret spiritual language.

In some ways Toll has been writing the same poem for years. But don't confuse a focused artistic vision with the lack thereof. That's how most people missed the brilliance of the Ramones the first time around. The poems resemble each other because each is an incomplete incarnation of the same vast and intangible generative force. It's like the Tao Te Ching, except it's all lies. Of course, I don't quite mean that. In his poems Toll plays the part of the snake oil salesman, but in this case the snake oil works, and hidden in the performance of the con are many actual truths that range from the personal to the cosmic.

Disinformation Phase release party:

Saturday, June 25, 2011
8PM at the Metro Gallery
(1700 N Charles St, Baltimore)

Readings by
Chris Toll
Christine Ferrera
Megan Boyle

Music by
She Bites!
Jacob Panic

$10 (w/ book)


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

"The Pilgrim Dreaming" by Chris Toll

I’m in a suburb of Cleveland.
I’m talking to a monitor in a mailbox.
The husband and wife are wearing pig masks.
They say they won’t deactivate the force field.
Missiles are screaming over my head
and destroying houses a block away.

Chris will be performing his work at WORMS on March 16. Watch the trailer for Chris' forthcoming book, The Disinformation Phase, here:

by Rupert Wondolowski

Just as regular as a clock can tick you reach up for the old pigskin high on a dusty shelf as the sun is setting and the light is becoming gray and pointillist and your hand brushes an old Halloween mask. You pick up the mask, but it's slippery and brittle at the same time and you realize it's an actual face. As you drop it and collapse to your knees little songbirds jet up from the wrinkly folds and warble to you with outdated pre-recorded answering machine voices. Your mother calls to you from downstairs that dinner's ready, but she's been dead for five years now.

Your brother used to be able to imitate your grandmother's voice perfectly, breaking your heart when you came home from school to what you thought was an empty house, but then there was what you thought was the treasured voice of granny. Your brother could never imitate your mother, though, and the last anyone's heard he's currently hiding in a polar grotto below the visible pattern of the natural world, going by the name Red Reflectors On a Tree Stump. The manifesto he issued to the press, which now consists of a bunch of slightly above average intelligence junior high students sending out a bunch of emails grading events or personages either "stinky", "not stinky" or "chill", states simply "Ouch".

The scene on the small street outside does nothing to calm the beating of your heart or settle your emotions. Everyone is sitting outside their homes, it is a beautiful early fall evening after all, but they are so still and their eyes are all covered over with lid flesh and sloppy hand-stitching. No one seems bothered by this state, in fact no one is moving or saying anything at all.

Rupert will be performing his work at WORMS on March 16.

Monday, March 14, 2011

from "Star Hoppers" by Dave K.

Eventually there came a more pressing concern: Wendell had to go to the bathroom. Certain primal, physical needs were good at boxing in loose strands of thought, or just passing through them altogether, piloting through the asteroid belt of Wendell’s mind and diffusing to the parts of his brain that made him stand up, walk to the bathroom, open the door, lift the seat. Some actions are beyond theory. When a volcano is erupting, no one tries to figure out whether a tectonic shift or mantle plume caused it. They’re too consumed by fear of its output. This is what Wendell’s galaxy of anti-psychotics had reduced him to: a gastrointestinal Pompeii.

Dave will be performing his work at WORMS on March 16.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

"Secondwave Dysphoria" by Buck Downs

sweating it out

until it's over

I did a double

take with my feet

the way I lost it

a map will not help

Buck will be performing his work at WORMS on March 16.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Wednesday, March 16 — Buck Downs, Dave K., Chris Toll, Rupert Wondolowski

You would regret missing this WORMS with Buck Downs, Dave K., Chris Toll, & Rupert Wondolowski.

A native of Jones County (Miss.), BUCK DOWNS lives and works in Washington, DC. His books include Marijuana Softdrink, Ladies Love Outlaws, and Recreational Vehicle.

DAVE K. is a Baltimore writer whose essays and speculative fiction have appeared in Welter, Front Porch Journal, Battered Suitcase, ULA Redux, and the Nautilus Engine. He is also a regular contributor to Adfreak, Adweek Magazine's weblog. In addition to the experimental work he publishes through his 'zine imprint, Banners of Death, DK is working on a novel about clowns. When he's not writing, DK is a village and civil parish in Hampshire, England.

CHRIS TOLL is a poet and collagemaker who lives in Baltimore, Maryland. He co-curates the Benevolent Armchair Reading Series. Publishing Genius Press will soon release his new book, The Disinformation Phase.

RUPERT WONDOLOWSKI is editor of Shattered Wig Review and Press, which has somehow become Baltimore's longest running literary magazine despite no one knowing of it. He is the author most recently of The Origin of Paranoia As a Heated Mole Suit (Publishing Genius Press). His work has recently appeared in City Sages: Baltimore, The i.e. Series Reader, Everyday Genius and Fell Swoop. He also appears in Luca DiPierro and Michael Kimball's film "60 Writers/60 Places". He is currently clearing a spot in his house for getting down and ugly with some acrylic paints. Shattered Wig Press activities and Rupert's writing can be found at:

As always it's free, but bring $$$ for books and to help Buck make enough money for the train ticket back to DC; he's been stranded all day, & he has a good job, he'll show you his pay stub and his ID.

Monday, February 14, 2011

"Threshing" by Robert Schreur

Not my words,
which are chaff,
but their gist
is the grist
for your mill.

Winnow me,
world, till just
what I mean
will remain
to be said.

Robert will perform his work at WORMS on February 16.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Wednesday, February 16 - Erin Gleeson, Jesse Heffler, Ashlie Kauffman, Robert Schreur

The month of fevers will not go unWORMS'd! Welcome Erin Gleeson, Jesse Heffler, Ashlie Kauffman, & Robert Schreur to WORMS on Wednesday, February 16.

ERIN GLEESON is a writer, illustrator and co-creator of the touring puppet series Showbeast. Her work has been featured all across the country, and she recently co-wrote and co-directed videos for Dan Deacon and Beach House. She writes the blog letsbeselfsufficient.com, in which she explores sustainable living in an urban environment.

is superstitious about both photography & biography.

ASHLIE KAUFFMAN was lucky enough to grow up in the Hereford Zone. She has two too many masters degrees, in poetry and fiction. She writes book reviews for the Baltimore-based journal JMWW.

ROBERT SCHREUR's two most recent books are Poems and Problems and Scattered Remains, both privately published. His Syllabic Press recently published a translation of poems by Ishikawa Takuboku titled On Knowing Oneself Too Well.

It's free and open to all, but bring $$$ to purchase books & beverages.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Short pieces by Lesser Gonzalez Alvarez












Lesser will be performing his work at WORMS on January 19.

Monday, January 17, 2011

"Plots" by Andy Devine

A, a, and, and, and, and, and, anything, at, aunt’s, away, backseat, brother, brother, burial, but, buy, California, cemetery, did, didn’t, dining, drove, each, else, family, family, father, father, father, for, four, from, front, got, her, him his, house, house, house, huge, hung, I, in, in, in, in, in, in, included, it, its, keep, know, laid, let, lived, make, me, me, might, mother, mother, mother, mother, my, my, my, my, my, my, my, my, my, my, of, of, of, of, of, Ohio, old, on, one, or, or, our, outside, pack, plots, portrait, response, room, sat, seat, separated, side, suitcase, summer, that, that, that, the, the, the, the, the, the, the, then, there, think, this, three, to, to, to, together, took, until, up, us, was, was, was, way, we, we, we, we, we, were, what, when, where, with, years, ,, ., ., ., ., ., ., ., ..

Andy will be performing his work at WORMS on January 19.

Friday, January 14, 2011

"Junctions" by Heather Rounds

Deer sprawled across the junctions of a state the shape of a broken heart. Point where the Blue Ridges poke and the birds are urgent, no stars, no moon over this roadway, nothing much kicking through. At rest stops we are small incidents.

When we left her this morning she was squeaking around her pulpy brown garden, picking at a berry bush, wearing too little. There may have been blankets of snow the moment we drove away.

In the rearview mirror, the road keeps expanding and we quietly acknowledge that by now we've been replaced by the teabags we left soaking through paper towels on the coffee table. By now we are not part of the true order of things.

Heather will be performing her work at WORMS on January 19.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Wednesday, January 19 - Andy Devine, Lesser Gonzalez Alvarez, Lola Pierson, Heather Rounds

A new year. A new WORMS. Watch Andy Devine, Lesser Gonzalez Alvarez, Lola Pierson, and Heather Rounds put the past behind them on January 19 at the Bell Foundry.

ANDY DEVINE ’s WORDS (Publishing Genius, 2010) has been called “amazing,” “genius,” and “a joy to experience.” And one critic noted that, “Devine has dismantled the English language.” Devine’s alphabetical fictions and essays have appeared in a variety of literary magazines, including New York Tyrant, Unsaid, elimae, Everyday Genius, and Taint. In 2002, Devine was awarded the Riddley Walker Prize (for a work that ignores conventional rules of grammar and punctuation). In 2007, he published his first chapbook, “As Day Same That the the Was Year” (Publishing Genius). In 2009, Devine was awarded The Ivory-Billed Woodpecker Award (for fiction in the face of adversity). Andy Devine Avenue — in Flagstaff, Arizona — is named after him.


LOLA PIERSON is a MFA candidate at Towson University. She is a founding member of The Un Saddest Factory, a Baltimore based DIY theatre company, and lives at the Bell Foundry. She won third place in the Baltimore Citypaper's fiction contest this year and is the author of many hit plays.

HEATHER ROUNDS lives, writes, collaborates, etc. in Baltimore.