Tuesdays at Curley's

Welcome to PoemAlley, Stamford, Connecticut's eclectic venue for poets, poetry reading and discussion! Open to anyone living in Fairfield County and the surrounding area, we meet Tuesday nights at 7:00 pm at Curley's Diner on 62 Park Place (behind Target) . Come contribute, get something to eat, or simply listen!

Jun 11, 2018

Frank Chambers: The Spoken Word "Against The Howling Mob"

As president of the Fairfield County branch of the Connecticut Poetry Society (now, in its forty-fourth year and spanning ten chapters with the addition of Farmington Valley), tomorrow’s featured poet at Curley’s is Frank Chambers, who will be reciting material drawn mainly from his commitment to his family and, in particular, what he terms affectionately as “the four young muses masquerading as children”.

Frank’s Open Mic program, which he has facilitated faithfully for many years each month at the Stamford Barnes & Noble, has been a valuable venue for expressions of hope, humor, honest outrage and humanity by poets and essayists, not just from the immediate vicinity, but from as far as across the nation and the world.

Situated appropriately enough in the downtown Stamford Town Center retail/office complex (itself, just a few years younger than the CPS, publisher of the annual Connecticut River Review), Open Mic’s regular outpourings of creative observation and dissent make for a grounding counterpoint to a city which has become increasingly dizzy in its repeated submission to the celebrated vapidity of corporatized culture, a widespread trend dramatized to disturbing effect in this video version of progressive metal trio Rush's 1993 song "Nobody's Hero":


You can revisit the details of past speakers here, here and here.

Frank has placed poetry in such publications as PostScriptPoetry EmergingLong River Run (the members-only magazine of the CPS), A First Tuesday in Wilton and the 2006 PoemAlley anthology Wednesdays at Curley’s (Turn of River Press).  

Open Mic Poetry begins at 7:15 pm on the second Monday of each month in the DVD and Music section on the main floor of the bookstore in the Stamford Town Center mall:

Barnes & Noble
100 Greyrock Place, Suite H009
Stamford, CT 06906

May 14, 2018

Duane Esposito & Ralph Nazareth: Friendship and Individuality In Defiance Of Time

Building on the their experience as co-presenters at last December’s “Poetry In Conversation” program at the Norwalk Library, this evening friends and academic colleagues Duane Esposito and Ralph Nazareth will be reading from their new collection, Dropping Death (Yuganta Press, 2018) at the Stamford Barnes & Noble bookstore this evening. 

Martin Buber (1878-1965)
Duane Esposito
In his write-up for the Colorado Review, poet Tim Wood draws particular attention to Dropping as a successful effort in its atypical commitment to honoring both, rather than suffusing either, contributors’ creative voices, such that “the point is… to bring them into orbit around one another. "
Ralph Nazareth
Among other interpretive lenses Wood applies in his examination is existentialist Martin Buber’s “I-Thou/I-It” dialectic in laying out how Duane and Ralph’s collaboration ties their friendship with an enthusiastic acknowledgement of that fundament of sapience, our sense of Self--and, by contrast, expressions of Otherness, be it in meeting a new neighbor, encountering different cultures, Death, or, in the sample below by Duane, the priorities of childhood: 
head inside to things
the toys
& crumbs & crafts

& such—
& I
lie beside it all—
rub my kids’ bellies—
tell them the story

Duane Esposito is a Professor of English at Nassau Community College, (from where Ralph recently retired). Duane holds an MFA from the University of Arizona and has placed work in dozens of journals. Prior to Dropping Death, he has published three collections, including Cadillac Battleship (Broken Tribe Press, 2005) and Declaration for Your Bones (Yuganta, 2012). He also resides on Long Island with his family on Lopsided Farm.

Ralph has released several collections, and is a dedicated poet, publisher and teacher who has worked in academic, penal and community settings--including the Tuesday night PoemAlley group based in Stamford’s Curley’s Diner. His book Ferrying Secrets was originally released by Yugadi Publishers, Hyderabad, India in 2005 and is available through Ralph's Yuganta Press. Last year’s Between Us the Long Road was published through Owl Feather Collective as a fundraiser for GraceWorks, Inc., the international non-profit foundation Ralph manages (find out more here).

Hosted by Frank Chambers, Barnes & Noble’s Open Mic Poetry program meets the second Monday of each month in the music/DVD section on the main floor of the bookstore (located in the Stamford Town Center), beginning at 7:15 p.m.

For more information, contact:

Barnes & Noble
100 Greyrock Place, Suite H009
Stamford, CT 06906


May 7, 2018

Robert Masterson & Doug Mathewson: Truth In Reality; Fiction As Truth

Globe-spanning journalist, writer and teacher Robert Masterson reads solo and in collaboration with editor/photographer and fellow prose and verse writer Doug Mathewson tomorrow night at Curley’s Diner.

A professor of English at City University of New York’s Borough of Manhattan Community College, Robert has placed work in numerous print and online publications and holds degrees from the University of New Mexico, the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at Naropa University in Boulder and the Shaanxi Normal University, the People’s Republic of China.

In Trial by Water (Dog Running Wild Press, 1982) and Artificial Rats & Electric Cats (Camber Press, 2008). Robert’s accounts and commentary derived from travels in Japan, India and elsewhere mix the ordinary with the far-reaching, culled from years of high-risk award-winning investigative reporting, including New York political corruption and the frightening aftermath of post-Chernobyl Ukraine, to the social tumult of China transitioning from communism to a market economy, ultimately informing the fourteen stories in 2012’s Garish Trouble (Finishing Line Press) on the underestimated branch-point decisions people make in daily life that spawn profound change down the road.

Interestingly, Doug Mathewson’s complementary “true stories from imaginary lives” often depict people adjusting to new, difficult situations, sometimes following personal setbacks or trauma, as in this moving November 28 posting from last year on his blog, little2say.org:

Sunday Afternoons
Long time ago, when I was first back, it was set up that I’d have this studio
apartment near the park. Just use the name “Walt Sizemore” they said, and the
place was mine. It was up on the third floor and looked out over a ball field.
On Sundays, during the good weather, there would usually be a softball game.
I’d nurse my hangover and half read the paper, half watch the game.
I was spooky back then about talking to people outside the center, so watching
the game from my balcony was all the socializing I could handle.

Listing Cultural Weekly, Boston Literary Magazine, Cloud City, the Jersey Devil Press and Rocky Mountain Revival among his credits, Doug has also contributed to the anthology Scabies and, reflecting his fascination with precision through brevity, is Senior Editor of Blink-Ink, a quarterly journal devoted to flash fiction of the fifty-word variety.

Find out more about Doug on Facebook.