Taos April 2016

I have just returned from Taos, New Mexico, where I was invited to read at the Jazz & Poetry event produced by the Taos Bebop Jazz Society and Analog Eric and Judy Katzman. I had first gone to Taos in 2000 for the Taos Poetry Circus, produced by Peter Rabbit, Anne McNaughton and Amalio Madueño, and felt immediately at ease. In my short sleeve shirt, shorts, sandals and straw hat my first year someone asked me: “How long have you been coming here?” (The Circus happened from 1982-2002.) I told them it was my first time and they said: “You fit right in.” I did, with the exception of the altitude and its affects on my tendency to be dehydrated, but I went the next two years much to the chagrin of my oldest daughter Rebecca, as the event culminated in the Heavyweight Chapionship Poetry Bout which was the night before Father’s Day each year, so I was AWOL in Slaughter.

So I was accompanied this year by Bhakti Watts and we were hosted by Amalio, who may be the most under-rated poet in the U.S. He was on the bill at the Taos Mesa Brewing Company along with Annie, the Greg Abate Quartet (which ably backed the poets who read) and Lady Laurie Buckley, the daughter of the infamous Lord Buckley and Lee Boeck, the emcee, who had Lord Buckley’s old hipster rap down pat. I read First, Breath (For Bud and Monk), some American Sentences and a poem tribute to Frank Morgan, all of which were well-received by the audience that braved an April 16 snowstorm to attend!

Some photos of the trip:

On the road from Santa Fe to Embudo

At La Fonda in Santa Fe

Guitar purse for sale in Santa Fe window

The Rabbit Queen and her Box of Fur



The Rabbit Queen awaits her Blue Corn Hotcakes at the Taos Inn.

Taos Inn, home of Doc Martin’s and the Blue Corn Hotcakes which were on the menu in 2000 when I stayed there and legendary alto saxophonist Frank Morgan played in the music room.

View of Garca’s truck and mountain as seen from Garcia compound, Embudo, NM

Garcia’s Dead Rat Museum

Ojo Calienta Mineral Springs

Ojo Caliente Mineral Springs, New Mexico

Garcia and the Rabbit Queen

Garcia & the Wily Splabman after a soak at the Ojo Caliente Mineral Springs, New Mexico.

Greg Abate Quartet with Annie McNaughton in the foreground, April 15, 2016, Taos Trails Inn, Ojo Caliente, New Mexico

Taos Trails Inn, Ojo Caliente, NM

Sunset view from porch of Taos Trails Inn, Ojo Caliente, New Mexico

Taos Trails Inn

Greg Abate and Pamela Post at the Taos Trails Inn 4.15.16, John Rangell Guitar

Snow on April 16!

The Rabbit Queen gets her Blue Corn Hotcakes

April Taos Snow

The Rabbit Queen shivers in the snow outside the Taos Inn

About Splabman

Paul Nelson is founder of SPLAB in Seattle and the Cascadia Poetry Festival. He wrote a collection of essays, Organic Poetry & a serial poem re-enacting the history of Auburn, WA, A Time Before Slaughter (shortlisted for a 2010 Genius Award by The Stranger.) He’s interviewed Allen Ginsberg, Michael McClure, Wanda Coleman, Anne Waldman, Sam Hamill, Robin Blaser, Nate Mackey, Eileen Myles, George Bowering, Diane di Prima, Brenda Hillman, George Stanley, Joanne Kyger & many Cascadia poets, has presented his poetry and poetics in London, Brussels, Qinghai and Beijing, China, Lake Forest, Illinois and other places & writes an American Sentence every day. www.PaulENelson.com
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