Saturday, March 30, 2013


intense autobiography.A  mutual aid.B, A  light touch.C  land-escape / soundscape.D  a charged space.E  building the dream house that is the body, where we live.F  self-organization as a devotional act.G  poetry as radical organizing.D 

What forms do we create in crisis, from crisis? What forms nourish us, heal us, free us to live? 

a two-day Symposium featuring Eleni Stecopoulos and special guests: Melissa Buzzeo, Thom Donovan, Margit Galanter, Bhanu Kapil, Beth Murray, Pavlos Stavropoulos, david wolach 

Friday APRIL 19, 2013 
Saturday APRIL 20, 2013

@ Subterranean Arthouse,
2179 Bancroft Way, Berkeley (just south and east of downtown Berkeley BART)

• Friday, 7-9:30 pm, talks & performances, $10/$5
• Saturday, 2-4:30 pm, workshops integrating writing with movement/somatic work, $10/$5
• Saturday, 7-9:30 pm, talks & performances, $10/$5

All-events ticket at door first evening: $25/$15
No one turned away for lack of funds


Melissa Buzzeo is the author of For Want and Sound (Les Figues, 2013), Face (BookThug, 2009), and What Began Us (Leon Works, 2007). Her poetic work has been greatly charged by a long engagement with hypnosis, palm reading and a desire for an altered consciousness tied to the body but radiating outward, which is to say healing. Or writing. She graduated from Cornell University and The University of Iowa's Writing Workshop, and currently teaches both Creative Writing and Architecture at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn. This year she is the 2013 Poet in Residence at Opus Projects Gallery in Chelsea.

Thom Donovan is an exemplary Post-Fordist laborer. He works as a poet, critic, scholar, archivist, professor, editor, and curator. His book The Hole can be purchased at SPD and he is currently working on his second book of poetry and first book of critical essays. He is the author of "Somatic Poetics," an essay regarding contemporary somatic practices and aesthetic discourse, and is a founding participant of the Nonsite Collective. For more information visit his blog Wild Horses Of Fire, now in its eighth year.

Margit Galanter is a dance poet and movement investigator living in Oakland, CA. Her practice, Physical Intelligence, encompasses her unique research perspective, helping people experience the innate clarity and vitality one can uncover through the potency of movement. Art Site PI Practice

Bhanu Kapil is a writer and bodyworker who lives in Colorado. She was a speaker at the third world congress of the World Association of Cultural Psychiatry in London, where she spoke about psychosis and the immigrant experience: the role of communal light touch and devotional acts as resilience factors. For the body. As for the text.

Beth Murray is a poet and homeopath with a practice for people and animals in the bay area. Last year she recovered from advanced breast cancer using a combination of modalities. To find out more about her recovery visit

Pavlos Stavropoulos is a longtime activist and organizer involved in numerous local, national and international liberatory and anarchist struggles, including anti-fascist and anti-austerity resistance in his native Greece. He is a founder of Woodbine Ecology Center, which focuses on sustainable communities and indigenous perspectives, a certified permaculture designer and instructor, a water and sustainability educator, a street medic and a father.

A longtime union organizer, writer on performance and experimental sound composition, and former body artist out of Detroit, david wolach is founding editor of Wheelhouse Magazine & Press. wolach’s first full-length collection of poems is Occultations (Black Radish Books, 2011, 2012). The full-length Hospitalogy is due out from Tarpaulin Sky Press in May of 2013. wolach is professor of text arts, poetics, and cultural theory at The Evergreen State College, and visiting faculty in Bard College’s Language & Thinking program.

In collaboration with The Poetry Center, Eleni Stecopoulos has curated programs featuring participants from diverse fields, including philosopher Alphonso Lingis, poet Raúl Zurita, anthropologists Barbara Tedlock and Dennis Tedlock, physician-poet David Watts, performance artists and disability culture activists Neil Marcus and Petra Kuppers, and many others. Author of a poetry collection, Armies of Compassion (Palm Press), and a recent chapbook, Daphnephoria (Compline), she is finishing a book on the poetics of healing.

A Thom Donovan, B Pavlos Stavropoulos, C Bhanu Kapil, D david wolach, E Melissa Buzzeo, F Beth Murray, G Margit Galanter 

Friday, July 29, 2011

Practice Modalities

Translation. Making space. Integration. Alternation. Tuning in/out. Turning down/up. Working (in) the dark. Attendance. Nursing. Cultivating the void.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Impasse / Chronic / Asklepion II

The one who could not be healed
would go to sleep in the abaton
"not to be stepped into"
to dream of Asklepios
who would reveal the remedy
or the dream itself could cure

I side with opacity

because it's in the dark something changes

and we never see it

Etel Adnan from Beirut writes that she has never seen war

They say healing needs witnesses
a patient, reintegration into community

but mystery requires darkness
(No one young can see how / opacity lends protection not risk)

I don't think we see healing
as we don't see a child growing every day

our bodies do not tell stories but enlist them travel them become subject to

[It’s because I’m not a subject I light out for the territory]

our bodies prepare for future bodies
at every moment repairing aligning acting interpreting

for plants it is always night

"I passed cancer two years ago"

In Greek the idiom is chronologic rather than victorious

Healing takes place in the impasse / the sickness passes

Time is a living being
                        - Alma Kunanbaeva, Eurasian Shamanism as Healing,
                           Stanford 2005

Poetry as antibiotic, malpractice, and placebo effect

I came across this article by John Lundberg in the venerable HuffPo recently: Can Poetry Heal?

I found these lines particularly ironic and troubling (in that they seek to make poetry untroubled and untroubling):

"Longo also speaks to a third potential benefit of writing poetry: that writing a poem can help to clear up one's emotions on a complex issue."

"Experts are careful to stress that poetry is a tool, which, wrongfully employed, can hurt rather than heal a patient. But many feel that it has significant potential. In a Time Magazine article on poetry therapy, Yale Psychiatrist Albert Rothenberg offered that "poetry by itself does not cure," but noted the benefit of its unique focus on verbalization, which, he offered, is "the lifeblood of psychotherapy."

Calling Robert Kocik here - by subtlest and therefore most potent means - to treat the iatrogenic effects produced above...gathering myself for emergent measures...induce the chronic to remediate the acute..

Poets, still trying to make poetry anesthetic to remove the sting of aesthetics?

Psychiatrists, still trying to defang poetry into talking cure?