Friday, August 22, 2008

Featured Poet: Alfonso Colasuonno

"Alfonso Colasuonno is a 24-year old native New Yorker. He is a graduate of Beloit College with a BA in Creative Writing. He is currently working as a special education teacher in the New York City public school system, while simultaneously working towards his MS in Adolescent Special Education at Long Island University within the NYC Teaching Fellows program. In his creative pursuits, he primarily works within the mediums of screenplays and traditional prose, but is currently experimenting with poetry. " Editors note: Alfonso, a good friend of the OSFR editorial team and new poet, absolutely tore it up at the OSFR reading as a last minute replacement for Robert Voris, who was unable to attend. Alfonso's poetry represents a lot about the spirit of this site...he doesn't write lots of poetry, but he gave it a try, and then he was given a platform on which to stand and share it. It's too bad other poetry journals don't do that. Too bad indeed. Social Significance This poem is not socially significant. This poem won't make you think about the human condition. This poem won't alter your perceptions of reality like a drug that comes on slowly and then swiftly rushing into your bloodstream at 2 AM on a Saturday night in a nameless Midwestern college town surrounded by fields of wheat after a couple of rounds at the local pub that doesn't check IDs with the shamrock lit up in front with the Budweiser insignia on it. This poem is NYC since Rudy G. phallic skyscrapers piercing grey sky cunt delancey without ebon faced teenage hookers bensonhurst without sallow Mafiosi Williamsburg without tall bearded Israelites in fifties hats and suits alphabet city without heroin thin leather jacket mohawks. Hopelessly 21st century white out-of-touch with the streets male middle-class goyish upbringing bar hopping suit wearing upright citizen obama loving liberal arts college lack of culture useless dreck waste of time waste of space banned from the canon. An exercise in hopeless vanity. Art for commerce's sake. This poem is not (so)cially significant. I Hate Poetry Boring depictions of natural life flowers gardens pastoral settings classed mentality. What relation does that have to us in the city selling souls punching clocks? Woolf wrote beautifully. But works can't speak without a voice. Or any semblance of plot. College lecturers continue teaching to vapid careerists in lecture halls seating 500 Staring bored blank-eyed blasted by the ejaculated cacophonous voices making up this public circle jerk. A Creative Writing degree means that you have successfully learned how to type mediocre drivel. But it rhymes! It rhymes! Iambic pentameter. You can follow conventions You can join the work force Fight in wars Be a cop. Wear ties with smoking twin towers and "We will never forget" looking down at Art history philosophy degree from Reed Antioch Evergreen Oberlin Grinnell Carleton Beloit at job interviews in soaring office towers. It rhymes! A Love Poem to RJ Reynolds (8/15-17/08) Marlboro Lights are like smoking air. Marlboro Reds are as harsh as unfiltered Lucky Strikes. Winstons are addictive as hell. Nat Shermans are smooth but expensive. American Spirits are for hippies and you have to double puff. Parliaments have funny looking filters. Pall Mall Reds are decent but I feel like my grandfather when I smoke them. Basics USA Golds even Dorals are way too cheap tasting and burn too fast. I can't roll my own cigarettes and Drum tastes like crap anyway. Camel Lights Camel Filters Camel Turkish Gold as long as it's not mentholated. The mix of Virginia and Turkish tobacco creates a new race. All the cool kids artists writers fashionistas baristas college dilettantes smoke Camels. Joe Camel is a wickedly funny mascot stared at by students with lopsided grins on rich kid day old laptops in prison cell rooms in glorified bomb shelter dorms with trash bins filled with smashed Keystone Light cans and bottles of Carlo Rossi filled with cigarette butts. Camel, of course. If I had never smoked Camels I would have quit a lot sooner.