by Tark Mackintosh

Peoria’s own Poetry Society announced this morning that, in addition to the title billing of known poets Miss Mary Mackryll and others, it would open its monthly doors for the first time to unknown, itinerant poets. ‘Any visiting writer may take part in the program,’ announced the Society’s pamphlet, posted up all over town, even in the train station, leading many to question whether the Society was openly encouraging the participation of vagrants and boxcar hobos.

‘I am a poet,’ claimed Tobias Jaundice Jr., a known wino and self-proclaimed minstrel out of Cincinnati who has been taking shelter under the railroad bridge in South Peoria in a cardboard house he constructed when the weather turned brisk, ‘and I intend to make an appearance at the Peoria Poetry Society gathering this Tuesday, where I have been assured there shall be an array of muffins and hot coffee, and there read from my own master opus, From Fruits As Jezebel,’ a tome we discovered that is published by Pornlenghetti Press and contains only short poems (50 lines or less), perfect for the society gathering.

When asked if she would be screening walk-in participants for content or hygiene, the Peoria Poetry Society president, Miss Mary Mackryll herself, replied that formal attire would be required, while ‘Each Man’s Muse must dictate his own Content. To stifle the wild mental meanderings of a true Poet is to stifle Art Herself.’

Lines from Mr. Jaundice’s ‘Honeysuckle Honey’ from From Fruits As Jezebel read:

In the corner of the bus depot
Piss and shit ankle deep I slipped
Sucking wine with my favorite hoar- [sic]
-gal out of Cinci and Detroit with very
Fine ankles…

Etc. etc.

Congratulations and best of luck to the Poetry Society and Miss Mary Mackryll. The reading is scheduled to take place tomorrow evening in the poets’ corner at Ye Bonnie Box on 1157 Sixth Street, and there is rumored to be free refreshments.