Nature of the Muse – 1/30/14

Thanks to Brandon Perdomo for the flyer!

Program from the third Nature of the Muse event:

fireside reading & live writing @ LIC BAR 1/30/14

people wish to be settled; only as far as they are unsettled is there any hope for them. –r.w. emerson

the players:

AUDREY DIMOLA delights in making her talented writer-friends sweat! She is the author of Decisions We Make While We Dream, an original poetry and prose collection, guerrilla sticker poet of the Compass Project, devious founder of “Nature of the Muse,” and curator of the first ever Queens Literary Town Hall, bringing together the growing literary community in her home borough. She is obsessed with Freddie Mercury (and leopard print), and wishes she was Peter Pan. A steadfast crusader for culture in Queens and a lifelong supporter/participant in the arts – Audrey lives for creative exploration across genres, and aims always to stay wild and stay grateful.

MALINI SINGH MCDONALD was born and raised in Manhattan but is proud to call Queens her home. After all, she’s lived here half her life in Kew Gardens. When she isn’t doing all things theatre, she finds solace in writing poetry. She is beyond thrilled to be reading for “Nature of the Muse.” She has read for Boundless Tales and the REZ Reading Series. Her work has been published in Newtown Literary Journal and she is contributing to an upcoming book on Kew Gardens due in February. She loves being a tourist in her hometown and is currently working on a series of poems on her NYC.

DEVIN DOYLE is the Co-President, along with Audrey Dimola and Aida Zilelian, of Boundless Tales Inc. ( He has submitted poetry via the United States Postal Service to the following publications: Volt, The Iowa Review, Tin House, Antioch Review, EPOCH, and Newtown Literary. He only heard back from Newtown Literary, which he was accepted to, which came out like a year ago. He has no website dedicated to his writing. (Curator’s note: Nature of the Muse supports sarcastic bios)

JEFF LAGRECA is a writer, director, teacher, actor and improviser residing in NYC and is currently at work on a family musical, Bijou and the Bots, for the Gentile Entertainment Group. He is a writer/creator of Minimum Wage, which made its Off Broadway debut in NYC in 2007, receiving the Producer’s Award in the 2002 & 2006 FringeNYC festivals and “Outstanding Musical Comedy Act” from BackStage Magazine ( Jeff has written and directed corporate shows all over the US, written and performed for TV (Comedy Central, Food Network & more), and is writing a series of children’s books including The Gargoyle Garden and the recently published Hideously Heinous (Wide Awake Press). He is currently working on his first Middle Grade novel, The Water Goblins, and also has a band called H2Awesome! which specializes in nerdy punk rock (

DR. M. LEONA GODIN is a writer and performer. She has produced two plays: The Star of Happiness: Helen Keller on Vaudeville?! AND The Spectator & the Blind Man: Stories of Seeing & Not-Seeing. She received her PhD in early modern literature from NYU’s English department, and has taught many classes on the “Great Books of Western Civilization.” Her collection of poems, From Homer to ME, was written and recorded in the belief that poetry should smash brains!

JOHN “CHANCE” ACEVEDO has been reciting and hosting for over a decade. As the eldest of three, he receives inspiration from everyday life situations and most commonly uses a blend of comedy and drama to reflect his real-life experience. Chance has become recognized in many poetry venues and universities for which he has been a featured performer and workshop facilitator. He’s been the popular host for “No intro’s,” “Urban Voices Heard: Write Out Loud,” and “Sunday Spokenword Showcase.” He is currently hosting and co-curating monthly shows for “LatinosNYC,” “Noo Moves Entertainment: Artist Appreciation Show” and “The Artist Collective: Poetry Project.” Chance has been published in Raul Maldonado’s The Company We Keep, Erato from Park Slope Poetry Project and most recently Me No Habla With Acento. Chance is the founding member of the hardest working poetry troupe on the scene, “El Grito de Poetas,” a collective of diverse Latino and Latina poets dedicated to the craft and performance of modern poetry.

TYLER RIVENBARK is a playwright and musician born and raised in Warsaw, North Carolina. Since moving to NYC he has played at such venues as the National Underground, the Trash Bar, Parkside Lounge and more. His plays have been produced at Dixon Place Experimental Theatre, Artists’ Block, Mellow Pages, and many others. In 2009 he was a writer-in-residence at the Louis Armstrong House Museum. In 2011 he was commissioned by the Poetry Society of America to adapt Rita Dove’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book of poems, Thomas and Beulah, for the stage. He is a 2013-2014 member of Mission to (dit)MARS’ Propulsion Lab. In 2013 he co-founded The Hammer & Pick Collective (like them on Facebook). And he is a proud member of the Dramatists Guild.

THOMAS GRAFF has intricately woven his Pop/Rock influenced sound through the Chicagoland nightlife scene since he was 13 years old. After racking up performances with an established cover band he was invited to play lead sax and sing for, Graff built his own performance group in college and became a featured artist at Northern Illinois University, The Watertower Place in Chicago, and The Rouge Wine Cellar. He then released his first album titled “Caroling Cousins,” featuring his 2 sisters and 5 cousins who sold the albums to raise money for Misericordia (a residency for people who have mental health issues). In 2010, Graff moved to San Diego and after performing at highly celebrated venues such as The House of Blues in Hollywood and the Hotel Del Coronado, he released his first solo album, “Included Intuition.” Graff now lives in NYC and has a residency at Winegasm in Astoria. His latest EP, “Life of an Artist,” was released in 2013 along with his newest single “Be Here When I Sing.” This summer, Graff performed on the mainstage at San Diego Pride hosted by LaToya Jackson and on UT-TV’s Night and Day, UT-TV’s Morning Show Live, and the CW’s San Diego Living. Thomas-Graff (The Fan Page) on Facebook;; music on iTunes, GooglePlay, Spotify &

upcoming! Fri, March 28th: live playwrighting & performance event for Rough Draft Festival. Sat, April 12th: celebration of Queens literary arts – both at LaGuardia Performing Arts Center in LIC.

SUPPORT QUEENS LIT! check out what our community has to offer: visit

about the series: “Nature of the Muse” came out of many things – my experiences as a writer, reader, curator, audience member, and writing workshop participant, as well as a lover of improv and the unexpected – what happens when you push creative people to produce work on the spot and share it with spectators. If you’d like to get involved (not only limited to writers – musicians, playwrights, artists, dancers, etc.) give a holler to

audrey wholeheartedly thanks: Everyone who has supported her and helped to promote “Nature of the Muse,” my beautiful friends for participating, all the open minds in the audience, and of course LIC Bar and especially GUS RODRIGUEZ for giving this event its fireside home and for always encouraging his fellow creatives to pursue their dreams. MUCH LOVE!


your heart must always be ready to leave/ and ready to begin again,/ must form new bonds/ with courage and without regret./ every beginning offers a magic power/ that protects us and helps us to endure. –hermann hesse

PHOTOS from JMBOES Photography – on Facebook



Prompt: Just plain old happiness

I did an afternoon in Sing Sing
watched a bunch of
convicts give the
performance of a lifetime

In that afternoon
as the sun dipped
behind the glistening
and quiet water
the train humming
ever so gently beneath
my feet
as gates and doors
and the wall of officers
were behind us

I watched these men enjoy
just plain old happiness

They weren’t on lockdown
They weren’t themselves
They were new characters
Not the characters they
created that go them there
but new ones, clean, clear
arc and all
characters that made them
reach their truth

The pain to just plain old
happiness to


Prompt: The worst thing about the wedding…

The worst thing about the wedding
was her skull.
Not that she was petulant
Not that I half-knew her
from our suction cup jobs
atop  the bottom rung
of our income brackets
Not that, in the office, she honked
snortled, mushed, mashed
coagulated the water cooler
and stole the stapler.
Not that her breath stunk
and that the groom was
a piece of plywood
in a suit…

It was her Neanderthal head-bone
that those country girl curls
can’t suppress.

A bride, even in the modern age,
should have a snow globe atop her neck
Round, like a magnified bug,
like the lost American state,
like a sufficient island.

Hers was dented by a divot
as shallow as the brain in it.
I have an alimony scalp
shedding the dandruff of divorce.
I’m crazy single with a smooth cranium.
I’m proud.


PROMPT: “No great mind has ever existed without a touch of madness.” -Aristotle

Aristotle sat nervously on his doggy bed, restlessly tossing and turning in a particularly intense and not too pleasant sunbeam. The Big Blue Bay window of the Pershing residence had no curtains on it, so the warmth, no, the unbearable heat, filled the room. There were no curtains on the window because, Aristotle, along with his people-family, had just recently moved into 1501 Parsifal Lane.

Aristotle gazed at the digital travel clock sitting haphazardly on an unopened moving box. The blood red digits clicked over to 2:15pm. The canine anxiously scratched the underside of his collar. His human, Jeremy, would not be home from school for at least another 45 minutes.

He was not usually a dog who scared easily, in fact, he was part boxer and had quite the muscular torso. But there was something terrible about what lay outside the Big Blue Bay window. He began to mutter to himself under his breath, “Maybe today they won’t come…” The crazy quiet in the room was crazy and quiet. He whimpered and chewed his ragged paw.

And that’s when the first pair of red eyes peeked at him from outside the windowpane.

His tormentors had returned.

And this time, the squirrels had brought knives…


Prompt: “Sat on my balls and fell asleep” (Oh god, you had to hear the way she read this…!)

Sat on my balls
Fell asleep
Good day
Mistress very very nice
Played in park
Rolled in grass
Chewed bone
Chewed bone
Chewed bone
Ate food good
Same as yesterday
But still good
Big poop
Mistress said What a good boy!
Sat on my balls
Fell asleep
Chasing rabbits


Prompt: Splish splash

Thomas plays a guitar that looks as if it was dipped in honey.
He strokes each string with his finger so he
Can be just a little bit closer to her.
He talks about his love for another man
while he gently has his hands around her neck
she’s no stranger to being the other woman
She knows what his san diego nights looked like.
What the blistering cold of a thursday night feels like
in the back room of the other side of the bar
But she rolls with the punches.
She rolls with the disrespect of him loving another him
while he touches her
She wonders if he would like Audrey’s kitty purring on her hips like he
Fixes his lips
to utter songs for another man while he rubs her back with his …

What she is trying to show him is that they need each other like the g train and greenpoint
Like tyler and his harmonica
Like the guy in the third row everyone keeps calling pineapple.
Like the lady in the front row with red pants and a crease that can cut bread
She wants him to know that he is the splish and she is his splash.


Prompt: Like a moth to a flame
Burned by the fire
My love is blind
Can’t you see my desire
(This is a Nature of the Muse FIRST.. Tyler wrote this SONG from a PROMPT, and then sang and played guitar to it!)

Give me your hand
Run it up and down my spine
Let’s see how long
We can stretch this night
Take a breath
This may be hard
It’s been a long time coming
For our weary hearts

Like a moth to a flame
Burned by the fire
My love is blind
Can’t you see my desire (2x)

In the dark
Everything seems all right
As we pray to God
We never see that morning light
We’re not as young
As we used to be
These tired excuses
That we always seem to need

Like a moth to a flame
Burned by the fire
My love is blind
Can’t you see my desire (2x)

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