I apologize for taking so long to comment on this splendid event. I tried twice on Monday of last week but as a result of my head injury I guess (I fell in my apartment a week ago and suffered a slight concussion, stitches in my arm and multiple assaults to my self esteem). I couldn’t quite get it together to both sound coherent and send the message–both of which felt like monumental tasks. I tried again on Wednesday and got a little further. I’m trying again today and hoping that I’ll sprint along nicely.
CavanKerry is blessed with very wonderful and generous friends without whom we would not be in existence. Judi and John’s splendid Literary Salon last Sunday was a perfect example of the extent that our friends will go for us. It’s particularly gratifying to me when one of our CKP writers picks up the banner and rallies for us. It means that our work is worthy and we’re doing a good job (as determined by someone on the ‘inside’). The program was rich and varied with fine writing and performance, and none of us could believe that Judi had not orchestrated such a salon before. She seemed so graceful and capable–blending 5 separate performances by 5 uniquely gifted writers, such that each was appropriately spotlit and fully appreciated. I’m convinced after attending two of Judi’s productions –the first being her reading at (le) poisson rouge from Motherhood Exaggerated in perfect harmony with cellist Sebastian Baverstam- that she has a career waiting for her in producing and directing live performances.
Thank you to all of the writers for donating your fine performances. Special guest, journalist and fiction writer, Pete Hamill, read a very poignant story from his newest collection The Christmas Kid; Aedin Maloney was a sultry and seductive Molly Bloom and read 2 poems from WRR II—Eclogue 2 by Dawn Potter and A Cup of Coffee by Sara Hunsicker; Catherine Barnett read from her newest poetry collection The Game of Boxes, Jenny Allen performed a scene from her one woman show I Got Sick Then I Got Better and Rachel Hadas, WRR II guest editor, read her Introduction to the Reader and two powerful poems of her own, and Judi asked Aedin to cap off the program with another selection from the WRR II—this time Loneliness by Meg Kearney.
In addition to this banquet of words, Judy served champagne, sumptuous sandwiches and cakes–my favorites were the scones –I ate 4 of them! (they were very small!!!!) and the chocolate truffles! I’m weak-kneed in the presence of chocolates. Conversations begun before the program continued afterwards over coffee or more champagne; clearly people were delighted to be included in Judi’s soiree –have the opportunity to reconnect with old friends and meet new ones and be inspired by the wonderful performers. Particularly moving for me was the fact that Drs. Arnold and Sandra Gold attended along with the new president Richard Levin, MD and his wife along with VP Bob Gurmankin and his wife. The Arnold P. Gold Foundation for Humanism in Medicine is co-sponsor of CavanKerry’s LaurelBooks: Literature Of Illness and Disability Imprint and the Waiting Room Reader.
This benefit for our soon to be born Waiting Room Reader II brought many new friends to CKP whose generosity will account for several hundred books in scores of hospital waiting rooms. Thank you!
Thank you! Bless You!
Joan Cusack Handler