We popped into the new poetry space around the corner last week. The performances happen in the front room, essentially a dressed-down apartment living room, with exposed brick along an entire wall and some interesting original art displayed. In the back room (the kitchen), you could grab a Schlitz in a bottle for a $2 donation. Not a bad little operation, and the place was packed.
Packed mainly with 20-somethings smoking cigarettes, squeezing themselves thigh to thigh on small couches, flirting a little, drinking their beer down to just a small pool at the bottom of the bottle, then using that same bottle as an ashtray. They listened to not incompetent poetry delivered by not overly earnest poets. As scenes go, it was a reasonable one.
The evening filled me with some guarded nostalgia over a period of life when an average Wednesday night for me might feel much the same.
That said, despite my dents and dings and wear and tear, I'm very happy not to be a 20-something chainsmoker anymore, reciting poetry in non-ventilated rooms, hoping I might get a kiss by the end of the night.