This blog is long overdue.  But in my defense, sometimes an event is so special I can’t find adequate words to describe it.  This leads to writer’s block, which leads me to move on to other tasks until the block dissipates, which then makes me feel guilty for putting off what I was eager to write about – and that guilt, in turn, leads to more pressure to write something fantastic about the event, which leads to more writer’s block.  Lix and Kix 5 on Tuesday 17 February 2009 was that kind of special event.

Featured poets Nick Traenkner and Steve Goldberg at Lix and Kix 5

I still don’t feel I have good enough words for it.  So let me just share a few thoughts and photos.

Steve Goldberg and Nick Traenkner are perhaps most famous for co-hosting a fabulous monthly poetry event at Cleveland’s Literary Cafe.  But because they are such excellent hosts, overflowing with fun and dedicated to promoting the great poetry of others in Cleveland and beyond, one might be inclined to overlook the fact that they are mighty fine poets themselves – inclined, that is, until one actually reads and/or hears their poems.

Steve Goldberg Frenches Charles Baudelaire

Even though Lix and Kix 5 was their feature, Steve and Nick still took time to pay homage to other poets who’ve inspired them.  Steve read some of Nick’s work, while Nick shared poetry by Steve.  Steve read Baudelaire in French and English, Nick turned us on to John Berryman’s The Dream Songs, and Steve introduced us to new work by living legend S.A. Griffin.  At one point they even read their poetry simultaneously.  Yet though they were most impressive on all counts and I enjoyed it all thoroughly, I must say I enjoyed hearing Steve and Nick read their own poetry individually every bit as much as the rest.

Nick Traenkner and his martini share an intimate poetic moment

I won’t attempt to be comprehensive in my photo selection here because I’ve already uploaded 120 photos from Lix and Kix 5 to my Facebook account.  After Steve and Nick’s joint featured reading, we took a short break and began what turned out to be one of the best Lix and Kix open mic sessions ever.  Some of the fine folks on hand for the poetic festivities included my wife Geri Lynne, co-host Dianne Borsenik,  and friends Ken Kitt, Keisha Davenport, Christina Brooks, Vertigo Xi’an Xavier, Jen Pezzo, Brigitte Belmonte-Jarc, Ella Shurr, Neve Black, C. Allen Rearick, Susan Amethyst, Suzanne Savickas, Adam Sonstegard, Jack LaPlante, Azalea Tidwell, Ray McNiece, Miles Budimir, Billy Nardi, Marlana-Patrice, Wendy Shaffer and Kimberley Diamond Bones (If I left out your name, please accept my apologies – my memory is not as sharp as it once was).  You can see photos of most everyone I’ve mentioned in my aforementioned Facebook albums.

Thanks again to everyone who made the evening of 17 February at Lix and Kix 5 so unspeakably special!  And thanks especially to our featured poets Steve Goldberg and Nick Traenkner!  You can see them every second Thursday at Cleveland’s Literary Cafe, located at 1031 Literary Road in the historic Tremont district (click here for a map).  Their bar opens at 8:30 pm, with poetry beginning around 9:30.  This month (April 9th) they’ll be featuring two Ohio poetry legends, Maj Ragain and Jim Lang, along with what is always an exciting open mic.  Don’t miss it!

Click here to see a short Ken Kitt video of Steve and Nick reading at Lix and Kix 5.
Visit Nick Traenkner at
Visit Steve Goldberg at and
Visit the Literary Cafe at and

Finally, for my mom who doesn’t have a Facebook account, here’s a photo of me wearing a suit that night (I just knew it was going to be a special occasion!):

Find out about about future Lix and Kix events at and

Peace and poetry,
aka Mr. Lix