It’s the last Brew this Saturday, and you know what to do. Join us, hopefully with a poem on your lips!
This is not a drill. This is the last drop, and it’s been good. Poetry in the Brew has always been what you make it, and it has been life affirming from the get go. The promise lingers, the poetry ever flows, and we sound a note of everlasting appreciation for our founders. Come December, we’ll be back in the loft for a new reading series, the Writer’s Wart open mic hosted by Silence Wordsmith. One last time on November 12, we gather for Poetry in the Brew. It’s the day after Veterans Day, and we have a seasoned voice to guide us through the night: JW Heacock.
Portland Brew East
1921 Eastland Avenue
Nashville, TN 37206
Sat. Nov. 12th (the final Brew!)
Feature poet JW Heacock
Open mic signup 4:30pm
Reading starts at 5:00pm
Choose any spot on the list in the loft. Each person on the signup gets 5 minutes max on the open mic.
Tips are always appreciated, so please remember cash for Patrick and the Portland Brew East crew who stay open late for us.
Growing up, JW never had any interest in becoming a writer. Back in the 80s, a writer’s job was to document the triumph and tragedies of a life chasing booze, adventure, and women (all writers then were assumed to be cis dudes), and the role models were guys like Vonnegut and Hemingway. JW, however, had no interest in being captured by the Nazis and even less in shooting some poor elephant or lion to prove his masculinity, so he took a hard pass on the writer’s lifestyle. His experiences were just too bland and boring to record in print.
But as the years passed, JW’s travels took to exotic locales like the malls of Boca Raton and suburbs of Connecticut, from southern dive bars to Bible Belt strip joints, from the excuse-littered moral battlefield of law school to the literal battlefields of Iraq. JW finally decided that he’d seen and suffered enough to pour out his life’s wisdom onto the printed page.
But alas, his life still wasn’t interesting enough to become literature.
Until one day, he had a revelation: he would lie. Instead of being tethered to the mundane truth, he’d recount what he wished he’d done. So he started writing poems that bemoaned loves long lost, both earned and spurned, and spinning tales that transformed his real-life adventures into sagas. He took the reality and gave it a makeover. Fake it until you make it, then fake it some more.
Since then, JW has retired from the military, earned a masters degree in English on the government’s dime, and has continued to put the “artifice” into art.” He was a National Parks Foundation Artist-in-Residence at Gettysburg National Military Park where he began a hybrid work addressing the legacy and mythology of the Civil War. His poems and stories have appeared in Beyond Words, Cathexis Northwest Press, The Fredericksburg Literary and Arts Review, Kestrel, The Esthetic Apostle, SHIFT, and The Write Launch. JW’s short story “December Sand” was a finalist for the Iowa Review’s Jeff Sharlet Memorial Award.
To hone his verbal lying skills as well as his written ones, he has presented several memoir pieces as part of the Tenx9 Storytelling series and been the featured writer at Nashville’s Lyrical Brew and East Side Storytelling series and its accompanying podcast.
JW looks forward to lying to you on November 12, 2022, the day after Veterans Day. He may or may not recite some poems or stories about his wartime experiences—but if he does, some will be true, others false, and the point is never knowing which is which.
You can find JW Heacock on Facebook.
Reading starts 7pm in the Bennett Hall Social Room, 1027 18th Avenue South, Nashville, TN 37212. Free parking in Lot A and B off 18th. The event will be livestreamed and archived on Scarritt Bennett’s Facebook page and YouTube channel.