As the sun went down on the Miami River, The Island Queen, her two levels crowded with tipsy poets, artists, photographers and several imitation captains hats, glided over the placid waters.
There where high hopes from attendees and our friends from The New Tropic that crowded the pews on deck. There were bounteous libations graciously provided by Biscayne Bay Brewing Company. There were a trained crew of boatmen and boatwomen. There were lovely words spoken and intonations delivered.
But something was missing. As the cruise made her way back to Bayside, she turned her prow starboard to the Miami skyline, onyx glass and shimmering, circuit board lights.
The InterContinental Miami was front and center, and the silhouette of one big, dancing lady was nowhere to be seen. Instead, there was a pair of massive hands appearing and disappearing from the hotel's borders. With each appearance, they contorted or collaborated to form a letter, appearing one by one:
O, M I A M I
Yes, O, Miami has partnered with InterContinental Miami. Our massive hands have reached in and swooped up that tireless twirling lady. The hands belong to Miami native, Flipside Kings B-Boy, writer and performer of one man shows PET and Fat Boy, Rudi Goblen. With Rudi and artist Eric Cade Schoenborn, the movements were filmed and then adapted to the screen. The hands will spell out 305, O, M I A M I and P O E M. A selection from Oread by H.D. follows: "Whirl up sea / cover us."
After docking, attendees were invited to InterContinental’s Toro Toro, for an after cruise party. Some drove, while others walked the two blocks, passing the aftermath of an Ultra Music Festival location: a lot filled with Coke bottles, food rappers and general trash along with a stripped stage frame, like the bare skeleton of a Tyrannosaurus Rex.
Passing this muddle, we came to view InterContinental's marquee, an unmissable sight on the hotel's facade cycling through photographs of past O, Miami festivals.
Arriving at Toro Toro, poetry cruise attendees were granted a beer on the house.
Inside the lobby’s purple and reddish glow, large screens scrolled with the zip codes of Miami-Dade. The digital piece, United By Our Rough Edges, links with our Ode to your Zip Code project, in which we partnered with WLRN.
The night proceeded with congratulations of an event’s success.
This year's totes were handed out displaying a selection from Sylvia Plath's "Poppies in October."
As a close to the evening, Shel Shiverstein arrived on scene and graced us with his warm elocution and the theatrical gifting of a cold treat, courtesy of Randy Burman's Poetry Pops.