Invited by Charlie Bondhus to the Publishing Triangle Awards Ceremony, I decided to troop along. The evening was held in the auditorium of The New School, where I heard Marie Ponsot read some years ago. The big space was less than half-filled. I thought it a pity, since the event was free and open to the public. Don Weise, with whom I chatted during the reception, suggested that New Yorkers don't value what they can get for nothing. Steven Cordova and Walter Holland, who are in the same writing group as Charlie, came in support too. Sara Farizan made a dramatic entrance just as her win for the Edmund White Award for Debut Fiction was announced. She had been delayed at San Francisco airport for three hours. She received even greater applause when her novel If You Could be Mine won the Ferro-Grumley Award for Lesbian and Gay Fiction. It was the first time in the awards history that one book won in the two categories. I was very happy for Charlie when his book of poems All the Heat We Could Carry was announced as the winner of the Thom Gunn Award for Gay Poetry. So little did he expect to win that he had not prepared a speech, and, after thanking everyone, returned to his seat and collapsed half-weeping into his partner Kevin. The Bill Whitehead Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to playwright María Irene Fornés. The playwright and director Jorge Ignacio Cortiñas, who accepted the award on Fornés’s behalf, gave a deeply felt tribute to the Latina lesbian trailblazer. I had not heard of her before, and had the impression that she was unknown to many in the audience too. I hope to make up for my ignorance soon, for she sounded, in Jorge's citation, like a truly innovative artiste.
brighter than day