Many artists and authors were lifelong fans of MAE WEST, for instance, the poet Brant R. Lyons, who died on this date in 2012. Known as a musician-composer as well as a poet, he championed the spoken word with music in his reading series, “Hydrogen Jukebox,” at Soho Playhouse in lower Manhattan.
• • The title of his poem was "Mae West Consults the Mediums of Lily Dale." It was printed in the literary journal Danse Macabre, No. 24.
• • Brant R. Lyon [1956 — 12 May 2012] • •
• • Three Rooms Press poet, pianist, and reading series coordinator Brant Lyon died in New York City after a brief illness on Saturday, 12 May 2012. His lengthy Mae West poem is below.
• • "Mae West Consults the Mediums of Lily Dale" • •
• • Diamond Lil’s sparkle never dimmed until / well past her prime, still refracting immortal / light as she dispensed ghost-written advice / re: ESP and spiritualism, or the rejuvenating / virtues of bottled water, enemas and colonics, / positive thinking, indirect lighting, fantasy / and sex, that gave to the lie that goodness / had nothing to do with it. /
• • Ravenswood, even the beach house, kept / shuttered from the sun’s pernicious rays, / devoid of houseplants she claimed consumed / oxygen, but two un-housebroken macaques / given free range for monkeyshines, the muralled / walls depicting otherworldly golden phalluses, / disembodied testicles floating in air as though / trumpets in a seance, the opulence of her boudoir. /
• • And all her other worldly goods would be to her / but a splendid pharaoh’s tomb — — vainglorious / dowry for no afterlife — — were she unable to make contact, / re-bond, with her mother and father on the Other Side. /
• • Mae made that long, anxious journey from Hollywood / to Lily Dale and sat in silent awe in darkened / psychomanteums and parlors, tables tipping uncannily / on their sides, or in charmed frenzy, danced, / An eerie rapping on the wall, raising the platinum / hairs on the back of her specter-white neck. /
• • But of all the mediums that beckoned forward / the dearly departed from Summerland to that / ‘thin place,’ it was Jack Kelly, from whom sex appeal / oozed like ectoplasm, she had come up to see / (and not the other way around), and open her / heart to invite spirit inside as he cast a beam / Of supernal light on which she passed over to meet / the undead — — Jack’s gaze piercing through the veil / of disbelief or doubt, of disappointment, / unfathomed hurt, before the message delivered / from a somewhere she had long known but never / seen came through as he looked her straight / in the eye and asked with the innocence / of a child, “May I come to you?
• • On Wednesday, 12 May 1971 • •
• • On Wednesday, 12 May 1971 Mae West, UCLA’s Woman of the Century, spoke to students after a screening of her 1933 classic movie “I’m No Angel.”
• • On Tuesday, 12 May 1998 • •
• • The record album "Mae Day: Masquers Club Salutes Mae West" was released on Tuesday, 12 May 1998 on the label Bacchus. The original recording date was on 14 April 1973.
• • Overheard in Hollywood • •
• • Mae West is cautiously secretive. In an interview, one comes to the conclusion that she either is interested in nothing but making movies and money, or that she is putting on an act. Probably both are true.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said: "A man has more character in his face at 40 than at 20 — — he has suffered longer."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • The New York Daily News discussed the 1911 marriage of Mae West.
• • Frank Wallace told a local reporter: "I couldn't sleep the night before I married Mae West. She had promised herself to me. Tomorrow we were to be man and wife." . . .
• • Source: Interview in The New York Daily News; published on Sunday, 12 May 1935
• • The Mae West Blog celebrates its 10th anniversary • •
• • Thank
you for reading, sending questions, and posting comments during this
past decade. The other day we entertained 3,497 visitors. And we reached a
milestone recently when we completed 3,100 blog posts. Wow!
• • By the Numbers • •
• • The Mae West Blog was started ten years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 3176th blog post.
Unlike many blogs, which draw
• • Photo: • • Mae West • • displaying her wedding ring in 1911 • •
• • Feed — — http://feeds2.feedburner.com/MaeWest
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