Both Sides Now

Poet Dana Levin welcomes contradiction

"Figuring out how to write about living in the age of Trump without giving the poems over to Trump and Trump rage has been very interesting and challenging," renowned poet and former Santa Fean Dana Levin says of her new poems. "I've always had a little political bent in my work, but this is the first time I've been bringing that interrogation inside."

Levin lived in Santa Fe for 19 years, helming the writing department at the College of Santa Fe and Santa Fe University of Art and Design, working her way into the fabric of our city through poignant lyricism and warm laughs—often in the same breath. She moved to St. Louis, Missouri, in 2017 to teach at Maryville University, and this week marks her first visit back to Santa Fe since. She reads on Sunday with friend and fellow luminary Carol Moldaw. (Disclosure: Levin was this writer's professor at CSF in the aughts.)

Levin finds that her new work is both a series of small, chopped-up, traditional-looking poems, as well as a grouping of "really long lines, almost edging on essay poems," she says.

In addition to the contradiction inherent in her current work, Levin muses on the more intangible contradictions in her new home; she grew up in California and spent nearly two decades in New Mexico—but her parents are both from Chicago, so her move to the Midwest was a sort of moving home, she says. She finds many divides in St. Louis, a city caught between North and South, and its distillation of "all of the longstanding problems with the American character and the American experiment." But additionally, she says, STL hosts a vibrant poetry community and a formidable arts scene. She speaks of her new city with great reverence. There is room for both love and questioning.

After discussing her work with such cerebral intellectualism, when asked about what she thinks coming back to Santa Fe will feel like, she immediately says: "What I'm really looking forward to is some fucking green chile, OK?" (Charlotte Jusinski)

Dana Levin and Carol Moldaw
6 pm Sunday April 28. Free.
Collected Works Bookstore and Coffeehouse,
202 Galisteo St.,

Slacktivism at its Best

Making money for a local nonprofit has never been easier than when, each April, Kitchen Angels celebrates Angels Dine Out (renamed this year from Angels Night Out, since it goes on all day, after all). At any one of 40 local restaurants, bring your friends to eat and drink your fill, and the restaurant donates 25% of your bill to the local nonprofit. Kitchen Angels provides hot, home-cooked meals to homebound Santa Feans who are ineligible or unable to use Meals on Wheels, and has been since 1992. You don't have to say anything special, do anything in particular or spend anything extra—literally, just\ go out to eat. From low-key Ranch House or Café Fina to upscale La Casa Sena or Paloma, take your pick of locales and help provide the Angels with more than $80,000 in one night. But maybe make reservations—this is a big deal. (CJ)

Angels Dine Out:
Various locations, all day; check for 40 participating restaurants.

Big Voice

Courtesy Santa Fe Opera

If this is going to be the year you say screw it and try to acquaint yourself with opera—or if you already made that choice ages ago—the Santa Fe Opera and Collected Works Bookstore and Coffeehouse have just the events for you. At the Opera Spotlight Series, conductor and certified opera buff Oliver Prezant spends a full 90 minutes breaking down the mystery and history of the art form, aiding newcomers and hardcore fans alike in gaining a deeper perspective and appreciation for all things opera. This week's installment focuses on La Bohème, Giacomo Puccini's moving and ultra-hot story of a love affair betwixt poor artist-folk in Paris. (Alex De Vore)

Opera Spotlight Series with Oliver Prezant: La Bohème:
6 pm Friday April 26. Free.
Collected Works Bookstore and Coffeehouse,
202 Galisteo St.,


Courtesy Rozu

No spoilers, but we're a little extra into metal music right now. Perhaps it's the crushing riffs and brutal imagery, which ultimately leads to both rocking and catharsis, or perhaps it's just because it's a wide open world of genres and sub-genres from passionate folk who simply want to slay. Whatever it is, Denver's Rozu (which we hear is Japanese for "rose") brings its post-hardcore metal-ness to town alongside locals like Blood Wolf, Snot Goblin and Nadu. Zephyr Community Arts Studio has been doing a bang-up job supporting the metal world of late, and we notice. Oh, we notice. Anyway, go for the "jud-jud," stay for the riffage. (ADV)

Rozu with Blood Wolf, Snot Goblin and Nadu: 
7:30 pm Saturday April 27. $5-$10.
Zephyr Community Arts Studio,
1520 Center Drive, Ste. 2.