In anticipation of Big Ten football season, we threw the fourth-down Hail Mary this week.

Speaking of which: Go! Black and gold! And maize and blue! And cardinal and white!

We did something unpredictable. Counterintuitive, even. You know how a lot of fundraising calendars showcase scantily clad women? We went with dudes. Top that, with your standard-issue bookstores and sidewalk sales.

We didn’t settle for a sidewalk sale. We went with the biggest sidewalk sale ever. And we threw in the greatest bookstore ever.

Houston, home of Richard Levy, the Houston Poetry Slam and Devin the Dude, has incubated some great poetry. But that was too mainstream for us. We weren’t even interested in its mediocre poetry. We demanded the worst poem in Houston.

We took a bold stance against building an urban wasteland too close to T.S. Eliot’s ashes. Poets rule; slumlords drool.

Aside from Nâzım Hikmet, poets don’t spend nearly as many words on Hiroshima as they do on certain other national traumas. We opened up about it.

Eschewing the ivory towers, the ivy-covered walls and even the animal houses of academia, we took it to the streets. Or, more specifically, the poles.

We celebrated the sight of an unapologetically highbrow, experimental journal getting coverage in The New York F’n Times: Namely, erstwhile rock critic Alexander Provan’s brainkid Triple Canopy. Three cheers for awkward group photos! Actually, let’s throw in a fourth cheer, and maybe Provan won’t put us all to sleep with his drone music.

Keep your text messages. We deleted your e-mail. We don’t even want your greeting cards. From now on, it’s a postcard or nothing. We’re living on the edge.

How many poets were first inspired by Dr. Seuss? We hesitate to guess. But we don’t hesitate to keep representing.

Let’s keep this momentum going through January. And then on into AWP.

Originally Published: August 19th, 2011