“I've been thinking a lot about Adrienne Rich,” began the legendary queer author Dorothy Allison. The crowd was hushed, the silence nurturing reverence. “I've been thinking about the stories we all share.” Allison's Southern cadence rolled off her tongue as she opined, “Leave something behind.” And Allison definitely left something behind on Sunday — tales involving sex, porcelain, childbirth, and (maybe) orgasm.
But before we get there, we should tell you Allison was the final reader at Sunday's Sister Spit event at the San Francisco Public Library. And if you don't know (yet), Sister Spit is a vanload of chanteuses and luminaries, queer legends and performance artists, who travel the country in a sort of literary roadshow every April. Sunday's edition inaugurated the 2012 tour with a special SF appearance by Ali Liebegott and Hilary Goldberg's short film adaptation of a chapter from Michelle Tea's Valencia.
The vivacious Tea, host extraordinaire and founder of Sister Spit, welcomed the crowd with two announcements. The first (which we already knew) was that her book Valencia is being made into a film with each chapter adapted by a different director and cast. The second was that Sister Spit is getting its own imprint with City Lights Publishers. Tea is indeed a busy, busy lady (did anyone catch her hosting Balderdash the other week at Intersection for the Arts?), and now she's on the road with her traveling cabaret, moving between Southern California, Arizona, and back up to Oakland on Sunday, April 8, for a different show with Beth Lisick and Annie Danger.