Best Poetry Reading Orange County 2008 - Factory Readings at the Gypsy Den
After 20 years, 240 meetings, seven different venues, hundreds of poets and thousands of curious audience members, there's no question this monthly gathering has become something special. And the fact that it's produced by Santa Ana College professor Lee Mallory—a guy who has ridden the bus to work since 1978 and still doesn't have a cell phone or computer—is just icing on the cake. He started the readings with longtime colleague Jana McCarthy at the Chicago Pizza Factory in Santa Ana in 1988. For the past five years, Factory Readings poets have used the ultra-artsy setting of the Gypsy Den to spout verse as onlookers hoot and holler while imbibing tea and scarfing bran muffins. Stop by sometime and hear poems ranging from the solemn to the salacious, from the perverted to the just plain crazy.