Melt in Your Mouth and Thistle 

MFA students and budding playwrights mouth off at Hyde Park Books

Everyday life is often sadly lacking in literature. While captivating prose and poetry can be hard to come by, Hyde Park Books is making it easy with a stream of readings and performances this month.

Kicking it off is the inaugural reading in this year’s Boise State Mouth and Thistle series, which features Reggie Townley and Karena Youtz. Townley is currently working on a novel in which he examines the lifestyle of a truckstop prostitute in the Arco area. The Idaho setting strongly influenced Townley’s work, and he chose a location carefully, describing it in his press release as “a strange and intense landscape, with a very strange and fascinating history.”

Youtz, a poet who lives and works in Boise, published a collection of poems called The Shape Is Space in 2010 and is releasing a second collection, Transfer Free, in early 2012. Youtz and Townley will give Mouth and Thistle its running start on Saturday, Sept. 24, at 6 p.m.

As if that weren’t enough, Hyde Park Books will also play host to a monthly play-reading series called Black Linen Introduces Playwrights. BLIP is a partnership between Hyde Park Books and actors from HomeGrown Theater, with a focus on gaining recognition for local playwrights through informal productions. Last month featured the short play No Glass Eyes or Pets by Boise Weekly’s own Josh Gross, who returns to BLIP this month with a full-length work, Veronica Livingston, I Presume. To catch the reading for the first time or revisit favorites, each play is available as a podcast from The BLIP reading of Veronica Livingston, I Presume takes place on Tuesday, Sept. 27, at 7:30 p.m.

But ever the literary juggernaut, Hyde Park Books isn’t done yet. The store is always looking for poets, playwrights and prose writers to participate in future readings and help enliven the Idaho writing community. Those interested can send Hyde Park Books owner Jem Wierenga a sample of their work. Email with submissions.

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