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29 January 2007

Bakery of the Poets: The story behind the name

It occurs to me after all this time, that I've never told the story of Bakery of the Poets; or rather the story behind our name. My favorite literary work of all time is Cyrano de Bergerac. Rostand's play is a work of great humor, artistry and love and his hero...truly heroic. Cyrano is big in every way; not just his nose but his heart, his courage, his idealism and his creativity; are all of epic proportions. I love and adore this character. But I admit that I don¿t much identify with him. Yes, in that deep part that is my creative spirit; bold, unfettered, idealistic beyond belief, we are kindred. But as a character or a person...let's face it, he needs a keeper. He seems to careen from one catastrophe to another with unparalleled style and verve.
My own particular style is not conducive to catastrophe; has, in fact, more to do with catastrophe-avoidance than catastrophe-seeking. The character with whom I identify most is Ragueneau; pastry chef, poet (in a small way) art and artist lover; owner of a cafe identified simply as Bakery of the Poets. His love for artists prompts him to allow perennially impoverished scribblers and sketchers to exchange their work for food and wine (a habit which drives his bottom line-watching wife mad) his own poetry, he uses to wrap the bakery goodies he sells. Bakery of the Poets is a gathering place for artists and an artist-watching place for the nobility, the intellectuals and the ordinary citizens who find them fascinating. In Rostand's Bakery of the Poets artists fill their bellies, socialize, fight and find patrons and discuss the big ideas.
Once I really decided to do my part to help artists, the creation of a Bakery of the Poets for the modern age came very naturally. We are using technology to create a place where artists can find all kinds of support; 'bread' for their labors, people who nurture their talent, the encouragement and society of other artists. BotP is a forum in which they are published or promoted, helping artists find new audiences and patrons for their work. We want to give them the support they need to do their work and in that way help create artists. During 2006 we reached our tipping point where making progress no longer feels like pushing a boulder up hill. And with your support, 2007 promises to be a banner year for BotP and artists everywhere. On to the news.