In Memoriam Jay Chollick

Yesterday, I received an email with the sad news that Jay Chollick, a long-standing regular at First Tuesdays, has passed away. Jay was our featured reader in September 2018, when he read poems from a new self-published book, called new from j.

When Jay read his poems aloud, you could tell you were in the presence of a master performer, controlled and yet passionate at the same time. Here are two videos from his feature:

In March of this year, just before everything shut down due to the pandemic, Jay was unable to be at First Tuesdays, so sent me a poem and asked me to read it at the start of the open mic. Poetry had become his way of being in the world and knowing that his words would be part of our community even if he couldn’t be with us himself was important to him, and sustaining in its way. It is a sad poem about, in part, his wife’s loss of memory.

The last line, in which he asks whether her mind held no Jay,” is especially moving now for me. He is no longer with us, but we have the memory of his presence and the words he shared with us, and I am glad that some part of him will live on here, on the First Tuesdays website, for as long as it remains live on the web.

Up next Watch A Video Of Nana Ekua Brew-Hammond’s Reading Nana Ekau Brew-Hammond’s reading was extraordinary, not just for the quality of the work she read, but for the discussion afterwards, which turned
Latest posts In Memoriam Jay Chollick Watch A Video Of Nana Ekua Brew-Hammond’s Reading The September 2020 Cento First Tuesdays Presents Nana Ekua Brew-Hammond The Cento for June 3, 2019 First Tuesdays Presents Ralph Nazareth & Duane Esposito The Cento for May 5, 2020 First Tuesdays Presents Antoinette Brim The Cento Zoom Edition for April 7, 2020 First Tuesdays Presents Sokunthary Svay First Tuesdays Presents Sarah Gambito First Tuesdays Presents Sara Khalili The Cento for January 7, 2020 First Tuesdays Presents Mark Weiss The Cento for December 3, 2019 First Tuesdays Presents Rachel Zucker The Cento for November 5, 2019 First Tuesdays Presents Alex Segura The Cento for October 1, 2019 First Tuesdays Presents Abeer Hoque The Cento for September 3, 2019 First Tuesday Joins PEN’s Break Out Initiative First Tuesdays Presents Peter Marra First Tuesdays Announces Its 2019-2020 Season First Tuesdays Presents January Gill O’Neil First Tuesdays Presents Donald Nicholson-Smith First Tuesdays Presents Charles Fishman First Tuesdays Presents Michael Broder First Tuesdays Presents Nicole Harotounian First Tuesdays Presents Matt Pasca First Tuesdays Presents Russell Ricard