MONDAY, 8.16: You’re a poet; admit it, and join your fellow versifiers, neontasters, fools, clods, and skoundrels masquerading as wise men to celebrate the original barfly at Fez. Wake Up, Sir! author Jonathan Ames and company stage a tribute to Charles Bukowski with a little help from One Ring Zero and Miss Bunny Love. 7:00pm, $10 [first spotted at bookcircuit.com].
TUESDAY, 8.17: Downtown fringe impresario Clay MacLeod Chapman is a riveting storyteller who excels at old-time stagecraft with his freaky (and long-running) Pumpkin Pie Show. He is also the author of the excellent Southern Gothic novel Miss Corpus. On Tuesday, he hosts a reading at Barbes, and one can presume from past experience that this evening will not be a snooze. 7:00pm, FREE.
WEDNESDAY, 8.18: Part of the New York International Fringe Festival, Subway Train claims to be “the world’s first beat poetry musical,” 90 percent of which was allegedly written while riding the rails of “the world’s most fascinating mass transit system.” Decide for yourself whether Subway Train is the next Hip Hop Story, or just another candy scam. 4:00pm, $15 (also plays 8.10, 8.20, 8.26, and 8.28; times vary).
THURSDAY, 8.19: Get lit when sexy sex scribe Rachel Kramer Bussel, playwright Joey Sanders and poetry slam champ Patricia Smith collide at KGB for Drunken! Careening! Writers!, the reading series that pulls it all together by requesting that each piece contain one thing that makes people laugh. 7:00pm, FREE.
FRIDAY, 8.20: Author/activists (the model/actresses for the post-irony age?) Naomi Klein, Vijay Prashad, Michael Albert, and Robin D.G. Kelley join together in solidarity for some serious trash-talking at Beyond Bush: An Evening of Visionary Resistance, as part of the succinctly-named Life After Capitalism conference, whose slogan could be (but isn’t), “because it’s time to put theory into praxis.” 7:00pm, $10-20.
SATURDAY, 8.21: Drinking in the afternoon doesn’t seem so bad when done for the sake of poetry, and it’s all the better at a bar so storied that it has its own scholarship, natch. The Ear Inn Reading Series features poets William Cassidy, Matthew Freedman, and Sarah Hannah on Saturday afternoon. 3:00pm, FREE.
SUNDAY, 8.22: Contemplate the times we’re living in, and ask yourself, Yo! What Happened to Peace? at the exhibition of the same name that features posters by dozens of artists, including Heidegger buff Shepard Fairey and Artburn author and LA Weekly columnist Robbie Conal. At Stay Gold Gallery & Art Space through 9.5. 12:00-5:00pm, FREE.
The Smart Set appears Mondays and highlights the best of the week to come, with special favor given to New York’s independent booksellers and venues, and low-cost and free events. Please direct your listings, tears and bribes to email@example.com by the Thursday before publication for consideration.