Literary Las Vegas: Peter Magliocco

In addition to spending more than 20 years championing the poetry of others in the limited-run lit-zine Art:Mag, Las Vegas resident Peter Magliocco has written plenty of poetry of his own. Ninety-eight of his poems and a collection of sketches are collected in the book "Ex Literotica."

The poetry runs the gamut from reflection on events such as the murder of Tupac Shakur to commentary on Las Vegas' dark side inhabited by strippers, prostitutes, gang members and homeless people. Included in the mix are snapshots of relationship highs and lows. Magliocco takes readers from a pinball convention at Bally's to the fictional Ex Literotica hotel where "transients in ant-like fashion gather to search for any leftovers in the trash cans and cigarette urns, where their dark fingers scoop up butts or still edible food scraps to tide them over for the night."

In addition to his poetry, Magliocco is the author of the novels "Nu-Evermore" and "Hiawatha Rocks." His newest book, the sci-fi novel "The Burgher of Virtual Eden," features a young poet protagonist.

Excerpt from "Ex Literotica"

The Leaving

When I just thought of poems

Not one equaled her in beauty

Nor her figure's cool symmetry

On our street corner hang-outs.

When I thought to write about her

It remained a reflection of me

Imprisoned in light brown eyes

She closed against the heat of us.

When I thought to paint her

My brush caked with hardened paint --

& her mental vision inside me

Became a last scar

Before she left.