Saturday, July 31, 2010

On Silence

Less than a pin drop, more than an emptiness.
The crowd lingers in opposition to beauty.
There’s a theatre of walruses reciting poems.
I heard the echo of sadness a million times vanish.
Nobody wants to hear the truth?
Less than a pin drop, more than emptiness.
The crowd is full of longing and need,
the cheerleaders are older with more assertions
than ever and the boy god recites his prayers blandly.
I heard the echo of a shadow on the silent periphery of madness.
There were no children, only the scaffolding of quiet lies.
I am getting ready to submit to a number of magazines. I have a number of poems I am insecure about, but I understand my insecurity about them, among other things is a problem that needs work. We are all, after all, a work in progress.

I have a ton of poems, mostly short lyrical poems, and I also have a number of lyrical/narrative pieces which I hope to place. It's been many years since I've sent my work out unsolicited, so here it goes. I'm bracing myself for the rejection as these poems are different than the type of poems I was writing before, but I feel I will get an acceptance or two in the end. Possibly they are somewhat surreal now? No, not really. They are all quite plain spoken, but there is something to small words and poems too. My work is not as organic as it once was, in that it isn't necessarily working holistically in its appeal. Maybe it is more fragmented than before. Yes, I think so. Lots of insecurity after Po-biz kicked my ass, but I'm back writing again a little at a time, and I think it's best to enjoy that process of creativity. I'm at Cannon Mine to mark the occasion of getting my stuff ready by labeling envelopes to at least 20 journals for now.

A number of the poems deal with healing and mental health and there's at least one journal out there that calls for such poems, so I will send there. Very excited to be on the ball about this this fall finally.

Friday, July 30, 2010

7-11 is surely going to be the death of me. I truly hate it. My housing option fell through today. I'm depressed. Nothing is working out lately. I am having a very hard time getting to work today. Surely I can focus on the positive things: the stories that come out of it, the working class people I am surrounded by. Anything at all that I can hang on to that has a positive tone to it. I'm trying. I'm tired. I want to write soon to see if it can help. Instead I go to work. Ugh.

On a brighter note I've been asked to write my second blurb which is cool. This writer was a finalist for the main street rag contest recently. More later on that possibly.

Alas, now I go off to serve the public, to vend quarters and drop twenties and make that Brazilian bold, that 100 percent Colombian and wipe down that slurpee machine and mop those sticky floors.


Thursday, July 29, 2010

Sassy Gay Friend: Eve

I think these videos are funny. I am getting ready to move on Sunday. I don't live in a van down by the river; I live in a motel down on Colfax, but it's just a temporary thing until a place opens up for me.

Someone I admire recently asked for my opinion about Contemporary American Poetry, so I'm going to reflect on that a bit before I answer. My initial reaction was of course crepe paper black hanger negative in that it's a mess and unfair, but the reality is that it is alive and vibrant and very diverse. I do think sometimes marketing comes into play a bit too much like over at the Poetry Foundation, but I suppose that's what bureaucracies have to rely on, marketing, hustlers etc. I wish the presentation of poetry was less lopsided, and should I get into why I believe this is the case or not? I don't know. It seems the self-appointed avant garde is the new cool thing, but there's lots of good poetry out there that can't be classified in a narrow definition of that slant of poetics. And that doesn't make everything else confessional old hat etc. or elite "school of quietude," but I can sit around and blame the injustices of the po-biz world and not write or I can get busy and try to write again. My confidence has taken some major hits the last few years, but I am trying to get myself back together again and get back into writing more positively, where the process itself is enough. After all, that's all we really have in the end, the journey, the recovery, the healing poetry offers. I've decided the best path is to start writing again and be ambitious in the face of what seems overwhelming socioeconomic dynamics that leave my work in a limited place, but audience or perceived audience isn't everything. The pleasure we get from the process has to be our main endeavor.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Cher-Half Breed, Gypsy's Tramps & Thieves and Dark Lady

I'm in the midst of moving now. Thinking about writing more once I get everything in storage. Oh joy in this heat. I'd like to send my work to some journals. Excited and scared about the prospect of actually getting my work circulating after all these years. So, the song above "half-breed" is significant as I was called exactly that not too terribly long ago. The term unnerved me. Perhaps it is something I should embrace.


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

New Poets of the American West ed. by Lowell Jaeger

I have a poem in New Poets of the American West edited by Lowell Jaeger. Very excited to be included among such wonderful poets!

Saturday, July 17, 2010


This is how things begin in the garage and end out on the street cruising and it seems we get to a point in life that there's not turning around. Not even veiled. My step-father wanted to keep things documented, wanted each old acquired vehicle sold back to its past use.

I lost the dread of oil slicked waters and exhaust. He was bitter about every cut car, chopped he'd say with disgust and judgment. Every oddly souped up vehicle was for him a loss of history, nerdy loss of history's past, but the flamed painted doors, the Satanic Chicana chick with her tail, the flames telling us there was more to what's shown and more hidden. Every tatoo a pink devil woman, Malinche biding time.

I always liked the new art, the painted engine hoods, la virgen, the whore, the risque bizness of creating something new. But it was the antiques strict in the guidelines of restoration where sorrow came like a shadow forever on the surface of the floating moon.

My old man was dead in the past, in the resurrection of walls and porous arachnid traps, but I sense something new in the old cruising. Freedom. Hydraulics. Hemp and happiness.

Reasonable men leave me dead in leaves, in the color of leaves. Oh showy body, slick with the last great age of petroleum.

We reap what we sow. We sow what we reap. Karma, Karma, Karma, the bad birds cawed in the thick layers of smoke. Gyre. Gyre. We hear the old echo, but these birds are ravenously throaty and they bobble and squack trying to drown the sound of engines.

It was the last testament to our strange love mask, something of loving and another of need or was it green; how a storyteller says it sideways, face turned profile shadow
and uncertainty walked its brave prayers, and it was time to cut the whole angle and sing.

Her voice tremor and tenuously stretching itself nowhere. His certain criticisms left the cars unfinished too long. Rumble seats unfilled, chokes unchocked, and the world was this strange geometry and the Puerto Negra was finally more than a song. It opened like the gates of hell, flames and fire and heat in the desert. Some searched for water, others ran beside the cut shells of newer cars, glowing.

My old man was dead in the past, in the resurrection of so many walls and porous arachnid traps, for I believed in transference, in contageons and criteria, but I lost the sense of waking or dreaming, I do not know, but the world was filled and filled and we were so very thirsty.

It was la Puerta Negra, the black crape paper hanger at the party, it was the way the remodeled engines tickled and tocked, how the women dressed in old finery and the play acting began and began.

What is there to facade and need? We were not connecting with words too private to declilne. We trade what's dead for what's living.

Friday, July 16, 2010

This song makes me like Luivette's poem for Ricky Martin even better. So many talented and wonderful poets at Canto Mundo. You can check out the videos of fellows reading at Eduardo's blog lorcaloca or Francisco's blog Letras Latinas.

I accidentally posted this on Robert Vasquez's blog. Speaking of him, does anyone have a phone number where he can be reached currently? If so, please email me.


Thursday, July 08, 2010

Denver Tourism : Denver Butterfly Pavilion: Overview

I'm getting ready to drive to Albuquerque for Canto Mundo. Hopefully I'll get there and have some time to rest before the first gathering.

Happy July!

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Monday, July 05, 2010

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Ben Saenz and the border

Ben Saenz was interviewed on PBS's Newshour. Here's a video of it.

W.S. Merwin named Poet Laureate.