Saturday, October 29, 2011

Feeling better as sun came out after snow. I prefer that sun! I have 16 minutes left on computer. Mom mailed my new notebook today, so I'm excited to receive it. Have printed some poems out here at the library for 20 cents a page, which seems ridiculously high, but I will slowly print stuff out, and I'll also submit electronically to a number of journals. Will revise more intensely when I have computer.

The library is good for me as it gets me reading. Will check out poetry section before I leave as I've almost finished Milosz, which I heard the Polish pronunciation, but I tend to use the American pronunciation which is something like Miloch. I really like his essays, his reflections on many lost to World War II death camps, as well as Russian gulags. He rubbed elbows with a number of significant personalities including Camus, which I used to pronounce with the "s". ;) Same with Goethe early on- mispronunciation. In graduate school, once, I couldn't pronounce "mimicry." But as someone pointed out to me yesterday, I am somewhat knowledgeable about poetry and literature as I did study it for so long. I am getting ready to turn 47 and am well aware that I am quite a bit older than a number of "emerging" poets. All I can say is it's been a struggle to have time to pursue what I consider a leisurely passion. Poetry is a luxury.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Feeling kind of down, with the first snow which is still falling. I'm guessing 8 inches as predicted. Roads are sloshed. Printed out a few poems which I will try to send out despite feeling very down. I don't do well with winter cold I suppose.

I've been reading Rilke's Book of Hours: Love Poems to God and Milosz's ABC's. Reading is the only thing that can save me as a poet, as I'm down. U of AZ press hasn't yet waded through manuscript and I have people whispering in my ear, telling me it's just not ready, telling me they've published some bad books, at least one, but then again the source is questionable, in that he feels one should only write in English, which is absurd. Some are telling me I should only publish a chapbook.

In any case, the struggle with confidence has again come to a headway, as I am down and frustrated, but my mother just got me a new computer which she will ship soon. My mother is the only reason I'm living under the AND (Aid to Needy Disabled) and surviving.

My social security hearing is scheduled for March 21, 2012, and yes, it's been a long wait. Not sure what will happen. Very concerned and worried, then realize that worrying won't do me any good.

I really do like Milosz and the other day I was very excited and engaged reading these short essays. Here's a quote:

"People go to church because they are divided beings. They wish, for a moment at least, to find themselves in a reality other than the one that surrounds them and claims to be the only true reality. This daily reality is unyielding, brutal, cruel, and hard to bear... "

Yet in the end he seems to state it is advisable to have familiarity with the "so called truths of the faith".

So in any case, his position seems intentionally obscure. Whereas Rilke's poems ring with a faith I have long since lost in many ways. They are beautiful, though the translation I have has the German titles. So faith has been on my mind of late, and frustration too.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

At the library, frustrated because I've been unable to play cityville :(   Have the 50 plus files on a flash drive, but it's difficult as you are always waiting to get booted off the computer. Need to go through these poems and print them out, but printing out here costs 20 cents per page, and I have no 20 cents, but I do have freedom within.

Will get to looking at these poems since I can't play cityville. It's a simple twist of fate...

Friday, October 21, 2011

Time a shard, a blissful falling of yellow leaves
Diagonally in the breeze, a whisk of dandelions,
All beauty subjective, the split image of self
Lost in the tumult of rain clouds, black and gray,
A sigh in the willow of the body, a waving, a giving way.
Time a song, violins and trumpets, the hollowing away
Of the false image, the one we put on like a mask.
There are a million ways we don’t get what we want.
This journey, no wood, no dark path of matter,
No emptying only emptying. The eyes closed
And we learn to listen? The wind bringing winter,
The first snow fall, give into it now.
Time a knife, a sunset pink and billowing,
The day a new resurrection, and we are reborn
As the sky, reborn as the blackbirds and robins.
Time a shard, a blissful whisper of leaves pattering
In the wind. All is landscape, the internal organs
Dark in their holy places, and we are but  moments
Strung together in image and sound. Tactile
Hallucinations, the river inside your palm
Measures time. The glistening winter that tells us
Death is near and cold and possibly beautiful,
The ugly losses weighing us down, the way we can’t see
Our downfall even in the midst of falling.
Gray goatee, a clean thick backpack with newness and black leather Written on it. Designer glasses and a pair of jeans worn and washed for weeks. This is the way a man refuses help, sees himself a victim of circumstances. Years of crazy landlords and lost jobs, he’s grown frustrated and clenches fists Bitching against the Starbucks empire, and he’s aged. He refuses the nearest shelter for weeks protecting his Macbook from theft. I am seeing with glasses of judgment. Some send prayers To a God indifferent to starvation and worry, with hope for an intervention, But how can he ask for help in a social contract that binds one to death? He is counting the words in a poem, eyeing the leaves falling diagonally in the breeze. Death as beautiful, and he says, the tree’s still alive, the tree’s still alive. The world a blue globe of forgetting. The homeless sometimes bitter, Enraged, a plastic bag of belongings held on to as if it were life. I’d like the language of rainfall, the patter of magic, but it’s like this, We can’t see ourselves some days. The path lit with a strange fire, Yellow leaves cluttering the gutter. He walks with tennis shoes, lit With red shoe laces.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Trying to get back to writing. Will bring flash drive to library. Turning in circles, really as far as writing poems. A lot of talk. Relieved to not be teaching. Will try to write something on pen and paper as my computer died in that it won't charge. I have 8 minutes left on library computer. Was hoping that it would give me more time. Will be getting a computer soon though thanks to family. Fall is here and it's looking pretty good, but it sure is getting nippy in Colorado. Snow will come soon. Will begin revising 50 plus files when I remember to bring the flash drive with the poems on it, hopefully tomorrow. Really like this video. Not going to AWP and feeling somewhat a disconnect with other poets and writers, but feeling free in my life as I do have time to focus on healing. Blessings.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Will read a poem tomorrow for Words on the Wire in El Paso, Tx. and speak a bit about how El Paso is a wondrous place around 1pm! Many people in the city have a negative opinion of their hometown, so I've decided to share how travel informed my opinion about the place. Mostly it's poverty and its geographical isolation that came to my mind as I left the country and traveled around the country. I think I need to rewrite my notes and tie them more into my past travels and this view of its socioeconomic hardships, and how that helps define its beauty. I think I decided to read "Las Alas" instead of "River Ghost," as it is more of a praise song about the city. Still waiting to hear something from U. of Arizona press. Eager to send to other presses if I need to, but of course it's a waiting game. Need to get busy with the writing again, as I've focused on drawing the past few weeks. Will get to it tomorrow. I am moving downstairs and getting a new roommate, and I'm discovering I simply have too many books. Not sure what I'm going to do at this point. I may take them back to Texas, or I may try to sell them. It's painful to let go of so many good poetry books etc, but I simply don't have the room for them at this point. I think some day I will invest in a kindle. The books are heavy, and I don't think I can fit all of them into the car in December. Maybe if I make 2 trips I can get them all back to El Paso. Sitting in a cafe in Old Town Arvada, but I'm getting ready to head back home. I do still love Dylan after all these years. Will do radio show and hopefully begin working on the 50 plus files/poems I found the other week.

Sunday, October 09, 2011

The symposium was great! I met Juliana Araqgon Fatula, and we may get together and read with Maria Melendez in Denver; Juan Morales can be the lone guy. It was nice to be around other Chicana/o poets for a change. Denver is a bit lonely for me as a poet. Most poets I know are experimental and somewhat against the narrative. It was nice to be around poets with something in common, a little taste of Canto Mundo, a little taste of story telling and lyricism. I really enjoyed it despite being VERY nervous before I read. Today I'm at Starbucks with my roommate and will journal a bit. Maybe I'll hear from U. of AZ this month. If not, I think I'll shoot them an email, as Carnegie Mellon only reads in October. All is well. I'm doing much better and healing. A man, a prof at the symposium said, "creative writing" is not therapy. I kind of disagree, but I feel one can engage in creative writing and not heal because they aren't in real therapy or "really dealing" and out of denial. I lived 43 years in denial, but it was kind of unavoidable as I didn't remember events until my step-father died. My anger seemed to be coming out of nowhere. When he died I did not weep.

Friday, October 07, 2011

Going here tomorrow: Southern Colorado Rhetoric Symposium. Looking forward to reading some poems. It's been a long time since I've been involved with anything remotely academic. It's a 3 hour drive, and I'm going with a friend. Still nervously waiting to hear something from U. of AZ. :( I want to send something to Carnegie Mellon this month, but I doubt I can afford it. Hmmm. What presses are free to send to? Those are the ones I'll be looking into. "The traumatic experiences you had may have led you to believe that nobody can possibly understand what you went through and what happened to you. Not only can others not understand traumas themselves, but they cannot understand why you react as you do and why you think so poorly about yourself. McKay and Rogers 2000) discuss how triggers that bring back various aspects of the trauma (emotions, thoughts, memories, etc.) can lead to negative perceptions of yourself in relation to others. When you perceive that you have been harmed and victimized deliberately and intentionally, as well as that you were totally helpless and powerless to do anything about what happened to you, you can develop feelings of helplessness." I'm learning a lot about saying no, about being less of a victim and more of a survivor. It feels good.

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Two poems accepted by NEW BORDER WRITING anthology. I got on fire about sending work out to journals, and hopefully putting together a manuscript of work I've found. Feeling free with my life these days though I have no money. Need another printer, but will go to the library to print out poems later in the month. Need to type up one review, read a novel to review, review another poetry book, write a speech thingy for this symposium I'm attending and a five minute radio show/ podcast? where I'm to give an opinion on something. I'm doing poetry, place and travel for that too and will do a shout out for my "friends." ;) Also need to do some art work for the JCMH art show where I will be trying to sell some pencil drawings or designs I've done. It's mostly for fun, and I enjoy drawing. So it's not a "real" art show, but it is something I'm looking forward to doing.