Wednesday, August 13, 2008


I was over at U.C. Berkeley yesterday doing a lecture to a class that's using the BRICK as a textbook (hiya student peeps!)...and during the Q&A, one of the students questioned how I came to my vocabulary -- that she says I use words she doesn't usually see in poems.

I realized she was referring to a diction highly influenced by Wall Street jargon -- so I mentioned my background as a banker etcetera. But I then also said that what's great about poetry is that it gives you the excuse to delve into as many subjects as possible since Poetry can be about anything and everything. And I said jokingly (though only half-jokingly) that if you want to be a poet, don't be an English major or, as an English major, don't remain an English major if you want to jazz up your raw material of language. (I'm a former English major, btw, so you English-ers just hold your tomatoes, okay?) Of course a whole slew of poets come to mind whose non-literary experiences benefit their poems -- Forrest Gander, Diane Ackerman, the doctors, etcetera etcetera.

All this is to lead to where, finally, my M.B.A. counts for something. I've got a couple of questioning if not questionable poems in Marne Kilates' fabulous blog-based literary/arts journal Poets' PictureBook. It's for a so-called "Poetry and Math" issue and Marne thought my poems were "algebraic"...then notes in his Editor's Intro that I have an M.B.A. His take is amusing and amusingly welcome to Moi; even if inaccurate, I never challenge how others read my poems. Anyway, check out this lovely use of Blogger -- and of course I'm highly honored to be featured in there with three of the Philippines' top poets: Cirilo Bautista, Marjorie Evasco and Victor Penaranda.

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