SMALL PRESS TRAFFICS WITH BIG HEARTS
Because I believe in gratitude, I want to post that last Friday's SPT reading was special for so many reasons besides being able to share Michael's first English-language poem. Like my co-reader Susan Gevirtz who read in part from her new book which I am now enjoying: Aerodrome Orion & Starry Messenger (Kelsey).
--Rebeka who I thought was in Mexico but is in the Bay Area for now and stopped by with, among other things, Spanish and bilingual Spanish-English books for me and Michael to enjoy! Fabulous y gracias. (Rebeka is helping on that bilingual edition of The First Hay(na)ku Anthology which would be lovely as the English first run is out of print.)
--meeting such lovely SPT staff and volunteers, including the gracious Robin Tremblay-McGaw
--the indefatigable Sean Labrador y Manzano who, arriving late but in time for my reading, had to be escorted by security back to the auditorium where the reading was taking place (the security was confused as most of the attention at CCAC that night was on the end-of-year art exhibits by the students). So did the cops stay for poetry...?
--and last but not least, hearing CA Conrad's introduction of Moi, to wit I replicate below:
In her poem "Purity" Eileen Tabios writes, "After the fall of Miletus, the poet Phrynichos staged a drama about it. But the play's performance was forbidden by Athenians who fined him 'for reminding them of afflictions which affected them intimately.' I consider my search for unrelenting intimacy—a search I conduct despite my heart's cocoon of encaustic. I consider how a grid is supposed to eliminate gesture from paint. Although paint, finally, must return to its nature and flow like a menstruation—ooze with a viscous intensity unmitigated by geometry." In the current democratic empire of the United States of America, it is forbidden to be a foreigner of color, without papers, in Arizona, especially if you LOOK Mexican. OF COURSE, if you LOOK British you can destroy one of the most fragile animal wildlife refuges in the world with tens of thousands of gallons of crude oil and no one's going to arrest you. You'll be scolded. You'll be chastised, you may even be called names, but you can still fly to Phoenix if you're British and have lunch, take a stroll, enjoy the lovely day, completely unmolested by police. No holding cell for YOU. No, it's joyous.
I like this intro--there's nothing random at all about it. It gleaned my Babaylan Poetics.