Twenty seven readings in the US, Europe and the Middle East are scheduled in March to mark the seventh anniversary of the bombing of al-Mutanabbi Street, the ancient bookseller street in Baghdad.
Please join me as I participate in these two readings in SF:
1. The Great Overland Book Company (Bookstore) San Francisco, California -
Coordinator – Beau Beausoleil and Andrea Hassiba
March 5, 7:30 – 9:pm – at The Great Overland Book Company, 345 Judah
Street (at ninth avenue)
2. San Francisco.San Francisco Art Institute, San Francisco, California – Coordinator – Ozlem Ayse
Ozgur – March 6th, 7-9pm, San Francisco Art Institute Lecture Hall, 800 Chestnut
San Francisco, CA.
If you are in Oregon, consider coming to these readings:
1. Portland, Oregon – Coordinators – Bill Denham and Laura Russell – March 5, 7-9pm,
Multnomah Friends Meeting House, 4312 SE Stark Street, Portland, Oregon
2. Atelier 6000 in Bend, Oregon – Coordinators – Julie Winter and Patricia Clark
March 6, 4:30 – 7 pm – Atelier 6000 389 SW Scalehouse Ct. #120 – Bend, Oregon
For readings in London, Boston, Newfoundland and beyond, check out: http://www.al-mutanabbistreetstartshere-boston.com/readings–events.html
I will be reading from my book Ink and Blood, created for the al-Mutanabbi Street Project. For more info, check out: www.gallerydeforest.com
For poetry lovers everywhere:
A beautiful new book of poetry from Kim Stafford, Legacy of Beginning: Poems in Bhutan, has been published by Larkspur Press. The hand-sewn book contains wood engravings by the artist Wesley Bates. Stafford writes in the book’s preface:
“In the winter of 2011 … I gathered a band of ten writers from America and one from Poland for a creative pilgrimage to the kingdom of Bhutan. These poems were written as we sat together around the bukhari, the iron stove where pine crackled and winter kept us close. The poems are informed by the Buddist notion of four dimensions for each encounter, from the visible to the increasingly mysterious and important.”
If you love William Stafford’s poetry, check out the artists’ books Derek and I letterpress printed in honor of his Centennial: www.gallerydeforest.com.
Continue reading News from Cathy DeForest: Al-Mutanabbi Readings and New Work
New York City features 250 artists’ books from the Al-Mutanabbi Project! I am pleased to announce the opening of the Al-Mutanabbi Project in NYC in 5 venues. Big thanks to The Center for Book Arts’ for organizing this! I will be coming to NY…
Continue reading Cathy DeForest
March 28, 2013
It is officially almost April, National Poetry Month, and Poets On The Loose are ready to hit the streets again. We are a band of folks who offer poems to willing strangers on the streets of America. Join us if you can!
Let the merriment begin!
Here are ideas for this year based on our adventures last year. It was so much fun.
1. In order for our Poets on the Loose ideas to spread, we have set up a Facebook Fan page for Jubilation Press featuring Poets on the Loose. This is where we hope to post poems, photos and narrative of our Poet on the Loose adventures. Please consider doing these things:
Please sign up as a fan of Jubilation Press at http://www.facebook.com/jubilationpress and do one or all of the following:
* suggest poems for poets on the loose
* post your adventures on our facebook page
* post photographs of your readings on the street
2. Thanks to Kim Rosen, we have a Poets On the Loose website. It is: www.poetsontheloose.com. Please visit it and check out the poems Kim and others have posted there. If you click on the Acts Of Poetry tab, you can read posts people have made. If you wish to tell your tale or offer a poem, scroll to the end to the “Leave a reply” list. Instructions and other suggestions are listed on the home page. Thank you Kim Rosen and Nancy Bardos.
3. Here are guidelines for anyone who wants to be a poet on the loose:
Keep poems short. Read a 5-8-line excerpt from a longer poem if you wish.
Be welcoming. We want to avoid offensive language, etc. Shower the person with goodness and joy.
Bring a fun kid’s poem with you to read to children. This is a revolution after all and we need the next generation to join in. Consider making copies of your poems to give away. Consider putting this on the bottom of your poem:
Thanks for helping us bring poetry to its feet!
Poets on the Loose- bringing poetry to the streets.
DO IT YOUR WAY! IN YOUR OWN STYLE! HAVE FUN!
4. Here is a script for you to use if you wish to do so:
“Hi. April is National Poetry Month.
We are Poets on the Loose, reading poems to people all over town.
We would love to read you a short poem….would you like that?”
If no, walk on.
If yes, give them five or so cards of poems to choose from. (I personally put the blank sides up so they do not see the text of the poem when choosing).
Read the poem they choose.
Say: “Thanks! Would you like a copy of that poem?”
Give them a copy of your poem and include on this card the words:
Thanks for helping us bring poetry to its feet!
Poets on the Loose—bringing poetry to the streets
5. Possible places suggested by last year’s organizers:
Senior Centers, grocery stores, hospitals, bookstores, banks, galleries, libraries, folks on the street, Farmer’s Markets, parks, etc.
6. Please feel free to recruit more people….the more poets popping up everywhere, the merrier! Have them email me at: cathyjubilationpresscom (cathyjubilationpresscom) or call me at 541-690-6976 to officially sign up or ask questions, etc.
7. Please write up a short email summary of where you went and what happened. Post it on the Jubilation Press facebook page: www.facebook.com/jubilationpress and /or www.poetsontheloose.com
8. I have poetry pockets for sale designed and made by Cantrell Maryott and myself if any of you wish to purchase one. They are made from beautiful repurposed fabric and come with two pockets—one pocket is for a poem and one pocket is for keys, glasses, phone, etc. Call me at 541-690-6976 or email me at cathyjubilationpresscom (cathyjubilationpresscom)
THANKS FOR BEING A POET ON THE LOOSE!
Continue reading Poets on the loose!
Southern Oregon has our particular brand on “Poets on the Loose,” but the Street Poets in L.A. bring poetry to a whole new level. The Street Poets lead writing workshops and poetry performances for youth and young adults all around Los Angeles Co…
Continue reading Poets on the Loose a la L.A.: The Street Poets
Peter and Donna Thomas have been making artists’ books for over 30 years.
They are coming to Ashland, Oregon with their Gypsy Caravan to teach a workshop!
You can meet them
and see their books two ways:
Saturday, June 25 1:30-4:00
at Illahe Gallery
215 Fourth Street in Ashland’s RR District
by taking this workshop
Sunday, June 26 10-4:00
at Ashland Art Center
357 East Main St.
Creating Artist Books Workshop:
The Nested Accordion Book; Scrolling Codex
$45, ages 15 and up
· Contact Cathy DeForest to register at 541-690-6976 or cathyjubilationpresscom (cathyjubilationpresscom)
Peter and Donna Thomas, are self employed book artists, papermakers and letterpress printers who write, illustrate, and bind their own books. In 2010 and 2011, as the wandering book artists, they traveled around the USA in their homebuilt Gypsy Wagon Bookmobile.
Since 1977 they have produced over 125 limited edition books and over 300 one-of-a-kind artists’ books, which can be found in collections around the globe. They have been self-employed in the book arts since 1977, making books, teaching workshops and giving lectures. Check out: http://wanderingbookartists.blogspot.com
Continue reading Book Artists Donna and Peter Thomas coming to Ashland, Oregon
Last Friday (February 28, 2010) I went to see the poet Amiri Baraka read at Denver University. The former Poet Laureate of New Jersey, Amiri Baraka is a distinguished poet, author, playwright, music critic and political activist. Familiar with controversy, Baraka’s poetry (and other works) battle subjects such as racism, slavery, white culture and conservatism and his reading this Friday was no exception. A jazz critic, Baraka’s words were filled with jazz references, and accompanied often by rhythm as he pounded on the podium, tapped the microphone, sang refrains and scat melodies. At one point drumming with so much enthusiasm all his papers fell from the podium, his energy was especially impressive considering Baraka recently turned 75.
At times Baraka’s words were full of remorse and resentment for the history of African slavery–my brother the king sold me to the ghosts–and the connected history of the Americas–at the bottom of the Atlantic ocean/there’s a railway/made of human bones/black ivory. Yet he added to this the songs slaves sang to keep their pride–I may be wrong, but I won’t be wrong always. Still, the history he retold warranted the notion the preparation for pain is minimal/for joy, a lifetime.
Perhaps the most animated and comical part of Baraka’s reading was his series of lowkus (haikus for Afro-Americans who “don’t have time to count the syllables”). Baraka strung the lowkus together by singing the melody of Bud Powell’s “Un Pollo Loco.” The lowkus were full of humor, much of it directed towards whites–the devil said he left heaven because there were too many niggers/that’s why he started Europe–the rich–since the rich eat more than anybody else/it’s reasonable to assume/that they there are more full of shit–and Bush–the main thing wrong with you/you aint in jail and in Mandarin the word Bush mean dumb motherfucker. (Watch a video of lowkus at a UC-Berkeley reading. The lowkus begin at the 31 minute mark.)
Baraka’s reading was a powerful reminder of the world’s madness, which is recognized by liberals, conservatives and apoliticals alike (although opinions about the root cause of this madness vary). While demonstrating the tensions that still affect issues such as race and class, Baraka spoke of the need for this country to stay vigilant against conservatism. In order to do this, “we” need to stop fighting each other and fight the common bigger enemy, which Baraka would call the Republican devils. In addition to the outcry of his poetry, Baraka repeatedly offered another solution, referencing the DU student crowd by saying things to effect of, “You are all students, study this stuff.”
Baraka ended the reading with a poem that has attracted much attention entitled “Somebody Blew Up America.” Living in Newark, New Jersey, directly across the river from the Twin Towers, “Somebody Blew Up America” is Baraka’s response to watching the smoke rise as the buildings fell. Baraka lost his laureateship for the poem, which repeatedly asks the question, “Who?”:
Who fount Bin Laden, maybe they Satan
Who pay the CIA,
Who knew the bomb was gonna blow
Who know why the terrorists
Learned to fly in Florida, San Diego.
While implicating the Bush Administration, and many others, in the execution of 9/11, the poem’s questioning criticism goes far beyond any single event:
Who got the tar, who got the feathers
Who had the match, who set the fires
Who killed and hired
Who say they God & still be the Devil
Who the biggest terrorist
Who change the bible
Who killed the most people
Who do the most evil
Who don’t worry about survival
(Read the rest of the poem)
During the question and answer after his reading, a young woman asked, “Who exactly are you talking about?” to which Baraka replied something to the effect of, “That’s just what I’m asking, who? … You’re in school, study this stuff.” But while you’re picking up those books, be warned: poets on the loose, we’re coming around.
Written by Derek Pyle. Photo by Lynda Koolish from www.amiribaraka.com.
Continue reading Amiri Baraka in Denver
What a December! We at Jubilation Press printed a new broadside, “Vipassana,” a poem by me (Derek Pyle). In addition to that, I was honored to read poems for two audiences, at Illahe Gallery and Studio, and at the Winter Farmhouse Salon with Jeff Pevar…
Continue reading The Ghost of December Past
The transition movement emphasizes localized exchange as a way to avoid the environmental problems lingering on the horizon, but that is not the only reason why local is good. The local is the people we know, the people who live in o…
Continue reading Dec. 13 Farmhouse Salon: Jeff Pevar, Inger Jorgenson and Friends
Barbara Mortkowitz showcases her creativity with a series of artistbooks inspired by wanderings through the streets of Florence.Cathy DeForest exhibits her solar etching based onthe Egyptian exhibit of the Venice Biennale 2009.Rebecca Dant reveals her …
Continue reading Final Artist Book Exhibit at Santa Reparata International School of Art
Raffaella Macalusa exhibits her book inspiredby the 500 year old deed for her family home.Len and Diane Lea showing the medieval binding of herletterpress book sewn and printed at Santa Reparata.Kathleen Rydar exhibits her books which includes a tribut…
Continue reading Artist books created in Florence