Monday, June 30, 2008


it's not just speculation and supply/demand (increased refining and new drilling are opposed by oil companies, can you guess why? and demand is down but prices continue to rise...) driving prices thru the roof, but the complete destruction and devaluation of the dollar by economic policies designed to crush the middle class and enrich Our Corporate Masters. how exciting it will be when the dollar is on parity with the peso.

do your research and understand the mechanisms that will eventually make the current american/western life paradigm completely unsustainable (and it's not even sorta sustainable right now). are you going to learn new skills? how to grow food? how to mend a shirt? how to can and pickle and save? how to build a chicken coop? how to help your neighbor start THEIR garden? how to be a member of a community and not just an isolated, self-absorbed consumer of trash?

continuing to deny the new reality of the end of affordable energy isn't going to help. another day at the baseball game eating hotdogs isn't going to help. another mindless night of television isn't going to help. we have to rethink what matters, what is important, what we truly NEED as humans. I promise, when the truckers start striking here like they are all over the world, when the cabbies go on strike, when the shelves at Kroger are bare, when oil hits $200 a barrel, when all of our paychecks go to fuel the car to get to work, when McDonald's trucks don't show up to provide cheap 'meat,' when our power bill climbs to hundreds a month then we will HAVE to rethink the empty, hopeless, illusory lifestyle we've been sold now for generations.

think on this: a big ass storm blew thru here last night and fucked up some of our tomato plants and knocked over some other things. maybe some will die. what if it had been our entire food crop for a year? think about an entire corn crop in the midwest destroyed by floods and how corn (and soy) will be more expensive this year for all of us (and what do you think they feed cows when they're not feeding them their downer brothers and sisters from the slaughterhouse? this will make meat more expensive, make 'ethanol' more expensive, etc). think about what happens when trucks stop hauling food to your town either because they can't afford fuel or folks start keeping those things nearer to where they are produced because they have their own shortages to deal with. now think about how fragile this stupid fucking system is and how quickly it can all fall apart.

how prepared are we to face a reorganization of thought? it doesn't really matter, because we WILL have to come to terms with the massive change that is coming...

oh and one more thing: if you think the war in Iraq was to get their oil in order to make america wonderful and perfect again, you are a fucking idiot who has never done a single goddamn lick of research. it IS about oil, but not about making it available to us proles at a cost we can afford. same goes for believing in WMD, stopping fundamentalism, spreading democracy or any of the other blatant lies we were told to get that ol' military industrial complex humming at top capacity.

so my advice is: don't be a fucking idiot. use your goddamn brain. thanks.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

read this...

Monday, June 23, 2008


05.12.37 - 06.22.08

Saturday, June 14, 2008

our veggies...

we've started a small organic garden out back with eight different heirloom tomato plants (matt's wild cherry, pineapple, wapsipinicon peach, cherokee purple, super sweet 100, tigerella, green zebra, etc.), several basil, some oregano, thyme, pimento peppers, purple peppers, japs, cukes, three different kinds of onions, two different melons (old orignal and hale's best), broccoli, early moonbeam watermelons, blackberries, a couple different lettuces (red and bibb) and (not planted yet, so might be too late) hopefully corn.

it's very exciting and we've just eaten the first tomatoes right off our Matt's Wild Cherry plant

and made pesto from the basil,

and plucked a few blackberries.

this is practice, because next year we hope to start a farm and use it to supply our little restaurant when we're ready to open one (or just have a stand at several farmer's markets). and with the trucking industry about to shut down from diesel prices and your local grocery store shelves growing leaner, gardening is gonna be a national pastime soon. of course, the main reason is to feed ourselves. and yes, the pix sux, as I took em at night. cyn will do a much better job...

this looks good...

Friday, June 13, 2008

calliope nerve...

the lovely Jason Behrends from Orange Alert has published a second interview w/yours truly in the new issue of Calliope Nerve. it's a free email zine. if you have to have it NOW, email me and I'll forward the issue to you.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

lit shiz...

I've finished the ms. Good Morning, George Orwell. it's 36 brand new poems, a poetic 'concept album' where metaphors are layered throughout the text and the poems work in a linear narrative that describes a day in the life of an unnamed man working for "them" in 21st century police state america as we march into an uncertain future. I sketched out fragments of the story, then improvised the poems based on a very loose "sketch/idea" of what each poem would be, where each would go, in a deliberate amalgamation of craft/preparation and improvisation. it's a work with many levels and is an effort to go beyond what I've writ before; I attempted a narrative philisophical exploration rendered in poetry, with lots of air between the notes for the imaginative and curious mind to dissect, to unfold, to unpack.

I think it's important that an artist presses on into the unknown with his art; it's easy to rest on comfort and ease, on what's been done successfully already, but it's so much more fun to stretch out and see what lies in that great churning space deep within, that yawning void of strange energy from which creation flows, to try something new and maybe fail, but to never be satisfied, never be comfortable. it's that moment where the earth trembles and the mind reels, where the machine hovers a few inches above the table top and the paper glows and the ink shines, it's what we seek as artists and can't get without forging further and further ahead, turning over rocks and digging in the crawling mud beneath. it's something like magic, but more real. plus it's way more rewarding in the end to have challenged myself to 'play above what I know,' as Miles said...

anyway, it resides with a damn fine editor and we'll see if it goes, as I get to work on some "sound library poems" for Kendra Steiner Editions based on Ennio Morricone's freaky crime movie scores from the mid sixties and revolving around a very familiar place for me: the poker table.

Monday, June 09, 2008

get your dogs fixed and don't be an asshole...

in the last week we've had to find homes for three stray puppies lost and abandoned in our neighborhood. they are a FRACTION of the number of strays that wander around our little slice of misery here in College Park, but we're glad we've saved a few and made a few folks happy with their new babies. please be responsible, and like bob barker says: have your pet spayed or neutered. make sure your dog isn't creating more orphan pups.

also, you are a piece of shit asshole who should have your eyes chewed out by rabid swamp rats while your genitals are slowly sawed off with a rusty straight razor if you strap your dog to a tree in the yard on a short length of chain and never feed it or water it or walk it or take it to the vet or get the dog its shots, etc. dogs are pack animals and YOU are their pack. they aren't an object to own, but an addition to your pack, you uncaring, festering human canker sores.

and also: children can't raise a dog. a puppy isn't a fucking toy. children can't wipe their own asses much less train a puppy which takes hours of work every single goddamn day. so when your kid asks for a puppy, tell the little creature that having a puppy is like doing six hours of homework every day for the rest of the dog's life with no summer breaks either.

and a special note to our neighbors across the street who left their dog to die in the backyard on a chain with no food or water, riddled with giant heartworms from no care, no shots, starving and cowering in the mud and dirt when you moved out or got thrown out or whatever the fuck happened to you: go fuck yourselves, you worthless inhuman piles of monkey shit. we'll get him healthy at our expense and give him a good home, but if you come back you will be miserable. I promise. and may YOUR GOD have mercy on you for your ignorance and cruelty even after I exhausted all attempts at actually helping you learn how to do it right, after fixing your fence, teaching you about training, buying the food and housing for him, etc. seriously: fuck you all.

Friday, June 06, 2008

oa press website...

Orange Alert Press has a website. just so you know. and the ms. for Sunlight at Midnight, Darkness at Noon: The Cunningham/McCreesh Letters is safely in their hands, the cover artist is talented as hell and the special editions are gonna be sick. we're a ways off still, but it's very exciting.

support the indy presses, jerks!

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

and don't check this guy's blog...

justin.barrett. he's back.

great. just great. now we're all gonna have to hear about his exploits during his 'haitus,' and all the cool stuff he did.

hey bo diddley


Monday, June 02, 2008

Luis Omar Salinas (1937-2008)

*posted by Luis C. Berriozabal

Luis Omar Salinas, born in Robstown, Texas, died after a long illness near his home in Sanger, California on May 25, 2008. He was one of the leading voices in contemporary American poetry as well as one the leading Hispanic-American poets. His first book, Crazy Gypsy (1970), was considered a classic of Chicano literature.

Over 5 years ago I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Luis Omar Salinas with the assistance of his friend, Karen Harlow (McClintock), who is responsible for my photograph on MySpace and the back cover of my first book, Raw Materials. Mr. Salinas was in failing health and I was asked by Ms. Harlow if I wanted to meet Mr. Salinas. Being one of my favorite poets, I decided to meet Mr. Salinas and his kind friend, Karen. I met Salinas on two occasions. One when he was in a Fresno hospital, where we had a good talk. I was nervous about meeting Mr. Salinas. I did not know what to ask, but he was friendly and we seemed to hit it off. A year later he invited me to his birthday party in Sanger, California. I read a few poems for Mr. Salinas at his request from my book, Raw Materials. I am not one to read my poetry in public, but I could not say no to one of my heroes of poetry.

Around October 2003 I was able to conduct a small interview, with the assistance of his friend, Karen, with Mr. Salinas, who graciously answered my questions while he was recovering in a nursing home in Fresno, California, in his own handwriting. It appeared as if he had trouble writing at the time. Below are the questions I asked Mr. Luis Omar Salinas:

Five Questions for you, Omar -- please tell me

1) Why do you write?

I write to try to understand others and myself.

2) What inspires you?

What inspires me is the wind, nature, the ocean, and women

3) Who inspires you?

I'm inspired by a certain lady friend.

4) When did you decide that writing poetry was what you wanted to do?

It's not a question of when, but a question of how it happened and that it did happen

5) Do you love poetry as much as love?

Both as well

Last winter, my chapbook, Keepers Of Silence, was published by Kendra Steiner Editions. The book was dedicated to Mr. Luis Omar Salinas. Sadly, I had lost contact with Mr. Salinas and was not able to send him a copy. Below is a poem from the chapbook, which would not had been written if I had not met and read the work of Luis Omar Salinas.


Luis Omar Salinas
walks through the hills of Spain
in a dream.

Miguel Hernandez walks at his side.
In the quiet night
they listen to
softly singing.

Salinas says
to Hernandez,
I need to be alone.

Go forward, my friend, says Hernandez.

Luis Omar contemplates death.
He knows Hernandez is
a ghost, but also a
helpful guide and friend.

Hernandez walks away whistling.

Luis Omar looks to the sky.
There is a full moon.
He feels at home.

His dream takes him
to Central California.
His hands are calloused
and mulberry trees
appear in the distance.

Hernandez is with him again.

They are children playing
with imaginary swords
in a dusty field.

No one draws blood
in this dream like heaven.

Hernandez and Salinas say goodbye.

Miguel Hernandez walks
through the hills of Spain;
Luis Omar strolls
under a Fresno moon.

(Appeared in Pemmican and in the chapbook Keepers of Silence published by Kendra Steiner Editions)

There are a couple of more poems influenced by Luis Omar Salinas in Kendra Steiner Editions' 100th Chapbook, Next Exit Series #7, co-authored by poet Ronald Baatz.