Wednesday, December 20, 2006

i was tagged by susana....

the first poem i remember reading was....

not a poem. not really. it was Psalm 23. the holy bible. & i think after that i started reading Wisława Szymborska, View with a Grain of Sand. that's how i remember it going, anyway. i know that my love of poetry came directly from my love of the dictionary and not from any particular poem or poet. the poems & poets i loved just fueled my love of the word.

o, and my first dream about poetry went like this: i was looking at a page in a typewriter & typing an essay comparing Song of Myself to Dr. Seuss. and it made perfect sense in the dream but i've never quite been able to recapture that sense in real life.

i was forced to memorize numerous poems in school and...

actually, i wasn't. i don't remember ever having to memorize a poem in school. i had to memorize the Pledge of Allegiance in school. and Waltzing Matilda. but not a poem. My father made me memorize a poem that HE had to memorize in school & this is it:

One bright day in the Middle of the Night
Two dead boys began to fight
back to back they faced each other
drew their swords
& shot each other
A deaf policeman heard the noise
and came and killed those two dead boys.

i read Poetry because...

it can satisfy my linguistical needs. as primal as it can get. like sex & water.

a poem i am likely to think about when asked what my favorite poem is....

i'm likely to go blank & feel a lot of anxiety when asked this question & then i will think really hard & come up w/ names of poets first... & then if i'm lucky or had some tequila i will think of actual poems.

any of ted berrigan's sonnets
suzanne stein's fugitive state & also shack
elise ficarra's lip reader
brandon brown's memoirs of my nervous illness
jack spicer's Psychoanalysis: An Elegy
and, something i consider a poem, and maybe i am alone in this, but: Djuna Barnes: The Antiphon.

my experience with reading poetry differs from my experience with reading other types of literature....

my first response is to say that i don't have a different experience.

that is not entirely true. i think poetry places me inside my body more than other types of literature. although there are a lot of critical texts that also place me more inside my body. i read those as poems, though.

will have to finish later. back to work.

any which way... we leave for NJ / NY tomorow morning. yay! percy poodle, too.


i tag: andrea & chris . , Julie , , Kay and my dad.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

O Come Let Us Adore Him!

photo by kelly marshall.

Happy Holidays from the Pringle[hyphen]Zurawski[hyphen]Poodle Family!

Saturday, November 18, 2006


are not going to AWP in atlanta. we've decided. we are a little sad, but, really... we need to save money to move away & i've had to fly too many times this year [ruining all the work i've been doing on my ecological footprint reduction]....

& so we've opted out. & hope all those that we made consider the idea, still consider the idea.

but, hey... we'll probably be living closer to all the people we've yet to meet but somehow know very soon. like. in june.

back from MN but uninterested in the Blog world at this time.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006


i can tell you that i did, in fact, vote Green. & this is because when i tried to vote Democrat, & i tried really hard, & i even did in a few instances [Diane!]... i felt a wave a disgust overcome my entire body & just couldn't bring myself to do it.

i believe that one day there will be a Green Party candidate that can win everyone over. the Dems are too much like the Reps...

i am disappointed that the new energy bill didn't pass... i don't know WHY but maybe the news can explain it to me.

i find the discussion over at philly sound to be enlightening & a signal of how divided our country has become. it is inevitable. the democrats are not the same democrats they were 15 years ago. the world has changed. & yes, i'm happier w/ a balance of power.

but i still believe in voting Green if that's what you truly want.

just in case you were wondering.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006


i just did.

& i think you should vote for the people you believe in.

as far as the props, though...

please remember that you get to vote on Abortion Rights [another BS Parental Notification law], New Energy possibilities, &, in SF, whether or not we should Impeach Bush & Cheney.

those are the most important ones to me. although, others are important.

so even if you hate everyone running, or can't tell the difference between them, realize that there are important measures remaining to vote on & go vote!


another strange google search

getting you HERE

rocky mountain oyster poem.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

spt last night & after

a real shame that there was such low attendance for Prageeta Sharma & Douglas Kearney last night. it was a really great reading. lots of good energy & thoughts provoked. where were you all?


i am sad to report that this is what i heard from a brand new Poet at San Francisco State University last night:

that he wanted to work more with multimedia poetry & didn't feel like the environment at State would be very receptive to this work. that SFSU is more "mainstream poetry" and all the experimental folks are few & far between.


seeing as how i just graduated last May from SFSU i find this to be not only BAFFLING but absolutely TRAGIC. i tried to explain that we USED to be very receptive to such work... that most of my peers from SFSU have at least dabbled in multimedia work... & then he was surprised.

the end of an era?

what are all the left-over "experimental" writers at state doing? is Bob Gluck teaching 8 classes a semester now? do they all need to transfer to Bard in order to meet & have a community? are Stacy & Chet ever coming back?

is this even true or just one person's experience?

was this a purposeful move on the part of the CW Dept????

whatever the case... it is truly heartbreaking & infuriating to hear.


my grandmother died & now i am going back to MN next week.


i really did fall off my bike going Green & am pretty well bruised. [Green bruises, though.]

Friday, November 03, 2006

Bruce Andrews is My Hero!

And O'reilly is a dumbass:

Karl Rove Had A Gay Dad

Listen to this interview on Democracy Now to learn just how willing Karl Rove is to do anything to win.

Saturday, October 28, 2006


green festival in november

i'm gonna go to some of this... it looks really great. anybody care to join me?


also... happy late birthday alli!

i have Cousins, but i haven't been able to read it yet. i'm setting aside a special hour tonight just for me & Cousins.

also have some more chaps coming in the mail from Dusie.

[i'll add links later. have to go to work now.]

have a good day!

Thursday, October 26, 2006


GREEN poet based in NY for new project. be it, or want it.

please email me:

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

... going green

is really damn hard.

have you taken yr ecological footprint quiz yet?

i scored 13 acres. the average american uses 24 acres. & then i tried to get my acreage even lower by only driving my car 10 miles a week, NEVER taking the bus/train, & walking or biking the rest of my miles...

& then only ever eating 100% upackaged foods...

it only brought me down to 9 acres!

[there is enough for everyone in the world to have 4 something acres, see]

do me a favor...

if anyone of you scores lower than 9 acres when you take this quiz... email me. tell me how to do it. until then... i will do my best to figure it out. & i've already started w/ my bike again.


Sunday, October 22, 2006

let's start here?

Join Vice President Gore / Support Clean Energy

Monday, October 23rd, noon
2151 Martin Luther King Jr. Way
(between Allston Way and Center Street,
across from Berkeley City Hall)
what are we going to do about GREENing this place?

& then there is stop TORTURE

& then there is this ask conrad for the letter

& we are voting soon.... [& the race for GOVERNOR here in CA has m & i considering a write in for Percy Poodle]

but, what are we going to do about GREENing this place? what can us POETS do? what are YOU doing? i want to know. maybe you can help me get motivated & not feel helpless & inactive. maybe get me off my COMFORTABLE ass & not just work my 9-5 [non-profit/ for children] job & feel like i've done all i can do....

because the truth is, i can do more. & i'm really not interested in the politics of TV. or chatrooms. or TOP 40, which is all it seems to be now w/ the DEMS & REPS.... fluff. [fluffing.]

& george hasn't responded to my letter yet. although for a few days we thought the CIA was reading our blog.

serious responses only.

thank you.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

we are home.

& already while walking percy i had the opportunity to see two men pissing in the panhandle.

a far cry from rochester, MN [where it is probably too cold & panhandleless].

i just took a look at several blogs & comment boxes & i found it mostly depressing. [frustrating. offensive. etc.]

i think i'm going to take a long break from posting & write that novel some canadian is asking me for.

Thursday, October 05, 2006


i read aaron kunin's secret architecture [which is really really really great]

& brandon brown's Memoirs of My Nervous Illness [AGAIN.]

& started on lauren shufran's Burrow.

while i was getting a cut & color this was what i kept saying to myself

[inside my head, of course, so Lycia wouldn't think i was completely crazy] :

who is the hip-hop equivalent to david bowie? who?
is brandon brown the hip-hop equivalent to david bowie?

because i was thinking about how Memoirs can be read re: GENDER[bending].


that's all from me. we're off to minnesota on a late plane. see some of you thursday at rodney's reading....

have fun at joel's tomorrow!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

one thing that cheers me up

my oakland A's will be playing my dad's minnesota Twins the whole time we are in Minnesota this weekend.

i love to bet & vote against my Father.
there is so much going on that we [i] do not know if i am capable of using language at this time.

we are disappointed in our government.

& we are especially angry re: the Foley situation. first he gets busted. then he's in a rehab clinic. & now he is gay? & now, suddenly, despite much study pointing to the contrary... gays are more likely to be pedophiles????


last i heard only 1% of the known pedophiles are actually GAY. & maybe Foley IS gay... but it seems to me that he is taking one for his Party... good ole boy to the end... & frankly... we don't want him, either.


we are leaving for minnesota late tomorrow night & return late monday night. my father is turning 80!

i wonder about the poetry scene in minnesota. anybody there? anybody know anybody there? i know that it is a small press haven...

sadly we will not be in the twin cities but in Rochester... famous for the Mayo Clinic.

& sadly we will miss joel at SPT this friday. [but you shouldn't.]

Monday, October 02, 2006

read this.

Treadwell calls Ron out .


a reading

in Carlisle, PA

at Dickinson College

last night / tonight

& not one

but TWO, yes, TWO...

hits on our blog from this very place!

WHO could it be?

Sunday, October 01, 2006

reaction to the NY times at 8pm Pacific [a draft]: for Judith Goldman

it was reported today that the mechanism of movement over ran
itself. flailing about with gnat edges.

‘we do not wish to pursue legal action’ of course
because WE hasn’t been violated [contemplated] for nearly
12 years [he is, after all, nearly 16 years old, and therefore old enough to know better than to take money for sex or sex for money or give any senator enough to eat because we all know they have eaten plenty: don’t we?]

the papers contacted Mr. Representative’s office & were forwarded to Mr. Representative, who then forwarded the call to the Head Office of Representation.

the Representatives of the house of Representation have yet to return the call

[or recall]

of the paper. what we do know is this: there will
not be any LEGAL action taken at this time.

[ there are other times /occurrences that rhyme with indecency such as flagrant abuse of power & SOMETH -ing a minor.

[ there are other times that he will speak of never in the future tense but only in the half-limp light of some damn orchestrated catastrophe.

[ there is not an answer for this.

WE all went gone before we knew where we were headed

all the typers of typewriters and keyers of keyboards are expecting some kind of ARREST at some point in time whether it be by hand or heart : or both : what is it that makes people people god said to the other god

and god said back: SENATOR, WE DO.

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Mom, Did We Forget to Escape Soviet Totalitarianism?

The Following is taken from yesterday's broadcast of Democracy Now! at

The Senate has agreed to give President Bush extraordinary power to detain and try prisoners in the so-called war on terror. The legislation strips detainees of the right to challenge their own detention and gives the President the power to detain them indefinitely. The bill also immunizes U.S. officials from prosecution for torturing detainees who the military and the CIA captured before the end of last year. We get reaction from Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Michael Ratner of the Center for Constitutional Rights. [includes rush transcript]
On Capitol Hill, the Senate has agreed to give President Bush extraordinary power to detain and try prisoners in the so-called war on terror. The editors of the New York Times described the law as tyrannical. They said its passage marks a low point in American democracy and that it is our generation’s version of the Alien and Sedition Acts. The legislation strips detainees of the right to file habeas corpus petitions to challenge their own detention or treatment. It gives the president the power to indefinitely detain anyone it deems to have provided material support to anti-U.S. hostilities. Secret and coerced evidence could be used to try detainees held in U.S. military prisons. The bill also immunizes U.S. officials from prosecution for torturing detainees who the military and the CIA captured before the end of last year.
The Senate passed the measure sixty five to thirty four. Twelve Democrats joined the Republican majority. The House passed virtually the same legislation on Wednesday. Legal groups, including the Center for Constitutional Rights, are already preparing to challenge the constitutionality of the law in court.

Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.). Ranking member on the Senate Judiciary Committee. See Senator Leahy’s statement on the detainee bill here.
Michael Ratner. President of the Center for Constitutional Rights.
This transcript is available free of charge. However, donations help us provide closed captioning for the deaf and hard of hearing on our TV broadcast. Thank you for your generous contribution.
Donate - $25, $50, $100, more...

AMY GOODMAN: On Thursday, Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont condemned the legislation from the floor of the Senate.

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY: It grieves me to think that three decades in this body that I stand here in the Senate, knowing that we’re thinking of doing this. It is so wrong. It is unconstitutional. It is un-American. It is designed to ensure the Bush-Cheney administration will never again be embarrassed by a United States Supreme Court decision reviewing its unlawful abuses of power. The Supreme Court said, ‘You abused your power.’ He said, ‘Ha, we’ll fix that. We have a rubber stamp, a rubber stamp, Congress, that will just set that aside and give us power that nobody, no king or anybody else set foot in this land, ever thought of having.’

AMY GOODMAN: Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy speaking Thursday prior to the vote. He joins us now on the telephone. Welcome to Democracy Now!

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY: Thank you. It’s good to be with you.

AMY GOODMAN: It’s good to have you with us, Senator. Now, if you could explain exactly what this bill that the Senate has just approved with a number of Democrats joining with the Republicans, what exactly it does.

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY: First off, as you probably gathered from what I was saying on the floor, it’s a terrible bill. It removes as many checks and balances as possible so that any president can basically set the law, determine what laws they’ll follow and what laws they’ll break and not have anybody be able to question them on it.

In this case, the particular section I was speaking about at that point was the so-called habeas protection. Now, habeas corpus was first brought in the Magna Carta in the 1200s. It’s been a tenet of our rights as Americans. And what they're saying is that if you’re an alien, even if you’re in the United States legally, a legal alien, may have been here ten years, fifteen years, twenty years legally, if a determination is made by anybody in the executive that you may be a threat, they can hold you indefinitely, they could put you in Guantanamo, not bring any charges, not allow you to have a lawyer, not allow you to ever question what they’ve done, even in cases, as they now acknowledge, where they have large numbers of people in Guantanamo who are there by mistake, that they put you -- say you’re a college professor who has written on Islam or for whatever reason, and they lock you up. You’re not even allowed to question it. You’re not allowed to have a lawyer, not allowed to say, “Wait a minute, you’ve got the wrong person. Or you’ve got -- the one you’re looking for, their name is spelled similar to mine, but it’s not me.” It makes no difference. You have no recourse whatsoever.

This goes so much against everything we've ever done. Now, we’ve had some on the other side say, ‘Well, they're trying to give rights to terrorists.’ No, we’re just saying that the United States will follow the rules it has before and will protect rights of people. We’re not giving any new rights. We’re just saying that if, for example, if you picked up the wrong person, you at least have a chance to get somebody independent to make that judgment.

AMY GOODMAN: Senator Leahy, on this issue of habeas corpus, I want to play a clip from yesterday’s Senate debate and have you respond. This is Republican Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama.

SEN. JEFF SESSIONS: It was never, ever, ever, ever intended or imagined that during the War of 1812, that it British soldiers were captured burning of the Capitol of the United States, as they did, that they would have been given habeas corpus rights. It was never thought to be. habeas corpus was applied to citizens, really, at that time, and I believe that that’s so plain as to be without dispute.

AMY GOODMAN: Republican Senator Jeff Sessions. Senator Leahy, your response.

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY: Well, I wish it was as plain as he says. Of course, in the Hamdan decision, the U.S. Supreme Court has made it very clear that it is available in somebody captured. In a case like what he was talking about, if somebody had been captured there and held in prison, and they said, “You have the wrong person,” they could at least raise it. And you also have, of course, under the Constitution, that habeas can be suspended if there is an invasion, if there is an insurrection. We have neither case here. Even the most conservative Republican legal thinkers have said this is not a case to suspend habeas corpus.

You know, they can set up all the straw men they want, but the fact is this allows the Bush administration to act totally arbitrarily with no court or anybody else to raise any questions about it. It allows them to cover up any mistakes they make. And this goes beyond just marking everything “secret,” as they do now. Every mistake they make, they just mark it “secret.” But this is even worse. This means somebody could be locked up for five years, ten years, fifteen years, twenty years. They have the wrong person, and they have no rights to be able to say, “Hey guys, you’ve got the wrong person.” It goes against everything that we’ve done as Americans.

You know, when things like this were done during the Cold War in some of the Iron Curtain countries, I remember all the speeches on the Senate floor, Democrats and Republicans alike saying, “How horrible this is! Thank God we don’t do things like this in America.” I wish they’d go back and listen to some of their speeches at that time.

AMY GOODMAN: Senator Leahy, this was not a close vote: 65 to 34. The twelve Democrats who joined with the Republicans, except for Senator Chafee of Rhode Island, the twelve Democrats are Tom Carper of Delaware, Tim Johnson of South Dakota, Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey, as well as Senator Menendez of New Jersey, Bill Nelson of Florida, Ben Nelson of Nebraska, Senator Pryor of Arkansas, Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia, Ken Salazar of Colorado, Debbie Stabenow of Michigan and Joseph Lieberman of Connecticut. They joined with the Republicans. You are working very hard to get a Democratic majority in the Senate in these next elections and in Congress overall. What difference would it make?

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY: In their defense, all but one of them voted with me when we moved to strike the habeas provisions out. That was the Specter-Leahy amendment, and we had, I think it was, 51-48, I think, was the final vote on that. All but one of the Democrats joined with me on that. If we had gotten three or four more Republicans, we would have at least struck out the habeas provision. There are -- you know, I --

AMY GOODMAN: But they voted for this bill without that, with the habeas provision being stripped out.

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY: I’ll let each one speak for themselves. The fact that the Republicans were virtually lockstep in it, though, should be what I would look at. And maybe we’re blessed in Vermont --

AMY GOODMAN: But that larger question, that larger question of, what would be any different if Democrats were in power?

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY: For one thing, we would have been asking the questions about what’s been going on for six years. We’ve had a rubberstamp congress that automatically has given the President anything he wants, because nobody’s asked questions. Nobody’s asked the questions that are in the Woodward book that’s coming out this weekend, where you find all the mistakes were made because they will acknowledge no mistakes. The Republicans control both the House and the Senate. They will not call hearings. They won’t try to find out how did Halliburton walk off with billions of dollars in cost overruns in Iraq. Why did the Bush administration refuse to send the body armor our troops needed in Iraq? Why did they send inferior material?

And, of course, the two questions that the Congress would not ask, because the Republicans won’t allow it, is, why did 9/11 happen on George Bush's watch when he had clear warnings that it was going to happen? Why did they allow it to happen? And secondly, when they had Osama bin Laden cornered, why didn’t they get him? Had there been an independent congress, one that could ask questions, these questions would have been asked years ago. We’d be much better off. We would have had the answers to that. I think with those answers, we would not have the fiasco we have in Iraq today, we would have caught Osama bin Laden, Afghanistan would be a more stable place, and the world would be safer.

AMY GOODMAN: Was President Bush on Capitol Hill yesterday?

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY: Oh, yes, indeed. You can always tell, because virtually the whole city comes to a screeching halt with the motorcades, although it’s sort of like that when Dick Cheney comes up to give orders to the Republican Caucus. He comes up with a 15 to 25 vehicle caravan. It’s amazing to watch.

AMY GOODMAN: And what was Bush doing yesterday on Capitol Hill?

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY: Oh, he was just telling them they had to vote this way. They had to vote. They couldn’t hand him a defeat. They had to go with him They had to trust him. It’ll get us past the election. We had offered a -- you know, five years ago, I and others had suggested there is a way to have military tribunals for the detainees, where it would meet all our standards and basic international standards. They rejected that. And now, five weeks before the elections, they say, ‘Oh, yes, we need something like that.’ No, basically what he was saying to them, don’t ask questions, get us past the elections, because if you ask questions, the answers are going to be embarrassing, and it could hurt you in the elections.

AMY GOODMAN: Senator Leahy, we have to break for one minute. We ask you to stay with us. We’ll also be joined by CCR president, Center for Constitutional Rights president, Michael Ratner.


AMY GOODMAN: Our guests are Vermont Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy and Michael Ratner of the Center for Constitutional Rights. He is president there. Michael Ratner, your response, as we speak with the senator about this groundbreaking legislation?

MICHAEL RATNER: Well, I think Senator Leahy really got it right. I mean, what this bill authorizes is really the authority of an authoritarian despot to the president. I mean, what it gives him is the power, as the senator said, to detain any person anywhere in the world, citizen or non-citizen, whether living in the United States or anywhere else. I mean, what kind of authority is that? No checks and balances. Nothing. Now, if you’re a citizen, you still get your right of habeas corpus. If you’re a non-citizen, as the senator pointed out, you’re completely finished. Picked up, legal permanent resident in the United States, detained forever, no writ of habeas corpus.

It was incredibly shocking. I watched that vote yesterday. I had been in Washington for two or three days trying to line up the votes for Senator Leahy’s amendment that would have restored habeas. We thought we had them. We lost at 51 to 48. I have to tell you, Amy, I just -- I basically broke down at that point. I had been working like a dog on this thing. And there I saw the President come to Capitol Hill and persuade two or three or four of the Republicans who we thought we had to vote to strip habeas corpus from this legislation. It was a shock. I mean, an utter shock.

So you have this ability to detain anyone anywhere in the world. You deny them the writ of habeas corpus. And when they're in detention, you have a right to do all kinds of coercive techniques on them: hooding, stripping, anything really the president says goes, short of what he defines as torture. And then, if you are lucky enough to be tried, and I say “lucky enough,” because, for example, the 460 people the Center represents at Guantanamo may never get trials. In fact, only ten have even been charged. Those people, they’ve been stripped of their right to go to court and test their detention by habeas corpus. They’re just -- they’ve been there five years. Right now, under this legislation, they could be there forever.

Let me tell you, this bill will be struck down and struck down badly. But meanwhile, for two more years or whatever it’s going to take us to litigate it, we’re going to be litigating what was a basic right, as the senator said, since the Magna Carta of 1215, the right of any human being to test their detention in court. It’s one of the saddest days I’ve seen. You’ve called it “groundbreaking,” Amy. It’s really Constitution-breaking. It’s Constitution-shattering. It shatters really basic rights that we've had for a very long time.

AMY GOODMAN: Senator Leahy, how long have you been a senator?

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY: I’ve been there 32 years. I have to absolutely agree with what I just heard. I mean, this is -- it’s Kafka. But it’s more than that. It’s just a total rollback of everything this country has stood for. I mean, you have 100 people, very privileged, members of the Senate voting this way and with no realization of what it would be like if you were the one who was picked up. Maybe you’re guilty, but quite often, as we’ve seen, purely by accident and then held for years.

You know, I was a prosecutor for eight years. I prosecuted an awful lot of people, sent a lot of people to prison. But I did it arguing that everybody's rights had to be protected, because mistakes are often made. You want to make sure that if you’re prosecuting somebody, you’re prosecuting the right person. Here, they don't care whether mistakes are made or not.

And you have to stand up. I mean, it was a Vermonter -- you go way back in history -- it was a Vermonter who stood up against the Alien and Sedition Act, Matthew Lyon. He was prosecuted on that, put in jail, as a congressman, put in jail. And Vermont showed what they thought of these unconstitutional laws. We in Vermont reelected him, and eventually the laws fell down. There was another Vermonter, Ralph Flanders, who stood up to Joseph McCarthy and his reign of fear and stopped that. I mean, you have to stand. What has happened, here we are, a great powerful good nation, and we’re running scared. We’re willing to set aside all our values and running scared. What an example that is to the rest of the world.

AMY GOODMAN: You gave an example, Senator Leahy, when you talked about what would happen here. And, I mean, even the fact that “habeas corpus” is in Latin, I think, distances people. They don’t quite understand what this is about.

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY: “Bring the body.”

AMY GOODMAN: You gave a very -- sorry?

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY: “Bring the body.”

AMY GOODMAN: You gave a very graphic example. You said, “Imagine you’re a law-abiding lawful permanent resident. In your spare time you do charitable fundraising for international relief agencies that lend a hand in disasters.” Take that story from there, the example you used.

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY: You send money. You don’t care which particular religious group or civic group it is. They’re doing humanitarian work. You send the money. It turns out that one of them is giving money to various Islamic causes that the United States is concerned about. They come to your house. Maybe somebody has called into one of these anonymous tipster lines, saying, “You know, this Amy Goodman. I’m somewhat worried about her, simply because she’s going -- and I think I’ve seen some Muslim-looking people coming to her house.” They come in there, and they say, “We want to talk to you.” They bring you downtown. You’re a legal alien, legal resident here. And you say, “Well, look, I’ve got my rights. I’d like to talk to a lawyer.” They say, “No, no. You don’t have any rights.” “Well, then I’m not going to talk to you.” “Well, then now we’re twice as concerned about you. We’re going to spirit you down to Guantanamo, and we’ll get back to in a few years.” And, I mean, that could actually happen under this. And these are not far-fetched ideas, as the professor knows. He’s seen similar things.

And with that, and I would love to continue this conversation, unfortunately I’ve got to go back to my day job, back to the judiciary. I think this is going to go down as one of those black marks in the Congress. You know, I wasn’t there at the time, but virtually everybody voted for the Tonkin Gulf resolution. When I came to the Senate, you couldn’t find anybody there who thought that was a good idea. They knew it was a terrible mistake. You had members of congress supported the internment of the Japanese Americans during World War II. Everybody knows that was a terrible mistake now. That day will come when everybody will look at this and say, “What were we thinking?”

AMY GOODMAN: Patrick Leahy, thanks very much for joining us. We only have about 30 seconds. Michael Ratner, president of Center for Constitutional Rights, your final comment on this.

MICHAEL RATNER: This was really, as the senator said, probably the worst piece of legislation I’ve seen in my 40-year career as a lawyer. The idea, and even the example Senator Leahy gave, of someone being picked up, you don’t need anything. The President can decide tomorrow that you, Amy, or me, or particularly a non-citizen, can be picked up, put in jail forever, essentially, and if you're a non-citizen in Guantanamo or anywhere else in the world, you never get a chance to go to court to test your detention. It’s an incredible thing, and any senator who voted for this, in my view, is essentially guilty, guilty, guilty of undermining basic fundamental rights and may well be guilty of war crimes, as well.

AMY GOODMAN: Michael Ratner, thanks very much for joining us, president of the Center for Constitutional Rights.

saturday morning

Judith & Jules were each amazing last night at SPT & i think even if george w. had made it to the reading he would not have been able to decipher/decode/determine/detect: read. so. [see a few posts ago if yr wondering about the george w. thing.]

i love hearing Judith read because i feel like i can almost see/feel her writing process when she does. she's performative, not in a polished way, thank god, but in a passionate & raw, chewing peppers w/ an open nerve in yr mouth, kind of way.


CAConrad left a few days ago & we miss him in SF. it always seems like he belongs here when he is here but then, we all know his heart belongs to Philly. he just posted some musings he had while he was here over at PhillySound. a nice little write up about our gay marriage marriage which is not gay marriage but is the only "gay marriage" we can get. [because it makes way more sense that we legalize TORTURE. absolutely.]


i am on vacation starting Monday for 11 days. i am so excited. & i already have writing deadlines thanks to a very HAPPY friend of minor americans. thanks HAPPY friend!


last night's reading made me want to go home & write. i wish the readings were earlier & i didn't have a job & then i could go listen & then go write for a couple hours & then go meet everyone at Sadie's. i think that would be how i would organize the world.

instead i am back at work with a bit of dehydration & thousands of people [thanks to the smithsonian.].

Friday, September 29, 2006

and, finally, maybe

i just went and ordered THIS because you & i both know that Anne Boyer rules the world in real time.

& since i've secured the minor american copy, i don't mind letting you all know that you can pick one up now.

& i might add that logan aka transmission press & small town could use some love, too. [and deserves it.]


i'm ripping this straight off the site folks...

& i'm looking forward to this very much. VERY VERY MUCH.

i bet george w. IS NOT. though.

see you there. unless you love george w.


Friday, September 29, 2006 at 7:30 p.m.

Jules Boykoff & Judith Goldman

Jules Boykoff joins us in honor of his first collection, Once Upon a Neoliberal Rocket Badge (Edge Books). Tina Darragh says of reading it: “I want to echo Tom Hayden's comment on the 1999 Seattle anti-WTO demonstrations: ‘I am glad to have lived long enough to see a new generation of rebels accomplish something bigger.’ Boykoff's inventive language reminds us that in the futures market we're all dressed in sheep's clothing. This book re-girds us for the fight.”

Judith Goldman joins us in honor of her new book, Death Star Rico-chet (O Books). Rod Smith says: “In this violent and deeply accusatory book the cause and the effect are the restoration of our historical context as crime. The crime being murder. Deathstar/Ricohcet: The canceled check of a civilization. Somehow I don’t think that Pound thought his investment in poetry as ‘news that stays new’ would be returned for lack of funds. The implications of Goldman’s work are immense.”

Thursday, September 28, 2006


maggie & i go to AWP for two or three reasons:

1. to wake up in a different city & hang out with almost everyone + in person.

2. so we can buy restaurant guides & visit a city we probably wouldn't otherwise visit.

3. to CHILL w/ prageeta.

we think these are good reasons for you to go, too.

some people only go because they are on a panel or something, but really... there is nothing like a credit card vacation & the freedom to not go to panels if you so choose. & you could run into yr very first writing teacher ever, like i did, charles hood. which is always a pleasure. or yr second. like gillian conoley. OR, even yr first writing teacher's husband, like Forrest Gander.

some people we didn't run into in vancouver [we missed austin for some reason... o, yeah... money]... but would like to run into in atlanta:

1. elise ficarra
2. suzanne stein
3. brandon brown
4. michael nicoloff
5 pamela lu
6. julie reid
7.sarah vap [the winner of, like, EVERY poetry award for 2006...]
8. jack spicer
9. robert duncan
10. judith goldman
11. jocelyn saidenberg
12. maurice blanchot
13. logan ryan smith
14. john sakkis
16. stephanie young
17. everyone who blogs...

o... it is really too long of a list.

so, please. let's all go have cocktails & sleep in the same hotels & eat in the same restaurants & smoke each other's cigarettes in atlanta.


Tuesday, September 26, 2006


Originally uploaded by minor americans.
this, is a lucky shot. isn't it?

Monday, September 25, 2006

Sunday, September 24, 2006


dear president,

i was talking to my employee, ken, a young, heterosexual man, today at work and he asked me, on the eve of my only-legal-in-san-francisco domestic partnership day why the definition of marriage is considered so fixed and obvious but the word TORTURE seems to confuse you.

and i ask you, mr president,

why is it you are legally allowed to electrically shock a young man's balls but two consenting adult males can't legally stick their dicks in each other's asses in alabama?


kathryn l. pringle

san francisco, ca

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Open letter to Kevin Dvorak



[yes you do mr. dvorak... yes. you. do.]

Friday, September 22, 2006

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

hey californians

did you know we filed a lawsuit against all the major auto makers... GM, Toyota... etc... over Global Warming.

did you? we are SO CALIFORNIAN.



and, if yr in N. Cal & are free Sunday night... you should come to the Minor American bachelorette party.

email for details.

[we've both had stalkers, you see, so we have to filter. you know. but, if yr not a stalker, do email, bc we know we haven't gotten in touch with everyone we'd like to about this.]

Monday, September 18, 2006

Yesterday's Reading

Ange Mlinko

Maine in 1845 did not have limes as a possibility.
But everything was green. The beam industry,
the pew industry, all these did well. Generosity
emerged from the log bridge futures, so necessity
was met wherever a hand was raised in humility.
Everyone came from a well-constructed family.

Basil knew that sharp tops meant pines;
cedars were flat. Vanilla wafted from certain firs.
Thoughts turned to St. Petersburg, looking at birches.
Then paused when a hemlock seemed like a larch.
The isosceles perfection of Norway spruces!
For diversion, Basil grew lettuces.

In March, the onion grass was kelly green.
In midsummer, the lawns were clover green.
By the gushing springs, a blue-green,
mattresses of moss developed, moss-green.
As they balled up into lakes, mallard greens
flashed. And in the winter, ice was midnight green.

What do green and violet make?
A wholeness, pollarded by the frame of reference.

The chapping bark in the stealing crepuscule.
The irrigating vintages.

Logs of drydocks.
Beet striations with a westward sheer;

Basil's junior status at the window in the new chipped sky.
To "Look up!" was a message that stuck.

The "passing fancy" bell he'll often hear:
Everything was green
but Maine in 1845 did not have lime.



Kevin Killian from SELECTED AMAZON REVIEWS, Hooke Press

Airport Planning & Management by Alexander T. Wells
Price: $47.50
Availability: Usually ships in 24 hours
3 used from $40.00
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful:

The Book of Choice for Students and Dreamers, August 22, 2005

Like many young men, and I daresay women, I was drawn to airport management after exposure to Burt Lancaster's sterling portrayal of a harried airport manager in the Ross Hunter classic AIRPORT. Lancaster showed us that a man can handle a million problems all at once, if he had the right combination of grit and gray cells. It wasn't only the glamour, it was the idea of helping people get through their day -- even when the people in question were six or seven miles up in the air -- that made me consider airport management as a major at school.

Other factors prevented me from achieving my goal, but I continue to pick up textbooks and manuals to keep abreast of the way airports have changed over the last 35 years. From a technical point of view, one of the best resources for the lay manager is the Alexander Wells book AIRPORT PLANNING & MANAGEMENT (AP & MANAGEMENT), co-authored with Seth Young, both of them prominent in the field -- and the airfield -- today. This book brings you thoroughly up to date on the way the skies (and the terminals) have changed since the day of infamy, 9/11. Their information is laid out with dispatch, not a wasted word between them. In addition, they know their stuff, that's for sure. Over five-hundred pages and I could detect only a few minor inaccuracies.

If you were assigned to develop your own airport in some understaffed part of the world and were limited to bringing one textbook with you, this would be the volume you would bring. Of course, the old joke among airport-planning students is, what CD would you bring? Why, Brian Eno's MUSIC FOR AIRPORTS, of course.


If I hadn't read these two pieces on the same day, the similarities might have never occurred to me. Recently, I have been thinking a lot about the form as a search for the endless opportunity to write. What I mean is that I think there are ultimately two kinds of writers. One is the writer who has a particular story he or she "needs" to tell. The language is secondary to this kind of writer. The other is the writer who picks the story that will allow him or her to put the most language down on paper. Moby Dick is, I think, an excellent example of the latter. With all those interruptions concerning all the technical aspects of whaling, the story becomes subordinate to everything that can be said around it. That's the kind of book I find most interesting. No doubt a "story" that has some emotional cache with the writer will help generate language, and so it might be easy to confuse one kind of writer for the other, but I think ultimately the quality of language makes it easy to put a writer into one of either category.

But both of the above pieces fall into the "excuse to write" category, the language-driven category. Mlinko's piece sets off in the language one might expect at the beginning of a novel, but that gesture permits her to go no further than the pleasures of green. There is no story-line, just the illusion of one, so that she can string a series of words together. Poetry, in this way, is a necessary cultural diversion in a world where the value of everything seems to be gauged by its utility. There's no need behind this poem, other than the need to make a poem, and there's really no defense for such a need in today's world. It's not going to make my stock rise, or help me overthrow the president. That's precisely the value of such work. In a culture were the usefulness of everything seems to be accounted for, where every dollar and minute count, we need ways to remind us that we are more than beasts of burden in an intricate social system that we cannot remove ourselves from. The imagination removes us from the system and places us into a non-teological structure that allows us to become sentient beings preoccupied with greens. Amen!

Killian's piece is one of thousands he posted on in order to get himself writing again after a heart attack. The endless products on-line act like spurs for his imagination, endless excuses for writing, and the fact that these reviews are public document in a consumer space immediately make the act of writing socially subversive. I understand perfectly now when Eileen Myles calls CAConrad the "Kevin Killian of Philadelphia." The whole project strikes me as a contemporary situationist or Dada performance piece. The consumer review which is supposed to help push product, to have a practical purpose for the consumer, is mocked with such imagination by Killian that I can't help but think of him now as the literary counterpart to my other comedic hero, Stephen Colbert. It seems obvious to me that anyone shopping for an airport planning textbook would think that this review is the joke that it is, but the fact that 3 out of 3 people found it useful points out just how seriously we take our consumption. And the comedy arises from the fact that he has usurped a form with a very concrete economic goal to pursue the splendidly uneconomical art of writing.

My Most Passionate Writing To Date:

September 16, 2006

AT&T Residence Service
POB 9039
South San Francisco, CA 94083

RE: Customer Account 415 547 4

To Whom It May Concern:

I am writing because recently you added a long distance plan to my service without my consent. An announcement came in the mail thanking me for joining a plan I never signed up for, and then suddenly there was a $2.00 plus tax long distance plan added to my bill. Please cancel this service immediately and remove all related charges.

This behavior on your part is not new. Last year, when you were still SBC Global, you charged me about $400 for roughly a 60 minute phone call to Romania. I made the call because a relative was traveling and there was an emergency situation I needed to help with. I couldn’t pay the amount in one payment, so SBC cancelled my long distance service. Even though I was making large payments each month, SBC then cancelled my internet service, though the unpaid amount had nothing to do with web service. This happened at a time when I was applying to graduate school and the action jeopardized the process for me. When I called to complain, a sickly sweet representative, instead of offering an explanation for why the company thinks it can charge over $4.00 a minute for a phone call to Romania, recommended that next time I go to the corner store and by a phone card that only charges me $.05 a minute for such a call.

I moved last spring into a house where there was already AT&T internet service. I spoke to an AT&T representative and she explained to me that I could keep my current email address only by signing up for dial-up, even though I accessed the web through the home DSL connection. I agreed to do this, since it was important for me to keep my email address. At the same time, AT&T came to install a landline for me. The line did not work, but I was being charged for the service. I did not pay it until someone came to repair the connection. By this time, without warning, AT&T cancelled my email account because my phone bill was outstanding. What AT&T failed to recognize was that I had not paid the bill because the company had not installed the line properly. If you check your records, you will see that the repairman did not charge me for the visit because the lack of service was not my fault.

For all the reasons above, I wish to cancel my landline service with AT&T. I no longer wish to have a relationship with a company who aggressively and unfairly punishes its customers. Please make sure my account is cancelled upon receipt of this letter.

Perhaps AT&T should change some of its policies, since home phone service is a luxury in the age of cell phones, not a necessity.

I hope to never do business with you again.


Magdalena Zurawski

did i ever complain about not having enough to read?

the books sitting on my desk right now:

Tràma : Kim Rosenfield

The Metamorphoses : Ovid

A Season in Hell and the Drunken Boat: Rimbaud

Duino Elegies and the Sonnets to Orpheus: Rilke

Aristotle's Poetics

The Visible and the Invisible: Merleau-Ponty

Phenomenology of Self-Consciousness: Hegel

The Phenomenology Reader: eds Moran & Mooney

Collected Poems: Mallarmé

Memoirs of My Nervous Illness : Brandon Brown

DeathStar/Rico-chet: Judith Goldman

Non-Adhesive Binding : Books without Paste or Glue : Smith

The Collected Poems of Ted Berrigan


Books that were on my desk but Maggie swiped from me and put on her night stand next to our bed:

Selected Amazon Reviews : Kevin Killian

Burrow by Lauren Shufran

Cabinet Issue 21


Books that I ordered and are coming soon:

908-1078: Brandon Brown : get it here

the 2006 subscription from: Palm Press


and i'm still trying to get through fucking plato.



chatter now:

i had a dream last night in which i discovered that Lattimore actually translated EVERYONE and i was secretly heterosexual and in love with him because i only ever read HIM. every book said:

LATTIMORE'S... and then the title.

except for Kevin Killian's books.

and this may be because:

i fell asleep much earlier than maggie did last night because our upstairs neighbor had a party with a dj and hundreds of hipsters that lasted until 3:30 in the morning and i was totally annoyed because it seemed like there was a constant stream of conversations in which one of the smokers outside our bedroom window was always a Gemini and, like, that was so cool and they all rode Vespas [but maybe i inserted that for some reason]... so this was the night before last night, and thus... i fell asleep earlier than Maggie [who could sleep through the party which made me angry for some reason]...

and so... maggie was up reading Kevin's new book from Hooke Press [which everyone should have because of what i am about to tell you and also because Brent and Neil are doing an AMAZING job with these gorgeous books].... and i was fast asleep and maggie starts laughing convulsively and uncontrollably and wakes me up only... not completely... and she is in hysterics... and i am exhausted... so i start whining at her to stop it and she, of course, CAN'T... and i, not-awake, do not understand... so i start smacking her arm and whining louder which only makes it funnier for her. and me more confused.

that's all.

and she woke up this morning and read some of the reviews to me and we both fell into hysterics.

SO. there.


my doctor says i have a "normal" heart. FYI.


that's all i got right now. it is my only day off this week. been fighting the flu for two weeks. only made it to one event this past weekend [the PLAY]. i wanted to go everywhere, though. i swear.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

yr saturday night and mine.

oh... tonight there is way too much... and since i can't go to everything... i have to choose.

here's one:

SFSU Poetry Center Book Award Reading

Adrienne Rich and Mark McMorris
Saturday September 16, 2006
7:30 pm @ Unitarian Center
1187 Franklin (at Geary), San Francisco, $10
(SFSU students & Poetry Center members free)

and here is two:

Artifact Fundraiser:

Readings by:

Garrett Caples
Andrew Joron
Justin Sirois

Artwork by:
Renee Evans

September 16, 2006
7:30PM (reading begins at 8PM)
First come first served!
2921B Folsom St. @ 25th
SF CA 94110

and so. there you go.

you decide. i already have.

and maybe i'll see you.

Friday, September 15, 2006

have you noticed

that when our President has to pause and think that his mouth is still moving and the sound that comes out is something like a snake or a lizard hiss... or some other fork-tongued creature?

have you?

or is it just me?

yr friday night / announcements

this is where we will be, of course:

Fall 2006 at Small Press Traffic

Friday, September 15, 2006 at 7:30 p.m.

World Premiere of THE WISHING WELL, a play by Kevin Killian & Larry Rinder

Special benefit event – we suggest you arrive early – all seats $10 – first come first served.

In present-day San Francisco, not everyone's slacker, and artist-musician Buddy Harrison resents the label more than most. His art career seems like it's taking off, for he's sold one of his lemonade-based stick figure drawings for $150, and his acoustic band is polishing his Harry Smith-influenced neo-folk number, "Mushroom Wind." And yet one day Buddy wakes up and finds out that his little web side project, the "Wishing Well" has made him rich beyond his wildest imaginings, on a par with Craig from Craig's List. That's when his problems begin, as from around the globe, the people he helped and the people he failed to help converge on the city on the bay for another fatal round of summer wishes, winter dreams. From Russia fly Natasha Berchofsky and her French poodle, Bijou, cured of a pet disease once thought certain to kill him. From the Andes comes the young medical student and former shepherdess Purissima, now a gene-splicing technician at the new UCSF Mission Bay genetic labs. Buddy's boyfriend, suave real estate broker Michael Morton, has his own ideas about how to spend all that money. But what does Buddy want-really want? Put a quarter in the wishing well of San Francisco Poets' Theater, and find out. Our thirty-fourth full-length production, written by Kevin Killian and Larry Rinder, features an eclectic cast of poets, painters, musicians, film and video artists, photographers, writers and curators, including Gerald Corbin, Craig Goodman, Clifford Hengst, Scott Hewicker, Colter Jacobsen, Karla Milosevich, Donal Mosher, Rex Ray, Laurie Reid, Leslie Shows, and Wayne Smith.


also, an announcement from suzanne of TAXT

a bit belatedly announcing the summer publication of two new taxt

Selections from THE BRUISE by Magdalena Zurawski


Non Eligible Respondent by Stefani Barber


i'm back to work after a couple sick days.

and Hesiod went and got list-y on me in Theogony... but i still love him.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

hesiod vs. homer

[or is it Lattimore vs. Fagles?]

like i said, i'm reading a lot and i'm in the middle of Hesiod's Theogony [trans. Richard Lattimore look here .]

i just finished "The Works and Days," which i had read about in an amazon review [not one of kevin's ] "as very boring and about farming and stuff." <---loosely quoted.

so i wasn't expecting much... but what i got i fell in love with and here is an excerpt for you:

I mean you well, Perses, you great idiot,
and I will tell you.
Look, badness is easy to have, you can take it
by handfuls
without effort. The road that way is smooth
and starts here beside you.
But between us and virture the immortals have put
what will make us
sweat. The road to virtue is long
and goes steep uphill,
hard climbing at first, but the last of it,
when you get to the summit
(if you get there) is easy going after the hard part.


do i prefer the boiotian epic to the homeric?

i might.

i've always had a love for instructional poems. i like to be bossed around by work. and i like directness: i'm not one for small talk. [but maggie is working on this].

it seems to me... so far in my reading of Hesiod... that he refrains from "listing"... that, yes, there is a list... but it is more of a do this, do that [idiot] poem. the moments in the illiad and the odyssey [and the Holy Bible] where soldiers / tribes are listed for twenty pages... or the ships... those parts are really hard for me to sit through. and i realize that these lists are rich with history and culture... but with homer and the bible... i just want to get to the action.

with hesiod...

well. there is action in stillness. a suspended momentum.

but that's not really explaining it... it is more like seeing rapidly moving molecules that are moving so ... that they initially... seem unmoving.

ack... i'll try later.

after theogony.

[i'm home sick. i got this flu that had me achey and weak for 9 days, went away for 2, and returned with a very sore throat and stuffed up head.]


the easy and quick love i have for hesiod [or lattimore... which... i asked one of my employees who got a BA in classics which translators i should look at... because ever since my latin teacher suggested fagles and lattimore i haven't strayed... and he looked at me like ... 'translators? there are so many' ... and at first i thought... wow.... he doesn't care about this at all... and then i realized... he is his own translator. for the most part. but still...]

i do not have for Plato's Phaedrus. and i don't know if it is Plato or if it is me. but we always have trouble with each other. first... the Republic i found both frightening and hilarious and ... real [see how the CSU system is not so interested in the Arts anymore]... and again with Phaedrus.

i hesitate to mention the actual topic on our blog because of the sitemeter hits that will start bringing folks over [it is funny when it is "lesbian" but... this topic... i have a fear for the imagined safety of our blog neighborhood.]...

so... here: phaedrus .

my modern self coupled with my 300 + years of N. American Protestantism has issues with the text.

and, yeah, i do find it really funny. too. but difficult to surrender my disturbed self to.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Monday, September 11, 2006

Sunday, September 10, 2006

random and/or pointed reading.

"If I disbelieved it, as wise people do, I'd not be extraordinary; then I'd use their wisdom..." Socrates in Plato's Phaedrus.


does anyone else remember when our Presidents actually believed in democracy, not Democracy?

Thursday, September 07, 2006

my sister had her baby today!!!!!

Wednesday, September 06, 2006


when i was 12 these three songs were my favorites. i recently rediscovered my pre-teen musical obsession and have become re-obsessed.

and also convinced that

1/ i was a damn cool 12 year old [i did listen to gang of four, you know]

2/ my parents had no idea what i was doing ever. at any point. because these lyrics are very adult and i am just realizing this now.

never trust a man with egg on his face

beat my guest

whip in my valise

you will have to have iTunes to dload them. and it is SAFE, don't worry. you can always throw them away if you hate them.

enjoy. i still do.

[THANK YOU EB for help posting MUSIC... you are... RAD]

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

what was done

was that i cleaned up our links all afternoon and added some new ones that were really needing to be added for months but adjusting our template is not something i often want to do so i waited a really long time to do it and now it is done until i decide i don't like the way it looks again.


my new reading list is as follows:


not exactly in that order and not exactly including everyone.
my new project. kind of like when i read homer, aeschylus, sophocles, the divine comedy, and much more in order to read pound's cantos and maybe understand something about them.

only, this is different.


i think i really miss school. which i didn't expect. this is the first semester i've not been enrolled in classes. [in ten years].

the relief i felt when i finally graduated with my degrees is gathering into a low-level panic.


and, yes, maggie is really obsessed with the dog whisperer. she is on a first name basis with him and talks about him every night before bed.

As Ususal...

...I am not as prolific as Kate, nor when I speak is it as intellectual. But I feel it necessary to share my newest obsession with everyone: The Dog Whisperer. I know, I am behind the beat as usual. Caesar has already been on Oprah and spoofed on South Park. I never hear the first heartbeats of a trend, always the dying whispers. Maybe I should be a historian, since I only seem to like things once they've passed. In any case, after watching the first DVD of season one yesterday and Sunday, I have learned that it is possible to teach an old blind dog new tricks. Percy is well on his way to learning how to sit. And I also got him NOT to attack an Akita yesterday. All after only 6 shows. Why is this so important to me? Kate says it is because Caesar has related to my inner child. I was always ambivalent about "dominating" my dog. Seemed cruel. But watching the show has made me see that making the dog know that I am in charge is comforting. The equivalent of a child knowing the parents are taking care of him because he is forced to go to bed at 8:00pm every night. The child doesn't feel like he has to parent himself. Likewise, the dog doesn't feel like he is responsible for taking care of the whole house and "pack".

Thursday, August 31, 2006


to last post:

bruce springsteen Nebraska.

specifically Atlantic City.

[i'm a good wife.]

reading [or i miss grad school.] or both.

(Derrida investigates the Mallarméan moment as non-event and this stems from, as well as leads to, the question of whether or not Mallarmé can have/ has had / takes place [is an event] in French literature. The question of whether or not Mallarmé has a place in French literature is complicated by roughly three interrelated and linked issues: the value and meaning of event, undecidability of text, and Mallarmé’s own aversion to author signature. )

[“nothing will have taken place but the place” Mallarmé (115, quoted by Derrida)]

According to Derrida the Mallarméan moment is a moment of crisis. This crisis is defined as “the moment when simple decision is no longer possible, where the choice between opposing paths is suspend (113).” Judgment is rendered not-possible. The fact that one cannot use judgment makes the texts of Mallarmé something that rhetoric is unable address because the very object of rhetoric is to decode: to make meaning. How is Mallarmé, or “what passes through him, what traverses him (112),” able to dismantle rhetoric? Is this dismantling merely a withholding of information? An ambiguity? Clearly it is not an issue of polysemy, not an issue of mere confusion or an opening up of possibilities so wide that there can be no absolute, it is a suspension, but does this suspension take place?

Derrida first locates “the value of event on the one hand (presence, singularity without possible repetition, temporality, historicity)…. and, on the other hand, the value of meaning: Mallarmé never stopped tracking down signification wherever loss of meaning arose (112).”

[what does it mean to stop tracking down signification? wherever loss of meaning arises? what has taken place? I mean to say, does the polysemic text take place? places? I think yes.]

With Mallarmé, or I should say, with the text of Mallarmé, there is an untranslatability. Not only from French to English, but from signification to meaning. Derrida points out that this is not the opening up of signification and referent into multiple meanings, but paralysis of meaning. the impossibility of meaning. this impossibility of decision [because one must make a decision to make meaning] makes the place of Mallarmé in literature ‘questionable,’ in that “rhetoric or criticism [has] to have something to see or to do before a text, a meaning has to be determinable (114).”
[is Derrida arguing that Mallarmé’s indeterminability makes him unplaceable? which Mallarmé is not taking place in French literature? the Mallarmé that is Stéphen Mallarmé did, in his time, very much take place in the event of French literature by way of figure: his salon’s and correspondences. this seems to me a very different question, then.]

The main idea of Mallarmé’s texts and Derrida’s essay entitled “Mallarmé” is to state that the word disappears the moment it appears. that the attraction to these texts are in the unknowing of these texts: how Mallarmé suspends meaning. how the meaning of words is [always?] a crisis. If rhetoricians are unable to read Mallarmé as understanding is impossible, and polysemy is collapsed, how then can Mallarmé be placed? “Here the undecidability is no longer attached to a multiplicity of meanings, to a metaphorical richness, to a system of correspondences (115).”
[no meaning. disintegration. liberated energy. (116)]

The place for Mallarmé has no place because Mallarmé himself believed in the absence of the author, the death of the author, as Derrida quotes in his essay: “The organization of a book of poems appears innate or everywhere, eliminating chance; and yet it is necessary, in order to omit the author…” and “The right to accomplish anything exceptional or different from the ordinary, is always paid for by the omission of the author and, as it were, by his death as such (113).”
[is the inclusion by Derrida of these quotations from Mallarmé a violation of what is meant by these quotations by Mallarmé and not by what Derrida necessarily intends their meaning to be?]

[Mallarmé’s texts do not take place, except by taking space, but do they not cause event? What then is Derrida’s essay?]

Mallarmé also writes in English, has a relationship with the English language, and uses it in his works, thereby making it not entirely French and “[f]or this reason alone, “Mallarmé does not belong completely to “French literature (125).”

Places to go :

word identity vanishes while the word itself remains.

emphasis on ‘written work’ ?

writing and death lie down in bed…. the eternal absence of the bed

is this significant? is there then no bed and is that really important at all? there is no book? what is the not-book? is the not-book “Mallarmé” ?

“role to poetic opportunity” 121

the role of the syllable in the effect of the disappearing word 115

Saturday, August 26, 2006

ah, this is the most perfect

and infinite equation: more a spiral, maybe even a homoclinic tangle .


and we got our copy of BB's new chapbook yesterday... it looks as gorgeous as it sounds.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

strangest search getting you here:

"what does the bible say about guilt and shame"


i guess it says minor american.

Monday, August 14, 2006

we are stealing from John Sakkis...

this right here:

Brandon Brown

Now available from Cy Press!

Memoirs of My Nervous Illness-Brandon Brown


A genius lives inside this illness
living large on the residue of
laundered spirits obtained on loan
in the interest of, well, interest

when my toxins began to
articulate their feelings in
representative poetry and
rhyming quatrains didn’t I go
expect some diagnosis? Didn’t I
need some tonic / help?

Five dollars payable by check or cash to Dana Ward.
Send to--

Cy Press
c/o Dana Ward
1118 Cypress St. Apt. 3
Cincinnati, OH 45206


i am writing out a check this minute. and you should, too, because this chapbook is fucking brilliant.


i have one day off this week and have decided to write a book by midnight tonight.


maggie and i have been discussing future homes for the minor americans.... so far we both agree that NY and Philly are at the top of the list. at the bottom of my list is Chicago and at the bottom of maggie's list is San Francisco. Other States on the list are MA and NC.


one of our very good dog friends, codi ficarra, is in the process of passing. we have spent a good deal of time with her this past week and also went by this afternoon. she is looking much more peaceful today than we've seen her.

we love you codi.

Thursday, August 10, 2006


OK. Given the recent and endless reports concerning the thwarted terror attacks, I'd like to propose a radical new political agenda. Let us go back in time and thwart all colonization that occurred during the last 800 years. This I think will stop the number of terrorist attacks in the West. It will force us to make some sacrifices too, like, for instance, a significantly poorer English throne. Oprah Winfrey will also have to give up her new Hawaiian house (notice its plantation stylings), and all of us will probably have to do without rock and roll, as blues will probably not be sung in the same ways. So let us sacrifice John, Paul, George, and Ringo, not to mention tacos, Indian food, and our general wealth for a new era of peace. I take it John will agree, but Sir Paul will be upset that he had to remain middle-class.

-- Maggie

PS: Duh ! There would be no Oprah Winfrey. Sorry, it's hard to imagine, but the sacrifices we will make will be worth it for our children.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006



one of my older siblings, of which i have 6, sent me this awful fwd today and it just made me sick.

a petition supporting English as our only language.

which, okay, whatever,

but then there was this fucked up little personalized story about someone's grandchild in CA not being hired as a teacher because she only had one year of Spanish and how this is somehow proof that the USA will be conquered by Mexico...

and ... wtf is THAT?

and isn't this further proof that my family has NO IDEA who i am AT ALL?

so i couldn't resist a brief, and, i think, careful response to them...

i don't know.

i know i couldn't even get into college without two years of a foreign language, and that was for my BA so where this is coming from is beyond me.


i think i just hate to see that the fear tactics have taken hold of my older brothers and sisters. it used to be okay with me when it was my Dad because my Dad fought in WWII and has a very different relationship to this country than I do at 34.

but. when it is my siblings?

civil war.

civil unrest.

i'm feeling dramatic, i suppose.

and my sister just emailed me "My bad!" and so that is better than an argument on some levels... but not as useful as a open discussion...



maggie and i are going to minnesota in october for my Dad's 80th birthday party. we are going to stay at a hotel this time because my dad goes to bed at 9 and wakes up at 4 am and this is not so relaxing for us.


i love my family.

i hate that we don't even know each other.


and one more thing...

last time they read one of my poems, a collaboration i did with suzanne stein years ago...
they asked me what drugs i was on.


there you go.



something i don't have.

i spent a few days looking directly into the sun and now i'm wondering why everything is so damned blurry.

what is going on...

small town 10 is out and you can buy it somewhere over here .

i don't have mine yet but i'm really looking forward to it.


not much to state currently.

i'm writing daily, something i have never been able to do. i have made a challenge to myself: write every day in August. and so i am trying to keep to it.

the biggest challenge is not allowing my job to drain my creative energy.


also putting together a journal. more on that later.


that really is all.

maybe more tomorrow. when i'm less tired.

Monday, July 31, 2006

hello everyone.

hey, so... you should all check this out : litopolis.

i'm in it, but also, it is really awesome and has:

Nona Caspers

Jimmy Chen

Susanna Kittredge

Kristine Leja

L.J. Moore

Daniel Pendergrass

Len Shneyder

Jason Snyder

Anna Joy Springer

a really great view of the city.


i'm fighting off a potential illness. feeling aches and i'm easily tuckered out. i hate being sick on my day off. you know? i'd much rather be sick on company time.


i've started reading Mark Z. Danielewski's HOUSE OF LEAVES again. okay, so i love horror. i love horror films. i love forensic files. i love cold case files. i am fascinated by the darker side of humanity. what makes people so crazy. and so i'm reading this book again because i found it satisfying and also unsatisfying the first time.

i was and am completely willing to invest my time in this book of fiction because it is damn long, has shifting narratives and form... and is about human relationships and a house that grows on the inside. the family goes on vacation and comes home to find a door where there never was a door before and a small room behind the door where there never was one before... and how horrifying is that? only it happens all the time... just not so obviously... you walk out of yr door and have yr own relationship to the world and yr door and something happens and everything changes.... etc...

but to come home and find the basic structure of yr house altered.

that is terrifying. it would make me shiver.

so. i'm reading that and thinking again about space / architecture / and mental illness.


i missed stefani barber's going away party because of this stupid almost-cold. i'm sad. was it great?

i will miss you stefani!


that foot is much better. it is walking all over town now and working hard. it is still not the prettiest foot in the world but that's okay since it is attached to the prettiest face in the world.

that's all for now.

somebody send me some free poetry!

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Rejuvenated (except for one appendage)!

So Friday we drove straight from Tahoe to David Buuck's house. Well, Kate changed clothes in the Safeway bathroom, but otherwise a no-stop ride. There my new chapbook, which has two excerpts from The Bruise, was spread out on the coffee table. A lovely job by publisher Suzanne Stein complete with green staples. Her chapbook of Stefani Barber's work lay alongside mine. Stefani and I drank a little, then read to a big crowd, and then we played music. Thanks to David for hosting, Suzanne for publishing,and CAConrad for delivering an introduction via email! My gnarled spirit is unfurling!

Monday, July 24, 2006

teaching a blind dog soccer.

Watch the video

tahoe aftermath:

this foot must remain anonymous.

but, we all know who it belongs to.

just don't say it.


Monday, July 17, 2006

yesterday, today, and tomorrow

a quick post before i take maggie and the poods to lake tahoe for actual water, actual sun, actual heat... and actually maggie's 34th birthday.

[buuck's house this friday at 7 people!]

1. suzanne stein was so great last night! her reading and her work [her reading of her work] was/is hypnotic, harmonizing... and enlightening. it was hot. she is hot. and i love her dearly. so there.

2. logan ryan smith handed me a copy of larry kearney's passion last night. which is really great because i was too shy to ask him for a copy and also i have something to read while i'm in actual sun and heat today.

3. i haven't mentioned how fucking intense, insightful and haunting dodie bellamy's talk at New Langton was last week, have i? i could have listened to dodie read for at least another two hours. provided we could have 5 minute absorption breaks. and also... kathy acker really scared the shit out of me with that whole wire falling down in the shape of a noose thing. i had to get out of the building as soon as dodie was done reading i was so scared.

4. david brazil: i need yr email address so i can use you for literary support as i make another pass at Ulysses. thank you.

5. i just ordered the remastered version of Dirk Wears White Sox by Adam and the Ants. and just so you know... this is one of the best albums ever. okay? don't even argue with me.

we're off on vacation now! i wish we could all go to tahoe this week and bbq and drink Sangria in the sun talking about poetry. hey... we should plan a trip together!

see you friday.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

band practice.

photos by david buuck

our first hootenanny!

maggie getting in touch with her polish blues grooves...

before i knew about the finger picks and suzanne... well... she could blow on the harmonica AND smoke cigarettes... she's that good. david was on piano. of course.

thanks for sending the photos buuck!


and yes, i'm still reading poetry.

and working on my intro for a certain poet who is reading very soon.

and i just hung out with some old poet friends from undergrad... julie reid, kay elliott, and andrea rexilius. which was nice.

and tomorrow micheal *the cracker* nicoloff and i are going to a movie.

and wednesday elise ficarra and i are going to hear dodie bellamy talk about kathy acker's clothing.

but ... i am still afraid of corn. and worrying about what i eat. and oil. and war. and my sister's soon to be born baby.


dear friends,

i don't know that vegetarianism is the answer for everyone.
especially me.

i was a vegetarian for 10 years. when i see all the gluten i was eating as a vegetarian... my addiction to gluten... and how... knowing now i have celiac disease... i see i was poisoning myself... and i was an extremely unhealthy vegetarian. although i thought i was healthy.

i think it is great for others who can do it.

and i think now... what would i eat as a vegetarian with celiac disease? i would like to hear from you veggie ceiacs.

how to avoid eating corn [and i don't mean organic corn on the cob... or even corn tortillas... i mean the nasty corn that is used in everything else... including medicines. the corn that is feeding the food i'm eating.]... but how to avoid eating corn, gluten, and meat.

i eat eggs daily.

i couldn't go vegan again. i won't. i weighed 118 lbs and also. yeah. sickly.

i think the only answer is to eat free range, organic meats.

niman ranch doesn't count for me. found out they feed their steers grains the last few months that they live. a last minute fattening up? i don't know.


i mean... this corn business has literally shaped this nation. it has shaped the land for itself. and it is shaping americans. physically.

we are a nation addicted to and dependent upon corn.

and so ... when i say i'm afraid of corn. i am.

corn needs us as much as we need it.

THAT is crazy. and scary.


seriously. we stopped growing other foods and raising animals on farms because of corn. and what we can do with corn.


in corn we trust.


Friday, July 07, 2006


dear friends

i am having a food crisis which is really a land crisis.

our nation has been built on corn. and our corn has been given energy to grow abundantly [and STRAIGHT] not from the SUN but from OIL.

and we have made our Cows learn how to tolerate CORN so they can be fed cheaply and get fat quickly... only we have to also give them antibiotics so they don't get sick and die from the havoc CORN wreaks on their poor bodies.

it takes 50 gallons of OIL to grow one acre of corn.

does Ford know this? they are advertising for their ethanol [corn] fueled cars and how they will lessen our dependence on foreign oil. perhaps. i'm not sure if that will really do it.

have i mentioned that, like the corn problem farmers have [it costs way more to grow it than it can sell for].... now there is a dairy problem in vermont? because milk prices have dropped. and it costs more to make milk {because of all the oil it takes to make milk: grow the corn, get the corn [diesel!], give the corn....


anyway. this concerns me.

organic farmers are doing much better.

they don't have to spend all that money on oil.


Thursday, July 06, 2006

New Email for Magdalena, Maggie etc!

Hello! Att and I have officially severed ties due to their annoying business practices. Please find me at minor dot american at gmail dot com. Hurrah!

Monday, July 03, 2006

Kate said "Are you finally going to blog something?" and I said not really. I just want to know where I can get a copy of Lisa Jarnot's ILIAD. The publisher has sold out. Any ideas? I am too depressed to blog as of late. It seems I am depressed often. Oh well.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006


this is just to say that i spent 2 hours at the dmv today because i lost my DL at some point during the dyke march [probably one of the fifty million times i had to pee] AND...

while i was at the dmv i started reading the script of Wall on Terra i stole from david b.

and there is really nothing better than reading the Wall on Terra and hearing a constant light buzz and:

"Now helping H 5 0 1 at counter 12"

"Now helping F 0 6 7 at counter 3"

"Now helping G 0 2 1 at counter 20"

[and mind you, i was G 2 6 4 today]


i had fantasies that i would be arrested for reading a judith goldman [w/ david b] text in a government facility.

since, yeah, that's a subversive act.

right there.


and i was also imagining david's eerie [uncanny] [unbecoming] knack for sounding Bush-like. Bush-ish. Bush.


which leads me back to the dyke march and a sign i saw: Bush is a Dick.


on that note.

goodnight everybody.

Saturday, June 24, 2006


too much so.

i don't have the energy to even attempt to communicate how much i loved judith goldman's and david brazil's Wall on Terra last night at New Langton. but, i did. love it. very much.

i think every time the weather changes i start to feel a little bit sick.

am reading the omnivore's dilemma and becoming more and more disgusted with Corn. Corn the commodity.


and, Suzanne Stein 's Fugitive State in Both Both ... you all have to read this... i love that :

"Everything inside conspires."

i will say more about this poem when i'm feeling better. and the Wall on Terra because i stole david's script and get to read it now.


tomorrow is the dyke march so we are skipping the poetry marathon and marching and partying in the castro. it is really the only time of year we identify as homos before writers.


i wonder how many hits the blog will get because i wrote : HOMO.


i have work here, now, with a couple more to be added this week. my harmony series.


i'm worried about North Korea and launching missiles.

i suddenly realize i haven't done nearly as much as i want to do with my life.


maggie and i bought our first bed together and it was delivered today.

i think that means we are getting pretty serious.


Monday, June 19, 2006


i seem to be in a constant gushing state...

see tim yu's 2nd installment.

brandon brown is a rock star

i think brandon brown's "memoirs of my nervous illness" is genius.

i'm in love with that book.

i mean... i don't think i know exactly what it means when people say something is "authentic" poetically... or... rather, i think it is problematic to say such things... but i am going to say that this book that brandon brown wrote struck the authentic cord or plucked the authentic chord in me as a poet and this is very exciting to me because i am not struck nor plucked very easily.

and why...


i think because of many things, but i will try to make it more specific and say it is the way of his language.

okay, so that wasn't all that specific and here i'll just blurt things out and maybe later try to make more cohesive:

language => sincerity => investigation =>questioning sincerity=>language =| ENVIRONMENT causing ILLNESS



which is a question i can't answer for anyone but myself...

i blame architecture and paint color for my insanity.


all of this to say i think "memoirs of my nervous illness" is just a phenomenal work and i'm so very glad i got to be there to hear it last night and also so very glad that brandon wrote it. or someone who is somehow brandon wrote it.


o, and thank you jack for replying to the post i deleted because you replied so quickly and so well and i got my answers and all because of you, jack!

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

roubaud and brown

brandon brown and i were invited to read and speak in elise ficarra's class at sfsu last night... and it was really great. the class had a lot of interesting and hard questions for us and it was so wonderful to have people engaging/trying to engage with work on that level. it looks like a great class... a lot of energy and creativity and investigation. [and elise is a wonderful teacher.]

but, anyway, i got to hear brandon's MY LIFE AS A LOVER again and i've always loved those crazy sonnets...

slamming heads into rocks, etc

and i just read this poem on my lunch break and decided that brandon [and you] should read it too:

Boulevard Pereire by Jacques Roubaud

between Boulevard Pereire
north side
and Boulevard Pereire
south side
bulging with red
roses and pink
roses and
white roses
rain down petals wet
with the rain of a Pentecost Monday in June

if I were fifty years younger
they would come down tongues like as of
fire–I would understand all dialects
and would speak to the roses
red roses, pink roses, white roses
in the original tongue.

Monday, June 12, 2006

one day off

and it is today.

i am waiting for:

The Form of the City Changes Faster, Alas, than the Human Heart - Jacques Roubaud

as well as: this connection of everyone with lungs:poems -Juliana Spahr

and: the omnivore's dilemma by Michael Pollan.

these books are being mailed to me. it would be nice if they came TODAY.


we're going to watch soccer.


i have work in this here alice blue three


and a brief note to my unemployed friends looking for temp work. last summer, before i started teaching, [maggie is watching soccer and screaming at the TV. *THIS* is usually MY role. i hope her team wins...] i was desperate for temp work and this place: TEMP got me an admin job at a non-profit before i even got home from my testing interview! the woman who helped me was Mari. check them out. if they have something, you'll get it.


word is michael "phillip the cracker" nicoloff and i should be starting a celiac blog. and i think we will. it will be great. we'll talk about food and our bodies and i will talk about nice things like dermatitis herpetiformis and how LUCKY i am.


o, and thanks to all who have been supportive of and playing my BANJO this past weekend!

Monday, June 05, 2006

i just read this:

tim yu

and very nice meeting you tim at artifact.

My First Few Hours Off

Okay. I have to be at work at 4:30 pm and I've been either sleeping or working all week because we're short-staffed at the restaurant and that's the way it is at restaurants. So I work twelve hours and then sleep for 7 and then do it all over again. So my apologies in not posting.

Mike Magee: I've been thinking about your post and realize it needs a longer reply, so when I am off tomorrow, I'll write for real.

Bound to Get Fuller: Is the reason you're called that because you are going to let Kate and me in the band? I have an electric guitar, an acoustic guitar, and a harmonica. I can play them, too.

Springsteen: I have two extra GOOD seat to tomorrow's show in SF (actually at the Concord Pavillion). I will sell them at half price ($50/each) if Judith Goldman doesn't want them in the next hour.

a post

okay, so i didn't believe maggie that if i put the word "lesbian" in one of our posts our blog's sitemeter would go out of control and so i did and it did and it is a good thing that i didn't bet any money.

i thought just "banjo" would do the trick, but no, "lesbian" is the more popular google word of the two.


i just got an email from the CW program at state spreading the word about a teaching job in Poland that i'm pushing maggie into doing. it would only be for a semester and i think she'd be ideal for the job and it would be good for her CV. don't you think?

[i'm not having to push very hard.]


suzanne's press, TAXT, looks to be damn near ready to exist in blogland and as soon as she gives me the word i will add her link. we get a lot of googlin' for that, which is really great.

i still don't have a copy of david buuck's chapbook just released... [hint hint]. i've heard it is AMAZING. and i bet it is.

next up is maggie, i think.

if she ever stops thinking about bruce springsteen tickets and sends her copy to suzanne. [another hint.]


i'm currently not having any deep thoughts about Flarf.

i know.

there is this unfinished feeling. at least here. in this blog. and i know maggie is eventually going to respond to mike magee's last comment to her. and i also think it is her response to give.

and also... i was just reading all the flarf / thier guys... all kinds of comments over at limetree and wanted to let Gary know that so far the comment writers here that were also in attendance at magee's reading were : maggie, myself, michael nicoloff, and it was, of course, held at david buuck's house. and he was home.



i think that it is a really good idea for Brandon, Alli, Maggie and myself to form a bluegrass gospel band.


i do.

don't you?


aside from radical evolution i'm still reading the collected poems of ted berrigan and the battlefield of where the moon says i love you by frank stanford.

i'm having a bit of a hard time with frank stanford's because i don't ever find myself with a huge chunk of time [not these days] in which i can sit and really read this massive poem for a long time. every time i close the book i find myself returning to page one when i return to it.

has anybody else had this experience?

how did you do it?

i guess i'm imagining the impossible...reading it straight through.

i'm so optimistic.