Sunday, January 27, 2008

SATURDAY FEB 2nd @ 8PM : david need & elise ficarra!


elise ficarra is a writer/poet who lives in san francisco and is an affiliate artists at headlands center for the arts. she co-edits minor/american and manages the poetry center at sfsu. swelter, her first book, came out in 2005 and she expects to complete her second book this year. her work has appeared in 26, bird dog, 14 hills, parthenon west and
other journals. one spring she had a blog for two weeks.

[photos by me!]

grew up in Cleveland and Massachusetts and has been living in Durham since 1994. He teaches South Asian religions at Duke, as well as classes on Religion and Poetry, Siberian Literature, the films of Andre Tarkovsky and Stanley Kubrick, and Beat Generation and Russian New Wave writing. A one-time participant in Boston’s long-running Stone Soup series (1976-82), David’s poetry, memoirs, translations and essays have recently been published in Talisman, Fascicle, and Mipoesias.

Things you might not know about David.

1) When David was five, he and his older brother would walk to school. His brother had been blown away by reading the story of Joan of Arc in a comic book, and, for about a week, read from a longer biography while they walked. Although they were not Catholics, for months afterwards, David and his brothers would talk about Joan after the lights were off, imagining pilgrimages to the place where her ashes fell into the Seine. David would later write a story called “St. Joan and the Bear”.
2) Two of David’s first loves were older women, one of whom was a professional astrologer. As a result, David can do the astrological dozens with the best of them.
3) Between the ages of 17 and 24, David hitchhiked across country five times, once making it in four days in order to catch Patti Smith’s Wave tour concert at UMASS Amherst. His worse ride was with a van load of Viet Nam vets, and one hippie from Oregon who’d been living in a tree for three years. The driver was going to Minneapolis to sign up to fight with the Contras against the Sandinistas. As the sun set, the Van picked up a girl, hitchhiking East, carrying two shopping bags full of rocks she’d been picking up alongside the road. At the outskirts of Minneapolis, the van ran out of gas. David looked around at the guys and the girl, and got out and started to walk. A little later, the van stopped; they’d gotten gas, did David want a ride to the interchange? The girl wasn’t in the van. Getting in, David asks, “Where’s the girl? “Oh,” they said, “she got out and ran across the highway and started hitching the other way.”
4) When David was in high school, Dostoyevsky’s “The Idiot” stood out in his mind among books he read; now he is sweet married to a Massachusetts girl who teaches Dostoyevsky and whose favorite book was “The Idiot”.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

maggie says:

preliminaries! that's when katie gets pregnant!


aw, come on! edwards has such a boner for the presidency!


i love my new job. i do. i love it. thanks cv.

Monday, January 21, 2008

there has been a lot of crime around here lately. a lot of gun crime. we're both feeling less safe than we did in the Haight. mostly armed robberies, but a Duke PhD was found shot to death in his apartment, some of the Latino victims of armed robbery have been shot [not clear as to why only the Latino victims have been shot, so far], an increase of door-to-door panhandling...

i actually got crazy mad at a guy for coming up to me in front of my house asking for money to pay his rent. we've had so many burglaries, robberies in the area.... i told him to look around... asked him why he was in this neighborhood looking for money since it is obviously NOT the neighborhood with any expendable income... told him to go to the other side of town for it and to get away from us. 

i felt a little bad. i was quite loud & mean & fed up with it. but, truthfully, scared. we're very happy to have such a LOUD dog. but we are very unhappy with our neighborhood right now.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

OLD Photo

A friend of mine from college just put this on Facebook. It must be from my junior or senior year of college. I'm with my friend Tony Morgan. I'm shocked at how much I've aged. It's the first time that I really "see" myself aging. Scary. Kate says I look "too gay" and that she wouldn't have dated me then. Mean. It's on the main green at Brown.

o, my dear suzanne pleshette, i will miss you so. you and james garner all western and making me all gay. with that deep, sexy voice of yrs and yr dark hair...

o, suzanne pleshette. i will always love you.

I Miss Percy, Too!

Anne Boyer is a force of nature. She made me want to clean up my ways and be me again. Or not be me anymore. Or what I mean is she made me realize I wasn't writing enough and that I didn't have to be scared of writing (I've been scared of writing ever since I finished my novel -- it's much easier to be a grad student than to write). She made me think that writing was a way of life much like breathing or taking out the trash and that made it seem easy enough. So the day after she left I wrote all these cool things down in my notebook and today I was thinking of looking at them again and typing them up but I feel all phobic about it.

And I've been really sad about Percy. For some reason his last day with us keeps playing out in my mind. And I think I just miss his friendship. I feel strangely alone. I want my little blind dog guiding me. I miss how little he was and how he would relax in my arms and how his little body would wrap around my chest and how he would rest his chin against my shoulder. I miss the old man sigh he would let out as he was settling himself into bed for the night.

I think things would be better if Anne and Percy were here. But I must learn to carry on. Considering I haven't "blogged" in a year or so, maybe this is, as the psychologists say, "a baby step."

The publisher wrote me and said the typeset manuscript was in the mail.


Saturday, January 19, 2008

The biography tells us that Kafka once read aloud to some friends the beginning of his novel The Trial, which deals explicitly with the problem of divine justice. His listeners laughed through their tears, and Kafka too had to laugh so hard that his reading was interrupted.
Thomas Mann, Homage


i so didn't think it was funny. it really didn't even make me chuckle. it disturbed me, annoyed me, confronted me, abused me, it did many things to me but one thing it did not do at all is make me laugh.

is it not funny when you know that it really happens?

because... Kafka died before these things started happening. right?

do i have a poor sense of humor?

did you think it was hilarious? uproarious?

percy already sick of his new brother's breath.

i miss this.

Friday, January 18, 2008

i had a dream last night that i went into my neighbor's house with my neighbor and another woman... and i noticed that there were all these ghosts in her house and she was very frightened... not of the ghosts but of me for being able to see them. so, she tried to kick us out, but i pushed through the door. she said, "fine, come help me with the diabetic ghost upstairs." so i go up with her and there is this old man laying in bed. he is afraid of me, but i say "why haven't you really died yet?" and he says, "i'm afraid to die." and i say, "but you aren't really living, and you aren't really dying, yr just in bed!" and he says, "i don't know how to die." and i say, "well, was there a white light or something? why didn't you go into that?" and he says, "i was afraid of it!" and i stop for a second... look around... over his head is a large, framed, autographed, COLOR... photo of TONY DANZA. so i say, "if tony danza went with you would you be afraid?" and he says, "o, no, i could never be afraid if tony danza were with me!" so i ask the photograph of tony danza if he'd take the diabetic ghost to the white light for me... and tony danza comes out of the photo and says, "okay, fine." tony danza picks the diabetic ghost up and they disappear.

later, and this is what woke me up, i had a dream i ate a raw quarter pounder from McDonalds.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

my best friend forever from jr high [actually, she was probably my first love, too!] just found me on MySpace.

i'm delighted.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

i accidentally threw away my BLOGLINES button and now i have no idea.

i feel free.

maybe it shall have to remain thrown away because in my free time i'm trying to answer all of Kafka's questions and not-read Blanchot which of course involves Bartleby.

i forgot to tell anne that i wasn't the only one to
hey, anne, i wasn't the only one.
now i'm just an average american.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008


anne boyer was and is so great we had the loveliest visit with her remembering our brains and guts. yesterday she went home and bear promptly had an acid reflux anxiety attack because she left. bear really loves anne and not just because she's so stylish. maggie was a little depressed yesterday, too, but me... i was just fine. [that is sarcasm.] the house feels completely different without anne in it.

the reading with ken and anne was awesome. i am very proud of myself for putting those two together for a reading. thank you, thank you.


jeff davis just sent me a link to some to some old ed dorn photos and thensome.

we are still reading through subs to minor american 1.2. we got so many and much and e is in india. we will get through them and back to you soon, though, and apologize profusely for thinking we'd be done by now.

i'm reading blanchot and kafka. i'm starting a new job in one week as a Copy Editor. this is very exciting as the place is full of poets which is always exciting.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

a little darger?

iris vitiello is so cool.

have you seen her santa film?

some stuff i remembered today.

i’m not going to pretend i’m not writing this. this will stand for what it is. how very much it affects my vanity. i meant to write however much it affects my vanity but i didn’t. i’m writing love poems for people i don’t love.
it is in the eyes

white letters white letterspoached in water set adrift
white letters whiteyou say she pulled them out
white letters white white whitefor modesty’s sake

i say that wouldn’t make me believe
just ill. if you force the issue
then maybe i’d agree that something there was o so
catholic. no, i’m not trying to write or anything.

the great feeling is that you ask very little and you get very little.

the language confuses it. makes you read yellow instead of gold. she said

the yellow walls remind me of the orange sweater that he took me in

meaning she was upset by this and not wanting yellow walls

but, that’s a lie, actually, because what she really said was

when my retarded cousin was 18 years old she molested me and no one in my family would do anything about it because she didn’t know any better... i was only six. see how they hurt me?

i won’t lie. it was heavy. and what that had to do with the colors of yellow and gold and orange is something she could only explain. i just didn’t wear those colors. how could i?

when someone has been hurt very badly by sex i think maybe it isn’t something someone can really get over. and how can you demand it? how can you expect it? what will you do when there is no recovery from that kind of pain? but that wasn't sex. it isn't sex when it is that.

she did recover.

i was thinking about it again the other day. it didn’t really crack the way it used to. the name escapes me but the organ is so very loud that i forget my misremembering colors.

or disease.

a plummet and then the door creaks
a voice says “what do you want”
and the door creaks some more.

i can’t think about that question without grunting. more creaks. a dog barks and a train is blowing. doesn’t the wind always hammer? just like doors always creak. and floors. and dogs always bark. the whispering will get you nowhere i’m already pissed off by all this normalcy.

all these fragments really mean is i’m an asshole and shouldn’t be trusted.
the grammar induces convulsions.
my grammar induces my own convulsions.
i hedge at the writing of you. i want to vomit into my keyboard and pull up something beautiful, something that people will want to read, but mostly i just want to pull you up out of these fonts and rub what is left of my misery all over yr body.

Friday, January 04, 2008


<---photo by hazel!
the minor american reading series is back! bring yr bottles and yr musical instruments
to 811 wilkerson ave at 7:30 for:

Anne Boyer was born in Topeka, Kansas, raised in Salina, Kansas, and educated at the public universities of Kansas. She now lives in Overland Park, Kansas, and teaches writing and other things at the Kansas City Art Institute. With K. Silem Mohammad she edits the poetry journal Abraham Lincoln and with Robert J. Baumann she curates An Actual Kansas Reading Series in Lawrence, Kansas. Anne Boyer's works include Anne Boyer's Good Apocalypse (Effing 2006),Selected Dreams with a Note on Phrenology (Dusie 2007), and The Romance of Happy Workers (Coffee House 2008). She is at work on many projects including a novel, Joan, a book of poetry, Ma Vie en Bling, a book of imagined things, Art is War, and a book of bad translations, Ill New Wave Ho.

photo by klpringle ----->

Ken Rumble is the author of Key Bridge (Carolina Wren Press, 2007) which one reviewer describes as an "exuberant free-verse tour of Washington, D.C." He works as the marketing director for the Green Hill Center for North Carolina Art and lives in Greensboro, North Carolina, with his daughter. His poems have appeared in the literary journals Octopus, Fascicle, Coconut, Cutbank, Parakeet, the tiny, Carolina Quarterly, and others.

Thursday, January 03, 2008


Originally uploaded by minor americans
i try to write but maggie always follows me from room to room on the phone. so, instead of working, i'm trying to talk to conrad while maggie is talking to conrad.

have i mentioned it is freezing ass cold in our house?