Preparing for Saturday Reading

The past few days I’ve been focusing on the upcoming reading at El Laboratorio. The venue is an interesting space that mixes ideas from a variety of sources to generate something really special. With that in mind, Tim Hernandez and I wanted to make our reading something special too.

When Tim and I hang out we usually get into fantastic discussions that range from poetry to meditation to story-telling to identity and more. What we’ve been working on is taking the best of those literary discussions and incorporating them into our reading.

It will be sort of like a car show, where we show off our shiny, polished, tricked-out cars. But we’re also going to pop the hood and let everyone get a glimpse at what’s inside.

July 31st, 2007 | Category: Poiesis | Comments are closed

Buddha by Osamu Tezuka

I’ve been wanting to write something here about Osamu Tezuka for the past few months, ever since I stumbled upon his Buddha series.

So far I have been thoroughly pleased and surprised by these books. Surprised, not because I didn’t expect them to be good but because I had no way of knowing they would be this good. This work really is an achievement.

These would be a wonderful introduction to the life of the Buddha for young, old, Buddhist, non-Buddhist, comic book fans and everyone else. While it is not 100% historically accurate (and doesn’t claim to be), most of what I’ve learned about the life of the Buddha and the times his lived in are represented in the book.

But more importantly, the principles embodied […]

Silver Surfer: Antiwar Comic Book

The Silver Surfer has a long reputation as the bleeding heart  hero of Marvel Comics. I haven’t yet seen the new Fantastic Four movie, which features Silver Surfer, but I hope they keep his tender/compassionate nature.

Just in time for the new movie, Marvel Comics is publishing a 4-part comic series: Silver Surfer Requiem, written by J. Michael Straczynski. This month the 3rd part of the series was published and it was tale of antiwar.

Spoilers Warning

The basic premise of the miniseries is that Silver Surfer has a terminal illness. The first two issues he is on planet Earth saying good-bye to his adopted home and friends. In the third issue, Silver Surfer begins his journey to his home planet, Zenn-La. But on the way […]

Reading August 4th in Lakewood, Co

I’m going to be reading with Tim Hernandez at The Laboratory of Art and Ideas in Belmar Saturday, August 4th.

The Lab/ El Laboratorio is a pretty innovative space, so Tim and I are planning something special. If you are in the area, come check it out.

Understanding Comics by Scott McCloud

Understanding Comics has been on my to read list for a while but a couple of weeks ago the author did a book signing at my local comic shop. So I picked up a copy for him to sign (to my nephew, Nollie). My first response was WOW! And I continue to be impressed by this book. And my enthusiasm was sometimes a little much (which happens). I showed it to my girlfriend, to my writing friends, and to strangers at the coffee shop. It is that good.

As Art Spiegelman wrote in his blurb for this book, it is more than just a treatise on the art of comic books. Understanding Comics is about Art, Time, Space, and the Cosmos. This is not an exaggeration.

In the first chapter, McCloud offers a definition of comics:

July 24th, 2007 | Category: Long Tail Reader, Poiesis | 2 comments - (Comments are closed)

Antiwar Text: The Martyr’s Mirror or The Bloody Theatre

I found an interesting lecture by Julia Kasdorf that she gave at Penn State last April on The Martyrs Mirror, an explicitly anti-war text in the Mennonite tradition.

Mirror of the Martyrs: The Martyr’s Mirror (Thieleman J. van Braght, 1660) and its American Legacy

Author: Julia Kasdorf

Fri, Apr 13, 2007

Download File – 57.4 MB

Listen To This Podcast (Streaming Audio)

July 23rd, 2007 | Tags: , , | Category: Ahimsa | Comments are closed

Hogg by Samuel R. Delany

Before taking a creative writing workshop with Sam Delany last summer I read only one of his books, Nova, a science fiction novel first published in 1968. While Nova was an excellent book, with action, drama, and social commentary found in the best sci-fi, I found out later that his most acclaimed science fiction works are Dhalgren and Trouble on Triton. And much of his best writing isn’t science fiction at all.

This summer I decided to read Hogg, a novel that took over thirty years to get published.

This has to be one of the most disturbing books I’ve ever read. I can understand why it was so difficult to get published. Even Olympia Press refused to publish this book because of its sexual content.

I […]

SWP Week 4 – Pro-War Film Disguised as Transgressive Art

The panel was called Identity, Transgressions and Meta-Structures in Prose and Image . The first to speak was Abigail Child who introduced two short films. The first she described as actual footage of a US military stealth bomber. She said it was transgressive because it showed murders.

I was very disturbed by her introduction to the first film. Tears started to form in my eyes. I wanted to cry. War is terrible. It is so sad and frustrating and terrible.

But the film clip she showed was disturbing in other ways. It was a short film by Dominic Angerame called Anaconda Target. The online site describes it as:

a documentation tape of aerial bombings by the American military in Afghanistan, depicts the devastating effect of smart […]

Content

In class today with Donald Preziosi, he asked a few question that have really sparked me. First, he asked:

what is the difference (if any) between Poetry/Art and on-line gaming?

Ha! Gaming! I have no idea where that came from but what a great question!

I weighed in that there really was no difference. An on-line game can be just as artistic, as poetic as anything found in a book.

Then he asked:

what (if anything) is there to fear from moving from traditional written Poetry to something more like on-line gaming?

July 9th, 2007 | Tags: | Category: Nothing Achieving | Comments are closed

SWP Week 2 – MFA Lecture

Indira Ganesan gave the MFA lecture on Monday of the second week. It wasn’t so much a lecture as an interrupted reading. She began by saying she had found an unfinished manuscript of hers while she was moving. It was a novel, she said, that she began before coming to Boulder a few years ago and had not worked on it since. But finding the text had reignited her interest in it.

Without further introduction Indira began to read. From what I recall, it was the story of a young woman in the city. The woman was a writer and Indian. Probably much of it was autobiographical. I particularly remember the image of riding the Staton Island Ferry, with men opening and closing their legs like butterfly wings .

Indira interrupted herself several times. She skipped around the text, […]