Friday, December 24, 2010

Poet Laureate Cookies

 I thought maybe if I made cookies with Kaylee I would achieve the illusion that I was a Real Grandma. Like the "girls"of Victoria's Secret who got their wings for the TV runway show where they were all tarted up as angels, or the bell ringing in "It's a Wonderful World" which meant an angel got its wings,  I would be getting my Grandma creds.
    Now, I don't mean to use Kaylee as an ego trip or prop.  When I confessed that I didn't want to use her as a prop on Labor Day as Poet Laureate,  Matt said, "That's okay, mom,  when I go to a party I stay next to her.  I use her as a prop all the time."
    Well, hands scrubbed, helper stool at the ready, Kaylee in her apron and I in my Espanola Farmer's Market apron embarked on Cookie Day.  Like my dear sister-in-law Carol does with Lauren, my great niece, I would be a Real Grandma.  I had in mind gingerbread, sugar cookies, the ones with raspberry jam, and macaroons. It didn't occur to me to ask Carol for her recipes, which I'm sure are excellent.
    The rolling and cutting and decorating went well on batch #1.  Then Kayle got tired half way through the angels and teddy bears, the moons and stars and the big gingerbread boys.  She made herself a bed in the stairwell with every blanket and pillow she could find.  I moved on to a quick sugar sprinkle, a few raisins and red hot eyes, and baked the gingers.  Then I got the chilled sugar cookies and began on them.  This was cookie day, no resting for me. Kaylee rallied for more cookie pressing.  She wondered why there wasn't a Jesus cookie cutter which seemed a good question and gave me pause. Then Kaylee questioned the hand cookie cutter.  Then she said she knew why I had a hand.  Cause I was the..... what was I?  Our joke is that she says "Poet Gloriate" but with all the in excelsius deo, I didn't feel right about that.  So I said, "Laureate" and got the idea I would take these beauties to all my friends at the Santa Fe Arts Commission.  Hands indeed.
     Unfortunately I hadn't counted on anyone eating them.  Kaylee took one bite of a cunning gingerbread teddy bear, complete with chocolate chip eyes, a raisin nose, and sugary buttons and said it tasted weird. Maybe it was the molasses or the ginger or the cardboard hard tooth endangering texture.To the chickens it went.  Dreams of arriving at city offices with my rock hard cookies went up in smoke. But I had two no fail recipes left, surely I could pull it off.  Maybe with a little sugar glaze the others would pass.  Nobody wants to eat carbs anyhow.  Maybe I could say, these are just for the thought that surely must count and fashion a warning label, please don't eat.  These are cookies that will look the same in 2012, unless there is a recall.  I know for sure they did not select me for my baking prowess.  I am no Judyth Hill, my dear friend, who can bake.
      Kayle wanted to know if Jesus is still a baby.  This put the Jewish demi-grandma on the spot.  I say we celebrate the spirit of the baby Jesus, and than since he was God (I want to add, like you and I are with our divine consciousness) he is all things.  She glazes over a bit and I am rolling the thimble cookies, dolloping the raspberry jam, and baking.  They come out pretty good, more of a so-so that a complete disaster. Batch #3.
     Buoyed by this near success it is on to the macaroons. This is Laura Abrums' recipe, sure fire.  By now, Kaylee in into afternoon cartoons on PBS.  I am soldiering on towards dusk and listening for the peal of bells.  The macaroons seem decidely loose and indeed, after I bake them proceed, to fall completely apart.  It in unlike me to be so persistent.  I am a big giver-upper.  But I was so sure that batch #4 would do the trick.  My son comes and  I arrange a nice plate of these for him to take home.  Maybe no one will have the heart to tell me how they taste.  Maybe they will think, she's in her dotage, be kind.
   At about 2 AM I realize that I never put flour in batch #4.  I was so tired.  O Holy Night.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Altruistic Scrabble

My mother was competitive.  She'd come behind on the golf course and win. I know she would have been furious that her third husband, Alec dear, outlived her by eight years and was days from 101.  Monday would have been her 98th birthday. Happy Birthday Mom.

When I was a girl she despaired I would ever get ahead.  She dragged me by the arm to compete in the annual Westmoreland County Club swim races where she always said I came in 4th, thus barely missing a ribbon.  When I discovered yoga in college it was the idea of being okay where I was, and the non-competitive nature of the endeavor that amazed me.

So here I am, Sunday night, playing Scrabble at my neighbor Julie's house.  Julie and I and a houseguest from London are drinking tea or Proseco and playing. Months before I had realized that sometimes I like to open up the board as a goal for a move, or sometimes even open up the desired red Triple Word score.
I dubbed this Altruistic Scrabble.

On Sunday, by the end of the game and the bottle of Proseco,  Maggie from London but actually Irish, was leaning over, taking my letters and getting me much better scores.  She said she liked me.  I asked what she did for a living and she had been an economist with a definite Marxist leaning.  Thus Marxist Scrabble was born.

Why stop there?  When deciding between moves what if one chose the beautiful word over the mundane. Our Scrabble board boasted "ARIA" and "ZEN." Aesthetic Scrabble.  They let me get away with "YID" which was neither lovely nor legal in the game nor politically correct, but that came under the Marxist Scrabble rule.   Or like Pity sex, I was trailing and maybe the oldest in the room.  Or maybe I was playing the PL card again.  A Poet Laureate gets away with a lot.  But I have made two poetry emergency house-calls to this house, so maybe I earned it.

I'm sure Erotic Scrabble has been played. And there could be other leanings, but I want to just put this out to my strict and competitive Scrabble friends, you know who you are, I have changed the rules internally and upped the ante. Just like playing Boggle with my grandson, cooperatively since he is eight and I am old, there can be satisfaction in a variety of ways.

The weather has changed so get out your boards and lean towards beauty, truth, and rooting for the joy of others when you play. Mudhita Scrabble, pleasure and joy in the success of others, a Buddhist term.  I'm just saying.  Maybe I can apply these rules to my ticking PL life, five months in but who's counting?

Altruistic Scrabble

My mother was competitive.  She'd come behind on the golf course and win. I know she would have been furious that her third husband, Alec dear, outlived her by eight years and was days from 101.  Monday would have been her 98th birthday. Happy Birthday Mom.

When I was a girl she despaired I would ever get ahead.  She dragged me by the arm to compete in the annual Westmoreland County Club swim races where she always said I came in 4th, thus barely missing a ribbon.  When I discovered yoga in college it was the idea of being okay where I was, and the non-competitive nature of the endeavor that amazed me.

So here I am, Sunday night, playing Scrabble at my neighbor Julie's house.  Julie and I and a houseguest from London are drinking tea or Proseco and playing. Months before I had realized that sometimes I like to open up the board as a goal for a move, or sometimes even open up the desired red Triple Word score.
I dubbed this Altruistic Scrabble.

On Sunday, by the end of the game and the bottle of Proseco,  Maggie from London but actually Irish, was leaning over, taking my letters and getting me much better scores.  She said she liked me.  I asked what she did for a living and she had been an economist with a definite Marxist leaning.  Thus Marxist Scrabble was born.

Why stop there?  When deciding between moves what if one chose the beautiful word over the mundane. Our Scrabble board boasted "ARIA" and "ZEN." Aesthetic Scrabble.  They let me get away with "YID" which was neither lovely nor legal in the game nor politically correct, but that came under the Marxist Scrabble rule.   Or like Pity sex, I was trailing and maybe the oldest in the room.  Or maybe I was playing the PL card again.  A Poet Laureate gets away with a lot.  But I have made two poetry emergency house-calls to this house, so maybe I earned it.

I'm sure Erotic Scrabble has been played. And there could be other leanings, but I want to just put this out to my strict and competitive Scrabble friends, you know who you are, I have changed the rules internally and upped the ante. Just like playing Boggle with my grandson, cooperatively since he is eight and I am old, there can be satisfaction in a variety of ways.

The weather has changed so get out your boards and lean towards beauty, truth, and rooting for the joy of others when you play. Mudhita Scrabble, pleasure and joy in the success of others, a Buddhist term.  I'm just saying.  Maybe I can apply these rules to my ticking PL life, five months in but who's counting?

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Milagro on Day of the Dead

Santa Fe Poet Laureate in Denver during snowstorm
I made it through Halloween to Day of the Dead.  I wore a necklace of seven teabags sewn on a blue silk thread.  They were, left to right: Lipton, Stash moroccan mint green tea, Yogi Tea ginger, Tulsi lemon ginger, Eater's Digest by Traditional Medicinal, Bigelow's Mind Medley, and lastly, Himalayan Apple Spice by Yogi Tea.  The tea's represented going as my own private tea party.  It is sort of a genteel ladies event, or gay men dressed in white would be welcome, where we are civil and speak in low tones, and chuckle a bit.  We pour for the other first. Cecile, of course would be there. And I would be especially gracious pouring tea as the Poet Laureate that I so deeply am these days.  Have I mentioned?

In full regalia of seven tea bags, I I sat for about two hours and watched the Trick or Treaters at Chase's house, my son out-law and father of Galen.  By then Galen was not wearing the jukebox his parents ingeniously created out of silver bubble insulation.  They had to redirect him from wanting to be a slot machine to juke box, and fashioned one complete with lights, speakers, and an ipod that played music when you put in coins.  At his house there was a fog machine, massive spider webs, and seven pumpkins at least.  I lit the tea lights.  Tea lights, and me dressed in tea, for tea, of the tea.

Anyhow, I am home today and recovering. It is election day and I already voted. For calming and peace I was standing outside  and watching the chickens, the one Hungarian Chukker that survived, and the four turkeys, one destined for dinner this month.  Four is too many turkeys.  Milagro waddled up to eat the scraps I had offered.  Milagro belongs to my other daughter and her fiancée.  We have told her story many times, but I have never written it down.  She is named Milago because she survived three near death experiences.

The first was when she fell into a vat of manure tea (tea again) and was drowning.  They came home and found her little beak above the water and manure mix, rescued her, her head gangling to the side and limp.  They gave her CPR turkey style, and wrapped her in a towel, and fed her water with a medicine dropper, and after an all night vigil, saved her life.

The second time her fellow turkey was killed by the dogs of La Mesilla and she was wounded.  Again they ministered unto her and she lived.  Then there was the holiday of turkey death and they had promised her they would not eat her that year.  Her brother did not fare so well and is no more.
Then there was one (of the three bought at Farmer's Market for grasshopper control). That doesn't count as a near death experience, more of a brush with basting.

Later that year, we were taking care of her as Hope and Leland were visiting his folks.
She stopped eating, couldn't move, and I thought she was dying.  She didn't move for weeks and I thought we should put her down.  It was very cold and she just sat there, her legs seemed too weak for her large body.  Turned out we were giving her mortal hen scratch and she needed game bird mix.
After all, this was Milagro we were dealing with.  We got her her food and she accepted it.  She does a little dance when you feed her properly.  So here she is two years later and feeling fine.

There is a white turkey, a wild turkey, a brown turkey, and Milagro.  Day of the Dead and she is very much alive, having survived three near death experiences, and one holiday close call.  Standing by the poultry is a perfect remedy for election day jitters.  Now I must nap in time for tea, the 4:00 sinking hour.
I have done eight of my nine events as PL this fall.  I need to inhale, relax, and do a little appreciative dance like my fine feathered miraculous friend.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Mantra Time

Today, when I woke up at 5:00, again ever so slightly stressed about tonight’s poetry reading for nine poets who have poetry broadsides with the Palace of the Governor’s Press, the phrase, “You have all the time in the world” came calling in my mind. Broadsides are a one sided page printed to display a poem, originally a religious tract or a ballad, and these of our poems were set one letter at a time by Tom Leech.

As I took off to swim laps, “You have all the time in the world.”  As I shopped for ingredients, “You have all the time in the world,” and while baking cookies for tonight I set the timer three times for five dozen, and it went by smoothly.  I really tried to hear that phrase and live it.  I think I am rushing to get everything in, whatever everything is, done before my two years as PL is up.  I find myself counting the months like some sort of two year pregnancy when I will gestate a few elephants. Maybe it is because people are asking me about my “legacy” project or what big projects I have in mind.  I found myself getting a wee bit stressed out and I told a perfectly nice woman that my entire life was my legacy project.

As I was swimming laps, realized that the tangible is what we are after, materialists all.  My friend Rick Stevens, when he was dying said, “We walk in the snow leaving deep tracks, and think they will last.”  I am hurling myself at the PL job some days.  Miriam said that Valerie Martinez set a high bar and I am vaulting over it.  This is not limbo at a sleep-over.  This is a moment when my life has been noticed and honored, and of course I meet up with the dread ego, the dread competitor who forgot to go to yoga class and breathe, and the rushing around do-er.  As I swam laps today and forgot how many and lost track of the time, except that “I have all the time in the world, “ I had these thoughts.

Then, yet another coinkydink, my dear mother’s word for the convergences and coincidences in her life.  The lifeguard said, “Hello again.” He was one of the students from class yesterday, there all along at my pool.  He promised to send me his poem which had captured my fancy, both the Spanish and English version.  We talked  about life for quite a while, and I told another employee he was my new best friend.

So, like it or not, I am living La Vida Local.  And I have all the time and happiness in the world.  As I drove home from my swim and shopping I passed the descansos or shrine to an accident victim in the median that I pass coming and going.  Even after highway construction, the family who I have seen gathered in a circle at this site, and who never forgot to change the décor for the holidays, a pumpkin right now, St. Patrick’s green, and of course Valentines, moved the shrine and then relocated it in the median.  This Summer they came up with two large portraits of the young teen, she looks to be about 17.  She looks healthy and smart, and warm.  I like her so much coming and going.  She is making her mark on me as her family holds onto this beautiful daughter.  I think she is named Rebecca or Valerie, something substantial, as she appears to be a girl of substance. And we know the big rush is about our little line dance with mortality.

So I thank my new best friend at the pool, and I thank the median girl,  who lost her life, but did not lose being loved. And I thank time, for being the most misunderstood and crazy of the elements.  

PS.  The reading, which had me in fits because nine poets all may read a tiny bit too long, went off without a major hitch.  If time went too far over, then we would not have time to view the Broadsides,  before the museum guards at the New Mexico History Museum kick us out.  A woman actually said, “I loved every moment of it.”  That’s it, the big secret.  Hope to love every moment of today. A day when we all have all the time in the world.

The Tea Bag of Happiness

Ever since happiness heard your name, it has been running through the streets trying to find you. – Hafiz

This Hafiz quote is from Taoseña’s Dora McQuaid’s FaceBook wall.  I credit her as curator, connoisseur of quotes, and fellow explorer in the land of joy.

       Happiness is staging a guerilla attack.  Today, I had tea at my old friend’s house.  The teabag of Yogi tea, Lemon –ginger, thanks for asking, said,
“ Inspiring others towards happiness brings you happiness.”  I know, I know, I am being what we in the Santa Fe environs call “woo woo.”   But I have been wrestling with my ego, it that what wrestling with the angel is about too?  The messenger between me and the divine, my glorious ego is something I fret about a lot.  I never feel as if I do a good enough job.  I go through pre-performance anxiety and then afterwards, a large amount of energy in self-critiquing.  Plus, people give me notes and each time I try to improve.  I hope it doesn’t become like my horseback riding as a girl where I became almost paralyzed with form and forgot to have fun riding. So, knowing that maybe what I am doing is inspiring is a good thing.

      Today, I visited a composition class at Northern New Mexico College.  I have visited my friend Carrie Vogel’s classes often over the years.  I love meeting with local students who live five miles away from me, but didn’t have Beti shoving and shoveling books at them.  Let’s face it, nobody had a mom like Beti.  I always tell about her, and I read and talk too much, and then the students write.  These are quiet students in class but they wrote and some read in the final fifteen minutes of class.  Here is one, and more are coming I hope.  We begin with chile and the state question:

Green or Red?

Green is the flavor
I miss if I'm away
Red had variety
Each recipe unique
Both have the heat
But which to choose?
Why not both?
Christmas can 
Be every day
    by Nikolas Aivaliotis

  I like this poem, written by a young man with a skateboard,  because the last lines reflect how I feel now.  The PL life is the holiday season. I  also think writing a poem increases endorphins, the happiness hormone  that is produced by our body. I don’t know if there has been research, though there has been that writing can be healing in arthritis and asthma.  Also, that doing a good deed or watching someone else do a good deed increases endorphins.  So I think writing does, obviously, and chile does too.  Now that has been researched.  

Now you know why the quote on my ginger-lemon teabag was a good omen.
Right after a sweet experience, I received a message from the Yogi Tea folks.
It is also fitting as for Halloween I am making a necklace of teabags and being grumpy.  I am going as “Grumpy About the Tea Party.”  Don’t want to wear out my happiness.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Dang Happy

Bill Hutchinson said, "Happiness is a fragment of your imagination."  Figment, right, it was figment.  But I am experimenting with happiness, trying it on for size.  I remember a therapist advised that I buy the Dahli Lama's book called Happiness. I bought it and thought, so what's this all about?  How does this relate to me?  I wonder if I can read it now, I certainly had no interest ten years ago.

For instance today, we walked down the road and though the only yesterday insane yellow glow of the cottonwoods was finished off by the frost, how happy was I?

Pretty darn or dang as the cowboys are wont to say. Dang happy.  I want to invite everybody over.  Really, if you are my friend come on down.  The only thing is I am not cooking much.  I am taking a hiatus from big time cooking and this week only made two large zucchini breads from the Espa Farmer's Market, chicken with garden roots, the last gazpacho of summer and maybe the best, and another soup.

That is me not cooking, oh and the cottage cheese pancakes on Sunday morning, but Sunday morning doesn't count.  Today I have "Joan and the Giant Pencil" l with Jeremy Bleich at Turquoise Trail Elementary.  I love doing this little performance with 20 poems set to music.  If you want to hear a sample of Jeremy, my first blog entry has some with my photo.  Also the group Medjool.  Get their CD and swoon.  ANyhow, I have to eat some of my "non cooking" and head on in.  A beautiful day to try on happiness, just don't use a three way mirror as I did at Penny's yesterday.  

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Happy or Hyper

Today I worked with students from The New Mexico School for the Deaf.  I love these students so much, and worked there deeply back in the 90's.  One girl wrote, "The days of the week are like shoes.   I don't like to wear shoes."  Another wrote, "Does the sun make you happy or hyper?"  That should be my question about life as The PL.  I am trying to can happiness as I once canned tomatoes.  I could pull it from the root cellar shelf, make sure the seal is good, and then open the canning jar for a whiff of happiness preserved from these two years.  It is so sweet to be recognized for my work, you can't imagine.  But it's a toss up on the happy/hyper inquiry. I feel a bit addicted to the action, work or seeing the mayor constantly, or performing poetry for kids.  I may need a chakra cleanse soon if I'm not careful.

Tonight my friend Miriam Sagan got the Mayor's Award in the arts for literature. It's a really big deal
with a gala dinner in this art glazed city. She was so gracious and relaxed, yet managed to mention everything from her late husband and new husband, to Zen and  Phil Whalen and the Beats, The Community College and her new Poetry Pole project, all of us at the table with her, the great poetry audience in Santa Fe and that the city was her muse.  Whew, that woman packed it all in and came away with a fittingly large piece of Nambé ware engraved with her honor.  Just like when my mom got Nambé for her golfers.  That was part of the trip out here, since she was on the prize committee.   We'd go on a huge Nambé spree for her country club.

My mom is on my mind these days. Yesterday was the yahrzeit (the anniversary date of a death) of both Miriam's husband Robert Winson, and my mother, Beti Weitzner Slesinger Schwartz.   Fifteen years and nine years respectively. I lit the candle,made a little collection of photos), one shows my mom lounging on the couch in Boca Raton in a divine pastel Pucci dress. She looks absolutely relaxed and sure of herself.

 Am I happy or hyper?  It depends on my sleep pattern.  I hope I sleep tonight, full moon or no, and to wake up again without the heady fast lane of City life, with my slow-mo La Puebla drone as in sitar.  I love the poetry friends, and had a blast tonight, driving home with reggae telling me not to worry bout a thing.  Maybe I am happy and not hyper, or maybe I am having a new experience.  Happy and focused on my art, and I haven't even played the coffee card yet, that is begun to drink it.  Who knows what would befall me if I went on the caffeine road. I would be turbo charged. Anyhow, congratulations to my dear friend,and to all of us who are friends with her.

Goodnight mom. Goodnight Robert. Goodnight PL. Goodnight Nambé.  
Goodnight old lady whispering, "too much."

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Am I allowed to be Happy?

Our houseguest is wandering in the dark talking on his cell phone. He has been aourn here for 3 weeks but I'm actually not counting. He is a young shaman, really.  He makes artesianal healing chocolate which s a good trait in a houseguest.  It has things like spirulina, maca from Peru, chile, and tastes lovely if intense.  I am allowing myself to not get in my car today, to nap, after three PL events which each had a beauty.  The reading for kids at the Museum of Art had about 22 in attendance, most of them my relatives, and the sweetness of the poetry and music was stunning.  I mean my Doctor brought three girls who looked bored then jumped in to play air violin for my ballad "The Magic Fiddle." It was rich and calming and I didn't dwell on the non-audience, because each person was totally present, even the three year old named Haven and his brother Coby, and my grandson, Galen, and sweet Kaylee.  The kids were into it and everyone wandered in the museum and wrote.

Alvaro read like a dream and we had a fine time at Collected Works, and Annie Lamott, of which I was but the intro person, was fine as could be.  I am allowed to be happy.  I am letting my tribal leanings go with the cheery Hungarian half of my family right now, and not the dour Lithuanians. Those four Hungarian women never stopped smiling and saying they were proud of us.  I am letting them kvell and tsk with pleasure. Go Beti!  Go Pearl!  Go Ida!  Go Ethel!  Knock wood and all that, a happy day, a breathing day is fine by me.

I got to share chocolate ice cream with Rico, my friend Miriam's husband, and I am not the best sharer but on the Poet Laureate diet it's all about sharing the chocolate.

XXX----JL for the PL

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

On the Via of La Vida Local

The first words I heard my old poetry teacher say when I met him was, ”Any place can be Paris.”  That was in 1991 and the man was Gerald Stern, another former Pittsburgher.  It may have been then, or earlier, that I formulated a way of looking at my life.  While many poets have their eyes out there, on the national arena, I realized that in a country as big as the United States, to have a function and presence in the local community was what appealed to me.  New Mexico has a geography half large as France.  I had three children at the time, ranging from 6-17, and didn’t want to jettison my strong family boat.  All along, since moving here in 1973, I have been living la Vida Local only now I named it so.
I have grown my art with my friends in community, and have tried to serve community in a variety of ways. After food coops, play groups, and quilt making I reconnected with poetry. I volunteered at the John Hyson school in Chimayo. I wrote a poem for Robert Winson’s death and Mirabai and Eddie’s marriage.  I wrote with Ricardo on his deathbed for 13 months and published a book of his work and our collaboration.  I wrote with a support group called Write Action for the AIDS community and published two books of their work. The group evolved into more general crisis, illness, and loss focus.  Write Action met for 13 years almost weekly. Three of its members showed up last week to support me on Labor Day.
Even more locally, down the road two miles in Arroyo Seco, for seven years I have hired local artists and run a free monthly art workshop called Artist of the Month.  It serves as a community gathering at The Teen Center of Hands Across Cultures, and celebrates young and not so young artists with art forms as varied as traditional tin work and henna tattoo.
I am not telling you this to brag. I am trying to make sense out of my life and see its trajectory as I carry it into the two years as Poet Laureate.  In my days I have learned to persevere, write grants, publicize the events, and often work for free. New Mexico is my Paris and has everything needed to grow a rich life, even cafés. To live in useful context is my goal and being Poet Laureate helps me to focus on how good the community has been back to me. Tres Chicas Books, founded in 1993, as another small press is another undertaking that flourishes in the 505 as youth calls it after our area code.
This is not to say that I didn’t jump at the chance to teach in Bratislava, Vienna, and Zagreb when it came along in 1994.  But that was a side dish in my locavore life.  I am trying to think of a word for local writer, locascribe, locajot, loca pen.

Live La Vida Local.  Write locally, shop locally, donate locally, dream locally, love locally, dance locally, and sing locally.   
In Amazement ----   Joan Logghe

Sunday, September 12, 2010

What I Forgot to Say, La Vida Local

You'd think with my massive verbiage I'd remember what I am doing here and articulate.   I forgot to say to my interviewer, Jill Battson,  for Pasatiempo that I am looking at these two years as a a chance to practice what I believe in.  New Mexico is my turf, and instead of trying to be national, I have wanted to be of use locally.  I have read poems at weddings, funerals, and baby showers.  I have written occasional poems for some events such as my son's wedding.

Not able to eat totally as a locavore, I write out of New Mexico as my Museum of Modern Art, my left bank. The United States is so huge, that one state could be Germany and another  Belgium. When I first met fellow Pittsburgher, Gerald Stern, I overheard him saying.  "Any place can be Paris!"  I have been flirting,and I mean only flirting, with the idea of reading only local authors for a year.

I don't think I can do it.  I mean, the New Yorker alone would be too much temptation and deprivation.
Or to not read poets from other states and lands.  I can't live a year without Emily Dickinson, Stephen Dunn, or Linda Gregg.

Coming up is the Women Author's Festival, year number three.   I'll be there and get to intro Anne Lamott.
To live a year without reading her would be like a year without salt.   So, I will be living la Vida Local in my own way. If you want to join me, look at the archive for August and see my Dates to Date.


Thursday, September 2, 2010

Labor Day Poem

This Monday I am reading at the Railyard Park at noon, right after Major David Coss.
There will be free food and Democrats. Nobody told me about the Democrats, not that
there's anything wrong with them. I was invited as if I would be showing solidarity to the workers of the world. I started to feel extremely Pablo Neruda about it. So I wrote a poem,
as I was asked to do. In case you can't make it, here is my poem:::::

Preface : Pablo Neruda said, a Nobel Prize is good

and I’m sure he could use the money,

but the best is when the miners, coming from deep

in the earth recited his poems to him.

He was that kind of poet, and those odes

he wrote to common things, the socks, the spoon,

the loaf of bread, a violin in California,

to me are stand-ins for common folk

when maybe it isn’t safe to say how much

you love, how close you’ve grown to earth.

And so I dedicate this poem to him,

over the heads of families, under the Santa Fe

blue sky and living wages in at least a few pockets.

I myself have all I need times ten. We built

our house, we carried water seven years.

I volunteered to simplify, here’s how and why.

Labor Day Poem :

The best job I ever had was driving a school bus

right out of college and I thought it a job suitable

for a poet, cruising the upscale suburb in a Blue Bird

bus and my family hoped I wouldn’t be recognized.

the best job I ever had was teaching kindergarten,

the kids in the morning and the kids in the afternoon.

I taught them the hora and the Mexican Hat Dance

and Woody Guthrie. Even now, all in their 40’s

they wonder where they got these tunes.

The best job I ever had was working in a firehouse

with the lost children. Every staff meeting we’d disagree

about autism and how to hold the children when they

couldn’t hold themselves. That was a job I walked to

past a corner bakery on 9th and Judah that sold pirogues.

The best job I ever had was selling garden plants

1973, I watered all the trees, carried bags

of steer manure to cars. I learned to say maybe

you watered it too much, or maybe too little.

The best job was not substitute teaching.

I got the spitballs and the thumbtacks on my chair.

I got the attitudes and how by high school

even then, they’d given up.

The best job was waiting tables at El Paragua in Española

My old boss still knows me, says, “Oh Joanie, I remember

when you dropped the steak and lobster.” And I recall

the sopapilla basket I set on fire, too close to the candle.

But even then I felt the joy of work and customers

treated us as humans not as servants, but still I tip well

in homage to those days.

In Santa Fe, on Canyon Road, I swept the patio

in my apron as the tourist bus passed by the Haven.

I tried to look like local color. Then I was a chiropractor’s

right hand until my third child came onto the scene, I mean,

I was a mother almost all along and that was a hidden

love and job of work.

And all along I gave my life to poetry, which begs

the question, am I management or labor? Thirty years

and here I stand. I always thought if I aimed low,

kept my feet on solid earth, I’d be myself for the long haul.

My self, the best job I ever had,

Tuesday, August 31, 2010


So, right after I mentioned the Rolfer in the last blog, I met his son. Son of a Rolfer, go figure. Then we were talking about Lyssa and Lyssa called. All the time these things happen. My friend Don didn't believe in synchronicity. He had a bone to pick with Jung. Don died, and I still remember everything he said. Like my mom, he said great things. Unlike my mom, I listened to him and took his advice. He said, "Money's no expense" and "nobody should make me uptight in my own house." My father, who was like Don in his dark swarthy looks, said, "It only takes a little more to go first class." He also said, "I don't have to be a millionaire to live like a millionaire." He went, first class.

My mother called coincidence "coinkydinks." She had other funny names for things. When offered desserts she's ask for that Russian dessert, "one-of-iich." Or she'd confide that an acquaintance was a "pinintheas" which stood for pain in the ass. My mother died the month after 911, a spectacle I tried to shield her from. Her last night, as reported by her care giver, she said, "Pack your bags, sweetheart, we're going to Florida." So I figure that was her heaven, she's by the ocean.
How does all of this have anything to do with living the PL life? It must because it is my life and nobody is going to make me uptight in the house of it. I have many little jobs and a few larger jobs. None of it is brain surgery, but all of it has cut and mind.
The jewish holidays are coming. It is a chance to turn in, to prayer, and to give to charity. By doing so you might get inscribed in The Book of Life. One can ask and one does ask. it is also a good time to make peace with friends, to apologize, to come to clean center.

I spend time with the ancestors The weather is more beautiful than anything but God, and this isn't a coinkydink.

Thursday, August 26, 2010


Sometimes I tune in to see if a fairy added a posting. I would like a deep and studious fairy, not a flighty one, so maybe I am waiting for the shoemaker's elves, a little more gritty in their leather aprons.

My poetry for kids is coming together. Please scroll down to dates to find out the why and wherefore of the PL life.

Today I am researching copyright and public domain. I might have been a lawyer if I hadn't gone hippie on myself. My first adult writing group in 1987 had seven lawyers, plus one Rolfer, one therapist (soon to be My Therapist), and a few sundry seekers. One woman gave me a number for her codependency group. Maybe it was because I drove to teach in a snowstorm and I had pneumonia, though didn't know it. I didn't realize then that writing wasn't life and death. Still don't.

Please check out my public appearances as Poet Laureate, a role with dignity. I am so happy to have shoes, thank you elves! JL

Saturday, August 14, 2010

What is missing

Today I am going to a benefit for Jinny Erdley, the midwife of not only my last child, but my first grandchild. She has lost her right arm to cancer. I spent the morning looking for, and finding, a poem she wrote to me in 1985 in response to one of my poems, and to being such friends in the ancient and loving mid-wife/mother/baby bond. I was thinking that knowing Jinny, losing will be the new whole. The newspaper article said she hasn't gone out much, but is figuring out how to knit and cook. I recall when she came to check me after Hope was born, there was goat shit on her top, and some straw, and it felt so whole and holy and New Mexico casual. Here's to the kind of wholeness that has missing parts, and still is filled with life force.

Now the baby of mine she delivered, Ana Hope, is in the field of infant and mother's health, a doula who provided emotional and practical support to women in Norteño land, working for Tewa Women United. I am inordinately proud of her, as I am all my three kids, and the three grandkids. I think during the first two kids the poet was the missing piece. I stopped writing until both were back in school. Too many deep places in me where my mom was at work. So the face was watching them, but sometimes the mind was missing. And then by Hope I was in my writer's life again, and my mind was definitely missing. She would read my face and get on my case for being a drifty and dreamy sort of mother. She had to share me with my career.

Now, I have another kind of wholeness. Just when I was ready to pack up shop and close the door, I get two years in a sweet and dreamy fast lane. I will be driving to town a lot, promoting things so someone shows up to events I have carefully planned,
and not an on-call grandmother. I will be missing, a little, in order to be present to my poetry life. Front burner, back burner,
my stove has five in all. Often there are several at work. But right now and for the first time, I am feeling like the poetry gets to be primary, for these days, or weeks, or hopefully two PL years that extends into the rest of my life, what I always wanted seems to be saying, "Come on Down..."

My dear Jinny has this patch in her life, I have a sweet time after the troubles of my 50's, my husband has retirement after working since he was five on the dairy farm. Every fullness alive has what is missing right up beside it. I am wish Jinny an impossible next phase, where she who has brough 1,000 babies into the world is brought 10,000 inspirations and joys.
Last summer we both were at a conference and it had been so long we didn't recognize one another, old women. It didn't make us sad, this is not Hollywood, it made us laugh.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Living La Vida Laureate

Even in the pool with a bathing cap and glasses, I got congratulated. Some stranger offered to share the lap lane with me and had read the article in the Rio grande Sun. Now we are pool friends, which is good cause I lost two pool friends last month
I had two congrats at the post office. Only one person in Española seemed pissed off at me. Priscilla said, "You live in Santa Fe." It felt as if I had defected to the other side, what ever place that is that we defect to. Maybe to wearing panty hose. Yes, I have defected to office wear and it's not casual Friday.

Living La Vida Loca Laureate is great. I drove to Albuquerque for a front yard reading, which was lovely, people liked my work and I liked their work. I then stayed over with a new best friend, Frances Mccain my only movie actress friend. I read some poems to her house-guests and then went to Church of Beethoven in the morning. Only in Albuquerque is classical music, poetry, two minutes of silence, and coffee the Sunday morning event. I met a friend, Pilo Bueno, from the old days of AIDS prevention and we talked about monogamy. So, it became worth it to drive 90 miles to read for 12 minutes.

Back home, Mike returns, we visit the kids in the yurt, and then today, Leland brings us a sauteed puffball. It is larger than a burger and quite yummy, only we already ate sweet corn from Espanola market, grown by Salvador, fish a la Trader Joe's, and
salad. We were eating with gusto after a nice feminine rain and watching Oprah about food and God. I am intellectually very positive and gusto-ish about puffballs, but I want to sample, not overdo. Maybe I could go on the wild mushroom diet.

Did I tell you life itself is having a gusto moment. I feel as excited as when I was back on the floor at John Hyson School's stage, teaching kids from Chimayo to write poems. It was the best thing ever, thirty years ago, and still is. I am going to go practice shaking a maraca while reciting "Eletelephony." I must to my art.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Staying Home so I can Wax Poetic or Wax the car

After a day at Ghost Ranch where I taught at my friends Dona Bolding and Susan Weber's Writing, Hiking, and Yoga class, i was so totally wiped out that the beauty of the cliffs as seen through my rose colored PL glasses almost did me in. I made it home and slept about 11 hours. Today, instead of being the perky run-around PL, I stayed home. Well, I did go for a swim at the Española pool and see my old pal, Stella, from Walgreens. Stella does not know she is in a poem in my book Rice. I don't think I will tell her, a girl needs her secrets.
I spent today typing up my poems for our next Tres Chicas Books book, Greatest Hits: Love & Death. I hope we can keep the ampersand. I am partial to them. Typing up all the love poems of my life is curious. marriage is the background music to various crushes, old loves, and flights of fancy. I hesitate to use the word "drone" to refer to marriage because you'll take it the wrong way. The great Ravi Shankar would know what I mean, that underlying resonance that makes it all possible.
Then I wonder about great loves I have held that were way more about my psychology than about another person. I am having a love connection with myself which is totally focused on another human. I like the book Invisible Partners by John Stanford.
It is required reading before you read my poems. I got about 23 pages typed, and look forward to typing more and learning more about who I was 30 years back. I like my writing, I was very precise and the use of imagery is something I could learn something from. I mean something from which I could learn.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Dates to date, Living La Vida Local

Labor Day at the Railyard
Monday, September 6, 12:00-3:00 pm, at some point at this picnic of free food, I'll be reading a poem written for the event.

Premier reading at Collected Works:: Thursday, September 23, 6:00.
Joan Logghe with read with Alvaro Cardona-Hine, her dear friend. His recent book from UNM Press is The Curvature of the Earth with the late Gene Frumkin.and Joan will read from works in progress . Joan has worked closely over the years with Collected Works and wants to honor this important bookstore for poetry, and her dear and inspiring friend. Cardona-Hine is a poet, painter, and composer and lives beside the gallery in Truchas with his wife, Barbara McCauley, who also paints and writes beautifully.

Joan and the Giant Pencil:: Sunday, September 26, 2-4:00 PM at the Museum of Art, In a program for young children and their parents, Santa Fe’s Poet Laureate, Joan Logghe, will be accompanied by musician Jeremy Bleich. They will present a program suitable for the early elementary years, ages 6-9 give or take. After the performance with children will be invited to write in the galleries, accompanied by an adult. This a launch for a similar program to be offered to four schools during the school year.
Free admission to all.

Women's Festival of the Book, Annie Lamott reading at the Lensic September 28 and yours truly does the intro!
on Saturday, October 2 at 1:30 I will be reading at the Meem, a beautiful space adjacent to new History Museum. Many great poets, fiction, cookbook, etc. writers for Two Whole days and Free, ladies.

GHost Ranch, Living Life Twice, Writing the Sacred Down, Oct 3- 9., check it out and come on up.

Southside Library. Joan and the GIant Pencil, Tuesday, October 19 at 4;00 for their after school program. For kids and their adults to have fun with poetry, write a group poem, and hear a poetry and music performance.

Broadsides Reading and Exhibit: A Spirited Reading. Meem Room, at Museum of History on the Santa Fe Plaza, Friday, October 29-6:00-8:00, reading to celebrate the Broadsides by Tom Leech and the Palace Press. Broadside poets and artists will meet to read from and celebrate this series done with letter press, and on handmade paper.

Museum of International Folk Art::
Sunday, November 14, 2:00-4:00, Writing in the Galleries, in conjunction with the show, Material World, Textiles and dress from the collection. Free Sundays with New Mexico driver's license .


Life is so full of clouds these days. And I am on the move, from Abiquiu where I read at The Inn and stayed over to swim in The Lake, and celebrate our 39th anniversary and 40 years deep. Then I had to be celebrated at Rancho de Chimayo. And that was great with our gang of Friday night revelers. But the best part of that was that Arturo Jaramillo was there, helping out as his way long ex-wife had broken her leg. I mean we're talking 25 years ago. And we remembered each other and he was as handsome as ever. It was one of those moments in time, the former hippies of the Nambé road meet the esteemed restauranteur. Only now we are both elders.

Then I had to compose a pink poem for the 8th color party at my friends Bette and Richard's house. I was the Poet Laureate of the color party for many years. So this ripple out is satisfying. The pink effect was wonderful and my three grandkids each made color party friends which I am hoping can be a tradition. And then.... I went to a hip hop show all dressed in pink which made me feel even fogeyer than I am, until I remembered my bowling shirt. Nothing like a Poet Laureate bowling shirt to shed some years (and add some pounds). Idris Goodwin invited me to read. He asked if I had "some in my dome." Now my dome is pretty tundra-esque, sparse clumps of lichen and the like. But I had books in the car (I am known for selling out of the way-back) and I read an "Espanola Pantoum." Idris can spit poems on his feet, free style, and I am paging through ones I wrote twenty years ago.
He called me "OG". And when I asked, it stands for "Original Gangster." The words that came to mind, after "old Gal" were "Oy Gevalt!" which is Yiddish for what were you thinking when you came to this venue where you could be everyone's mother if not grandmother?" Another translation is "Oh, the powers that be, the force of it!" A Yiddish proverb is "We come into this word with an Oy!----and leave with a gevalt!"

But by the end of the evening, we were family thanks to the menschlich qualities of Idris Goodwin. He celebrated each performer, the guy Patch from Silver City who had never been to Santa Fe, the 2Bers who are wonderful performers, hip hop with a bit of singer songwriters besides, and this ego riddled PL. I got to hug the 2Bers kids, Iris and Annabel, whose grandmother was a dear friend and passed on five years ago. Here's to Ellie, Your kids are doing great.

This morning Idris asked me to blurb his book. Have I arrived or what, or am I simply traveling the outer routes of my inner joy.
Speaking of which, Henry Real Bird, the Poet Laureate of Montana is riding his horse across his state handing out poetry books. People take care of him, feeding him drief beef and traditional foods of his Crow nation.
Anyhow, signing off, JL as the PL (and OG)

Sunday, July 25, 2010


My husband said he had one word for me, and then he gave me two. The first was, "No." He thinks I need to pace myself. For example last night I wanted to go hear Jeremy and Sarah Jane more than anything, but it would have meant my third night in town, and third drive home in rain. Granted it only drizzled, unlike the arroyo run of the night before. But a night on the couch with a movie made sense. I said "no" and it hurt, but was good for me.

The other word was, "Dignity." Last night Bob Eckert from the Rio Grande Sun called to tell me he was taking a comic approach to the photographs in the article he is doing. Mug shots of me. Was I okay with this? I am always okay with humor, unless it hurts or is racist. Laughing at myself is part of my wiring. Also taking things as sacred and serious. I am ambidextrous.
I used to be ambivalent, but I am not any more. I am a grandmother, for goodness sake and spent yesterday herding kids afternoon. Today to write at Spanish Market. Notebook. Pencil. Dignity in tow.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Other People's Eyes

"I am just inspired by you-all your life hanging in there as a poet and now Recognition! Its kind of cinderella-ish. You looked beautiful and sounded so strong and I loved your Poet Sign. It was really good to see Mike and your girls and Julie and Shaffer. It all made me happy and miss you all. Making any gaspacho yet? I planted seeds from the pumpkin you gave me from your garden and I have a beautiful pumpkin patch- a poet pumpkin patch." Mary Jo

That's why former neighbor had to say. I, of course, was doing my usual post-mortem on how i didn't do well enough, wore the wrong dress, and blasted the mic instead of getting intimate and strong. I am sure I will be heading to therapy before too long. B
But no! I think part of being in community is having the blessing of other's people's eyes. When I have had years of uninspired writing, I'll run into someone who sees me as a poet. To me, that is the prayer a community can be. To see the parts of us we can't even recognize in ourself. To hold us in that role, even if we're not in the mood.

Though I am totally happy and thrilled about life in the PL lane, it doesn't make my neurotic ways evaporate. This will be a practice in good enough. I am preparing for each event I do and will have to accept it as my best effort at that moment.

The pedicab sure was a blast the other night. Kathleen Mccloud is so into it she wants to donate her pencil, FUTURE, to the arts commission. I'm saying, after my tenure, please....and she has agreed.

People are stepping forward in the sweetest ways. Being happy for the joy of another is called "mudhita" in Buddhism. This gives me the opportunity to take in, not lose a bit of it, and remember to be happy for the success of others. They may be struggling with the "good enough" even when winning the lottery of their particular life. I do feel like I've won the lottery
and I see it as joy reflected in others.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Passing of the Pencil Ceremony

Last night felt like what summer nights in Santa Fe are meant to be. Bob Chavez drove our pedicab round the Plaza. The poetry Valerie Martines & Gabriela Ortiz were in turn elegant and embarrassed. The major was there, lots of friends, two great bands, the guy who bought my mom's car. It was a full house.

My grand-daughter, Kaylee, held my POet Laureate sign on stage. I forgot to introduce here. She got a little tired and turned the sign upside down, but that was cool. Afterwards at San Francisco Bar and Grill she said, eerily channeling the Hungarian aunties or my mother, "I'm so proud of you." Then she looked deeply into my eyes and said, "Don't lose a bit of it." All three of my grandkids were there, and that means the most to me.

Michael, my consort, is back from two weeks in Wisconsin. It was a good welcome home party on the plaza. The giant pencil got him lots of comment as he walked around downtown Santa Fe. Everybody evidently loves a giant pencil. What next? Kathleen has already made a giant sumie paint brush. Giant paperclips. Giant calculators. Giant pop-up note dispenser.

Here is my induction speech:: Thanks to Valerie, who did an outstanding job, 52 events of great quality, as our Poet Laureate. Thanks also to David Lescht and the Bandstand, for making the Plaza a place of community again. Speical thanks to Santa Fe Arts Commission, especially Sabrina Pratt, for sponsoring the Poet Laureate Program a rarity among cities.
Thanks to New Mexico Literary Arts, our board that keeps the grass green in grass roots arts organizations.
Thanks to my friend Bob Chavez, pedicab driver by day, nightsky and lightening photographer by night. He changed his schedule for us. And the Poetry Paparazzi, I never thought I’d get to say that.

Poet, Anne Sexton, said we are writing a communal poem. I wanted to thank not just the two preceding Poet Laureates, Arthur Sze and Valerie Martinez, but the many fine Santa Fe Poets who are friends and colleagues. They are writing in coffee shops and colleges, they are publishing everywhere and starting literary magazine, they are both well known or below the radar. They are reading in apple orchards and homes in Chupedero, as well as independent bookstores. We have a great audience for poetry, the Lannan Foundation readings at the Lensic often fills the house at 850. We have book stores which stock poetry and teachers who put stock in poetry, who welcome poets into their classrooms in programs such as Poets-in-the-Schools, and Artworks. Thanks to Culturenet, Alex Traube and again Arts Commission who has sheltered Artworks until recently when Partners in Education took it on.
Tonight ushers in a new era in poetry, where children fall in love with poems, adults support each other’s work unceasingly, and the youth are coolest of all because that is teenagers’ job. A time when SLAM, coffeeshop, Lannan, grassroots, spoken word, page poets, and IAIA readings serve the hearts, minds, and souls for a literate and literary Santa Fe. Or maybe it’s not so much a new era as bringing to awareness that Santa Fe is an epicenter of poetry. We are a UNESCO city of arts excellence, with the highest percentage of writers in the work force of any city. Let’s keep writing that communal poem. We are a city of poems/city of poets. Metaphors be with you!

Here is a poet of the FUTURE, 8th grader Gabriela Ortiz of Santa Fe Girls’ School with her Ars Poetica, poem on the art of poetry.

Friday, July 16, 2010

The Poet Laureate Diet

I told my co-publishers at Tres Chicas Books meeting yesterday that people were being so nice to me. Even people who don't like me are excited for me. Why they don't like me I'm not sure. But everyone is being nice. Miriam kept saying "Dos Chicas" during our meeting. I hope they don't dump me for being pre-occupied as I try to land on my Laureate feet, and get my sea legs in a land locked city. Miriam Sagan gave me a long cut velvet wrap which at 98 degrees I may not have been properly excited about, but will be lovely in the winter. I will go all Anne Waldman.
Miriam's late husband, the lovely Robert Winson, once said as he put me on his KSFR radio show, "I'll make you Adrienne Rich." he was very supportive of his friends' art. But I asked him if he could make me Anne Waldman instead. I like her sense of style.
My friend Barbara Davilman liked my idea of the Poet Laureate Diet. I did have a few bon bons today and will try for bon mots tomorrow. Basically, I am so happy, despite this world and three deaths this week, and all that, that I expect weight may just leave the premises. If it doesn't , I will be carrying happy weight like water retention in a dry climate.
The Passing of the Pencil Ceremony*******
Come to the Santa Fe Plaza on Mpnday at 7:00 for ten minutes, I promise. The bands are good, I checked with musician friends and David Lescht wouldn't let us down. Thank you, David. I am writing poems too, and will read my favorite one on Monday. Valerie Martinez will be there and Gabriela Ortiz, a young poet I have worked with two years at the Santa Fe Girls' School will read her Ars Poetica (The Art of Poetry). Incase I don't get to I want to thank the Santa Fe Arts Commission, especially Sabrina Pratt,
Kathleen Mccloud of the pencil, and my dear friend, Bob Chavez, photographer and pedicab driver.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The Year of Living Poetically

So far as Poet Laureate of Santa Fe I have had two and a half poetry emergencies, one public appearance in a bowling shirt that makes me look boxy, and one writing on site where I was so moved. The two emergencies occurred in La Puebla, NM where I live. My friend, Julie Bennet, has a sort of B & B set up called Air, Bed, and Breakfast. Two, not one, but two separate guests were poets and so I had to don my bowling shirt which reads "Santa Fe Poet Laureate: Joan Logghe" on the front and "City of POems/City of Poets" on the back and rush over. Two nights. Poetry was discussed and shared by all. I didn't know house calls was part of the deal. Then in a nursing home in California, I met a 97 year old who is a former Santa Fean. When told I was her Poet Laureate she asked for a poem. I gave her a small one and she applauded. I count that as a half emergency since she is 97 and wheelchair bound already.

The boxy bowling shirt appearance a gratitude moment. I went to Los Alamos concert series was was able to introduce singer/songwriter Eliza Gilkyson. Here's what I waned to say and didn't. A bit of a case of nerves.

In the early 1980's in santaFe, when I had just taken on poetry again, I'd go hear a singer downtown in a club below La Fonda called Casa Blanca or the Casbah, one of the "c" named clubs. She'd sing about Cerrillos, her town, about being a mom and never alone. I could totally dig it. She sang, "Santa Fe just sits there grinning under Indian blue skies" and so I'd sing is as I drove into town from the north. She showed me that writing can be intimately personal and reach others deeply. I was a fan and a groupie. I wanted to thank Eliza for being on her path so fiercely and with such determination. She moved me. And today I am Poet Laureate of Santa Fe. Here I ma with my two grandchildren. Gratitude to Eliza."

I said an approximation and my son put it on You Tube (Try POet Laureate, Eliza Gilkyson). She calls her path The Beauty Way after the Navajos and thanks to all on this knife edge. That was a Gratitude Emergency and she got it.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Listen to my poem, "Music from the Plaza."

I knew a blog would be lurking around the corner. My friend TJ helped me put this poem here.

The music is from May Day 2010, Jeremy Bleich composed it for Samba Fe. I wrote the poem last year. On July 19 at 7:00 PM there will be a reading of this poem and a passing of the giant pencil from Outgoing Laureate, Valerie Martinex, to me. The pencil is by Kathleen McCloud whose great work is at Ernesto Mayans Gallery. She took my writing classes years ago. This sculpture is called "Venus Velvet" and is a cousin to the one Kathleen is allowing me to show for my tenure as Poet Laureate. My accompanying sculpture is aptly called, "FUTURE." The photo when you play the poem is by Jamey Stillings, (c) 2010

Everyone is being so helpful to me and happy for me. Thank you...