Monthly Archives: April 2010

Imelda Marcos dances with David Byrnes

OK- I’m writing posts back-to-back because I just found out about this album David Byrnes (Talking Heads) and Fatboy Slim produced entitled Here Lies Love, which came out earlier this month. It’s a pop/disco conceptual album, detailing the controversial life of the extravagant Imelda Marcos, famous for her shoe hoarding.   This is so bizarre to me, a second-generation American whose parents left the Philippines because of the Marcos era.

Cyndi Lauper singing, “He’s so fast, tell me what’s his name?/It was only a moment, but I don’t feel the same /He gave me—two roses/He gave me—two roses/One is open/One is closed/One is the future/And—one is my love—” about Imelda’s falling in love with the soon-to-be president.  BIZARRE!

This is from David Byrnes’ introduction to the album:

“The story I am interested in is about asking what drives a powerful person—what makes them tick? How do they make and then remake themselves? I thought to myself, wouldn’t it be great if—as this piece would be principally composed of clubby dance music—one could experience it in a club setting? Could one bring a ‘story’ and a kind of theater to the disco? Was that possible? If so, wouldn’t that be amazing!”
You can find lyrics, blog, and samples of the album here.
I’m not sure whether or not to feel offended.  From what little I know about the Marcos family, it ain’t good.  What do folks out there think?

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MMIX Readings and “The Blood-Jet” on Poetry Foundation


Thanks to MMIX Writers Los Angeles, MorYork Gallery, Cafe Muse, folks who came out to all the wonderful literary events this month.  I love doing themed readings.  The MorYork reading was centered on childhood; Cafe Muse on sex.  It was fun to play around with my setlist and read poems I don’t usually read.  It was also nice to give my aswang poems a break for once.

Below are photos from the reading at the gorgeous MorYork Gallery.

For more photos, check out the MMIX Blog and Sorin Constantin’s website.

In other news…

Thanks to Barbara Jane Reyes who interviewed me about “The Blood-Jet Writing Hour” on

“Poetry is the blood-jet. There is no stopping it.” –Sylvia Plath

I wanted to shout out Rachelle Cruz, whose work I was introduced to a couple of years ago at the San Francisco Litquake’s boisterous Litcrawl, where she read for the API arts org, Kearny Street Workshop. I picked up her chapbook, honey may soon run out, because I was impressed with how concrete, meticulous, and emotionally well-considered her poems and her reading were. She’s a young and energetic poet, a recent PEN Center USA Emerging Voices Fellow, and I am confident we’ll be seeing all kinds of good work coming from her in years to come. Currently, she is the host of the weekly The Blood-Jet Writing Hour online radio show.

You can read the rest of the article here.

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Filed under emerging voices, los angeles, MMIX, readings

MMIX Writers’ April Readings

I’m reading with MMIX Writers’ Group this month.  Read below for more details:

  • On Sunday, April 18th at 4 p.m., MMIX will read original work relating to childhood at MorYork Gallery in Highland Park, in conjunction with MMIX’s own Sylvia Sukop’s photo exhibition.
  • On Thursday, April 22nd at 9 p.m., MMIX will read risky and risque tales at Cafe Muse in Hollywood. SEX, LIES AND LITERACYpromises to be an evening of food, fun, drink and provocative

I’m debating on whether or not to read from the Aswang poems.  I’m excited about reading newer poems, or poems I haven’t read publicly due to time constraints.  I think that themed readings are great fun and challenge me to switch up my regular set list.  If you’re based in Southern California, I hope to see you there!

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Filed under emerging voices, los angeles, MMIX

Poetry Tools for April

Are you worried (like me) that you’ll be too stuck to write anything tomorrow — the first day of 30 days/30 poems?   To ease both of our anxieties, I’ve made a list of books/websites/other resources/ideas to provide as inspiration.

*Writers at Work — Founded by Terry Wolverton in 1997, WAW is a creative writing center based in the Silver Lake neighborhood of Los Angeles.  They have guest poets and writers post writing prompts and tips – perfect forApril!

*Visit the grocery store and pick up a fruit or vegetable you don’t normally cook or eat.  Cook and eat it.  Write about the experience. (Mine would be spaghetti squash).

*Read Write Poem – A type of social networking/resource providing website for poets.  Their contributors will be posting prompts daily in April from their website.

*Write a Facebook Birthday poem (thanks to Richard Garcia for the idea — who stole it from someone else!).  Visit your Facebook page and check to see whose birthday it is that day.  Visit this person’s page.  It doesn’t matter if you know them well or not.  Write a poem about or as an address to this person using the information listed on their page.

*Poetic Asides with Robert Lee Brewer — Another great website featuring daily prompt updates in April.

*Lots of poetry anthologies.  I have When She Named Fire: An Anthology of Contemporary Poetry by American Women, ed. Andrea Holllander Budy (Autumn House Press); The Working Poet ed. Scott Minar (Autumn House Press) on my shelf.  You can find these books here.

*Listen to “The Blood-Jet Writing Hour” on Fridays at 10 am and hear the work of William Archila, January Gil O’Neil, Patrick Rosal and Scott Minar! (Wink).

Any more ideasss?

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Filed under 30 days/30 poems