Saturday, October 9, 2010

SpinCity Terrace y Environs

Back with more than just poems and long, adulatory postings that come too few and far between. It's been an eventful season. What else can be said? Corazón del Pueblo is thriving. The "Un Floricanto Adelanto" at Corazón was a milestone gathering of 40+ poets and a sense of community that was not exactly matched at the equally stirring USC reprisal of the original 1973 Festival Flor y Canto. Meeting Festival coordinator and photographer extraordinaire Em Sedano, hosting the spirited Pocha Catalana, traveling to San Pancho to read at the Mission Cultural Center 40th Anniversary Celebration in honor of the Bay Area's El Tecolote newspaper on Aug. 29th were nothing short of breathtaking. We can probably dispense with the obligatory recap, but reconnecting with poet/artist mentors from 25 years ago was just the shot in the arm this pobre vato loco needed. Can't say enough about the renewed sense of purpose, the writerly compromiso...

And the ride hasn't stopped. It's taking me to Cal Sate Monterey Bay to read poetry in protest of SB 1070 in a former U.S. military base on October 28th. Will try to find a ride to Big Sur and Carmel while I'm there. Taking the train to Salinas. At Corazón, Teatro Urbano has extended the run of The Silver Dollar, a gut-wrenching play about the death of periodista Rubén Salazar. They perform the historic drama every Saturday in October at 8:30 pm.

The move to City Terrace brings me closer to Corazón and the work we're doing as part of a firme collective. Still in the middle of a do-or-die Dia de Los Muertos issue of Brooklyn & Boyle but it will come. The 1st St. corridor is hopping like mad. The Metropolitan Bar is open for business. I've had the glorious opportunity to meet the 70-something Doña Teodora Sanchez, proprietor of the tintoreria up the block. More on her later. The Boyle Heights Farmers Market is a Friday staple. Un Solo Sol Kitchen is serving healthy Mexican-Salvadorean fusion, ie. pupusas made with spinach or mushroom or squash as well as asian salads and chick pea guisos. Sorry if you're unfamiliar with "guiso." Just try to think of it as a Mexican stir-stew-fry in a pan and not a wok. 'Nuff said. We'll skip the litany of ultra-cool happenings you can't miss but must perforce mention the Latino Book Festival at Cal State LA today and tomorrow. Thank you Eddie Olmos. I'll drop in tomorrow for a panel on "Latino Diaspora," a discussion among Latino exiles from Latin America living in the U.S. as a result of the civil wars and political persecution by U.S. supported dictatorships that were installed in many countries to protect U.S. business interests and the landed local elite in often violent opposition to labor and indigenous rights activist movements. Which has nothing to do with the "Batalla de la Loncheras" at the Cornfields and the Mole cook-off at Placita Olvera tomorrow, two separate events I hope to hit before settling in at the Cal State LA Book Festival...

Por ahora, we'll just have to table

No comments: