Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Lookee What I Did!

What're YOU Lookin' At?!?!?

(I figured out how to put images on Medusa! Now I'm dangerous!!!)

—Richard Zimmer, Sacramento

Down in the thorny creek-side bushes,
a flock of small wrens roost.

Their loud and bubbly song
fills the air with chatter,
as they flutter in the brush.

Restless brown birds,
their rounded tails bent upward,
make cheerful chirping sounds.

In this place with earth, stones and
where wild grass grows—will ever be,
as long as there's sun and rain,
till the last wind blows.


Thanks, Richard! More of Richard Zimmer's poetry will appear in Snake 11, due out in mid/late September.

New Site for Los Escritores:

Interested in joining a writing group? Many people begin new activities in the Autumn, and this is not just a new season, but a new location for the Writers of the New Sun/Escritores del Nuevo Sol. The group, founded in 1993, will keep its affiliation with La Raza Galeria Posada [LRGP], newly located at 1024 22nd Street, in midtown Sacramento. The philosophy of the writing group is similar to the philosophy of LRGP, which serves to foster, preserve and present the best of Chicano/Latino and Native American culture. Membership is open to all who sincerely wish to develop more quality to their writing, whether poetry, fiction, or nonfiction. Some members write only in Spanish, some only in English, some write bilingually. The group is considering adding a second, Spanish-only, group of writers. Typical meetings are the first Saturday of each month, 11 AM, and include work on a writing exercise, sharing of members’ writings for critical feedback, and a potluck. The next such 2006 meetings are September 2, October 7, November 4, and December 2.

The group also sponsors a series of special readings during the year, usually scheduled at LRGP. The next ones will be the September 15 annual all-Spanish reading, and, in early November, the annual reading that celebrates Day of the Dead/Dia de los Muertos, honoring those who have passed but are not forgotten.

For more information on activities and membership, check the web site: www.escritoresdelnuevosol.com or call 916-456-5323.

Monterey Poetry Review:

The Monterey Poetry Review is seeking submissions of poetry from writers who live in, or who have former or present ties to, the four counties of Monterey, Santa Cruz, San Benito and Santa Clara. Please send in your poems and help spread the word to your poetry groups and other writers. Deadline for submissions for the fall/winter issue: September 15, 2006. Guidelines: Submit up to 6 poems, a short bio of several sentences, and a photo, and full contact info. All these must be submitted before poems will be considered by the editorial board. Email submissions are preferred. Send to: montereypoetryreview@gmail.com (or snail mail to: M. Lee, Editor, PO Box 5885, Monterey, CA 93944). Open to all styles, forms and lengths. Articles can be about current poetry venues, poets, interviews, reviews of recent books, or the craft of writing.

Ads can also be sent in preferably by Sept. 15, but no later than Sept. 30. We print and distribute 3,000 copies in four counties and are growing in area distribution in San Jose, SFO and other cities. Cost for any size ad: $6.00 per square inch. Advertise your upcoming events (mid-Nov. 2006—Feb. 2007) books, chapbooks, business, business card, favorite charity.

Donations are the biggest supporter of the magazine; thank you to all of you who send in support from time to time or regularly. Every dollar goes to production and distribution—our production team, directors and helpers are all unpaid volunteers. We are a registered California non-profit organization, soon to be tax exempt when the paperwork goes through.

News from the Vietnamese International Poetry Society:

Sinh Quang Le, the President of V.I.P.S., writes: The Vietnamese International Poetry Society (V.I.P.S.) was founded in September, 1994 in Sacramento, California. The V.I.P.S.’s purposes are to identify, encourage, and help develop creative expression among Vietnamese American Poets and to introduce and exchange the Vietnamese Culture with the other countries. V.I.P.S.’s current membership totals over 400. Accordingly, eleven anthology volumes entitled Flowers of Love (Cum Hoa Tinh Yeu) (Vietnamese edition), and four trilingual anthology volumes entitled Flowers of Love in Vietnamese/English/French have been published, with over 1000 copies for each volume. In addition, V.I.P.S. has also published 30 individual poetic works written by the members of the Society. V.I.P.S. has also issued a newsletter and a magazine to keep in touch with its members living in the USA and other countries all over the world. Also, four CD and music books, including the poems selected from Flowers of Love and set to music by the musicians (Han Ta Vo, Singapore, in 1997; Thanh Gia Hoang, Sacramento, CA, in 2001; Tan Huu Nguyen, Sacramento, CA, in 2002; Nguyen Tat Vinh, Nashville, TN, in 2004) have been presented to the public and media in the USA and Europe.

We organize every two years the “International Poetry Convention“ to consolidate the friendship of the members and develop our Society. The first convention took place on September 11-12-13, 1998 in Sacramento; the second on September 15-16-17, 2000 in Westminster, Orange County; the third on September 7-8, 2002 in Paris; the 4th in Washington D.C. on October 22-23-24, 2004, and this year, September 15-16-17, 2006 in Sacramento, to celebrate the 10th Poetry-Journey of the poetic work, Flowers of Love: Volume 1 (1995) – Volume 11 (2005). In these conventions, Flowers of Love (Vietnamese Edition), the trilingual anthology, Flowers of Love (Vietnamese/English/French), and the magazine, Viet Dieu (Vietnam Bird) are presented to the public and media as a testimony to our efforts and to mark the growth of the society into an international forum for artistic development.

In the framework of the Fifth International Poetry Convention, we have the honour to announce The Poetry Music & Dance Banquet organized by V.I.P.S. to celebrate the Ten-Year Journey of Poetry of Flowers of Love: 1995-2005. This special event will take place on Sunday, September 17, 2006, at 5 PM at the Rice Bowl Restaurant, 2378 Florin Road, Sacramento, CA 95822; (916) 421-8492. Admission: $25.00. Your Donation would be appreciated. (Famous artists are coming from Southern California, Kentucky, and Virginia.) We welcome you to this special evening!


—Steve Williams, Portland

I could have hugged his averted hulk,
kissed the space above his head
or squeezed his shoulder as I left.

I could have kept my volume low,
accepted my commission as little soldier
and forsaken my demilitarized mind.

He could have tinkered only with machines,
looked around the resemblance to my mother
and ignored what that town of churches thought.

He could have forgiven my birth,
apologized for his vagrant parenthood
or loved me as he would a stray dog.


—Patricia A. Pashby, Sacramento

Hidden among
ripening tomatoes
and lemon cucumbers,
a Praying Mantis nymph,
the size of a thumbnail,
dressed in newborn white,
front legs held upright,
head on a swivel, bug-eyed;
waits to ambush any hapless
insect that comes too close to
its garden niche.


Thanks, Pat and Steve! Watch for Pat Pashby's new littlesnake broadside, Potpourri, coming in September.


Medusa encourages poets of all ilk and ages to send their poetry and announcements of Northern California poetry events to kathykieth@hotmail.com for posting on this daily Snake blog. Rights remain with the poets. Previously-published poems are okay for Medusa’s Kitchen, as long as you own the rights. (Please cite publication.)