Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Secret Ingredients

—Patricia A. Pashby, Sacramento

Slice off both ends of the pomegranate
so it will stand up steadily.
Cut into quarters.

Submerge fruit in a bowl of water
and break apart to free the seeds.
The seeds will sink to the bottom of the bowl
and the white membrane will float to the top.
Discard membrane.

Drain liquid and put the seeds
to one side. The seeds are covered
with sweet juice sacs called arils.
Both arils and seeds are edible.

Just sprinkle, toss or bake—
delicious on desserts, salads and cereals.


—Richard Zimmer, Sacramento

A Rebel has to walk a rocky road,
he’s anti everything, even gravity—
he tries to fly using cardboard wings.

Facing life, with a stubborn will,
he tosses all the rule-books in the air,
catching them again with a wink.

He thinks things are mocking his eyes—
clouds in the shape of lions and bears,
and tall trees nodding back to him.

A slight disorder in a woman’s dress,
suggests wantonness, which bewitches
him more than one being well-dressed.

He likes to leave things undone—he never
out-did a meal, or out-did the frolic of wine.
What might-have been—others can ponder.

When into his up-turned world another rebel
came, bringing new rebellious thoughts that
curbed his spirits, they both agreed to disagree.

Strange and terrible events were welcomed—
comforts were despised. Then to celebrate,
they shook hands and stopped for ice cream.


Screenwriting Class at 25th and R with acclaimed Writer/Director-Producer Walter Klenhard—A one-time only special offer from Room to Write and the Sacramento Poetry Center!

This is a special opportunity if you have ever thought of writing for the big screen. The free class will be taught by Walter Klenhard, a writer and director with over twenty produced movies. Walter has recently returned from Canada where he directed Gabrielle Anwar in the murder mystery, Lies Between Friends, from his original script. The film will be premiering in April of this year on the Hallmark Network.

Mr. Klenhard began writing in 1988 with the two-hour pilot for “B.L Stryker” starring Burt Reynolds. Since that beginning, he has written over twenty produced films. He was nominated for an Edgar Award for outstanding television mystery for The Last Hit. Walter has directed seven movies in locations ranging from Australia to Nova Scotia and Thailand. He began his career as an actor. As a teenager, he studied theatre in England and later continued at UCLA. In 1977, he turned professional and for the next decade appeared in numerous films and television shows. His credits include Midway, Tom Horn and, on TV, “Alfred Hitchcock Presents.” When not on location, he makes his home in California.

The class (limited to ten students) will meet April 8, 15, 22, May 6, 13, and 20 from 7-9pm, (except 7-10pm on May 20). SPC and Room to Write are located at 1719 25th Street, next to Alliance Francaise in the R25 Arts Complex at 25th and R in Sacramento. This screenwriting class offers something for all levels. Beginners will learn all the building blocks: format, structure, dialogue, and story. Experienced writers will have the benefit of professional feedback and have the opportunity to re-write their scripts with the guidance of an established writer/producer.

Classes are free, but we are requesting a $5 per class per student donation ($30 for the six-class series) to benefit the SPC/Matrix Arts building fund. To register, contact Walter at


The latest issue of Ekphrasis is out, featuring many fine poets from all over the country, including our Joyce Odam. Pick up a copy from Laverne or Carol Frith, or go to

Our Seed of the Week is Food, and the troops have responded in fine fettle! Apparently food is a universal subject. Send your food poems to or P.O. Box 762, Pollock Pines, CA 95726. No deadline on SOWs. Here are three rather unsettling ones from Taylor Graham, who will be reading along with the other Red Fox Underground poets this Saturday in Placerville—see our Bulletin Board for details. You can also catch TG at tonight's Upstairs Poetry reading from 6-7pm at The Upstairs Art Gallery, 420 Main St. (2nd floor), Placerville. It's a poetry open-mike read-around, so bring your own poems or those of a favorite poet to share, or just come to listen. No charge.


—Taylor Graham

If Huntley & Palmer's biscuits were more widely and evenly dispensed among the neediest of the working-classes, [there might be] less crime and fewer tenants of [Reading] and other gaols.
—Elihu Burritt, A Walk from London to Land’s End (1865)

Biscuits indeed! You’ve never seen such enginery
for dealing with dough. This is the stuff of industrial
revolution: machines of iron and steam; ovens rotating
like revolving shutters; rollers regulated by a screw,
with force and action that could work sheet-metal.
Rotary stamper. A gun (they say the barrel’s loaded
with sweet paste), ramrod pressed to the operator’s
chest, sharpened knife in his other hand to slice
the jet erupting from the muzzle. And this mortar
that could lay siege to a town; breech-loading,
charge propelled by a steam piston.

Loaves and biscuits: do they offer you a sample?
Is it sweet enough to subdue the roughest hunger,
this cake forged in the arsenal of peace?


—Taylor Graham

By some chemical transformation,
it became the taste of sorrow.
As if someone waved a magic wand
across my dust-mask
smeared with mentholatum
to sweeten the stench of death.
Five days after
earthquake, no water.
A mother crooning on the street.


—Taylor Graham

You asked for cherry-pie cake.
There were ants in the sugar bowl.
I picked them out till I couldn’t
find any more. Seventeen
I squished between thumb and finger.
I thought briefly about their
small lives, their sweet hungers.
I may have missed some.
You said the cherry-pie cake
tasted extra-special good
this time.


Today's LittleNip:


If you do not shake the bottle,
None'll come, and then a lot'll.



Tool Shed
Photo by D.R. Wagner, Elk Grove