Where I Find My Poetry…

A Fullness in Brevity - Adam Byatt

At band rehearsal this week (I play in a covers band for weddings and corporate functions) I scribbled this onto a scrap of paper between songs as the band rehearsed with a drummer who is filling in for me for an upcoming gig.

I’d had the title floating in my head for about a week and an idea of what I wanted to write. Originally I intended it to be a simple blog post about how I, as a writer and poet, find my inspiration and ideas. 

The idea was composting in my head and while I lounged behind the sound desk I scribbled this out.

Where I Find PoetryWhere I Find Poetry

while searching for loose change in my pocket
between the first splash of milk
when I make a cup of tea
and stir in the sugar
waiting for the hot water to come through
in the shower and I’m standing…

View original post 307 more words

Why (Good) History Matters: The Republican National Committee and the AP Exams

In agreement

That Devil History

RNC Chairman Reince Priebus scowls as thinks about actually educating Americans about history. RNC Chairman Reince Priebus scowls as he thinks about actually educating Americans about history.

Have you ever heard someone say that pursuing the liberal arts is a waste of time? Sure you have. The refrain goes something like this: Studying the liberal arts is a waste of time because you’ll never get a job with a “useless” degree in English, Art, or (gasp!) History. A few years back, for example, the estimable Forbes ran an article titled “The Ten Worst College Majors,” and, of course, almost all of them were liberal arts majors. In a similar vein, Thought Catalog troll Matt Saccaro has claimed that the liberal arts, including history and literature, should be outright removed from college in order to focus on “what matters;” namely, making lots of money.

This granite-headed attitude — that the study of the HUMAN EXPERIENCE is now pointless because it won’t make you any…

View original post 1,499 more words

Our Ethical Bankruptcy Is Going to Kill Us, Not a Virus

Our Ethical Bankruptcy Is Going to Kill Us, Not a Virus

The Order of Turbulence

Johann_Melchior_Füssli_(1677–1736),_Sketch_of_a_Cordovan-leather-clad_doctor_of_Marseilles

The United States has the most capable health infrastructure and the most capable doctors in the world, bar none,” Lisa Monaco, President Obama’s senior counter-terrorism adviser, said at a White House briefing. (“US Ebola outbreak ‘extraordinarily unlikely’, White House officials insist.” The Guardian)

You might wonder what a ‘counter-terrorism’ adviser is doing vouching for the quality of the US health system. It is an indication of just how badly this issue has been framed since the first report of the latest Ebola outbreak, which began in March of this year. Nor is it helpful that the current head of the CDC keeps insisting that an Ebola outbreak couldn’t happen in the US. And even more laughably, there’s a DA in Texas who looking into pressing charges against Thomas Eric Duncan, the Liberian who fell sick in Dallas.  Let’s hope he lives long enough for that to…

View original post 1,248 more words

About Books and Writing

i share a few sentiments

"Of the Making of Books there is no end..." (Ecc 12:12)

My admiration for authors, people who have written books, goes back to my childhood and runs deep in my psyche. This admiration is threefold. I grew up idolizing those authors–Anne McCaffrey, Frank Herbert, Isaac Asimov, and Michael Moorcock–who filled my youth with their imaginative worlds. At the same time I grew up in a traditional Jewish household, and from a young age I was exposed to traditional Jewish scholars, many of whom are referred to by the title of their books (e.g., The Tur for Rabbi Yaakov Ben Asher and Beyt Yossef for Rabbi Joseph Caro). Being a member of “The People of The Book” for me was understood to mean you were expected to write a book. Finally I grew up in academic household, with a father and an uncle who were prolific writers and publishers (even as my uncle struggled to find an academic position, he had no problems writing…

View original post 1,765 more words

Song of the Drunk (After Okot P’Bitek’s ‘Song of Malaya’)

Lyriversity

by Chime Justice Ndubuisi

Welcome home
Young warrior, valiant and strong.
I heard of your prowess in lands
Far away, across seven seas and mountains,
As you defeat and keep on defeating
While your ancestral obi is lying in ruins
Defeated not by hand or ammunitions,
Defeated by something armless and lifeless: loneliness.
Where now is your boot?
Where now are all your war spoils?

Welcome home
Young sailor, vigorous and tireless.
I heard you scanned the entire Western horizon
In search of dry land
But when none was in sight
You went down deep in the sea
Laid down your head on a rock
And slept, breathing inside water like fishes do.
Where now is your crew?
What happened to the iced-fishes
And the Okporoko that you used to chew?

Welcome home
Mother and sisters prostitutes.
I heard you always smile at men
As they lure you to bed…

View original post 454 more words

Practical Classes for Writers

truth

Abby Has Issues

It’s back to school time for most people, and while I value my college education, I can’t help but feel that the writing curriculum they provided didn’t necessary prepare me for the real world.

Of course I took the basics for academic, creative and professional writing, but technical skills aside, they failed to address the more “realistic” aspects of being a writer.

writing

So with that said, I have proposed a few more practical classes that all aspiring writers should be required to take.

Textual Dysfunction

This introductory prerequisite will tackle the perennial problem of writer’s block and the five stages every writer will go through. Along with preparing the student for the emotional trauma of textual dysfunction, several creative writing exercises will be performed in an effort to facilitate creative expression — including how to explain to friends and family that your blog/novel is not based on them, even…

View original post 441 more words