Poems from the 20th Anniversary Authors’ Anthology

New poem by Kim Shuck

2017 Poet Laureate of San Francisco

Drought Break

Weaving of water is layered

Sitting in the rain

Feet dragging in the runoff

I know there are trees coming down tonight

Drought tired

Clots of soil run free

Sailors still catch and spill

Windpainting

Still navigate by song

Remember

Remember

Treesong

Waterweave

So far we are still witness

***

Borderless Butterflies: Earth Haikus and Other Poems
Mariposas sin fronteras: Haikus terrenales y otros poemas


by Francisco X. Alarcon

Federico García Lorca / Roque Dalton /
Gloria Anzaldúa

oh poetas del mundo
de ayer, mañana, siempre
sin fronteras
hermano del alma
hermano en lucha
hermana mestiza
pusieron en riesgo
sus vidas en versos – y ante
mentiras, la verdad

9 de diciembre de 2013
o poets of the world

from yesterday, tomorrow

forever borderless

soulmate brother

brother in struggle

Mestiza sister

you risked your lives

in poems – choosing

truth over lies

December 9,2013

***

New poems James Downs

Whispers in the grass

The sheer

abruptness of sweetness

on the tongue



the full

dawning of sunflowers

in the mind



the repetitive

mirror taken down

off the wall



the shouldered

certainty of sightings

in the throat



what is it we seek in this life of woe



the twinkled

brightness of benevolence

near the stars



the tried-

and-true of whispers

in the grass



the hunger danger of hope in the heart

***

The Nature of Mountains

John Peterson

dark season


we keep finding small places that let the

smell of herbs come through



rosemary before its put in the black skillet

with potatoes onions and black pepper



basil oregano and cilantro growing on the roof

top deck where the sound of pigeons and sunsets

fill the sky and early morning bells

from the methodist steeple

stand out against the snow covered peaks

of the cuyamacas



the source of rain in the spider plant

the deep smell of burning oak

eucalyptus both wet and shining and played out in smoke



this is the season the bear sleeps where you and i

slowly give in and lay front to back like spoons in

a velvet embrace

***

Landscape of a Woman and a Hummingbird

Joe Milosch

He twists his neck to catch the sun,

which turns his throat to the same shade

of red as the fluid in the gourd-shaped feeder.



Peeling grilled tomatoes, she lifts her head

to see him dip his beak, turn his head,

and burst into shadow.



As they slip through her fingers, tomato seeds

become prayer beads, which seem suspended

for a moment before falling into her salsa.

So Many Voices

Poetic Matrix Press’

So Many Voices Cover

20th Anniversary Authors’ Anthology

246 pages, Price $20.00, available from Small Press Distribution (SPD) www.spdbooks.org

With material from our 60 books and 45 authors (including new pieces from many) this is a true reflection of So Many Voices that we have had the privilege of publishing. This is an interesting and beautiful compliment to our publishing efforts. With editorial assistance from John Peterson, James Downs and Joe Milosch and Forward from James and John and cover art from Molly Weller.

Kim Shuck, Francisco X. Alarcón, James Downs, Shadab Zeest Hashmi, john (peterson), Diana Festa, Anne Whitehouse, Patricia Nelson, Brandon Cesmat, Joseph Miloach, Ashley Gene Pinkerton, Arthur W. Campbell, Mun Duk-su, Peter Gibson Friesen, Joseph Zaccardi, Hassan El-Tayyab, Joe O’Connell, Joan Michelson, Leroy Franklin Moore, Jr., Grace Marie Grafton, Yearn Hong Choi, Lyn Lifsin, Rayn Roberts, Chris Olander, Molly Weller, Charles Entrekin, Gail Rudd Entrekin, Sandra Lee Stillwell, Tomás Gayton, Joel Netsky, J. P. Linstroth, Ruth Rosenthal, Bonnie Joanna Gisel, Peter and Donna Thomas, Reverend James Fox, Alex Landon and Elaine Halleck, and many more.

The Bay Area Bookfair

 

BABF

 

Here is our table at The Bay Area Bookfair in Berkeley this past weekend (June 4 & 5). The weather was beautiful and I met many good people.  Grace Grafton, Gail & Charles Entrekin came by as did Devon and Catherine.  It was a good 2 days.

Gail recently won first place in the Women’s National Book Association awards for “Before Making Love” from The Art of Healing and was interviews on PBS Newshour. Read here.

The Art of Healing got a nice intro by Judy Woodruff.

Many folks came by all weekend to send blessings to Francisco.

 

Francisco Memorial Reading

On Thursday Feb. 18th a large group gathered at the John Natsoulas Gallery in Davis to celebrate the life and work of Francisco X Alarcon

who on Jan. 16th Untitled-1 passed from this place to that on his journey.  So many souls that he has touched and so they came to honor him and to honor  Javier and Francisco’s family.  Love to you brother!

The following featured poets read poetry at Canto Hondo: A Memorial Reading for Francisco X. Alarcon:
JoAnn Anglin
Paul Aponte
Francisco Aragón
Lucha Corpi
Luz Maria Gama
Marta Garcia
Nancy Aidé Gonzalez
Xico Gonzalez
Nicole Henares
Zheyla Henriksen
Suzy Huerta
Dr. Andy Jones
Arturo Mantecon
Gerardo Pacheco Matus
Adela Najarro
Rosie Ochoa
William O’Daly
Graciela B. Ramirez
Betty Sanchez                                                                                                                                                    Allegra Siberstein
Bob Stanley

Special Guests :
Javier Pinzon
Members of the Alarcon Family
Kalpulli Xihuacoatl Danzante Group
Mariachi Cielito Lindo

FRANCISCO X. ALARCÓN

image

We have lost a rare and beautiful person.  To Francisco, my friend, my love to you on your new journey.  It has been my privilege and my joy to have gotten to know you and to work with you.  Thanks to James Downs for introducing us and thanks to Devon, my son, and Kiirsti, my daughter, for the good work we did on your book project.  And thanks to Javier, blessings to you.

Francisco is one of those special people, special poets, who in his life and in his poetry he showed us the best a person can be.  In his poetry you see the man and in the man you see his poetry, they are the same.  As James said to me tonight, “he is now the Borderless Butterfly flying over us all.”

Loco                                                            Crazy
mis puertas                                            I leave
las dejo                                                      my doors
sin cerrar                                                 unlocked
los extraños                                           strangers
me parecen                                            look to me
tan familiares                                      so familiar
a todos                                                      I would
los abrazaría                                         embrace and
y besaría                                                  kiss them all
cada día                                                    every day
en la calle                                                on the street
hallo a Dios                                            I run into God
en vez                                                        instead
de llorar                                                  of crying
ahora me río                                        now I laugh
quiero poner                                       I want to
el mundo                                               turn the world
al revés                                                    upside down
nada                                                          nothing
me convence –                                  sways me –
debo de estar loco                            I must be crazy
3 de agosto de 2009                        August 3, 2009

 

Solar Eclipse by Francisco X. Alarcón (click here for full poem)

Solar Eclipse

I

Mother Moon embraces
Father Sun above the clouds –
we, their children, rejoice!

Mamá Luna abraza
a Papá Sol sobre las nubes –
sus hijos nos regocijamos

Tugann an Mháthair, an Ghealach,
Barróg don Athair, an Ghrian, os cionn na néalta –
Déanaimidne, a gcuid páistí, gairdeas dóibh!

II

the Moon eats the Sun
with kisses and caresses –
they’re making celestial love!

la Luna se come
al Sol a besos y caricias –
¡hacen amor celestial!

baineann an Ghealach plaic as an nGrian!
gona bpóga is gona mbarróga –
comhriachtain na spéire!

III

the Moon, the Sun impart
the lesson of Spring –
a wedding ring for all!

la Luna, el Sol dan
la lección primaveral –
¡a todos anillo nupcial!

insíonn an Ghealach is an Ghrian
ceacht earraigh an lae seo –
fáinne pósta do chách!

IV

when the Lady and
Lord of Duality made love –
primordial Big Bang!

la Señora y el Señor
de la Dualidad al amarse –
¡Big Bang primordial!

Ometecuhtli = Lord of Duality
Omecihuatl = Lady of Duality
Ometeotl = Deity of Duality

V

Earth, Moon, Sun
Serpent, Quetzal bird, Soul –
a blessing at hand!

Tlalticpactli, Metztli, Tonatiuh
Coatl, Quetzalli, Tonalli –
nahuatlatolli in matl

Tierra, Luna, Sol
Serpiente, Quetzal, Tonal –
¡bendición en mano!

an Domhan, an Ghealach, an Ghrian
an Nathair, an Quetzal, an tAnam –
ár mbeannú!

May 27, 2013

Irish (Gaelic) translations by Gabriel Rosenstock

from Francisco X. Alarcón’s new book published  by Poetic Matrix Press

Borderless Butterflies: Earth Haikus and Other Poems /
Mariposas sin fronteras: Haikus terrenales y otros poemas