Wednesday, August 03, 2005

"An ABC of Free - For Orlando Ramirez at 50"

An ABC of Free
----- for Orlando Ramírez at 50
----- "Being a Chicano Bores Me" (~O.R.)



Above
beauty: cunning
denial exiting furtive

grasses—
haloes instigate
July's knot lovingly

massed,
needy ovals'
pestilent quizzing, risen

sense
tying under
view, wasting xanthous

zealots
after breeding
chicanazos, diatribes'

erasure.
Found ground,
hallowed inventories just

knives
lividly marbling
niches of paradise,

quietude.
Rich selection
treasoned under victory,

wizened
xicanery:: youth
zooed. Again. Bar-re:o/(wed)(he/d)e.

Chicano
dancer, excellent
Fancy galloper handling

impudence,
justice KOed,
lived menace nudging

out
plenitudes, quitting
resisted—stance: transcendent

unto
veniality, 'waiting
x, y, z:

anon.

~~~~~~~~~

Happy Birthday, 'Nando, wherever you are—feliz!

2 Comments:

Blogger msedano said...

yeah, nando, felix bday. but lorna dee, you got me on this one:

zooed. Again. Bar-re:o/(wed)(he/d)e.

not only am i unable to fit my tongue around it, my eyes can't pull anything from it either. i am responding to the form not the poem. am i?

4/8/05 08:17  
Blogger Lorna Dee Cervantes said...

zooed. Again. Bar-re:o/(wed)(he/d)e.
zooed. Again. Bar-rioed.
zooed. Again. Bar- rio (ede')
zooed. Again. Bar-re: owed.
zooed. Again. Bar-re: ohed.
zooed. Again. Bar-re: ode.
zooed. Again. Bare: ode.
zooed. Again. Bar-re: wed.
zooed. Again. Bar-re:d.
zooed. Again. Bar-re: o/(he/d)e.
zooed. Again. Bar-re:o/(wed).
zooed. Again. Bar-re:o/(wed)(he/d)e.
zooed. Again. Bar-re:owe.
zooed. Again. Bar-re:oh.
zooed. Again. Bar-re: ow.
zooed. Again. Bar-re: o.
zooed. Again. Bar-re:o/(wed)(he/d)e.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
How to do that in the text? in a single word? a la rasquache? I don't know. How to duplicate that gonging in the head, the inner eye when confronted with something like the recent La Bloga post on the "Ghettoizing" (sheesh, how do you spell that much less think it?) of Chicana Chicano Literature. Maybe that's why you can call me an experimental writer, i.e., xicana. Or, an experiential writer as in Jimi Hendrix, "Are you experienced? have you ever been/ experienced?" It's all in the layers of dis-course.

Check out Bill Allegrezza who's an excellent textual artist as well as poet, capital P. When it's good, it's really good -- text moves for a reason, disjunction happens in the Karel Appel sense, sometimes meeting Rube Goldberg in structure; or, as my favorite issue of Archie, and favorite character, Jughead said: "There's method to my madness." And the text is intriguing, interesting being sometimes the best to which we poets can aspire. Ideally, (in the Platonic sense) this text would move, terms replacing terms, ad naseum, just like reel life on the Tortilla Track at swing shift. But, like real life, in real life, the meatfield, it all takes too long.

But, I'm a techno mensa. Somebody tell me, please, what to type inside those sideways French bra cups that will indent or change the text, color (7-color rainbow), eg., as I have no clue. I do best with my magnetic poetry notebook (neat item & gift from my artist step-mother, Susan.)

Kinda the point (bars & hyphens): jars one out of the poem of life to get wrenched to the soul-knees by some frat kid spitting on your child in a stroller, ya know; the interjection of some(one else's) form, mathematical, heartwise or otherwise. And how postmodern is that has to do with these layers: the melopoetic (sound-sense, mus(e)/i/c, voicing), the phanopoetic (image, image/truth, layering of imagery & symbolic development), and the logopoetic (taking a given set of words: ad blab + another set of given words: heart attack = ad attack, heart blab; evoking the trace of the missing phrase:: a path the mind knows well) and agitate it all in the blender of time & circumstance—I skip the pomp, but that's a personal decision—and serve when ready. When blended with native paths of timespaceways: fictive time, symbolic time, ritual time (most difficult to achieve sticking strictly to the observed text) & the folly of real acts in real time you get Poetry (not a registered trademark) in all it's daquiri/margarita/. . ./quanta splender. (note how, logopoetically & melopoetically, the mind's shadow hears and retains "blender" in that word choice?)

See ChicanoPoet Reyes Cardenas for a taste of a Maestro.

This, to me, this fascist good-fer-sumpthin idea from Ezra Pound ("Usuary & metaphor are the only things which produce excess value">not counting love & birth) is a more useful cognitive map for poets to go by than the conventional hierachies & taxonomies (taxologies) dominating literary (univer$ity) discourse today: scientific (mathematical), narrative, dramatic, poetic in a military train of command of law & genre.

And, certain discussions get old after 30 years, especially to those of us gnawing on the shells of Lautremont's lobster since birth; heck, xicanerati have been diving in those waters since before the land bore their names and the names for us, People.

("Manifestos Are Us - Since 1492")

And, friends, best friends, people you love over many years but have lost contact with for whatever reasons, like mother-killers or planes exploding in a sister's backyard, in the twin's swing-set. Stuff like that. So, maybe the poem's about intent. Intent & form. Your own, others, and the structure, whatever it is: a cool kalaidoscoping mandala or a matrix of home. Your choice, choice, ideally = Free-dom. And, now, 30 roads not taken later on finds (one's self) once again "zooed. Again. Bar-re:o/(wed)(he/d)e." Especially, when someone else is trashing other people's lifework recognizing (introducing, legitimizing) the signifier: Chicano-literature, which is, still, an oxymoron in the minds of the moron young and old. (HA! NOT REALLY, just a joke, I can't resist the wordplay, you know, like the Frito bandito, I got my hat on, even the punctuation is stolen and a joke: gallows humor.) What I mean is, "to the under-educated masses" & those who out-right dismiss the lot, unread, for whatever reasons, all succumbing to the Master text, in my book.

Anyway, carnalismo, what is a carnal if not that head-intimate who reads you in all your holographic messages, la mesclada: the high five & low down? And the what it is when it is. You miss that if you've ever had it. And friendship, under the form, is coded by the others as "identity politics", exotica, ethnicity, and other phyla: the language you use, what makes you laugh at brute-faced irony.

I never write exercises. I never write in form. But I have been trying to emulate my grandma in my old age (yes, I may even write about her again, she may be wielding a wooden spoon the color of her arms) and she was very playful. She also said: "Never say never."

So, gotta write a tight poem for a tight friend, now lost to time and generational neglect (you've read him? an exceptional writer, not "flying low to the ground" but clear out of sight to the typical), tight-skirt the text & the subtext by dancing to the arbitrary order of the letter and form imposed by rule (the hya(na)ku, a 21st Century Pilipina—however you want to denote or spell that—form invented by poet, Eileen Tabios); and make it well. This tripping through the personal and private, the public and subtext while diverting the bombs of history and his subsequent dates.

So I tried. Even if sometimes it feels like starting all over again from scratch: first there was a, then b, then c happened. . . you know, chicanazos on Haight street all over again & I'm wearing the wrong color, wrong diction, clutching my Burciaga bag of tacos de panza marinada and sprouting my "macoronic phrases" for peace. Brother. (!-*)

I was planning to footnote it, add an asterisk in the place of the hyphen, put the line, politely (it jars the reader out of the melopoetic, the music I hear in my head as I write, the preliteral "Lyric" level) back into the narrative mode and ghettoized into an endnote. So, thanks for your comment. I really appreciate it. Nando would get it. I hope. His email has vanished into the cenote that was my edu account a few years ago. I wanted to write & post a poem for him as this blog is also a way for me to reconnect with los vivos.

¡Qué viva los vivos!

Thanks for reading.

Yours in irony (hay, ronnie),

LD

"Read, Raza."
Eat, Raza.
& get in you(r) image-engines (image injuns) (image nations)
& drive

end note: "Raza" is not a registered trademark but MEANS "homo sapian" even "homos" but not hummus de free-hole or hummers, which is a registered trademark

4/8/05 11:51  

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