Monday, October 31, 2005

Good Poem By Rochelle Nameroff at Ron Silliman's Blog & Comment by Lorna Dee Cervantes On Po' Biz, Ole Times & SOQ

* Read Rochelle Nameroff's excellent poem, "Lecture" & Ron's account here. ~ LDC

Thank you for this.

This is the Silliman I knew & remember; reading the same poets (DUGAN!!) & going to the same teach-ins (me, a teenybopper Chican-India truant just off the free San Jose State - UCB Library Shuttle). I didn't realize Rochelle had organized the early teach-ins (I read Tattoo) [Tattoo Highway]. Too bad I gave away a small fortune that's now sitting, probably unopened, in many many boxes at San Jose Art Museum (then, the library) - or worse, tossed, in 1978. That's where her book ended up, and yours, and litmags, mimeos, etc., my small press collection donated to the, then, SJ Poetry Center. (I oughta ask Alan S. if he can track it down). Treasures, there.

Your particular path, as public person and as poet, always made perfect sense. To this little wisp, at least.

Congratulations on the SPT award for Under Albany, and recognition. Having selected & championed your NEA app (quite blindly, I may add) I could have told anybody, as I stated in 2002 (2003? duh), you're one of the best poets writing in America today. Kudos to SPT for their entire list of awardees, that would be close to my list for the year. But who's aware of every poet? The best don't come out of hiding. And, who ever listens to a Xicana poet?

As for the whiting (sorry for mixing threads - I've been stuck to the screen for Mexico hurricane relief work, just now taking a break), who knows. I imagine if it's your money you can say whatever you want about who it goes to, or doesn't go to, unlike the NEA, eg. I was asked to nominate this past year. I nominated, as I am want to do, the BEST of the best based upon literary excellence, of whom I thought best filled the description of an early to mid-career poet who hasn't received the recognition s/he deserves for whatever reason. My nominee happened to be from an independent press, and not any of the ones you listed among past awardees -- and was not selected for this year's award. I believe that I was one of five, and that our nominations then went to The Committee (The Board? El Mero Mero, we would say), so they pick, and someone agrees or vetos. Me, I'll never tell my vote, but I'll say it was a guy.

Po' Biz: To me it's all a w(hole)e lotto love. You buy the time to write a line, you buy a ticket to the riff-raffle -- or, like me, you don't. It's like Don Juan Matus stopping to tie his shoe-lace among multiple choices of action: tripping on the lace & falling down the cliff, the spring mountain lion just waiting to pounce from the tree limb above, or the rolling boulder coming down fast on the path; point is, "make sure it's a damned good knot!" Or, line, that is. Ron, you always tie a damned good knot.

I'm more a historian than a literary critic, which is to say more semioticion than mortician or worse, Professor Taxidermist, PhD. SOQ vs. . . ., ad mortem: All the names and the classes and the sub-phyla just give me a big headache. And any war, cultural or otherwise, just makes my stomach sour. As my late father, the Visionary Artist from the Mission who recently passed used to always say about it: "Hep cat, hipster, beatnik, beat, hip, hippy, yippie, chippy, counter-cultural, ..., the names keep changing but I stay the same: I'm an artist and I'm an Indian."

Peace, Brother. Thank you so much for keeping a beautiful mind alive. I needed a good poem today.

Lorna Dee Cervantes, Hurricane Season 2005

P.S. Do you remember Merritt Clifton?


Anonymous Merritt Clifton said...

P.S. Do you remember Merritt Clifton?

Yup. Appreciate the good words.

--Merritt Clifton

17/12/05 20:59  
Blogger datelot said...

yes it is interesting and good poem by Rochelle..thanks for sharing and reminding his good words..

9/2/10 12:20  

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