Sunday, March 29, 2009

REVIEW: Gestalt & Pepper

GESTALT & PEPPER issue 1 (there may or may not be any more) is a zine produced by Madrea Marie in Old Town Florida. Madrea's the daughter of Wild Bill Blackolive, America's most celebrated underground writer, and a substantial part of the zine features correspondence between Bill, herself, her husband Eli and various friends. Maybe you'd have to be a fan of Bill or Madrea as writers to find that interesting; I'm a fan of both, so I couldn't tell you how much that influences my judgement. But I found the letters, which cover topics as diverse as 9/11, jail and the problems of getting good, radical work published anywhere, really entertaining. There are also poems and some very fine ink drawings (or designs maybe), by Madrea. She says she's considering doing a comic strip for a local paper, but I think she should be designing cd covers (if such a thing will exist in a few months) and t-shirts for bands. Ok (as so many people seem to sign off nowadays).
You can get a copy of GESTALT & PEPPER by writing to Madrea direct at 6NE 558th Street, Old Town, Florida 32680, USA. There's no specific cover charge, but be a pal, support the good work she's doing by sending a little cash, or stamps. Community spirit and co-operation are the only way these things function, and we need them just as much as we need another poetry magazine.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

REVIEW: "Bird Effort"

by Ronald Baatz

Kamini Press Ringvagen 8 4th floor SE-117 26, Stockholm, Sweden

This is another of those gorgeous little editions Henry Denander, who's a poet of considerable talents himself, is producing on his Kamini Press, and number 4 in the series is another selection of poems by Ronald Baatz. 46 (I make it!) American tanka, one might as well call them, and two haiku about nature, animals and ageing--which may not sound promising to anyone who prefers urban poetry or who isn't versed in the traditional forms Ronald adapts so marvellously to the modern idiom. But trust me if you can! The poetry is melancholy, funny, lyrical and even the simplest observation echoes in the mind with revealed truths for a long time afterwards.You'll read it, then you'll step outside and notice something you've never seen before. He's the successor to Kerouac as a poet in adapted Chinese and Japanese verse forms, to my mind, is Ronald, and very few people could have taken Jack's mantle off his shoulders.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

t. kilgore splake

cojones time

“sun light here i am”

charles bukowski

muse long gone

no blank page contests

past distant memories

destiny in hand

hot chivas rush

bardic blood boiling

brain skull cavity

distant gray fog

dull hum hum humming

.357 ticket to ride

spared nursing home

score tied

overtime eternity

compulsive voyeur

talking only to talk

never understanding

emptiness of spoken word

drying alone on hospital gurney

helpless afraid

his song unwritten

winter diary

too late

to tell my story

artistic essence fading

shadow dancing

across new borders

something more intense


sweet dreams

only white guy

ghetto hoops team

big city metro

jukes and dekes

pulling up

skyin’ high

top of the key

soft fade away j

rippling chain net

street cred

waking from darkness

tortured eternity

writer’s black brain death

skull cavity empty

first dawn

streaking far horizon

steady light snow

turning paris white

rue montparnasse

lover’s footsteps

vanishing in

early morning light

tru gen

fancy workout threads

logging exercise miles

video with jake

air conditioned

knotty pine

bulls in hot pursuit

wanabe lady brett

cohn flynn

on pamplona holiday

bloody shit stink

wine soaked sweat

wild ass frenzy

racing toward


black side

time to go home

midnight quiet

streetlight blinking below

seventh story window

hospital cardiac unit

saline iv solution

staccato rippling echo

distant owl calling

winter coming

mad poet passing

waking from blackout

night light shadows

scattered jelly glasses

empty thunderbird deliriums

gone gone gone

“last train to clarksville”

racing through the station

chest throbbing

jackhammer heart pains

stomach acid boiling

oxygen tank hissss

needing new diaper

distant graying poet

nurse stealing meds

no longer feeling welcome

“shit and git”

vanished youthful memories

boy doing things

missing sweet wet kisses

no more nights together

black magnum solution

hole behind his ear

left this morning

never coming home

last clarksville train

washing down aspirins

warm blue ribbon suds

damp gray first dawn

jerry lee’s cassettes silent

black terminal loneliness

yesterday wife saying

“things got to change”

squeeze the trigger

gain methodist salvation

promised better life