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Monday, August 7, 2017

Sashana Proctor, David Madgalene and Steve Shain at Friends House, Thursday, August 10th, 2017 7:15 pm

Friends,
please join us at Friends House

THURSDAY, August 10, at 7:15 P.M., IN THE LIBRARY

Friends House,
684 Benicia Drive,
Santa Rosa, CA

Write Series Hosts Clare Morris and Vilma Ginzberg

 "This month, the Second Thursday Poetry-Plus evening will feature two very dynamic poets, from dissimilar backgrounds and using different poetic voices, who nevertheless share a deep belief in the basic triumph of the best in human nature.  David Madgalene's epic poetry, accompanied by bassist Steve Shain, echoes jazz and gospel musicality.  His most recent epic poem, "Call Down the Angel," was made into a gospel-based musical this year. Sashana Proctor's poetry, recounting human struggles and joys, emerges, like her collages, from an ecology-based spirituality. Recently, she has turned her attention to writing about getting older, which she muses, "beats the alternative."  Another poetry-plus evening not to be missed."

Friday, July 14, 2017

Hoodoo Girl by Ed and Justin Coletti



For more videos from "Call Down the Angel" please go to John Christian's YouTube channel at John Christian

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Mike Tuggle


Mike Tuggle was a poet of the first caliber, and a marvelous, wonderful human being. He will be greatly missed. I had the honor of publishing Mike’s poem, “Dance of the Blind Pig” in the 2011 anthology, Continent of Light. Sadly, perhaps Mike’s poem is more relevant now than when it was written.


Dance of the Blind Pig

No thank you, Mr. Bomb,
we don’t need your help.
Our blind, headlong fecundity
has engineered it on its own—
      we’ll soon be gone.
And what of it?
Who do we think we are?
So many kinds have left
this earth before.
Who said we were entitled
to forevermore?

Ah, but we blind pigs can dance!
Ah, but we blind pigs can sing!
Ah, but we blind pigs can think!
     We blind pigs do everything!

For a little while.

 
One is always taking a great risk when publishing one of one’s own poems beside a poem by Mike Tuggle. However, in this case, I’ll risk suffering by comparision. I wrote this poem for, and not about, Mike (Anyone who knew Mike knows that!). And I realize now that I never got the chance to share it with him as I’d hoped to do.


La brisa del mar
(for Mike Tuggle)

He drove to the coast
and he walked along the beach
and among the rocks
and over the cliffs
and he looked out across the flat sea…

Later, he went to the restaurant
                on the bay.
She was there, waited on him,
            as he’d wished she might.
Their conversation was limited to
his order; he communicated
            his wishes clearly and succinctly.
            Her service was brisk and efficient.
The food was good; the view of the bay exquisite.
            As she handed him the bill,
            their hands touched, and he felt the jolt.
            He tipped her the fifteen percent
(something he rarely did)
and as he drove home, night swallowed the sea.

Friday, May 5, 2017

Call Down the Angel June 3rd 2 pm Occidental Center for the Arts



Saturday, June 3, 2017. CALL DOWN THE ANGEL. Music and Poetry featuring Susan T. Mashiyama, Kirk Lumpkin, Ed Coletti, Justin Coletti, Kirk Charles Heydt, Steve Shain, Nico Morris and David Madgalene. Free and open to the public. Occidental Center for the Arts, 3850 Doris Murphy Court, Occidental, CA. 2:00 to 4:00 PM. 707-328-3325.

Call Down the Angel is a journey through the spiritual desert of contemporary America, simultaneously individualistic and evocative of the collective subconscious. Susan T. Mashiyama, Kirk Lumpkin, Ed and Justin Coletti, Steve Shain, Kirk Charles Heydt, Nico Morris and David Madgalene present original songs and poems in this heartfelt love letter to “the black and unknown bards” who created the roots gospel blues music of the Southeastern United States.


Susan T. Mashiyama Call Down the Angel June 3rd 2 pm Occidental Center for the Arts



Susan T. Mashiyama is a Bay Area harp player and singer/songwriter whose pieces have nature and mythological themes that are influenced by traditional and Celtic music. She was trained classically in piano and violin, and later became introduced to Irish music and the Celtic harp. She also plays the Irish fiddle. Her debut album of harp and song Dance of the Fairies is a collection of original pieces about fairies and other mythological creatures, as well as some classic favorites such as "Ave Maria" and "Danny Boy." Her second album is a collection of favorite Christmas carols and her future plans include a holiday collection of songs and pieces from different religious traditions. Susan has played for a number of years in local Bay Area venues and serves as the Music Director for the Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists, a church that welcomes all faiths that have love as their basis, and also welcomes agnostics and atheists, and encourages individual spiritual exploration. Susan also makes music videos that tell the stories behind the songs and music. She hopes people can feel the peacefulness and joy she feels when she plays music.

Nico Morris Call Down the Angel June 3rd 2 pm Occidental Center for the Arts



Nico Morris was born 1947 in Washington,  D.C., and raised in Mexico and California. Since early childhood, Nico has been exposed to many musical traditions with their roots in indigenous culture. A student of many forms, teacher of some, and master of none, he’ll try to get out of the way and let the music/spoken word say the rest.

Saturday, June 3, 2017. CALL DOWN THE ANGEL. Music and Poetry featuring Susan T. Mashiyama, Kirk Lumpkin, Ed Coletti, Justin Coletti, Kirk Charles Heydt, Steve Shain, Nico Morris and David Madgalene. Free and open to the public. Occidental Center for the Arts, 3850 Doris Murphy Court, Occidental, CA. 2:00 to 4:00 PM. 707-328-3325.

Call Down the Angel is a journey through the spiritual desert of contemporary America, simultaneously individualistic and evocative of the collective subconscious. Susan T. Mashiyama, Kirk Lumpkin, Ed and Justin Coletti, Steve Shain, Kirk Charles Heydt, Nico Morris and David Madgalene present original songs and poems in this heartfelt love letter to “the black and unknown bards” who created the roots gospel blues music of the Southeastern United States.


Kirk Lumpkin Call Down the Angel June 3rd 2 pm Occidental Center for the Arts



Kirk Lumpkin is a poet, spoken word artist, lyricist, environmentalist, cultural worker, and event organizer. After more than 40 years of living in the Bay Area he and his wife, Lyn Talkovsky, in the Fall of 2016 moved their home base to Mendocino County between Willits and Laytonville. In 2016 Kirk also became a California state certified Naturalist. In early 2017 he began singing with the Emandal Chorale, a community choir based in Willits, and most recently, he has joined the Board of the Willits Environmental Center. The Bay Area Poets Seasonal Review has said, “Kirk Lumpkin has been an important part of the Bay Area (and beyond) poetry scene for years, hosting readings in San Francisco and Berkeley, helping to facilitate the Watershed Environmental Poetry Festival (with Poetry Flash & former U.S. Poet Laureate, Robert Hass), and hosting open mikes at Burning Man.” Kirk is author of two books of poems, Co-Hearing and In Deep besides being published in numerous anthologies and in both print and online journals. His poetry/music ensemble, The Word-Music Continuum, has released two CDs, the first was self-titled and the second is Sound Poems. He’s also released two CDs featuring his original rock songs, Positive Voodoo (with the Wild Buds) and Moondog Sessions. Kirk was on the Board of PEN Oakland for 10 years. In 2014 Kirk retired after more than 20 years on the staff of the Ecology Center, mostly as the Special Events Coordinator of the Berkeley Farmers' Markets. Contact: kirk@twinberry.net; (707) 621-3215.  More info: www.KirkLumpkin.com.

Ed and Justin Coletti Call Down the Angel June 3rd 2 pm Occidental Center for the Arts



Ed Coletti lives with his wife Joyce in Santa Rosa. He is a poet, widely published internationally. Ed also is a painter and a middling chess player. Most recent poetry collections were Germs, Viruses & Catechisms (Civil Defense Press, San Francisco, 2013) and The Problem with Breathing (Edwin Smith Publishing, Little Rock, 2015). Ed also curates the popular decade-old blog No Money In Poetry. 

Justin Coletti, born and raised in Sonoma County, California, is an avid outdoorsman and musician. While away from his duties of being a financial and accounting manager at an alternative health clinic, Justin spends most of his time fishing, kayaking, and doing an assortment of extreme sports. Most of all, he enjoys singing, playing guitar, and performing with his roots reggae band, Dubtown Dread, which can be seen at some of the popular local venues around the Bay Area.








Kirk Charles Heydt Call Down the Angel June 3rd 2pm Occidental Center for the Arts




Kirk Heydt is a composer multi-instrumentalist with three releases as a leader. He has recorded and performed  with Sonny Simmons, Cecil Taylor, Flipper, Hello Kitty On Ice, Carolyn Wonderland, Jesse De Natale, Will Oldam aka Bonnie Prince Billy and and Nino Moschella.

Call Down the Angel is a journey through the spiritual desert of contemporary America, simultaneously individualistic and evocative of the collective subconscious. Susan T. Mashiyama, Kirk Lumpkin, Ed and Justin Coletti, Steve Shain, Kirk Charles Heydt, Nico Morris and David Madgalene present original songs and poems in this heartfelt love letter to “the black and unknown bards” who created the roots gospel blues music of the Southeastern United States.




Steve Shain Call Down the Angel, June 3rd, 2 pm, Occidental Center for the Arts



Saturday, June 3, 2017. CALL DOWN THE ANGEL. Music and Poetry featuring Susan T. Mashiyama, Kirk Lumpkin, Ed Coletti, Justin Coletti, Kirk Charles Heydt, Steve Shain, Nico Morris and David Madgalene. Free and open to the public. Occidental Center for the Arts, 3850 Doris Murphy Court, Occidental, CA. 2:00 to 4:00 PM. 707-328-3325.

Steve Shain has been playing the string bass since 1963 in Chicago Heights, Illinois. Currently freelancing with poets, dancers, jazzers and improvisers in the Bay Area, Steve accompanies worthies such as Beat legend ruth weiss and Sonoma County favorite Jonah Raskin. In another life, Steve was a founding member of the Rohnert Park Symphony. Currently Steve can be heard at www.bassicsewing.com.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Elizabeth Herron Workshop, May 6th at the Laguna de Santa Rosa

Friends,
Elizabeth Carothers Herron will be leading a special writing workshop, Saturday, May 6th, 10 am to 4:30 at the Laguna Environmental Center, 900 Sanford Road, Santa Rosa. Entitled "Writing the Watershed: Poetry and Prose," it is for especially for writers seeking a deeper connection to our beloved Sonoma County landscape. For more information, please go to
http://www.lagunadesantarosa.org/laguna_walks_classes.shtml#WritingWatershed

Also see below for an incredible poem by Elizabeth, first published in the Free State Review.

Dead Snake
by Elizabeth Carothers Herron

Ovoviporous snakes hatch their eggs inside
and bear their young live. But she was hit
torn open by the tire, and here they are
half out her, some dragged and blurred
over the pavement. Close to term, perfect

tiny replicas of her – gray-brown, the long
stripe down her side pale green or yellow gold.
It’s hard to tell with the dust, and the way
the color fades when life goes.  What if
they were inside me, so if you slit me open

they would spill out in a slithering lump?
Think of my own eggs in their thin sacks
like the granular roe of shad pressed
to the roof of my mouth with my tongue,
or translucent, glistening like flying fish roe

which I eat on sticky white rice. My eggs
a delicacy wasted, one by one
in their lonely descent, their brief lodging
their final exit beautifully wrapped
in their bloody bedding. I wish you could see

how deep and red it is, how it flowers
open on white cotton, or blossoms
on water, widens, fades into a pale pink
tinge. Sometimes so thick even clotted,
the drops hold their shape the way fudge

after you’ve beaten it a long time
holds together when you drop it into cold
water off the end of a spoon -- this
rich blood, this necessary nourishment my body
give up, belongs to the Mother’s garden

as this snake, medusa bellied, unarticulated
eye still clear and shining, this sad and
beautiful snake, swinging grotesque
and miraculous in her holy multiplicity
when I lift and carry her on a stick

to the grass beside of the road -- already
she is everywhere, her eggs the still green
beaded buds amid the small sharp leaves
of coyote bush will open creamy white
flowers staining the hills with the smell of honey.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Jonah Raskin and Steve Shain present April/May readings with music from AURAS at local Sonoma County Libraries




Turquoise
(from "Auras")
By Jonah Raskin

In the grotto of grief,
a slip of a girl
greedy for her own
bony self to call
out to her and

for her pumping turquoise heart
to remember the streets
she has walked,
the cigarettes she has begged
from bankers in bowlers
bent by the wind,
along the carrion canal,
winding toward the palace,
in place of
love betrayed,
that delivered her to
the grotto of grief
beneath the
plaza,

among the skeletons
wrapped in linens against
all the dust of the ages,
the candlelight leading
her blind turquoise heart
to the kind knife
of healing and
the healing of
the kindest knife.

Steve Shain on bass

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Jonah Raskin and Gary Brandt at So Co Coffee Saturday March 11, 2017 4 pm




Saturday, March 11, 2017. JONAH RASKIN and GARY BRANDT. Book Launches for Raskin's "No Walls Now" and Brandt's "The Vault Apocalyptia." MC: David Madgalene. FREE and open to the public. SOCO COFFEE, 1015 4th St.,Santa Rosa, CA. 4:00 to 5:30 pm.

Jonah Raskin is the author of seven poetry chapbooks, including More Poems Better Poems, Public Spaces Private Places, Bone Love, Auras, and Rock ‘n’ Roll Women. He performs his poetry with live music.


Jonah writes: “I wrote these seventeen poems between 21 November 2016 and 12 January 2017. The date of composition is at the end of each one. In some ways they’re responses to the presidential election and to the news of the day. They also track my own inner landscape and move back and forth from past to present and back to past. Readers might see here reflections of my childhood and my adult selves.”


In the Dark Lake
By Jonah Raskin
From No Walls Now

Night fear, oven fear
childhood darkness fear,
father memories lodged deep inside,
resurfacing now,
Hansel and Gretel forced into the forest,
the nightmares along the dark lake
where I turned three-and-a-half,
too young to hear Nazi Jew stories
at bedtime from my own mean father,
not knowing his anger at his own father,
my longing for mother comfort,
my pillow, my blanket
covering me in the cabin that summer
where I want to go now,
crawl into that space,
hide from neo-Nazi headlines,
history unleashed from its grave,
the prayers I never said as a boy,
the prayers I want to say now,
our Father who art in Heaven,
who never forgot me, forgave me,
reaching back for something
that took me to pillow sleep,
woke the next morning and
swam in the dark lake.

(21 November 2016)