Small Press Traffic is pleased to present a reading by
Heather Nagami & Alli Warren
Friday, December 1, 2006 at 7:30 p.m.
Heather Nagami joins us from in celebration of her first book,
Hostile (Chax Press). Ron Silliman describes her writing as having “a goofball
elegance that has much to do with the School’s commitment to wit.”
Nagami’s poems have appeared in Antennae, Rattle, and Xcp (Cross-Cultural
Poetics). She is codirector of overhere Press, a small press that publishes
hand-bound chapbooks with an emphasis on poets of color and other
Alli Warren grew up in the Valley. She is the author of the
chapbooks Schema, Yoke, Hounds, and most recently Cousins (Lame House Press).
On reading four lines from Hounds, Jack Kimball writes, "A narrow, stodgy and
often ostentatiously learned, pedestrian, callow youth with an unpromising
future, not a voracious reader of fine literature, a painter without pictures,
a radical without followers, a bloviater on par with the windiest, incapable
of getting to the point, one who's cacography was really a mess" She has
performed work recently at the Artifact and New Yipes reading series, and
every weekday at Small Press Distribution in .
Unless otherwise noted, events are $5-10, sliding scale, free to current SPT members
and CCA faculty, staff, and students.
Unless otherwise noted, our events are presented in Timken Lecture Hall,
California College of the Arts (just off the
intersection of 16th & Wisconsin)
Small Press Traffic
Literary Arts Center at CCA
Monday, November 27, 2006
X – R E F E R E N C E
A pre-holiday book launch extravaganza for Encyclopedia Volume 1 A-E
(everyone's favorite new pink and turquoise encyclopedia of fiction, prose and
FRIDAY DECEMBER 1, 7:30PM
MODERN TIMES BOOKSTORE (888 VALENCIA STREET)
Readings, Screenings, and Live Cross-Referencing Action!
Hosted by Miranda Mellis & Kate Schatz.
FEATURING VOL. 1 CONTRIBUTORS:
Jaime Cortez (see: dahlia)
Jacob Eichert (see: Exene)
Bob Glück & Jocelyn Saidenberg (see: babble)
Minal Hajratwala (see: America; Gloria Anzaldúa; autobiography)
Jeff Johnson (see: audience; book; destroy)
Chris Nagler (see: astrology)
Kirthi Nath (see: epigram)
Micah Perks (see: ending)
Praba Pilar (see: anxiety)
Sara Seinberg (see: ephemera)
Chuleenan Svetvilas (see: documentary)
WITH ART BY:
Special holiday prices on book!
Mind-blowing raffle! Door prizes!
The Encyclopedia Project will be collecting books for the Prisoner's Literature
Project, so if you can please bring books to donate.
For more info contact miranda@encyclopediaproject
Small Press Distribution invites to our
Holiday Open House and Book Sale.
Saturday, December 2, 2006, 12 noon-4pm
20-50% OFF ALL BOOKS!
Readings at 2pm + Music by David Buuck at 12:30 and 3pm
Featured Readers: Lisa Robertson, Stephen Ratcliffe, Marvin K. White, and Barbara Jane Reyes.
Free and Open to All!
SPD is located at 1341 Seventh Street, a half a block from Gilman in North Berkeley, between San Pablo blvd. & the 80 freeway.
Thanks to our generous supporters: Ashkenaz, Berkeley Repertory Theater, Cheeseboard, East Bay Express, Festoon Saloon, Jeff Maser, Jimmy Bean's, Lalime's, Landmark Theaters, Parkway Speakeasy, Peet's Coffee, San Francisco Performances, Vino!
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
Saturday, Nov. 18, 2006
7:30PM, reading begins at 8PM
$5 donation will benefit the Artifact Reading Series, Press, & Public Writing Projects
2921B Folsom St. @ 25th St. SF 94110
Amanda Davidson is a
Rodney Koeneke is the author of Musee Mechanique (BlazeVOX Books, 2006) and Rouge State (Pavement Saw, 2003). Empires of the Mind: I.A. Richards and Basic English in China (Stanford University Press, 2004) is a souvenir from his history days that's unlikely to have much bearing on this reading. His work has been read or performed at Small Press Traffic's Poets Theater, the Poetry Center at SFSU, the Pacific Film Archive, the San Francisco Cinematheque, and the 2006 Flarf Festival in New York. He's recently left San Francisco for Portland, OR for dark economic reasons.
Most recently, Stephen Vincent is the author of Walking (from Junction Press), Triggers (a Shearsman ebook) and Sleeping With Sappho (a faux ebook.) In the spring, Junction Press will publish Walking Theory, his collected poems from “the feet up.” This evening he will read work from his most recent ‘transversion’ projects, including Tenderly (improvisations on Stein’s Tender Buttons and Jack Spicer in Glasgow ( improvisation on Spicer’s Language, including some letters to Jack). Vincent’s blog (http://stephenvincent.net/blog/) includes various excerpts from these works.
If you're going to be in the Bay Area on Wednesday, November 15, I hope
you can come to a reading at USF (University of San Francisco) at 7:30
We're going to be reading from the stories of Sam D'Allesandro, the San
Francisco-based "New Narrative" writer who died, aged 31, of AIDS in 1988.
Last year Suspect Thoughts Press put out a new edition of D'Allesandro's
stories, called THE WILD CREATURES, and it has been a big success so far,
winning the Stonewall Award from the American Library Association.
USF is commemorating 25 years of "artistic struggle against AIDS" by a
yearlong program of readings, plays, exhibitions, lectures and panels, and
this is part of that. I will be there, and also reading from
D'Allesandro's work will be the poets Bill Luoma and Suzanne Stein, and
the artist Colter Jacobsen. This event is sponsored by the MFA in Writing
Program, and by the Department of Performing Arts. And it's free to the
public (I always wonder what that expression means, and if there's some
other group, not the public, that has to shell out the entrance fee. The
sponsors I guess).
Anyhow you may be thinking, didn't we act up, fight back, fight AIDS years
ago, and that this reading should be solemn and sad, I don't think so! I
expect it will be the reading of the year, so don't miss it.
USF, Lone Mountain Campus (2800 Turk Street), Room 100.
Thanks, hope to see you on the 15th.
Monday, November 06, 2006
Small Press Traffic is pleased to present the 2nd of our Predecessors Talks:
Elizabeth Arnold on Rhyme & Politics in Oppen, Niedecker, & Loy
Friday, November 10, 2006 at 7:30 p.m.
Elizabeth Arnold writes: “In a talk I gave on rhyme in free verse, the focus
was, naturally, on the music of the language, the lyricism of the poems I
chose. And yet, several people in the audience were surprised to find that, in
addition to being compelling aurally, so many of the poems were political.
Included among them were some poems by George Oppen. Oppen’s adherence in
particular to what Wallace Stevens of all people insists upon: the necessary
interaction of reality and imagination. Social realism did not allow for the
unanticipatable emergence of ideas and feelings in a poem; as a committed
Marxist, Oppen chose not to write for twenty-five years rather than compromise
his art. Lyric power was crucial to him, the ear being necessary to the
success of poems carrying, out of the deepest recesses of a man who lived what
he believed, lyric poems with political subject matter. I may also look at
poems by Lorine Niedecker and Mina Loy in this light.”
Elizabeth Arnold is the author of two books of poems, Civilization (Flood
Editions, 2006) and The Reef (University of Chicago Press, 1999). The
recipient of a Bunting fellowship and a Whiting award, she edited Mina Loy’s
Insel for Black Sparrow Press and teaches in the MFA programs at the
University of Maryland and Warren Wilson College. She lives outside
SPT's Predecessors Talks series exists to map and illuminate continuities of
influence and impetus among writers of a range of eras and milieux.
Unless otherwise noted, events are $5-10, sliding scale, free to current SPT
members and CCA faculty, staff, and students.
Unless otherwise noted, our events are presented in Timken Lecture Hall,
California College of the Arts 1111 Eighth Street, San Francisco (just off the
intersection of 16th & Wisconsin)
Sunday, November 05, 2006
October 3. 2006
I am being held hostage by a progressive underground coalition called “The Imaginative Action Regime.”
I have no concept of where I am anymore. But don’t worry, I have not been harmed. My captors treat me well and feed me popsicles. They do not ask for my body. I have tried many times to spread my legs freely, but they have refused. This is my plight, as they are very attractive.
They want something else, which is why I am writing you. They want you to know about The LOS ANGELES PROJECT, a reaction to The Manhattan Project.
Manhattan. Los Angeles. Manhattan. Los Angeles. East Coast. West Coast. Fuck it.
I responded with a charismatic joke about Tupac and Biggie. I told them that if I were ever in a war, it would be a rap one, and I would be a super small fiery bundle of rhymes that jumps out into the spotlight to save everyone from gunfire.
Yes, they agreed. I am a maniac. I know nothing of war, let alone rap, or even hula hooping. Yet, they liked my joke, mostly because of my enthusiasm and tone. I felt promoted. And, in my playfulness, became one of them.
They told me to forget about coasts, forget about this and that, and to think only in concepts. They suggested that I think about The Manhattan Project minus Manhattan in a non-linear manner. They told me that The LOS ANGELES PROJECT should be thought of in a similar way but with different effects.
We have had many arguments over this.
I said that I could only think about things that are real.
This is how I get through the day, by putting one foot in front of the other, by zipping things up, by opening the door. I told them that ever since my dad died, I have been overly concerned with concrete things, because when I think too long about unreal things, I start to float in space.
“There’s nothing wrong with space,” they said.
I explained that if I sit still long enough, my body becomes magnetic, like water, pulling apart at the seams.
They nodded their heads and then tickled me. It was very sexy, and I grew distracted . . .
They are laughing over my shoulder right now . . . they are throwing me winks.
Where was I? Oh, that’s right. The Manhattan Project.
“Can you invent something that was unimaginable until now?” they asked.
“I’m not strong in physics.” I said.
“You don’t need to know how things work. This is not about knowing.” they explained.
They pushed piles of paper under my nose and forced me to write the word “coast” over and over again, for hours upon hours, until I saw only inane squiggles and curling pencil marks.
“What is that?” my captors demanded.
My hand ached, my eyes crossed. “It’s just pencil.”
“But, what does it mean?”
“It means pencil. It means we talk without talking through this scribble. I understand and you understand”
"No," they said, “we don’t understand.” They pointed to my scribblings.
“Nothing real means anything solid.” They do several little dances to spite my exhaustion. A lovely twirl for hours, a choreographed dance to Pat Benatar, and then I get crazy. They never tire.
On the next day, they told me to draw the first dead person I had ever seen.
On the next day, they told me to draw the second dead person I had ever seen.
On the next day, they told me to draw these two dead people as though they had forgotten about peanut butter.
It was difficult-- drawing the nose has always been challenging for me. At first, I drew carefully, and then carelessly as they watched, until eventually I grew distracted-- uncertain of my squiggles . . . this was a good sign.
On the next day, they asked me to illuminate myself like a fish gasping for air.
“Do you remember the Manhattan Project?” they asked me again.
“What are you, a nihilist?” I threw down my pencil.
“Would a nihilist have a suntan?” they laughed.
It was true, they had great suntans.
They urged me to continue. They described these times as apocalyptic and they told me what was at stake. They elaborated on some funny stories about performance pieces where performers protest performers to performers as though to suggest that wars are solved in art galleries.
They warned me about self-indulgent ego blasting, that some artists would not find it interesting, that some creative types only glory for other established creative types . . . this is not what The LOS ANGELES PROJECT means.
If their demands are not met, I will be held captive for a long long long fucking long ass time.
They said some artists would critique this, eat too much cheese and drink too much wine, throw up on themselves, demand this letter be more serious, especially when talking about war times and death. They might suggest my writing flat, that in three years it might mature, but in three years it might be too late.
I told them about you. How you are different.
I said that you believe in possibility, that chance is what you bring into the world and what you are capable of creatively evoking.
This is why they demanded I write you. For whatever reason, they believe in me, and in this sense, they believe in you.
“There is nothing wrong with funny childlike art,” My captors told me. “In fact,” they added, “only funny art will save the situation at hand.”
This is The LOS ANGELES PROJECT-- an extreme progressive need for imaginative action during these war times.
They are serious about being silly and their demands are as follows . . . pay attention, this is the important part--
1. Look out of a piece of paper and pretend window.
2. Write down something childlike or embarrassing—otherwise known as something
that could change the world. Do not talk about serious existing politics. As we all know, that route will not change the world, let alone save it.
3. Draw what you wrote down, especially if you are shy about drawing.
4. Make sure your something was fantastical and incomprehensible until now.
5. Place the pretend window in an envelope, and mail to our portal:
The LOS ANGELES PROJECT
c/o ms. dacheux
1803 Gramercy Place #12
Los Angeles, CA 90028
or place the pretend window in a scanner & jpg us at thelosangelesproject at yahoo dot com .
6. Now, think of a friend who was imaginary when you were a kid and is now very real.
7. Send them this document, paste the url, etc. get the word out, and tell them to repeat these actions.
My captors are building something quite spectacular here. They promise explosive results. Their brains are on fire. We are all doodling noses and feet for fish. Do not worry, I am safe, I am enjoying my stay. But, I miss you all. I miss you all so terribly. They will not release me until their demands are met. So, please act fast.
I don't know all the details. Every day is new. But, they have assured me of this--
Collectively, if geniuses were able to build something destructively unimaginable out of science, surely we can build something constructively unimaginable out of art. This is the beginning. This is where you and I hold hands & walk into the project.
Sincerely Your Friend & Future Collaborator,
Stacy Elaine Dacheux