The DitchRider's Blog (298)

The Sunday Poem: Kenneth P. Gurney... Hours After Sumter

There it was--that first wave of bravado without regard for the lives and deaths of thousands which would inevitably follow. The Civil War began with brave shouts and cannon fire 150 years ago. The cost of slavery as well as the cost of that war were also inevitable and is still being paid.

Kenneth P. Gurney…

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Added by The DitchRider on December 12, 2010 at 7:29am — 6 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Zachary Kluckman... Reflecting Over Coffee

Those moments are gone. Her lips have left the cup...but the imagined kiss remains. Delicious. Every imagined minute of it.



Zach Kluckman's anthology of New Mexican poets, Earthships: A New Mecca Poetry Collection, was a finalist in the 2008 NM Book Awards. Past publications include the New York Quarterly, Dos Passos Review, Cutthroat and more, as well as several anthologies.



Reflecting Over Coffee



“…ghosts… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on December 5, 2010 at 7:31am — 7 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Dee Cohen... Levitation

Your job, your partner, your child...what is it that keeps you from floating away? This remarkable piece begins in Walgreen's, usually a tough place in which to levitate.



An active DCF member, Dee Cohen is new to the ABQ poetry community. Her work has been published in assorted print and on line journals. Her chapbook Lime Avenue Evening was published by The Laguna Poets group of… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on November 28, 2010 at 7:59am — 9 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Lee Francis IV... Untitled, October 15

As beautiful as this season can be, there is still an undercurrent of approaching winter. And life...well, it has its own seasons.



Lee Francis IV has appeared in Words On A Wire, Moccasin Telegraph, Earthships Anthology and A Bigger Boat. He was a member of the 2006 Albuquerque Slam Team, coach of the 2008 Albuquerque Slam Team and a member of the 2008 LoboSlam National Champion Team. He currently teaches at the Native American Community… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on November 21, 2010 at 7:26am — 5 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Diana Huntress... Between You and Me

For years Albuquerque poet Diana Huntress has been writing tiny jewel-like poems...hard little nuggets whose veins twist, run deep, and crystalize. This is one.



Deeply involved with the Rio Grande Writers Association for a long time and very close to many in the writing community including the late Judson Crews, Diana continues to work… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on November 14, 2010 at 7:35am — 8 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Margaret Randall... Among the Arugula and Spinach Dip

Read on, my friends. You never know who is lurking in the produce department. Even a comic book character and movie star! This wonderful prose poem is from Randall's new book, My Town. Margaret continues to live here in… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on November 7, 2010 at 8:00am — 8 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Gaurav Rajen... First Love: Memories (1972; 2010)

These worlds that Gaurav Rajen visits and revisits--it's not just India and America, it's the humbling passage of time itself that haunts him in such a beautiful way. Well, it haunts us all.



Gaurav Rajen is an engineer with a doctorate working on greenhouse gas reductions and other environmental problems. He lives in the NE Heights where he continues work on his first novel.





First Love: Memories (1972;… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on October 31, 2010 at 8:00am — 6 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Jessica Lopez and Christian Drake... Frida & Diego

A poem written by two people is pretty unusual, and here Lopez and Drake tackle one of the most complicated and passionate relationships that ever existed: that of Frida Kahloe and Diego Rivera. What an incredibly rich piece! Perhaps the only thing better than reading it would be watching them perform it...so a video of them doing just that follows. Wow.



Christian Drake is a six-time National Poetry Slam team member, including the… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on October 24, 2010 at 8:00am — 7 Comments

ABQ Poets Against War: A Beginning

I asked Elaine and Demetria how all this started. I received the following explanation today.

--The DitchRider






It began innocently enough. Three of us sat at the old oak table over a simple meal of pasta with homemade pesto. We had come together to relax on a Friday evening and enjoy some good conversation. At the table were Demetria and Elaine, two poets and Daniel, an Environmental Sociologist. Before long our conversation took an unexpected… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on October 19, 2010 at 2:47pm — 9 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Stewart S. Warren... Flutter of Communication

Leaves are about to fall. This is a poem you really need to read before they do...because, as he says, "Leaves are the words of trees / whose chosen work is remembering."



Stewart S. Warren, writer and performance poet, was born 1950 into the affluent southern society of Tulsa, Oklahoma where, Stewart says, he was raised by slaves and all night gas station attendants.… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on October 17, 2010 at 7:30am — 3 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Demetria Martinez... Before You

Who do poets write for? It is seldom the anonymous public...it is for you, my love.



Albuquerque writer Demetria Martinez won the Western States Book Award for Fiction for her novel Mother Tongue. She is also a regular contributor to the independent progressive biweekly,… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on October 10, 2010 at 8:30am — 7 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Brian Hendrickson... The Ornithology of Conviction

Teaching in a prison just has to change a person. Here, Brian Hendrickson ruminates, "I used to think I had lived / An incredibly clever life." Well, welcome to the yard. Yet, teaching inside is not the same as living inside and the poet looks for his own kind of meaning.



He also mentions Ted Kooser, whose American Life in Poetry was the actual inspiration for my own… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on September 26, 2010 at 8:00am — 9 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Diane Thiel... Resistance Fantasies

It is so easy to feel disappointed and powerless in today's world. We dream of being more than that...a lot more. By the way, the last line of this poem will stay with you for a long, long time.



Diane Thiel is the author of nine books of poetry, nonfiction and creative writing pedagogy. Her work appears in many journals, is re-printed in over fifty anthologies, and has been translated… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on September 19, 2010 at 8:00am — 9 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Gary Brower... Escaping the End of the World

Did you see the news story? Two asteroids, each one big as a house, zipped between earth and the moon last Wednesday. Talk about coincidence! Just read today's poem. There are three epigraphs that preface this remarkable look at the future, but the title really says it all.



Gary Brower is one of the Directors for the… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on September 12, 2010 at 8:00am — 5 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Katrina K Guarascio... They Don't Make Memories Like That Anymore...

Poets try to never forget anything. Ever. But with love, well with love even the act of remembering is an experience not to be forgotten.



"Some automatic device clicked in her big brain, and her knees felt weak, and there was a chilly feeling in her stomach. She was in love with this man.

They don't make memories like that anymore"

— Kurt Vonnegut (Galápagos)




Katrina K Guarascio resides in Albuquerque and teaches… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on September 5, 2010 at 8:00am — 9 Comments

The 2nd Annual Sunday Poets Potluck

Last Saturday, MaryAnn and I hosted the second Sunday Poets Potluck. So far The Sunday Poem series has run for 89 consecutive weeks. It started February 15, 2009 with two poems by Richard Vargas and continues until the present day. 56 different local poets have been featured here, many more than once. I repeat: 56 local poets! And we are not done yet.



A Scary Bunch

It takes a lot of courage to call yourself a poet. Next time… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on August 31, 2010 at 8:20am — 6 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Liza Wolff-Francis... American Noise

Somehow the noise of America seems timeless. "Can you spare some change?" resonates through much of the 20th century. And here we are in the 21st. Self-help slogans are everywhere. We listen for the soul of our country somewhere in this mix of verbal traffic.



Liza Wolff-Francis is a poet, writer and clinical social worker. She is an MFA student at Goddard College and has been published in Earthships Anthology, Albuquerque Almanac… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on August 29, 2010 at 8:16am — 6 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Don McIver... Daily Special

Don McIver is on duty. His eyes are open. He is keeping the watch, even if he can't do much about what he sees.



McIver is a 4 time member of the ABQ slam team, the host/producer of KUNM's Spoken Word Hour, the author of The Noisy Pen, and a co-editor of A Bigger Boat: the Unlikely Success of the Albuquerque Slam Scene. A teacher by trade, he works at Central New Mexico Community College. The banner photo above is by the late… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on August 22, 2010 at 7:46am — 5 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Gina Marselle... Time Traveler

Poems about paintings always lead off the canvas. And in the case of a painting of a crow, your journey could be a long one.



Gina Marselle is a poet, photographer, teacher and single mom whose impact on the poetry community includes collaborating with local poets, and coordinating the Open Space Visitor Center’s semi-annual “Poetry in Place” event connecting people to place through poetry. She has been work published in the Rag, The Sunday… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on August 15, 2010 at 8:08am — 9 Comments

The Sunday Poem: Richard Vargas... why my ex-wife will go to heaven

Richard is one of Albuquerque's strongest voices. He continues to walk down your streets, taking it all in and making sense. Today's poem about his ex-wife partially takes place in his ex-home, Rockford, Illinois. Incredibly, I lived there for 18 years myself.



Vargas is the editor of the poetry journal Mas Tequila Review. It just published its first issue (available for a reasonable six bucks). Purchase and publication info is… Continue

Added by The DitchRider on August 8, 2010 at 8:00am — 14 Comments

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