Flagstaff blizzard.

And then the big winds camearound midnight, the radio station was tracking their arrival to the city. This just in to the West Side first.

Went walking beforehand, foot after foot, to the knee, deep snow. Deeper-than-dog snow. Dog bounding through snow and disappearing between bounds. I did a fall I call the inverse snow angel. (Video available upon request). falling thick.

And then the big winds did come, rearranging the powder as they saw fit. I saw it until the windows iced over. Then came the flashes of lighting unheard of in a blizzard, light bouncing between snow and low clouds, the whole world crackling purple white.

Woke up on the couch at dawn, the sun had come to breakfast. I was surprised and went back to sleep. The sun stayed anyway. Brilliant day. Sky without a trace of adjectives. I walked to Macy's. The coffee provisions had run out in our orange bunker.

Drank and thought about how the only way to live a desert is stories. Silko, Ortiz, first Australians, Bowden, Jews they all know this. Voices that shape the sand like big winds the snow. Stories that shape the ear. But how to explain that silence? The space after this stanza, the long horizon where words are born.

The stillness of staying home. Stillness rare like snow lightning. Stillness of cars stuck in the street.

And then the snow plow came and it didn't matter much, chaos is still chaos no matter who tries to own it. The City plows the rich neighborhoods first. Of course.

Resurrected my sister's car at sunset with a borrowed snow shovel. More is forecast, and what's here will freeze good tonight. Good to think we can leave when we want. But it's that silence we're after.

• • • L

for alison diciembre 2009

merry haunzakwanzamas & solstice, everybody

• •

Avie is surprised to see the sun come over without calling first.

Buen día.

Orange Bunker.

Snow turns the neighborhood back into forest.

Flag is very white, but tries to be colorful as well.

The space between things.

Always good to have arms for work. I spent an hour moving pounds of snow that won't exist if the sun sticks around. Like all work.

Colombia 2009

[nggallery id=7]

“Colombia’s back” proclaims the travel guide Lonely Planet in its new introduction to the country. But back from what? The violent abyss of past decades? The cocaine-flavored stereotyping by foreigners? The guerilla forces that choked the highways like cholesterol? Well, yes, that’s what they mean. But how did it happen, and what’s changed? READ MORE...

Foto From Where I Live

On a rainy Cuernavaca morning, here in the middle of the Centro, I have stumbled across the exhibition of a fotógrafo that describes better where I live than anything I can imagine myself writing. It's called México Tenochtitlán by Francisco Mata Rosas. It has been published as a book by Ediciones Era and is being exhibited online along with an amazing video version of the work. As a writer it pains me to say it, but there are some things that can't be described in words...

francisco mata rosas

francisco mata rosas

francisco mata rosas

francisco mata rosas

francisco mata rosas

foto california

In California they say that someday everything east of the San Andreas fault will fall into the ocean. And then all the rest of us, from our new homes at the bottom of the sea, will be like "wow, we miss being able to drive to California." These fotos take a stab at summing it up. None were edited or manipulated in any way except for size.

california 2006

california 2006

california 2006

california 2006

california 2006

california 2006

california 2006

california 2006

california 2006

california 2006 with my cousin, the beautiful and talented shayne eastin. foto: the cobra snake

california 2006 foto: karen ladson

Denver immigrant rally

Fotos from yesterday's immigrant rights rally in Denver, CO. Over 75,000 were in attendance, making it Denver's largest public rally ever. I attended with the infamous Ken Arkind, and it was awesome. The Denver Post has this to say. Thanks to Katie FS and Cindy for the sandwiches. denver rights rally

denver rights rally

denver rights rally

denver rights rally

denver rights rally

denver rights rally

Cuba 2006

[nggallery id=5] La Voz de Fidel by dirtyverbs

The second castle of the "New World," second statue of Columbus, the chalices of kings, gilded thrown that's never seen a holy ass, marble rooms where governments change with the swipe of pens, gold embossed caverns, build of marble shaped into a scale replica of the ambition of man.

A drowning Paris. A humid human maze. A history book written of towering words. The broken windows on the backsides of the monuments. Semitrucks hauling hundreds of humans, a sun actually built of fire, bodies built of naked flesh and sweat. Ay, compadre.

All fotos by logan phillips, 2006.

Pictures from Nationals

Ken Arkind, marry me

Let me tell you about the wonderful David Huang. I met him in Minneapolis during my first National Poetry slam in 2002. He is an amazing photographer with a huge heart who just so happens to be obsessed with poetry slam. He attends every major event and shoots constantly with his big camera that is always in his hands. After he has amassed hundreds of photos in one day, he'll upload them on his website, Poetic Dream.

Without him, our movement would be much MUCH less documented.

So, courtesy of my man David Huang, I give you the NPS 05:

Oh Ken Arkind from Denver, let us cross the threshold.

Oh Suz. You're right, yo. So right.

Two of my best friends, Suzy La Follette and Nick Fox.

Jeanne, great benefactor & friend.

Good conversations.

Was I wearing pants in this picture? I can't remember, we had been nightswimming...

A member of Team France, one of my favorite poets from the event in one of my favorite pictures. His cante flamenco pieces, if only I could hear them again.

Performing "Emergency Broadcast System" at our second bout.

"I don't know what that poem was about, but boy were those cool t-shirts!"

Performing our duo "This Spanish."


"This poem should be about my lungs / filled only with the names of men / who have given me entire worlds."


"A hundred boys fighting to be king of the playground!"

Push it, Meg.

If you had never heard of poetry slam, what the hell would you think we were doing in this picture?!

"Here's the wind-up and the pitch..."

"Raise up your left hands!"

I said raise them!!

Scream it, Aaron baby.

Raise them, bitches! This is our last poem at Nationals!

And we plead with you, audience!

"You gotta reach out and grab this big ugly world by its balls with ya left hand!"

Celebration! Yay France! Yay Berekley! Yay Eugene! Yay us!