Thursday, April 28, 2011

Check it out--generate your own version of "This is Just to Say" with this simple online tool. iphone/iPad app coming soon?

William Carlos Williams generator | ThinkStank | @joshmillard

This Is Just To Say

I have condemned
the tangerines
that were beside
the shrine

and which
you were probably
for Eid-al-Fitr

Forgive me
they were tedious
so flat
and so massive



Tuesday, April 26, 2011

So sad, so sad. "Poetry Man" was one of my favorite songs back in the day.

Phoebe Snow, the jazz-pop singer best known for her 1975 hit "Poetry Man," has died at age 60 of complications from a brain hemorrhage she suffered last year.

Talk to me some more
You don't have to go
You're the poetry man
You make things all right . . .


Monday, April 25, 2011

I LOVE this show!
It's my guilty pleasure. The wigs, the costumes, the challenges, the drama ("Untucked!). Can hardly wait to see the grand finale extravaganza eleganza tonight. I hope Raja wins. She is FIERCE, and that's the t.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Moral hypocrisy?

Tea party leader and Orange County GOP official Marilyn Davenport has apologized for sending out a racist image of President Obama as a baby chimp.

From Huffington Post:
According to KABC, Davenport issued a statement late Monday in which she apologized, but stopped short of addressing her future on the committee.

"I humbly apologize and ask for your forgiveness of my unwise behavior," the statement said. "I say unwise because at the time I received and forwarded the email, I didn't stop to think about the historic implications and other examples of how this could be offensive."
In the statement, Davenport also quoted the Bible and said she was "an imperfect Christian" who tried to "live a Christ-like honoring life."
"I would never do anything to intentionally harm or berate others regardless of ethnicity," she said. "I will not repeat this error."

I am not going to repost the crappy picture. Basically it shows an ape mom and dad, holding their ape child, with Obama's face pasted over it, and the caption, "this is why there is no birth certificate." How could any public official ever think this was appropriate?

Hmmmm, and the Tea Party and Birthers say they are not racist? Hmmmmm. And her apology only sounds like she is sorry for being caught. She doesn't denounce the image. Christ-like? Hardly.


Monday, April 18, 2011

Republican Fascists?

I love this comment from today's Huffington Post, about the fascist budget Ryan and the Republicans have passed in the house, that essentially transfers TRILLIONS of dollars from the pockets of working people and the elderly, to the coffers of business tycoons. Be afraid. Be very afraid. Then get mad as hell and protest and make it stop!

"When they came for the MediCare, I said nothing because I was not on MediCare. When they came for the Social Security, I said nothing because I am over 55. When they came for the food stamps, I said nothing because I was not on food stamps. When they came for children's aid programs, I said nothing because my kids are grown. When they came for the unions, I said nothing because I was not in a union. When they came for Women's rights, I said nothing because I am not a Woman. When they came for education, I said nothing because I had already graduated. When they came to disenfranchise minority voters, I said nothing because I'm White. When they came for the "fracking" leases, I said nothing because I didn't live in the area. When they came for another war, I said nothing because I'm not in the military. When they came for Civil Rights, I said nothing because I didn't want to be called unpatriotic. OH NO! They're coming for me! Where is everybody? Oh...............right."

Representative Ryan Puts the Republicans on the Record
For years people have accused the Republican Party of being the servants of the rich and powerful at the expense of the broader public. In the past, they would deny this charge and claim that they just had a different view of how the economy works. But Paul Ryan has eliminated any confusion on this point. He proposed, and last week the Republican House approved, a budget bill that will transfer tens of trillions of dollars from ordinary working people to the insurance industry, the pharmaceutical industry and generic rich people from any industry.


Sunday, April 17, 2011

Some great readings coming up the next few days in Seattle. Hope to see you there!

SHE WALKS IN BEAUTY Seattle Reading: Kathleen Flenniken, Jourdan Imani Keith, Rebecca Loudon, Colleen J. McElroy, Susan Rich
April 17, 2011
7:00 p.m.

Barnes & Noble Booksellers, University Village
2675 NE University Village Street


What’s So Funny About Peace, Love and Understanding?
Wednesday, April 20, 2011 - 7:00pm Richard Hugo House
Nuclear disaster, oil spills, global warming—these are no longer plots of sci-fi films and apocalyptic literature, but real threats that our world faces as the burning of fossil fuels and deforestation become more and more prevalent.

Doctor and Copper Canyon Press poet Peter Pereira; Kathleen Flenniken, a former civil engineer and author of "Plume," a collection of poetry about the Hanford Nuclear Site; Judith Roche, whose poetry about the life cycle of Pacific Northwest salmon can be heard at the Ballard Locks; and poet and beekeeper Bob Redmond talk and read poems about the destruction and healing of our natural world.

The reading is free. Books from the authors will be available for purchase, and the bar will be open.


Every Dress a Decision

Book release readings for Elizabeth Austen's new book! Don't you just love this cover! (FYI, the poems are great, too).

April 28th 7PM @ Cheap Wine and Poetry, Richard Hugo House
May 6th 7:30 PM @ Open Books


Saturday, April 16, 2011

I love this poem from today's Poem-A-Day. What humor, and music! The title, of course, from Shakespeare. And the poem itself a wonderful modern commentary on the sonnet it references. Such good medicine.

My love is as a fever, longing still
by Christopher Bursk

It didn't take a Harvard Medical School degree
to detect you and I were not lovers destined to wed
but two viruses doing their best to infect each other,
two fevers that'd spread, different symptoms of the same
sickness. Past cure I am, now reason is past care.
Did I really wish to die? The doctor dismissed me
with the professional ease with which one might swat a fly,
as if for the fly's own good. So what
if you loved me more intimately than anyone ever would?
A cancer cell could say that of any body
it refused to let go. Once the heart was infected,
how could it be corrected? So what was I waiting for?
The truth is, the doctor smiled,
the microbe adores the flesh it's dating.


from The Infatuations and Infidelities of Pronouns, published by Bright Hill Press.


I was searching again for the ICD-9 code for "second hand tobacco smoke exposure" the other day in clinic. I've been frustrated that I can never find it--only an "E code. I had a spare moment and googled it, and found out the reason why the code is so hard to find: The tobacco industry has SUED to prevent this code from being established! Can you believe it?! The powerful tobacco lobby can just say a problem doesn't exist, and prevent doctors from coding it in patient's medical records, just because they have the money and the lawyers. I was incensed. Read more about the evil being done by Phillip Morris here:

A new medical diagnostic code for secondhand smoke exposure became available in 1994, but as of 2004 it remained an invalid entry on a common medical form. Soon after the code appeared, Philip Morris hired a Washington consultant to influence the governmental process for creating and using medical codes. Tobacco industry documents reveal that Philip Morris budgeted more than $2 million for this "ICD-9 Project." Tactics to prevent adoption of the new code included third-party lobbying, Paperwork Reduction Act challenges, and backing an alternative coding arrangement. Philip Morris’s reaction reveals the importance of policy decisions related to data collection and paperwork.

It looks like the code is being set to be included in the new ICD-10 when it comes out. Watch for the tobacco lobby to increase their attacks (and line the pockets of many lawyers).

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Reading Frank O'Hara at 11th and Pine

. . . amid campy posters and traffic noise. This was really fun to do. Check out the video on YouTube:

Thank you to Joe Lambert, Brian MacGuigan, and the folks at Hugo House. You can see the whole series from the My Favorite Poem project here.

Friday, April 01, 2011

Poetry Fool

Happy April Fool's Day! Or is it Happy Poetry Month? Hmm, maybe they are one in the same?

Here is a list of a few of the things going on in the Seattle area (from the Seattle Times):

10 ways to celebrate National Poetry Month

"Poetry & Hot Toddies": Some of the city's finest thespians — Clayton and Susan Corzatte, Richard Ziman, and the mother-daughter team of Mary Ewald and Elena Kazanjian — will read works by their favorite poets. 8 p.m. Friday-Saturday. New City Theater, 1404 18th Ave., Seattle; $8 (800-838-3006 or

Poetry in Fremont: Join the Washington Poets Association for poetry from local poets Peter Pereira, Dennis Caswell and Joan Swift. 2 p.m. Saturday, Fremont Library, 731 N. 35th St., Seattle; free (206-684-4084).

"Theatrepoems": A festival of poems that were created in one day by 11 directors and 43 collaborators. 7 and 9 p.m. Saturday, Theatre4, fourth floor, Center House, Seattle Center; $9-$12 (800-838-3006 or

Copper Canyon Press Poetry Reading: A benefit for Copper Canyon Press, this is a group reading by Chris Abani, Chase Twichell, Lucia Perillo and Jean Valentine, 7 p.m. Tuesday, Town Hall, 1119 Eighth Ave., Seattle, $10-$25 (800-838-3006 or

Billy Collins: Former U.S. Poet Laureate reads from his new book of poems, 7 p.m. Wednesday, Elliott Bay Bookstore, 1521 10th Ave., Seattle (206-624-6600 or

William O'Daly: The author reads from his translations of Pablo Neruda's poetry, as well as his own work, 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Open Books, 2414 N. 45th St., Seattle (206-633-0811 or

Poetry potluck: Celebrate National Poetry Month by sharing favorite poems with other library users, 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Ballard Library, 5614 22nd Ave. N.W., Seattle (206-684-4089 or

Workshops with Rebecca Meredith: Redmond Poet Laureate Rebecca Meredith will lead two poetry-writing workshops: Teen session is 10 a.m.-noon April 9, adult session is 10 a.m.-noon April 16, Redmond Library, 15990 N.E. 85th, Redmond (425-885-1861 or

Caroline Kennedy: The editor reads from "She Walks in Beauty," her new collection of works by other poets. 7 p.m. April 11, Third Place Books, 17171 Bothell Way N.E., Lake Forest Park (206-366-3333 or

"A Good Line: Artists on Poems": A gallery exhibition of art based on poems in celebration of National Poetry Month. Opens 6-9 p.m. April 12 (runs through April 30), Richard Hugo House, 1634 11th Ave., Seattle (206-322-7030 or

Brian Turner, Major Jackson, Susan Rich: Part of Seattle Arts & Lectures' "Poetry Series," 7:30 p.m. April 14, Benaroya Hall, 200 University St., Seattle, $20-$50 (206-621-2230 or

Joan Swift and Julene Tripp Weaver: The authors read from their work, 3 p.m. April 17, Open Books, 2414 N. 45th St., Seattle (206-633-0811 or

Anne Pitkin and Ed Harkness: Two local poets read from their books. 7 p.m. April 20, University Bookstore, 4326 University Way N.E., Seattle (206-634-3400 or


In other news, looks like the Tea Party has peaked: I am so relieved!

The Tea Party roared Thursday. Or, it tried to, but it wasn't clear how well its demands were heard on Capitol Hill.

A couple hundred anti-tax activists braved a chilly drizzle outside the Senate in an unimpressive scene that was a far cry from the throngs that overflowed the Capitol grounds in past rallies.