Books & Poetry

Thumbnail image for Baseball is Not a Metaphor

Baseball is Not a Metaphor

by Jim Miller 03.30.2015 Books & Poetry

By Jim Miller

Baseball season is here again and with it comes one of the last times in my only son’s fleeting childhood that I have the opportunity to help coach his team. This brings much joy and more suffering because, as we all know, most of the game involves failure.

When you watch young people pitch, they throw balls more often than not. And when they try to hit, they strike out a lot. It’s a house of pain.

So you spend a great deal of your time telling them to keep their heads up and to stay in it. Indeed, the game is hard enough that, for lots of our young people bent on more immediate gratification, the patience and work it takes to get better is too much for them.

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Thumbnail image for What the World Needs Now is Empathy

What the World Needs Now is Empathy

by Ernie McCray 03.30.2015 Books & Poetry

By Ernie McCray

(This poem was written to kickoff the 1st Annual Social Justice and Education Conference at San Diego City College, March 26-27, 2015)

I look around me,
breathing in deeply
as I reflect on the totality
of what I see.
Before me, a man lays sleeping
on a downtown street
that jumps with a crisp
four/four time Hip-Hop beat,
bouncing from an upbeat retreat,
where folks hang out,
chillaxed to the max
as it’s the “Thank God it’s Friday,”
day of the week.

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces: The Surfing Madonna

Geo-Poetic Spaces: The Surfing Madonna

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 03.27.2015 Books & Poetry

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

Our Lady of Encinitas
is sliding down the lip of a wave
on rails

Lotus sun
unfolding

Wind thrashed tunic
splashing
light

Palms pressing
misty beads into prayers
the fin of her hands
carving
blue glass

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces: Knots

Geo-Poetic Spaces: Knots

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 03.20.2015 Books & Poetry

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

Show me a tree
that does not
bear signs of loss

Branches broken
by splintering rainstorms
still carried in trunks

Wounds healed
but not
forgotten

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Thumbnail image for being Sweeney tonight

being Sweeney tonight

by Will Falk 03.16.2015 Books & Poetry

By Will Falk

a warm wind
blended with whiskey
softens the distinction
between tonight
the sky
and my confusion

those shadows aren’t real
shadows, or
the shades of crows
because there are no crows
in crow canyon anymore
only darkness dripping

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces: Odyssey

Geo-Poetic Spaces: Odyssey

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 03.06.2015 Books & Poetry

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

We board planes
flying against dawn
climbing to cruising altitudes
looking down
into the macrocosmic mirror
of ourselves:

The Buddha’s hand meditating desert
arteries exposed
the spinal columns of continents
bending into capillaries
feeding the fascia of farmland

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces: Unvarnished

Geo-Poetic Spaces: Unvarnished

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 02.27.2015 Books & Poetry

For men and women who work for love and not financial gain

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

It takes a man
to do what my parent’s generation
deferred as “woman’s work.”

No minimum wage
cause and effect rewards
just salivating dogs
and pooper scoopers
the prolific
propagation of dirty laundry
the monotonous
mopping up of sweat

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Thumbnail image for Brown unLike Me

Brown unLike Me

by At Large 02.21.2015 Books & Poetry

By Emmanuel Ortiz

In Venezuela I watched
As the people of the nation
Stood at the plate
Swung out
In defense of their president,
Who won a democratic referendum
By a majority of the majority
(Unlike our own president that same year).
In defense of Chávez,
Millions of hands upon a single bat
Swing for the fences,
Un jonrón over the wall of the White House lawn.

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces: Esslingen

Geo-Poetic Spaces: Esslingen

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 02.20.2015 Books & Poetry

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

Hope is half-timbered
across the Neckar River

Minds float into eyes
before the miracle
named Esslingen

A 500 year old story
preserved as a city
talking out on
a limb

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces:  Scattering Crows

Geo-Poetic Spaces: Scattering Crows

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 02.13.2015 Books & Poetry

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

Sun beak of fire
pecking black murmurations
clawing night’s feathers

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Thumbnail image for Caught Up in the Beat of Superbowl Sunday

Caught Up in the Beat of Superbowl Sunday

by Ernie McCray 02.07.2015 Books & Poetry

By Ernie McCray

Katy Perry came out singing to a funky beat.
Next thing I know I was up
dancing on my old ass size 14 feet.
Every thing was mellow and sweet …

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces: Einstein’s Garden

Geo-Poetic Spaces: Einstein’s Garden

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 02.06.2015 Books & Poetry

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

A refugee from Franco’s Spain
planted a garden
in the square
where Einstein lived
before the chaos theory of war atomized his house

Theoretical physics and poetry
collide in trees here
particles of matter
fly into birds
light bending wings into song …

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces: Mount Woodson (Mountain of Moonlit Rocks)

Geo-Poetic Spaces: Mount Woodson (Mountain of Moonlit Rocks)

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 01.30.2015 Books & Poetry

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

When freeways flood
mind’s embankments
follow the scent of sagebrush
to higher ground

Up here sound is sight
shadows of clouds
thundering …

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces: The Cliffs of Torrey Pines

Geo-Poetic Spaces: The Cliffs of Torrey Pines

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 01.23.2015 Books & Poetry

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

Have you heard
echoes of waves
breaking in rocks?

Have you dipped your feet
into the shallow water
before it surged back to sea?

Touched foam
flying from stone?

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces: I Am not Charlie

Geo-Poetic Spaces: I Am not Charlie

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 01.16.2015 Books & Poetry

For the global victims of poverty and greed…

By Ishmael Von Heidrick-Barnes

Holding up pens
won’t stop the human race
from running into fountains of blood

We must put down swords
before picking up quills
read
between lines
drawn in sand

Expose
the invisible ink …

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces:  Another View of Sorrento Valley

Geo-Poetic Spaces: Another View of Sorrento Valley

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 01.09.2015 Books & Poetry

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

If your car windows
didn’t automatically
roll up
Sorrento Valley’s rounded off hillsides
onto tinted glass

You might glimpse another city
through my windshield …

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces: Re-Solutions

Geo-Poetic Spaces: Re-Solutions

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 01.02.2015 Books & Poetry

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

To bring
the two faces of January
together with honey and pears

To accept
the chirality of human brain chemistry

To humbly honor the distance …

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces:  Leading Economic Indicator (Part II)

Geo-Poetic Spaces: Leading Economic Indicator (Part II)

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 12.26.2014 Books & Poetry

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

Half a dozen nights
before Christmas
bank robbers
breaking into sound sleep
repossessing
cars

On the fourth eve
the owner:

A full-time single mother
working three part-time jobs
blocks a gargoyle truck
with baby dangling arms
pleads to headlights on high beam

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Thumbnail image for Everything You Need to Know About the Radical Roots of Wonder Woman

Everything You Need to Know About the Radical Roots of Wonder Woman

by Source 12.24.2014 Activism

Her enigmatic creator believed women were destined to rule the world. 10 facts about the iconic heroine.

By Christopher Zumski Finke / Yes!

All these things are true about Wonder Woman: She is a national treasure that the Smithsonian Institution named among its 101 Objects that Made America; she is a ’70s feminist icon; she is the product of a polyamorous household that participated in a sex cult.

Harvard historian Jill Lepore claims in her new book, The Secret History of Wonder Woman, that Wonder Woman is the “missing link in a chain of events that begins with the women’s suffrage campaigns of the 1910s and ends with the troubled place of feminism fully a century later.”

The hero and her alter ego, Diana Prince, were the products of the tumultuous women’s rights movements of the early 20th century. Here are 10 essential elements to understanding the history and legacy of Wonder Woman and the family from which she sprung.

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Thumbnail image for Stocking Stuffers, Lumps of Coal, and ‘Buy Nothing’ Christmas Gifts

Stocking Stuffers, Lumps of Coal, and ‘Buy Nothing’ Christmas Gifts

by Jim Miller 12.22.2014 Books & Poetry

By Jim Miller

As Christmas approaches along with the end of the year, it’s time to assess some of the best and the worst of 2014.

For those of you out there who just can’t jump on the “Buy Nothing Christmas” train, 2014 is a particularly good year to think about buying your friends and loved ones a book to stuff in their stocking.

This year saw the release of an unusual number of truly groundbreaking books that should inform serious intellectual discourse on the great issues of our day for years to come. So give the gift of knowledge rather than a shiny commodity fetish.

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces: Talking To Myself

Geo-Poetic Spaces: Talking To Myself

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 12.19.2014 Books & Poetry

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

Talking To Myself

I won’t stop talking to myself
while: Money has the last
word
torture is up for debate

I’ll keep shooting propaganda
with poetry
until people kill guns …

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces: When the Joshua Trees are Gone

Geo-Poetic Spaces: When the Joshua Trees are Gone

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 12.12.2014 Books & Poetry

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

How will we find our way
out of desert
when the Joshua Trees are gone?

No iconoclastic arms
reaching out of mountain passes no white flower
guiding Yucca Moths
to broken promise of land …

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces: Before Gathering Dusk

Geo-Poetic Spaces: Before Gathering Dusk

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 12.05.2014 Books & Poetry

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

See me hovering
above unnecessary spans
diving for petrified fish
in imaginary lakes?

I am older
but not as distant
as the lines of power
drawn between us …

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces: River’s Reflections

Geo-Poetic Spaces: River’s Reflections

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 11.28.2014 Books & Poetry

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

River’s Reflections

River
sees me reflecting

Currents
alter its sense of my self

I am held up by water’s memory

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Thumbnail image for Geo-Poetic Spaces: Kristallnacht

Geo-Poetic Spaces: Kristallnacht

by Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes 11.14.2014 Books & Poetry

By Ishmael von Heidrick-Barnes

It’s Kristallnacht
whenever anger picks up a stone
and throws it
through a neighbor’s window
shattering glass
into blades
sparks slashed from rocks
adding fire to eternal flame

Whenever an Israeli settler
builds a house
on land stripped from Gaza
Zionism becomes Lebensraum

Yesterday’s Synagogue
is today’s Mosque
leveled by Sunni shock troops
using the latest wonder-weapons made in Amerika …

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