Examiner.com- Los Angeles

100 THOUSAND POETS FOR CHANGE

LOS ANGELES POETS UNITE!

Saturday, September 24 · 11:30am – 11:30pm

A Global Event created by Founder Michael Rothenberg (see below) is growing at a rapid rate daily.  The poets of 265 Cities and 59 Countries across the globe are enthusiastically gathering, planning and writing to speak about “Change”.

An event such as this is history in the making; Stanford University is now committed to archiving it’s progress through the main website: http://www.100tpc.org

Poetry is the catalyst. It inspires creative solution. Poetry can only speak truth. It is based in love and compassion for every living thing that has inherited the Breath of Life. ~Yvonne de la Vega

LOS ANGELES POETRY FOR CHANGE ORGANIZERS CONTACT: losangelespoetsforchange@gmail.com

What is an L.A. Poet?

To define the outstanding persona and quest of the L.A. poet would entail a recalling of the history of the city itself.

Los Angeles is rich with stories of an untold history, stories that tell of the humanistic aspect of plight in regard to oppression, racism and the slow progress of change.  These social conditions are the very soil and social fertilization that cultivates the prophetic expression that only the poet can deliver.

If you study the rise of the Los Angeles Boosters, and the violence it took to create this mecca in a dry desert wasteland, there’s no wonder that film noir originated here. Go even further back to during the war between the United States and Mexico in 1846. Los Angeles was occupied by an American garrison, but the citizens drove the fifty-man brigade out of town.

Because of the city’s history, Johnston McCully recreated the early days of Los Angeles finding it to be the perfect place from where his fictional hero “Zorro” arose,  a hero and legend that fought in defense of whom? THE PEOPLE!

All in all, poets fight the Good Fight, and the Los Angeles poet is one that uniquely bonds to his fellow poet. There is love, honor and camaraderie between them.  So now, with this history in mind, add the demographic of Los Angeles as the entertainment capital of the world, and not only do you get a voice that calls for Change, but also one that is also delivered with stage presence, charisma, and a delivery that is convincing and entertaining.

Los Angeles poets know, or know of one another and have for decades.  Most have helped others with the organization of an event, sometimes supporting without having to be on the bill. This support and cameraderie is rooted in the love and for the sake of the Spoken Word. This is just one of the beautiful things about the Los Angeles poet.

Charles Bukowski stands out in our minds amongst the best poets of modern poetry. He wasn’t really one of the Beat Poets, although his readers like to romantically place him amongst them. Hank was different, he spoke with a rolling realism and a subtle humor beneath every bottom line and the difference between Bukowski and the Beats is, Charles Bukowski was an L.A. poet full on, full out, through and through. It is his realism and sincerity,  however cynical, that has attracted many to his poetry and short stories.  Of course… he was an L.A. Poet.  LA POETS UNITE!

On September 24,  a global grassroots event titled, 100 Thousand Poets For Change will take place in more than 245 cities and 55 countries worldwide. It’s going to be a definitive day for all of humankind and history in the making. Many topics of change and the need for change will be presented from the voices of the people, represented by the voice of humankind: the poets.

In Los Angeles, each organizer will host a one and a half hour poetry reading. The readings will be hosted back to back from noon to midnight. – There will be four booked bands featured before each quarter of the event. The L.A. poet organizers of The Los Angeles Poets For Change are:

Michael RothenbergFounder of 100 Thousand Poets For Change. A poet, songwriter, editor and publisher of Big Bridge. With Michael’s vision, poets of the world are coming together for the first time in history! In Los Angeles, some of the finest poets of the city will speak to our brothers and sisters, our children, our neighbors and especially to our Nation’s Leaders.

 

 

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Examiner.com- Los Angeles — 1 Comment

  1. Okay here is my poem from 100,000 Poets for Change (originally published in the Free Venice Beachhead, May 2010).

    Is There No Justice?
    “Sure it makes perfect sense.
    Import the breadfruit from Tahiti
    To feed slaves in Jamaica.
    Cheaper than bananas
    If slaves must eat at all.
    Makes sense to import
    Slaves from Africa
    Train them to drive
    The red natives from this land.
    A century later we send the black men
    And the red men
    To kill the yellow men in Asia.
    We play chess
    And the world is full of our little dolls.
    Our motto is:
    From each
    According to what we need
    To each
    According to what we choose.
    “And it makes sense
    To those of us who run the machine
    To keep the best for us
    And mete out the rest in tiny segments
    To the ones who bear the weight.
    Money is earned
    By those who love money.
    Those who rule
    Deserve their pay for ruling.
    And can our pleasure be denied us?
    We are exhausted from our struggle
    To lead the ignorant flocks.
    Excuse us our frolics in Vegas.
    Yes we’ve heard our employees
    Live through evictions
    And debts and unpaid medical bills.
    But they are not deserving.
    Had they been meant to earn money
    They would be earning it.
    It makes sense to us.
    The poor are poor
    Because it is their destiny.
    “There are winners
    And there are losers.
    If you are one of the losers
    Don’t cry to us.
    What helps us to keep winning
    Is that we promulgate the notion
    That you can become as we are
    And win.
    The truth is
    You never can.
    We won’t let you
    And your losing keeps us rich.
    “Justice? Why do you ask?
    What is that word?
    Is there no justice?
    Of course there is.
    Like any commodity
    It is always paid for.
    Medieval millionaires
    Did not burn at the stake.
    The moneyed ones
    Never hung from a rope or a cross.
    It makes perfect sense. At least to us.”
    So they said. So they said.
    And one being, with an active mind,
    Stomped upon and almost crushed to the ground,
    Felt the wind of another world
    Entering her almost broken frame,
    Bringing the revival.
    And from what miracle she could not know
    She began to grow.
    She raised her head,
    Threw up her arms
    Like two branches.
    Her arms grew wide
    And her hands formed fists
    That clenched the air,
    Pulling her clear from the wreckage
    Dealt her by the talking pride machines.
    Up and she threw
    That wreckage. The machines
    Crumpled, pushed back,
    Cracked, whimpered, as she dealt them
    The terminal blow:
    “It makes perfect sense! Our lives, our creed
    Make perfect sense! What are you doing?
    Help us, don’t hurt us. We’ll change!
    We’ll give you what you want. Only
    Let us go. Don’t crush us. How
    Can you do this to us?”
    She pushed them hard.
    They did not die
    But they did not shine.
    Left alone, feeble, unable to move,
    Unable to touch the millions
    At last freed from their interminable excuses,
    Only able to watch
    As the world got on
    So much better without them.
    The last they heard
    Was what was shouted
    As she left them to rust:
    “It makes sense to me!
    Is there no justice?”
    –Lynne Bronstein

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