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Thread: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

      
   
  1. #51
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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    One Today

    One sun rose on us today, kindled over our shores,
    peeking over the Smokies, greeting the faces
    of the Great Lakes, spreading a simple truth
    across the Great Plains, then charging across the Rockies.
    One light, waking up rooftops, under each one, a story
    told by our silent gestures moving behind windows.

    My face, your face, millions of faces in morning’s mirrors,
    each one yawning to life, crescendoing into our day:
    pencil-yellow school buses, the rhythm of traffic lights,
    fruit stands: apples, limes, and oranges arrayed like rainbows
    begging our praise. Silver trucks heavy with oil or paper—
    bricks or milk, teeming over highways alongside us,
    on our way to clean tables, read ledgers, or save lives—
    to teach geometry, or ring-up groceries as my mother did
    for twenty years, so I could write this poem.

    All of us as vital as the one light we move through,
    the same light on blackboards with lessons for the day:
    equations to solve, history to question, or atoms imagined,
    the “I have a dream” we keep dreaming,
    or the impossible vocabulary of sorrow that won’t explain
    the empty desks of twenty children marked absent
    today, and forever. Many prayers, but one light
    breathing color into stained glass windows,
    life into the faces of bronze statues, warmth
    onto the steps of our museums and park benches
    as mothers watch children slide into the day.

    One ground. Our ground, rooting us to every stalk
    of corn, every head of wheat sown by sweat
    and hands, hands gleaning coal or planting windmills
    in deserts and hilltops that keep us warm, hands
    digging trenches, routing pipes and cables, hands
    as worn as my father’s cutting sugarcane
    so my brother and I could have books and shoes.

    The dust of farms and deserts, cities and plains
    mingled by one wind—our breath. Breathe. Hear it
    through the day’s gorgeous din of honking cabs,
    buses launching down avenues, the symphony
    of footsteps, guitars, and screeching subways,
    the unexpected song bird on your clothes line.

    Hear: squeaky playground swings, trains whistling,
    or whispers across café tables, Hear: the doors we open
    for each other all day, saying: hello, shalom,
    buon giorno, howdy, namaste, or buenos días
    in the language my mother taught me—in every language
    spoken into one wind carrying our lives
    without prejudice, as these words break from my lips.

    One sky: since the Appalachians and Sierras claimed
    their majesty, and the Mississippi and Colorado worked
    their way to the sea. Thank the work of our hands:
    weaving steel into bridges, finishing one more report
    for the boss on time, stitching another wound
    or uniform, the first brush stroke on a portrait,
    or the last floor on the Freedom Tower
    jutting into a sky that yields to our resilience.

    One sky, toward which we sometimes lift our eyes
    tired from work: some days guessing at the weather
    of our lives, some days giving thanks for a love
    that loves you back, sometimes praising a mother
    who knew how to give, or forgiving a father
    who couldn’t give what you wanted.

    We head home: through the gloss of rain or weight
    of snow, or the plum blush of dusk, but always—home,
    always under one sky, our sky. And always one moon
    like a silent drum tapping on every rooftop
    and every window, of one country—all of us—
    facing the stars
    hope—a new constellation
    waiting for us to map it,
    waiting for us to name it—together

  2. #52

    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    hey Rico they no idea wot together is
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    but ya nose dat

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    sold taday as fresh as new set a teeth
    wot smile down
    ans suck ya blood fa
    bit a drink
    but maybe got supa
    in store
    ans one day
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    befor
    all a thang be dry
    ans life be
    bye bye


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  3. #53
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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Sloppy, when I'm elected President, you can be my inaugural poet.
    Recently I heard a 'wise guy' story that I had a party at my home for twenty-five men. It's an interesting story, but I don't know twenty-five men I'd want to invite to a party. ~Joan Crawford

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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Quote Originally Posted by LilBit View Post
    Sloppy, when I'm elected President, you can be my inaugural poet.
    Who will be your Secretary of Cuntipedes?

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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Pat Grimshaw, you are the Black Hole for happiness and joy. Here we had an amazing poem recited today from a very talented poet that most of us had never been exposed to before, and all you can do is derail this thread and criticize this poet over his race and origins. Will you please shut the fuck up and let us enjoy this gay poet recite his beautiful poem about American life?


    As for the poem, it was beautifully written. Thank you miaedu for posting the transcript of it on the thread. I was following along with your text while Richard Blanco was reciting the poem. It was amazing. Beautifully stated and read with such passion and conviction.
    Last edited by Just_Believe18; January 21st, 2013 at 10:49 PM.
    #439th oldest member on JUB.

  6. #56

    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    ^
    Oh Mary! Get back to Poppins' Land!

    If you were paying attention you'd see that I'm not swept up in this Special Day of Sentiment, Hope and Glory for the USA; I'm concerned for the long-term viability of this (I assume) struggling wordsmith.

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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Quote Originally Posted by pat grimshaw View Post
    ^
    he doesn't LOOK Cuban or LOOK like the son of a refugee or even LOOK gay. He looks very comfortable and middle class.
    Quote Originally Posted by pat grimshaw View Post
    ^
    I had assumed he was chosen for the purposes of being PC because this thread shows people are more interested in his background than his writing.
    Quote Originally Posted by pat grimshaw View Post
    ^
    Oh Mary! Get back to Poppins' Land!

    If you were paying attention you'd see that I'm not swept up in this Special Day of Sentiment, Hope and Glory for the USA; I'm concerned for the long-term viability of this (I assume) struggling wordsmith.
    Mmmmhmmmm.

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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Quote Originally Posted by pat grimshaw View Post
    ^
    Oh Mary! Get back to Poppins' Land!

    If you were paying attention you'd see that I'm not swept up in this Special Day of Sentiment, Hope and Glory for the USA; I'm concerned for the long-term viability of this (I assume) struggling wordsmith.
    He has a teaching position in a creative writing program. I imagine he's doing just fine.
    Last edited by LilBit; January 22nd, 2013 at 08:35 AM.
    Recently I heard a 'wise guy' story that I had a party at my home for twenty-five men. It's an interesting story, but I don't know twenty-five men I'd want to invite to a party. ~Joan Crawford

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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Quote Originally Posted by Just_Believe18 View Post
    Pat Grimshaw, you are the Black Hole for happiness and joy. Here we had an amazing poem recited today from a very talented poet that most of us had never been exposed to before, and all you can do is derail this thread and criticize this poet over his race and origins. Will you please shut the fuck up and let us enjoy this gay poet recite his beautiful poem about American life?


    As for the poem, it was beautifully written. Thank you miaedu for posting the transcript of it on the thread. I was following along with your text while Richard Blanco was reciting the poem. It was amazing. Beautifully stated and read with such passion and conviction.
    Quote for truth.

    Blanco knocked it out of the park.

    And for anyone who wants to shit all over him...just fuck the fuck off.

    And frankly Grimshaw, I think the whole of JUB is fed up to the teeth with the grinding and insinuating racism and malevolence you seem to introduce into every thread.

    The US should be very proud that an openly homo poet was invited to address the nation at the inauguration. It is a message not only to the American people but to the rest of the world.

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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Quote Originally Posted by pat grimshaw View Post
    ^
    Oh Mary! Get back to Poppins' Land!

    If you were paying attention you'd see that I'm not swept up in this Special Day of Sentiment, Hope and Glory for the USA; I'm concerned for the long-term viability of this (I assume) struggling wordsmith.


    Nobody cares what you, of all people, are concerned with, Pat! Everyone in this thread is here to enjoy the talent of this poet and the historical significance of his speaking. Stop derailing happy threads like this with your gloom and despair.
    #439th oldest member on JUB.

  11. #61

    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    brownshoesbrownshoesbrownshoes
    not a shoes a brown
    sure get nice crop
    ans alls get stuff
    gurd
    wen alls brown shoes
    ans not shoes
    make a brown
    crop keep cummin
    alls da time
    ans neva a brownshoe
    end up
    a canoe
    in sea a white
    doodoo

    there go

    thankyou

    licks foot
    esp

    extra special sawse

  12. #62
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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Quote Originally Posted by SLOPPYSECONDS View Post
    brownshoesbrownshoesbrownshoes
    not a shoes a brown
    sure get nice crop
    ans alls get stuff
    gurd
    wen alls brown shoes
    ans not shoes
    make a brown
    crop keep cummin
    alls da time
    ans neva a brownshoe
    end up
    a canoe
    in sea a white
    doodoo

    there go

    thankyou

    licks foot
    Great poem, but I haven't been elected yet, let alone inaugurated. Now you have to write a new one.
    Recently I heard a 'wise guy' story that I had a party at my home for twenty-five men. It's an interesting story, but I don't know twenty-five men I'd want to invite to a party. ~Joan Crawford

  13. #63

    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Quote Originally Posted by LilBit View Post
    Great poem, but I haven't been elected yet, let alone inaugurated. Now you have to write a new one.
    wot?
    verygurd
    wot nice day taday

    thankyou

    foot got elected
    * dat abugga *
    yea

    titturs
    esp

    extra special sawse

  14. #64

    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Quote Originally Posted by miaedu View Post
    Poet Richard Blanco reads a poem for President Obama's second inauguration. Blanco is the first Hispanic and openly gay man to read the inaugural poem.

    Quote Originally Posted by miaedu View Post
    One Today

    One sun rose on us today, kindled over our shores,
    peeking over the Smokies, greeting the faces
    of the Great Lakes, spreading a simple truth
    across the Great Plains, then charging across the Rockies.
    One light, waking up rooftops, under each one, a story
    told by our silent gestures moving behind windows.

    My face, your face, millions of faces in morning’s mirrors,
    each one yawning to life, crescendoing into our day:
    pencil-yellow school buses, the rhythm of traffic lights,
    fruit stands: apples, limes, and oranges arrayed like rainbows
    begging our praise. Silver trucks heavy with oil or paper—
    bricks or milk, teeming over highways alongside us,
    on our way to clean tables, read ledgers, or save lives—
    to teach geometry, or ring-up groceries as my mother did
    for twenty years, so I could write this poem.

    All of us as vital as the one light we move through,
    the same light on blackboards with lessons for the day:
    equations to solve, history to question, or atoms imagined,
    the “I have a dream” we keep dreaming,
    or the impossible vocabulary of sorrow that won’t explain
    the empty desks of twenty children marked absent
    today, and forever. Many prayers, but one light
    breathing color into stained glass windows,
    life into the faces of bronze statues, warmth
    onto the steps of our museums and park benches
    as mothers watch children slide into the day.

    One ground. Our ground, rooting us to every stalk
    of corn, every head of wheat sown by sweat
    and hands, hands gleaning coal or planting windmills
    in deserts and hilltops that keep us warm, hands
    digging trenches, routing pipes and cables, hands
    as worn as my father’s cutting sugarcane
    so my brother and I could have books and shoes.

    The dust of farms and deserts, cities and plains
    mingled by one wind—our breath. Breathe. Hear it
    through the day’s gorgeous din of honking cabs,
    buses launching down avenues, the symphony
    of footsteps, guitars, and screeching subways,
    the unexpected song bird on your clothes line.

    Hear: squeaky playground swings, trains whistling,
    or whispers across café tables, Hear: the doors we open
    for each other all day, saying: hello, shalom,
    buon giorno, howdy, namaste, or buenos días
    in the language my mother taught me—in every language
    spoken into one wind carrying our lives
    without prejudice, as these words break from my lips.

    One sky: since the Appalachians and Sierras claimed
    their majesty, and the Mississippi and Colorado worked
    their way to the sea. Thank the work of our hands:
    weaving steel into bridges, finishing one more report
    for the boss on time, stitching another wound
    or uniform, the first brush stroke on a portrait,
    or the last floor on the Freedom Tower
    jutting into a sky that yields to our resilience.

    One sky, toward which we sometimes lift our eyes
    tired from work: some days guessing at the weather
    of our lives, some days giving thanks for a love
    that loves you back, sometimes praising a mother
    who knew how to give, or forgiving a father
    who couldn’t give what you wanted.

    We head home: through the gloss of rain or weight
    of snow, or the plum blush of dusk, but always—home,
    always under one sky, our sky. And always one moon
    like a silent drum tapping on every rooftop
    and every window, of one country—all of us—
    facing the stars
    hope—a new constellation
    waiting for us to map it,
    waiting for us to name it—together
    A proud moment in history!

  15. #65
    GiancarloC
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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Quote Originally Posted by pat grimshaw View Post
    ^
    Oh Mary! Get back to Poppins' Land!

    If you were paying attention you'd see that I'm not swept up in this Special Day of Sentiment, Hope and Glory for the USA; I'm concerned for the long-term viability of this (I assume) struggling wordsmith.
    LMAO. Long term viability and struggling? Well he's done more than any of us here and that is be invited to the inauguration... struggling lmao. Thanks for the fake concern. I'm sure Blanco would love to hear about it...

    And yea, I'm sure Richard is doing just fine in his own endeavors. Perhaps someone is a bit... jealous?

    And yea I agree... I don't give a fuck about the negativity some spread on here. Take it elsewhere.

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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Making a Man Out of Me

    I'm six or seven years old, riding back home with my grandfather and my Cuban grandmother from my tía Onelia's house.

    Her son Juan Alberto is effeminate, "un afeminado," my grandmother says with disgust. "¿Por qué? He's so handsome. Where did she go wrong with dat niño?" she continues, and then turns to me in the back seat: "Better to having a granddaughter who's a whore than a grandson who is un pato faggot like you. Understand?" she says with scorn in her voice.

    I nod my head yes, but I don't understand: I don't know what a faggot means, really; don't even know about sex yet. All I know is she's talking about me, me; and whatever I am, is bad, very bad. Twenty-something years later, I sit in my therapist's office, telling him that same story. With his guidance through the months that follow, I discover the extent of my grandmother's verbal and psychological abuse, which I had swept under my subconscious rug.

    Through the years and to this day I continue unraveling how that abuse affected my personality, my relationships, and my writing. I write, not in the light of Oscar Wilde, Walt Whitman, or Elizabeth Bishop, but in the shadow of my grandmother--a homophobic woman with only a sixth-grade education--who has exerted (and still exerts) the most influence on my development as a writer.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/richar...b_2507024.html

  17. #67
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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Is he gay or straight ?


    NEVER LISTEN TO A ONE SIDED STORY AND JUDGE.

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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Quote Originally Posted by miaedu View Post
    Making a Man Out of Me by Richard Blanco

    I'm six or seven years old, riding back home with my grandfather and my Cuban grandmother from my tía Onelia's house.

    Her son Juan Alberto is effeminate, "un afeminado," my grandmother says with disgust. "¿Por qué? He's so handsome. Where did she go wrong with dat niño?" she continues, and then turns to me in the back seat: "Better to having a granddaughter who's a whore than a grandson who is un pato faggot like you. Understand?" she says with scorn in her voice.

    I nod my head yes, but I don't understand: I don't know what a faggot means, really; don't even know about sex yet. All I know is she's talking about me, me; and whatever I am, is bad, very bad. Twenty-something years later, I sit in my therapist's office, telling him that same story. With his guidance through the months that follow, I discover the extent of my grandmother's verbal and psychological abuse, which I had swept under my subconscious rug.

    Through the years and to this day I continue unraveling how that abuse affected my personality, my relationships, and my writing. I write, not in the light of Oscar Wilde, Walt Whitman, or Elizabeth Bishop, but in the shadow of my grandmother--a homophobic woman with only a sixth-grade education--who has exerted (and still exerts) the most influence on my development as a writer.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/richar...b_2507024.html
    The rest of the article is well worth a read.

    I would actually go out of my way to dig up that cunt's corpse, fuck her skull and then piss on the rest of her remains.

  19. #69

    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Quote Originally Posted by rareboy View Post
    The rest of the article is well worth a read.

    I would actually go out of my way to dig up that cunt's corpse, fuck her skull and then piss on the rest of her remains.
    ?

    even a Rico of make poet figa no 1 thang make da boat sink or float
    1st world wanna learn a read unless avoid da obvious ans-classfied- ooh

    anyway 13 comments
    600 view
    unless rong hole
    ta slip a goo
    * ooh ooh ooh *

    anyway

    inta emoty box a nothin
    ans poof

    thankyou
    esp

    extra special sawse

  20. #70

    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Quote Originally Posted by rareboy View Post
    ...I would actually go out of my way to dig up that cunt's corpse, fuck her skull and then piss on the rest of her remains.
    I must record this.

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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Quote Originally Posted by rareboy View Post
    The rest of the article is well worth a read.

    I would actually go out of my way to dig up that cunt's corpse, fuck her skull and then piss on the rest of her remains.
    Make her give up her recipes first. Cuban food is good.

  22. #72
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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Good for him. Not much for poetry though.

  23. #73

    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Quote Originally Posted by Ninja108 View Post
    … Not much for poetry though.
    what do you mean?

  24. #74
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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Inaugural Poet Richard Blanco Talks About His Inspiration

    In the video below, Blanco talks about his desire to create a poem of unity and love, as he believes the occasion demanded.


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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Quote Originally Posted by xbuzzerx View Post
    Make her give up her recipes first. Cuban food is good.
    Just to show the vicious bitch what I thought of her, I`d go to someone else`s grandmother for family recipes.

    Yes. That is how cold I am.

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    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Richard Blanco: The High, Low and... the Middlebrow!

    Richard Blanco, the inaugural laureate, took the stage before a national audience at our great nation's domed capital to deliver his oration. His poem, intoned in a solemn voice, had all the bells and whistles: epic and cinematic and patriotic -- it opens with the light of the rising sun filtering Westward through America, retracing the passage of Manifest Destiny, alighting upon thronging crowds, staining glass windows and, periodically, touching upon the poet himself: gay, Cuban, immigrant, working class. It was intended to be a touching poem -- a crowd pleaser.

    The entire time I was watching, I kept thinking on something not so august and grand. And I will share it with you, not to be snarky, but to be honest: I thought of the time I spent three months in New York and, while taking the subway, watched a woman read a book -- almost as if she was transported from the din and clatter and stink. Her face was beatific, like one of those martyrs in medieval paintings -- who are ecstatic in their gory death. The cover had the image of a handsome young man with a striking resemblance to Tyson Beckford, rendered in highly shaded pencil -- regular, soft features; devilish eyes; and a head cloth that in the street slang of the urban culture is referred to as a "do rag." The title of the book was Homo Thug.

    Don't get me wrong. This anecdote is not leading to a meditation on Blanco's sexuality, which the press already has much ballyhooed. It is not an attempt to make light of his brave act of self-display, of coming out -- an act which never happens once but over and over again.

    But truth be told, Homo Thug flashed before my eyes at that moment. And it speaks less to the issue of sexuality and more to the striking difference I see in the way that people react to literature in this time when the Internet inundates us with verbiage. Most of my friends admit on Facebook that they left the room -- pee break! -- when Blanco took the stage. And it fascinated me that we can find high brow entertainments so inaccessible -- as compelling as steel cut oatmeal, as satisfying as wheat germ.

    Everybody turns their nose at an inaugural poem. Everybody makes sure to come back for Beyonce. So, what I was really thinking about when these two figures flashed in juxtaposition -- like all moments of epiphany -- was the high and the low brow... and this lead me to wondering if there was a place for the middlebrow. If so, what is the middlebrow? Let me explain.

    The high brow is something that is relatively new to American culture. For centuries, we couldn't do anything but imitate Merry Old England. And it made us always seem second-class and kind of sucky. You see, poetry was considered a sign of great civilization and so the presence of great poetry was like the proliferation of a nuclear arsenal: a logical extension of the arms race: a sign of might. So, the absence of the nuclear warhead of poetry bugged us then just as it probably bugs North Korea now. Why wasn't there a poetry that was distinctly American? Why were we still copying things written over a century ago and long gone out of fashion by people across the great pond whom we were supposed to be independent from? Why did we keep on trying yet never get it right? People spent a lot of time wondering about this predicament and, frustratingly, couldn't find the solution. So though we forget, this much is true: Blanco's poem is a sign of America's might -- as powerful as bombs bursting in air and as potent as Beyonce's highest note. It's just that now: nobody gives a darn... at least on the national stage.

    Among community's of color, though -- Latino, African-American, Asian -- the high brow still matters precisely because it is a display of a certain kind of power: a legitimacy. It is the low brow that is all around, which is cast off and derided, even as it is eagerly consumed in subways and buses and waiting rooms -- a treat that, no doubt, will cause spiritual diabetes. My own community -- Vietnamese-American -- has all sorts of low brow entertainments. But we find acceptance, worthiness, accomplishment in the high brow: award winning novels and poems and films. They may be boring and hardly consumed by any but a few... but they signal a stage: a moment of entering into the mainstream, the rise of an aspiring 1 percent. They are mighty works, like the pyramids of Ozymandias.

    So where is the middlebrow in all of this? What does it mean to have a middlebrow literature? Does it mean that minority communities have entered into a new stage of development? Well, I'm not sure. It's an open question. To be fair, I should now make my full disclosure and tell you this: I'm writing a middlebrow book -- the first Vietnamese-American detective novel with a Vietnamese-American detective, written by a Vietnamese-American. That's how I'm billing it. So understandably that is what is on my mind, nowadays. That's all I think about night and day. And everything, even the words read at the inauguration of the first ever black second term president gets sucked into my obsessive vortex. I'm wondering what it means when a new figure with a new kind of story takes the stage. Will people pay attention? Will it speak to them? Or are they all going to go out to pee?

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/khanh-...b_2547080.html

  27. #77

    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    ^




    The conflict between highbrow and vulgar populism happens back at the source.

    The Master of the Queen's Music had a similar function to The Poet Laureate. But England's last Master of the Queen's Music was considered too highbrow/abstruse so Andrew LLoyd Webber was given specific commissions instead.


    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Master_...en's_Music

  28. #78

    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    Quote Originally Posted by miaedu View Post
    Richard Blanco: The High, Low and... the Middlebrow!

    Richard Blanco, the inaugural laureate, took the stage before a national audience at our great nation's domed capital to deliver his oration. His poem, intoned in a solemn voice, had all the bells and whistles: epic and cinematic and patriotic -- it opens with the light of the rising sun filtering Westward through America, retracing the passage of Manifest Destiny, alighting upon thronging crowds, staining glass windows and, periodically, touching upon the poet himself: gay, Cuban, immigrant, working class. It was intended to be a touching poem -- a crowd pleaser.

    The entire time I was watching, I kept thinking on something not so august and grand. And I will share it with you, not to be snarky, but to be honest: I thought of the time I spent three months in New York and, while taking the subway, watched a woman read a book -- almost as if she was transported from the din and clatter and stink. Her face was beatific, like one of those martyrs in medieval paintings -- who are ecstatic in their gory death. The cover had the image of a handsome young man with a striking resemblance to Tyson Beckford, rendered in highly shaded pencil -- regular, soft features; devilish eyes; and a head cloth that in the street slang of the urban culture is referred to as a "do rag." The title of the book was Homo Thug.

    Don't get me wrong. This anecdote is not leading to a meditation on Blanco's sexuality, which the press already has much ballyhooed. It is not an attempt to make light of his brave act of self-display, of coming out -- an act which never happens once but over and over again.

    But truth be told, Homo Thug flashed before my eyes at that moment. And it speaks less to the issue of sexuality and more to the striking difference I see in the way that people react to literature in this time when the Internet inundates us with verbiage. Most of my friends admit on Facebook that they left the room -- pee break! -- when Blanco took the stage. And it fascinated me that we can find high brow entertainments so inaccessible -- as compelling as steel cut oatmeal, as satisfying as wheat germ.

    Everybody turns their nose at an inaugural poem. Everybody makes sure to come back for Beyonce. So, what I was really thinking about when these two figures flashed in juxtaposition -- like all moments of epiphany -- was the high and the low brow... and this lead me to wondering if there was a place for the middlebrow. If so, what is the middlebrow? Let me explain.

    The high brow is something that is relatively new to American culture. For centuries, we couldn't do anything but imitate Merry Old England. And it made us always seem second-class and kind of sucky. You see, poetry was considered a sign of great civilization and so the presence of great poetry was like the proliferation of a nuclear arsenal: a logical extension of the arms race: a sign of might. So, the absence of the nuclear warhead of poetry bugged us then just as it probably bugs North Korea now. Why wasn't there a poetry that was distinctly American? Why were we still copying things written over a century ago and long gone out of fashion by people across the great pond whom we were supposed to be independent from? Why did we keep on trying yet never get it right? People spent a lot of time wondering about this predicament and, frustratingly, couldn't find the solution. So though we forget, this much is true: Blanco's poem is a sign of America's might -- as powerful as bombs bursting in air and as potent as Beyonce's highest note. It's just that now: nobody gives a darn... at least on the national stage.

    Among community's of color, though -- Latino, African-American, Asian -- the high brow still matters precisely because it is a display of a certain kind of power: a legitimacy. It is the low brow that is all around, which is cast off and derided, even as it is eagerly consumed in subways and buses and waiting rooms -- a treat that, no doubt, will cause spiritual diabetes. My own community -- Vietnamese-American -- has all sorts of low brow entertainments. But we find acceptance, worthiness, accomplishment in the high brow: award winning novels and poems and films. They may be boring and hardly consumed by any but a few... but they signal a stage: a moment of entering into the mainstream, the rise of an aspiring 1 percent. They are mighty works, like the pyramids of Ozymandias.

    So where is the middlebrow in all of this? What does it mean to have a middlebrow literature? Does it mean that minority communities have entered into a new stage of development? Well, I'm not sure. It's an open question. To be fair, I should now make my full disclosure and tell you this: I'm writing a middlebrow book -- the first Vietnamese-American detective novel with a Vietnamese-American detective, written by a Vietnamese-American. That's how I'm billing it. So understandably that is what is on my mind, nowadays. That's all I think about night and day. And everything, even the words read at the inauguration of the first ever black second term president gets sucked into my obsessive vortex. I'm wondering what it means when a new figure with a new kind of story takes the stage. Will people pay attention? Will it speak to them? Or are they all going to go out to pee?

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/khanh-...b_2547080.html
    no not
    High glop make glop glop ans all glop high
    ans equals oppurtunes glop a too

    there go

    thankyou

    no charge

  29. #79

    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    We discussed the poem at our literature group.



    We thought this classic of American music matched it with the same qualities of episodic, free form and discursive introspection.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knoxville:_Summer_of_1915
    http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/today...ry?id=18274653

  30. #80

    Re: Richard Blanco - 2013 Inaugural Poet

    coor new president alreedy

    we a we wot here ans there
    is we wot is ans is a we
    ans alls a wewe
    be
    da end

    ans hotdogs on president

    thankyou
    esp

    extra special sawse

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