Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Mormon Heroin by Erik Vatne

Mormon Heroin, a collection of poems by Erik Vatne, Burning Apple Press, Rhinecliff, New York, 2012

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Global Event Embraces Local Issues Through Poetry, Music, Art and More

September 29, 2012 marks the second annual global event of 100 Thousand Poets for Change, a grassroots organization that brings poets, artists and musicians (new this year) together to call for environmental, social, and political change, within the framework of peace and sustainability. The local focus is key to this global event as communities around the world raise their voices through concerts, readings, workshops, flash mobs and demonstrations that speak to the heart of their specific area of concerns, such as homelessness, ecocide, racism and censorship.

“Peace and sustainability is a major concern worldwide, and the guiding principle for this global event,” said Michael Rothenberg, Co-Founder of 100 Thousand Poets for Change. “We are in a world where it isn't just one issue that needs to be addressed. A common ground is built through this global compilation of local stories, which is how we create a true narrative for discourse to inform the future.”

Organizers and participants are hoping through their actions and events to seize and redirect the political and social dialogue of the day and turn the narrative of civilization towards peace and sustainability. Those that want to get involved can visit to find an event near them or sign up to organize one in their area.

There are nearly 700 events planned worldwide, including:

• 25 different events in the San Francisco Bay Area, the birthplace of 100 Thousand Poets for Change, with live poetry readings by Beat Legend Michael McClure, former US Poet Laureate Robert Hass and other major poets

• The Occupy Wall Street Poetry group kicks off a weekend of events in New York City with a poetry reading at the famous St. Mark’s Poetry Project

• Peace On Streets, R.O.A.D., Tasker Elite and SHARP will host performance artists, poets, musicians, hip hop artists and various youth and parent groups who will perform and lead workshops throughout Philadelphia to bring awareness to the ongoing problem of street violence in their city

• Wordstock, a 3 day festival at the Bamboo Arts and Celebration Center in De Leon Springs, FL, will include poetry slams, concerts, and an art exhibition focusing on images of war and peace

• In New Orleans, a blues festival featuring ten bands will help raise funds for medical care for aging musicians

• In Jamaica a week long Street Dub Vibe series called “Tell the Children the Truth” will include concerts, spoken word performances, art exhibits, lectures, and workshops to bring attention to the damaging culture of secrecy and denial surrounding the abuse, poverty and illiteracy impacting the nation’s children and destroying their future.

• Poetry and peace gatherings are planned in the strife-torn cities of Kabul and Jalalabad, Afghanistan

• In Cairo and Alexandria, Egypt, poets, musicians and mime artists, in response to the revolution in Egypt and the major changes taking place in the Arab World, will perform in public spaces and theaters and explore new ways to communicate their concerns, and their roles as artists, in influencing the future of their country

• In Volos, Greece, there will be 5 days of poetry and music events, including an exhibition of photography looking at the new phenomenon of homelessness in Greece

• An event in Blackpool, England will celebrate activist poets and writers of past generations through a special performance of Bullets and Daffodils, a play about the life of peace poet Wilfred Owen

100 Thousand Poets for Change began in Sonoma County, Calif. The official Headquarters’ Event will take place at the Arlene Francis Center in downtown Santa Rosa and will feature poetry readings, group meditations, workshops, and music and dance of various styles including hip hop, flamenco, African drums, reggae, salsa, folk and more. The HQ event will also live-stream other 100 Thousand Poets for Change events worldwide. This 3-day event is sponsored by the Peace & Justice Center of Sonoma County and the Sonoma County Arts Council.

Immediately following September 29th, all documentation on the website, which will include specific event pages with photos, video and other documentation compiled by each city coordinator, will be preserved by Stanford University in California. Stanford recognized 100 Thousand Poets for Change in 2011 as an historical event, the largest poetry reading in history. They will continue to archive the complete contents of, as part of their digital archiving program LOCKSS.

About 100 Thousand Poets for Change

Co-Founder Michael Rothenberg ( is a widely known poet, editor of the online literary magazine and an environmental activist based in Northern California. Terri Carrion is a poet, translator, photographer, and editor and visual designer for

100 Thousand Poets for Change
P.O. Box 870
Guerneville, Ca 95446
Phone: 305-753-4569

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

BleKSEM, Botsotso and Dye Hard Press launch at De La Creme, Melville, Johannesburg August 7, 2012

Centre, seated, from left: Ike Muila and Siphiwe Ka Ngwenya

The mime artist

Ike Muila

Frank Meintjies and Arja Salafranca

Arja Salafranca

Alan Finlay

Allan Kolski Horwitz

Allan Kolski Horwitz

Richard Fox

Eva Kowalska

Toast Coetzer

Street view on a wintry Johannesburg night - snow had fallen earlier in the day.

Photos: Arja Salafranca and Michelle McGrane

Thursday, 09 August 2012

Drawing Nine - December 2001

Oh BLeKSEM, I Missed (Most of) the Launch of Donga

On a night that snow fell in Johannesburg, breeding dubious new forms of life, a very respectable crowd turned out at De la Creme, the bakery and cafe next door to Bookdealers of Melville, for the launch of several indie works, including The Best of Donga, an important compilation from new imprint BLeKSEM (in association with Dye Hard Pres sand Botsotso)...Read more here

Monday, 06 August 2012

Special Offer for August: Who was Sinclair Beiles? and pushing from the riverbank

SPECIAL OFFER FOR AUGUST (SOUTH AFRICA ONLY): Get two Dye Hard Press titles for just R100, including postage:

WHO WAS SINCLAIR BEILES? edited by Gary Cummiskey and Eva Kowalska. A compilation of writings about South Africa's sole Beat poet, with contributions by Gary Cummiskey, dawie malan, Alan Finlay, Earl Holmes, George Dillon Slater and Fred de Vries. 136 pages.

PUSHING FROM THE RIVERBANK, a recent collection of poems by Johannesburg poet Alan Finlay. 46 pages, perfect bound, and beautifully illustrated by the poet's children.

To order, email 

Saturday, 04 August 2012

A note from Alan Finlay and Paul Wessels, editors of the donga anthology

it’s been a while… so much has happened… we’ve seen god, we’ve seen the alpha and the omega… paul beat mr death at his own game… so did stacy years later… alan holds out against the city folk… lionel and mark didn’t make it… the mud that caked our ankles has long since crumbled to sand and lies now like mementos of a long forgotten past on our unswept floors… the donga anthology edited by alan finlay and paul wessels will be launched in johannesburg tuesday 7 august 2012 5:30 for 6:00pm de la crème next to bookdealers of melville cnr 7th street and 4th avenue Melville… (cape town launch to be announced) we returned to the dugout a time ago, no sign of the lean-to, the ashes in the fire pit long blown away to reveal the grey earth of countless catfish braais… the wind caressed us, carrying off our tears as we turned to leave that place forever, having now gathered the words…

lionel abrahams
robert berold
lauren beukes
nadine botha
toast coetzer
gary cummiskey
jané dowd
clinton v du plessis
quen emmenes
graeme feltham
richard fox
stacy hardy
august highland
stephen hofstätter
aryan kaganof
chris kraus
bernat kruger
greg latter
arthur mafokate
dawie malan
joan metelerkamp
ike mboneni muila
pravasan pillay
leonhard praeg
lesego rampolokeng
arja salafranca
kelwyn sole
bill stobb
rayno van rooi
ivan vladislavić
paul wessels
stu woolman

apologies to those who do not appear in the anthology. no hard feelings. gary from dye hard and allan from botsotso bankrolled the project and we gratefully squeezed in as much as we could. maybe next time…

Drawing Eight 10-2001