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Archive for December, 2011


Saturday, December 24th, 2011


Photo: Dana Kelly

Al with poet-editor giovanni singleton whom he introduced at Book Passage Marin in Corte Madera, Sunday the 17th of February; her reading centered on ASCENSION, her new poem collection from Counterpath.


© Vivian Torrence | Three North Carolina country shots
>> Visit Vivian Florig Torrence’s website >>

Al Young

Jeannie’s present

Maria Syndicus

Al and Michael Young in the run-up to Christmas 2011

© Maria Syndicus

Meanwhile, oozing light, Al Young finds himself back in downtown Palo Alto at the Prez, where he resided for years.


President Apartments in summer


CANARY: A Literary Journal of the Environmental Crisis (Winter 2011-2012)

Thursday, December 22nd, 2011



Editor, Gail Entrekin

Published by Hip Pocket Press
Managing Editor, Charles Entrekin
Art Editor, Carol White

All work reprinted by permission of authors

The canary in the coal mine was a primitive early warning system used by miners to alert themselves to poison gases seeping into the mines. If the canary was found dead, it was time to get out quick. As a metaphor, its significance for me includes not only the salvation of the humans, but also the casual loss of the canary, that fragile and innocent bird with its lovely song, sacrificed without a passing regret. So often the poets of a culture are the canaries, the first ones to be hurt by trends so large that they are not immediately visible. This time the poets are raising our voices on behalf of the natural world, which cannot articulate its plight.

Issue Number 15, Winter 2011-12

© 2011 by Hip Pocket Press and each individual contributor


Thursday, December 1st, 2011


© Karen Johnson

Backstage of My Song, an evening with Harry Belafonte, a KPFA benefit held on the 30th of November at Berkeley’s First Congregational Church


Three years before “I Have a Dream” got preached,
the 1960 March on Washington

propelled us into DC. Once we reached
the Saturday when you were going on,
mean horseback cops reared up to stomp us. “Stop!”
one hollered in a trembling southern drawl.
“Let them kids live!” We thanked this rebel cop
with gut sighs, then we cut straight for the Mall.
You, Harry Belafonte, sang our songs.
You let us know you came down on our side.
Green college kids, we knew what rights, what wrongs
forced us to see you, hear you, while we died.
No caving in. No turning back. Just home.
Calypso? All we heard was: “Daylight, come!“

–Al Young

© 2011 Al Young