You can get with this or you can get with that

y e s w e c a n
Originally uploaded by js wright

I’m feeling all kinds of extra snarky these days and I’m liking it. The last few weeks have been heavy for me with a self-imposed reticence based on the perception that I’m lacking in prestige (etymology: from Latin praestigiae, plural, conjuror’s tricks, from praestringere to graze, blunt, constrict, from prae- + stringere to bind tight).

It’s more like I’m caught in the middle of my publication journey with some great acceptances in journals I really respect and some heavy rejections from journals I also really respect. This is what happens when you don’t submit to every call that goes out there and you actually care what happens to your work. At least, that’s what happens to me.

This in-between place is pretty familiar for me, I was in a similar spot a few years back as I had the prestige of being the louderARTS Slam Master (through a lot of hard work, natural math ability, and attending more slams than just about anybody I knew) but always found myself losing in arguments because I had never actually won any slams as a poet. Yeah, that little drive down memory lane was a very indulgent peek into my past, but it’s my blog and I’ll reminisce if I want to.

Meanwhile, back in West Oakland, I’m getting more proactive about carving out a place of my own in poetry world and making some personal power moves. One of them is to be more vocal here on the blog and call out some whackness when I see/read it. I’ll also try to balance that with even more critical writing and catch up on some thoughts from past readings that are still on my mind. But poetry is taking a bit of a back seat to electoral politics so let’s praise and bash some things.

FLY: Jeff Chang captures the turn of the historical page on the Vibe blog.

The election of the first biracial African American president in the history of the U.S. set off ecstatic celebrations all across the country. Twitter’s server stopped for a few minutes, overloaded by messages. In Oakland, Berkeley, and Seattle, people poured into the streets and instant block parties sprung up as if it was the Bronx in the summer of ’77. Crowds marched cheering to the White House. They filled Times Square as if it was New Year’s Eve. They came 1 million strong into Grant Park to hear Obama deliver his victory speech, the very place where the Democratic Party collapsed in police riots 40 years ago.

WHACK: Ralph Nader, not just a loser, but a racist as well. Just goes to show you don’t have to be a Republican to be an asshole.

In a radio interview, Ralph Nader asks whether Barack Obama will be “Uncle Sam . .. or Uncle Tom,” and then defends the comment on Fox News.

FLY: Derek Walcott pens some verse for the President-Elect

Forty Acres: a poem for Barack Obama

STILL FLY: Alice Walker writes Obama a letter.

I would further advise you not to take on other people’s enemies. Most damage that others do to us is out of fear, humiliation and pain. Those feelings occur in all of us, not just in those of us who profess a certain religious or racial devotion. We must learn actually not to have enemies, but only confused adversaries who are ourselves in disguise.

HELLA WHACK: Ban of gay marriage passes in California.

This morning, it was clear that voters had approved Proposition 8, which would amend the California Constitution to ban same-sex marriage. Even as thousands in San Francisco’s Castro district poured into the streets to dance, chant and wave flags after Barack Obama’s victory, the epicenter of the nation’s gay rights movement was awash in a mix of emotions.

GETTIN FLY: SF takes the fight for equality back to the courts.

A day after California voters approved a state constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, the incendiary issue returned to the state Supreme Court, where gay and lesbian couples and the city of San Francisco filed lawsuits Wednesday seeking to overturn Proposition 8.

WHACK: Palin must be ready to run in 2012 cuz she’s taking the road every high-level Republican takes: Blame someone else for your shortcomings.

Sarah Palin doesn’t think she is to blame for the Republican party’s election defeat on Tuesday, saying that voters were swayed by a “woeful” economic situation.

SUPA DUPA FLY: I came across this during Guy’s live blogging of Election Day and it’s been giving me hope ever since. You should read the whole thing:

I have a confession to make.

I did not vote for Barack Obama today.

I’ve openly supported Obama since March. But I didn’t vote for him today.

People, don’t be whack, stay fly.

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