Archive for December, 2008

I look at the world
From awakening eyes in a black face—
And this is what I see:
This fenced-off narrow space
Assigned to me.

I look then at the silly walls
Through dark eyes in a dark face—
And this is what I know:
That all these walls oppression builds
Will have to go!

I look at my own body
With eyes no longer blind—
And I see that my own hands can make
The world that’s in my mind.
Then let us hurry, comrades,
The road to find.

-Langston Hughes

HAPPY NEW YEAR from NinaAlvarez.net. May 2009 be the year we each find our road.

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1. Ithaca

2. Dirty Poem

3. Love Me Like You Never Loved Me Before

4. The Pumpkin

5. I Walked a Mile with Pleasure

6. The Lost Son

7. The Gashlycrumb Tinies

8. Poem-Video of Ithaca

9. Lucinda Matlock

10. A Rabbit As King of the Ghosts

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I’m excited about the wonderful community I am connected to through NinaAlvarez.net. Here are my plans for the coming year:

  • Another “Send me a poem, I’ll send you a book” contest
  • Author interviews
  • Friday night writing/publishing discussion series
  • And of course, the poems I love and a couple of my own

Let me know if you want to share anything, see anything, or say anything.

Thanks for visiting!



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asan3Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St Nicholas soon would be there.

The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads.
And mamma in her ‘kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled our brains for a long winter’s nap.

When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.

The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below.
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tinny reindeer.

With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St Nick.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name!

“Now Dasher! now, Dancer! now, Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! On, Cupid! on, on Donner and Blitzen!
To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
Now dash away! Dash away! Dash away all!”

As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky.
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of Toys, and St Nicholas too.

And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my head, and was turning around,
Down the chimney St Nicholas came with a bound.

He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot.
A bundle of Toys he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a peddler, just opening his pack.

His eyes-how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow.

The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath.
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
That shook when he laughed, like a bowlful of jelly!

He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself!
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.

He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings, then turned with a jerk.
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose!

He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ‘ere he drove out of sight,
“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night!”

-Clement Clarke Moore

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Canto 1

And then went down to the ship,
Set keel to breakers, forth on the godly sea, and
We set up mast and sail on that swart ship,
Bore sheep aboard her, and our bodies also
Heavy with weeping, and winds from sternward
Bore us onward with bellying canvas,
Crice’s this craft, the trim-coifed goddess.


-Ezra Pound

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Words Without Borders

The Online Magazine of International Literature

Even Small Donations Make A Big Difference at Words Without Borders
December 17, 2008

Dear Friend of Words Without Borders,

Thank you for your support of Words Without Borders and its unique role in bringing literary voices from around the world to English-language readers. It has been an exciting year. As the premier forum for literature in translation, we marked our fifth anniversary with bold efforts to expand our circle of talent to include more professional staff dedicated to strengthening the organization and enhancing its offerings, more volunteers, more educators enriching the minds of more students, more active board members, and most important, more involved readers!

Please join us in our continuing efforts to publish and promote the world’s best literature through a highly accessible and completely free online magazine, public events, education initiatives, and print anthologies. In 2008, with tremendous support from our donors, WWB:

  • Published 139 works translated from 30 languages by authors from 47 countries, including Horacio Castellanos Moya (Senselessness), Nobel Prize winner J.M. G. Le Clezio (Étoile Errante) and Brazil’s Jabuti Prize winner Cristavão Tezza (The Good Son).
  • Published an important selection of Chinese poetry and prose never before seen in English and co-presented a panel discussion on Chinese literature with two of its most prominent figures, dissident writer Ma Jian and writer/filmmaker Xiaolu Guo.
  • Presented a discussion in NYC with the Grand Prix in Angouleme winners (the most prestigious award for graphic novels) Phillip Dupuy and drawing partner Charles Berberian.
  • Curated, with the help of a highly competitive grant from the New York Council for the Humanities, a five-part discussion series on contemporary works of international literature featuring award-winning translators and writers, including noted writer Francisco Goldman and Natasha Wimmer, translator of Roberto Bolaño’s posthumous masterpiece, 2666.

We have even bigger plans for 2009. We will co-publish a special issue on international nature writing with Orion Magazine; publish an anthology and issue celebrating the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall; expand our education initiatives; provide in depth coverage of world literature through our blog; and curate more events both in and outside of New York City.

But to do this we need your help. We must continue our work knowing dedicated readers like you expect it and appreciate and understand its importance. A gift at this time, no matter the amount, will make a significant impact on our small organization and will contribute to creating a global community that is based on mutual understanding and respect. We look forward to hearing from you.

We wish you a joyous holiday season!

Warm regards,

The Staff and Board of Words without Borders

First Person Arts – Philadelphia

Three ways to enrich yourself in 2009
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Put in your 2 cents

Fill out a survey about the 2008 First Person Festival!
Your feedback helps us plan the 2009 Festival and deliver compelling memoir and documentary art that YOU want to see. Plus, it doesn’t even really cost you 2 cents, and, when you fill it out, your name is entered into a drawing for a pair of StorySlam or Salon tickets!
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Be a Joiner
The First Person Arts community depends on your continued financial and participatory support. Help us continue the tradition in 2009:

  • Become a Member of First Person Arts. When you do, we’ll hand-pick a memoir and send it to you!
  • Buy a six-pack of StorySlam Tickets. They make a great gift at just $40.

Get in the Act
Find creative outlets in artistic communion with like-minded lovers of memoir and documentary art.

  • Present your work of memoir or documentary art at a Salon.
  • Tell your 5-minute true story at a StorySlam. (You know you want to!)
  • Apply to be a First Person Arts Intern!

…and have a lovely holiday season!

Your friends at First Person Arts:
Vicki, Dan, Eva, Nick and Andrew
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Whole countries hover, oblivious on the edge
of history and in Cleveland the lake
already is dying. None of this matters
to my mother at seven, awakened from sleep


-Lynda Hull

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