Friday, May 29, 2009

¡Vamos a Book Expo America!

I have packed my sombrero and my exhibitor badge, and tonight I take the train from DC to New York for Book Expo America (BEA), one of the world's largest book fairs.

On Saturday, May 30, from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. I will be signing The Best Mariachi in the World/El Mejor Mariachi del Mundo at Booth 718, the home away from home of my publisher, Raven Tree Press.

I have attended BEA once before out of curiosity, but this is my first time attending as a participant. I will be a very small fish in a very big pond (perhaps more like a minnow in the ocean), but it is the pond where I want to swim.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Three New Poems in The Helix

Before I put on my sombrero and go up to New York for Book Expo America next week, I want to take this opportunity to announce that three new poems of mine, "Country Data," "Coyotes," and "Metaphors of a Mother's Death" appear in the brand-new Spring 2009 edition of the print magazine The Helix.

And I am only one of several dozen established, emerging and student writers in the issue. Other contributors include Steve D. Dalachinksy, Ruth Lepson and Joanne Lowery. In addition to poetry, there is fiction, non-fiction and even a short play.

I can also guarantee that, unless you are nothing less than phenomenal at multitasking, reading my poems and the other work will at least temporarily prevent you from falling in with unsavory characters or seeking out low amusements such as games of chance and the snares and temptations of opium dens.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Seis de Mayo (with pictures)

The pictures come from last night's reading of The Best Mariachi in the World/El Mejor Mariachi del Mundo at the Barnes and Noble at the corner of Broadway and 82nd Street in Manhattan, co-sponsored by P.S. 87. My reading of each page in English was followed by a reading of the same page in Spanish by a group of four P.S. 87 students who took turns.
Besides reading and signing some books, I got to meet some delightful parents and children, as well as the dear parents of my friend and colleague the London-based poet and novelist Sue Guiney.
The mariachis pictured are members of New York's Mariachi Bustamante, established in 1970 and the first mariachi ensemble in the Northeast. The group appeared in Woody Allen's Scenes from a Mall (1991), and their work was used in the soundtrack of the 2006 documentary Maquilapolis. Muscial director Don Agustín Bustamante also appeared as a musician in the 2007 film Enchanted. To state the obvious, or understate it, they are really, really good.
I want to thank Lou and Ann of the 82nd and Broadway Barnes and Noble for making all this possible and for making me feel very welcome for the event.

Monday, May 4, 2009

First We Take Manhattan

To begin with a disclaimer, I should state my belief that nobody truly takes Manhattan, not even the Muppets.

Still, I don't get many chances to use Leonard Cohen lyrics in relation to my own life, and this is one of those rare times.

In short, on Wednesday May 6, at 6 p.m. I will reading and signing The Best Mariachi in the World/El Mejor Mariachi del Mundo at the Manhattan Barnes and Noble on the corner of 82nd Street and Broadway. The event listing is here, as well as in several New York-area event calendars.

And I am not the only entertainment. There will be a mariachi band to continue Cinco de Mayo into Seis de Mayo, and at least one school group of niños will be in attendance.

As you may suspect, the forecast calls for sombreros.