- Want to come hear me read somethings?
Moby’s Coffee & Tea Company 5668 Cahuenga Blvd North Hollywood, CA 91601
Thursday Nights at Moby’s Coffee &Tea Company
Moby’s Coffee & Tea Company
5668 Cahuenga Blvd
North Hollywood, CA 91601
Sign Up – 8:00 pm
Start – 8:30 pm
Solo poetry/spoken word – 5 minutes or 3 poems
Fusion artists – 10 minutes
Cindy Weinstein (aka Feral Artist)
Reverend Dave Wheeler
Angel Uriel Perales
Margaret Elysia Garcia
Margaret writes poetry, fiction, and creative non-fiction memoir.
Margaret was a Pushcart nominee in 2011 for a story from her memoir in progress. She was also a Glimmer Train finalist in 2011. In 2008 her manuscript 605 Freeway Stories won second place in the 34th Annual Chicano/Latino Literary Award in fiction given by the University of California, Irvine’s Spanish/Portuguese Department. Nearly all the stories from the collection can be seen in print and online individually. She’s presently searching for a publisher for the collection. Recent work can be found from the links on her blog at Tales of a Sierra Madre where you can follow her adventures.
She’s also staff writer for the parenting blog parentingsquad.com and has had her work featured on Lifetime’s The Balancing Act. When not mothering and writing, she’s also a Plumas Community Radio DJ where she hosts the alternative women’s music show Milkshake & Honey.
Bonafide Books put out a lovely summer read called Tahoe Blues. Tonight four writers from the book (including me) will share our stories of life in the Northern Sierra Nevadas (and of course, life around Lake Tahoe). My story “Women’s Mountain Fashion” is included in the book. Something happens to women who move up to the mountains and their fashion choices display it for all to see.
6:30 pm Sundance Books in Reno (121 California Avenue).
My favorite all time poetry book is the classic 100 Poems from the Japanese translations by Kenneth Rexroth. It is the book I always go back to. Always. I refer to this book the way some refer to the Holy Bible. I promptly offer up this book as more my mode of construction of life.
Summer in the mountains is spectacular. The nights and early mornings in particular when the scent of the pine trees and crispness of the air over take you. And when there’s a moon all bets are off. It is truly beautiful. And it makes longing even that much more lustful. So last night in the tradition of the book, I wrote this.
A Japanese Court Poem Evening
If we were 500 years ago
I’d walk out onto the back deck,
watch the moon through the pine
plead for your safe passage here
The wind would blow
the frayed edge of my kimono
I would hide the faint trace of my smile
and I’d wait there in memory of
when your naked body and the dark
of night were one in the same.
I think of us sometimes
the way I used to
picture deBeauvoir & Satre
desks head to head
in a big room lined
with dust & ideas of others
a near dead plant in the corner
a cat needing to be let out
an ashtray needing to be emptied
another lover needing attention
only we are
in the ether
opposite ends of the country
perhaps on the opposite
ends of more than that.
you send me bits of what
you’ re reading attach bits
of what you’re seeing
makes me feel more
me and you , and
less me and nothingness
and perhaps you notice
or perhaps like Sartre
you think I’m sentimental
as you head into the wild
there are stacks of words
in both our places
plants that need watering
pets that need feeding
drunks’ glasses that need filling
partners needing attention
i don’t mind the
absence in the fullness
i look up from my desk
over at the empty space
that you often fill from the ether
and that is the perfect us for me
Back in 1996, my paternal grandfather and I met up in Cassville, Missouri. I got to meet his aunt who was recovering from surgery and dig a little deeper into the hillbilly genetics that our family is prone to—it was an enlightening trip –full of great tidbits from Aunt Mary, who, having thought she was on her death bed, was happy to divulge as long as we promised to remind her children never to sell her property to those, “damned Mormons” next door. Her property butted up against a Mormon church and as a life long Baptist, she didn’t cotton to that too well. I was still in my 20s. After a few great days of touring the emptied out hamlets of the Ozarks, finding the one place that sold actual espresso and vegetables, and getting every last sorted detail from Aunt Mary about the Irby side of the family, I had to think of something to do.
So I walked down to the farm surplus store. I had it in my head to buy myself new overalls ever since I ‘d read Their Eyes Were Watching God as an undergrad. I know it’s kinda crazy but I always thought them kinda sexy in a quirky sort of way. Surely, in this obesity ridden state, there must be a pair of overalls to fit me? A farmer ahead of me, came out wearing the largest size overalls I’d ever seen. He must have been 400 pounds. I was under half his size. If they had them for him, they had to have some for me.
They did. They didn’t really come in real sizes. Not any I recognized. At the time I may have been a 14-16. I found some that fit comfortable and bought them for all of 15 bucks. They were rough that first few days and I had to wash and wash them to get them soft.
It’s 2012. I still have that pair of ‘made in the usa’ farm overalls. They are now faded and washed to a soft cotton sheen. They have white thin pin stripes all the way down and gold plated buttons, snaps and hinges are returning to their natural plain metal state. I don’t really wear pants–always been more of a skirt wearer, but I have these in the back of my closet and take them out every once in awhile. Hour glass figures weren’t made for pants. If they are big enough in the hips they are usually swimming in the waist. It just doesn’t look right even when it’s small.
I have had them so long that they’ve seen me through every size and I now gauge weight gain or loss by them. At my thinnest in the last 12 years while teaching in Japan, they were so loose on me that I had to roll them up and could fit a bulky sweater underneath. At my fattest (pregnant) I couldn’t button the sides and they were highwatered about four inches from my heel. So of course, I try them on now with much trepidation for even when we totally know we are over the edge, do we really want to know?
It’s the third week of making an effort a la Gunnar Challenge. I should have tried these on right before I started but I did wear them back a few months ago. The verdict? Well, I don’t have to roll them up yet but they ain’t high-watered neither. The bottom comes right to my heel. All buttons button. And nothing is tight.
I’m wearing them today. Walking around my own hamlet in the middle of nowhere California where there is no farm surplus store. Grandpa and Aunt Mary are both gone. I look just fine near as I can tell and I’m thinking that might be the best 15 bucks I’ve ever spent.