The Writer’s Kitchen: How To Let Yourself Fall From the Frying Pan Into the Fire, by Rosario Ferré

Translated by Diana L. Velez

Feminist Studies 12, no. 2 (Summer 1986)

Throughout time, women narrators have written for many reasons: Emily Bronte wrote to confirm the revolutionary nature of passion; Virginia Woolf wrote to exorcise her terror of madness and death; Joan Didion writes to discover what and how she thinks; Clarice Lispector discovered in her writing a reason to love and be loved. In my case, writing is simultaneously a constructive and a destructive urge, a possibility for growth  and change. I write to build myself word by word, to banish my terror of silence; I write as a speaking, human mask. With respect to words, I have much for which to be grateful. Words have allowed me to forge for myself a unique identity, one which owes its existence only to my own efforts. For this reason, I place more trust in the words I use than perhaps I ever did in my natural mother. When all else fails, when life becomes an absurd theater, I know the words are there, ready to return my confidence to me.

“Child Support Office” from FINGERPRINTS OF A HUNGER STRIKE, by Tony Robles

At the entrance was a very large security guard chatting with another man who referred to him as Dinnerplate. Having recently been employed as a security guard, I felt a connection with my uniformed brethren. “Excuse me . . . uh . . .  Dinnerplate,” I said. “Can you tell me where I can give my updated contact information?” He gave me a stern look. “My name is Officer Fortune,” he said, “William A. Fortune, and you will address me as such!” I looked at the tattoo on his neck. It read Dinnerplate in cursive, although he may have been better served had it read Thinnerplate. “OK,” I replied, heading to the customer service windows where I was told — in so many words — to sit down, shut up, and wait my turn like a good boy . . .

Lines 3: HIS DARK MATERIALS

Books come in and out of self’s life all the time. Sometimes, if she’s lucky, they come when she’s most ready.

She’s currently reading The Amber Spyglass, Book III of His Dark Materials. Why has she waited this long to enter this world? She began with the most recent Philip Pullman novel, La Belle Sauvage, which she finished reading a little over two weeks ago. Then she moved on to The Golden Compass and The Subtle Knife.

So far, self’s favorite passage in The Amber Spyglass is the one about choice:

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23 April 2018

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23 April 2018

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23 April 2018

I’d Rather Be . . . In a Bookstore

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Linda Nietes greeting a customer at the bookshop she owns, Philippine Expressions (Inside a 1920s building, 479 W. Sixth St., San Pedro, CA). Linda is 81 years old. She has been running bookstores all her life.

Last Saturday, 17 March, International Woman’s Day, Linda Nietes invited six Filipina authors to Philippine Expressions Bookshop in San Pedro to read from their work. The authors were: poets Angela Narciso Torres and Irene Suico Soriano, and prose writers Cecilia Manguerra Brainard, Prosy Abarquez-Delacruz, Tessie Jayme, and self. The reading was held in the beautiful lobby of a 1920s-era building on 479 W. Sixth Street:

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Here’s son with Linda before the reading:

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Beautiful Event. Self was honored to be a part of it.

Here’s Linda, in her own words, about why she does what she does:

  • It is a ministry, an advocacy, a labor of love, and the results cannot be counted in dollars and cents. It is fulfilling only to the person who accepts the responsibility of creating a greater awareness and a higher consciousness among members of our community. I have found the field, planted an orchard. Saplings are growing and some have already grown and are blooming and even fruiting. Lucky will be the generation that will just pick the fruits of my labor, but I do not mind that because I understand what the role of a trailblazer is! You blaze the trail so that people will find their way. I was inspired by a quote: “Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” (Ralph Waldo Emerson)

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Art Speaks: Mary Rose Kaczorowski

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“Redwood Mary” by Mary Rose Kaczorowski, Fort Bragg, CA

Self bought this card from one of her favorite bookshops: Gallery Bookshop in Mendocino.

The art is by Fort Bragg artist Mary Rose Kaczorowski.

The sentiment speaks to the current political climate, so self wanted to share.

Remember, #NeverAgainIsNow and #MarchForOurLives #March24

 

VOICES FROM CHERNOBYL, AN ORAL HISTORY OF A DISASTER, p. 65

“I read in a book — it was by Father Sergei Bulgakov — it’s certain that God created the world, and therefore the world can’t possibly fail,” and so it is necessary to “endure history courageously and to the very end.”

Quote of the Day: Richard Brautigan

Karma Repair Kit: Items 1 – 4

  1. Get enough food to eat, and eat it.
  2. Find a place to sleep where it is quiet, and sleep there.
  3. Reduce intellectual activity and emotional noise until you arrive at the silence of yourself.
  4.  

 

 

 

Still More Waiting

Share a snapshot that shows a sense of waiting.

— Cheri Lucas Rowlands, The Daily Post

First, self’s Philippine passport. She is a dual citizen of the Philippines and the United States. This passport dates from the time when she first entered the U.S., to begin grad studies at Stanford:

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Final picture: Last week, self was in New York for her nephew’s wedding. On September 11, she decided to go to the Whitney on Gansevoort Street, her favorite Manhattan museum. She started at the top floor (the Calders) and worked her way down.

On the top floor, there’s a restaurant with stunning views. She saw the Statue of Liberty:

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Sept. 11, 2017: “Bring me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses . . . “

Immigrants. Self was an immigrant once.

Stay tuned.

 

Quote of the Day: “Measure for Measure”

O, it is excellent
To have a giant’s strength, but it is tyrannous
To use it like a giant.

— Isabella, Act II, scene ii, Measure for Measure

#amreading: About Folk Remedies

  • So the right eye of a serpent, being applied to the soreness of the eyes, cures the same, if the serpent be let go alive. So, likewise, the tooth of a mole, being taken out alive and afterwards let go, cures the toothache; and dogs will never bark at those who have the tail of a weasel that has escaped. Democritus says that if the tongue of the chameleon be taken alive, it conduces to good success in trials, and likewise to women in labour; but it must be hung up on some part of the outside of the house; otherwise, if brought into the house, it might be most dangerous.

— Sax Rohmer, The Romance of Sorcery

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