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Category Archives: Poetry
On Thursday, January 26th, 2012 at The Bowery Poetry Club from 5:00pm-7:30pm the Poetry Collective of Occupy Wall Street invites you to share your poems at our Winter Poetry Assembly. We imagine a kind of poetry town hall meeting where EVERYONE can assemble together and share words. This event is FREE.
The way Poetry Assemblies operate: show up, put your name in a hat, and eventually you’ll be called. This method is used to show that there is no hierarchy in determining the order.
Please choose a poem no longer than 3 minute. The Bowery Poetry Club has generously waived the usual entrance fee (it’s free!), but not the whiskey fee, which is understandable given the crowd.
Remember these devastatingly beautiful nights!!!
Photo of the OWS Poetry Anthology at the Tree of Life in Zuccotti Park
The 10th Update of the OWS Poetry Anthology is now online. Sadly, the poems aren’t pouring in the way they used to so I’m not going to update the anthology on a weekly basis anymore. Instead, I’ll update every few weeks once I’ve received a chunk of poems.
Besides sending in poems, everyone is also welcome to contribute to the “POETIC INTRODUCTIONS” section of the anthology. The introduction section is a place for “essays/writings/stories” about what the Anthology means to you. It’s a space for you to write an introduction for the anthology. Danny Schechter sent in the first introduction. I finally wrote one and it just went into the anthology with this update.
And in case you don’t know, the OWS Poetry Anthology is open to submissions from anyone. All poems are accepted. In all languages. If you want to have your poem in multiple languages, it’s up to you to determine translation.
Find out more about the anthology and read it HERE!
And one of America’s great living poets, the poet CA Conrad, sent in a poem for Update 10. It’s currently the last poem in the anthology… Here’s a video of CA Conrad reading it New Year’s Day at St. Mark’s Church. I LOVE YOU, CA CONRAD!
If you’d like to read my POETIC INTRODUCTION just continue reading… Continue reading
Happy Holiday’s Everyone! Doesn’t matter exactly how you celebrate, just remember to celebrate LOVE!
The Occupied Santa sent in three copies of the OWS Poetry Anthology… a copy will be in the park today (I’m heading down there with the library soon) for everyone to admire… or just print/make your own copy! And don’t forget to keep sending poems… The movement is just getting started! And we need your poems! If you haven’t gotten the freak poet in your family something yet, the anthology is the perfect gift and it’s free online HERE!
On another note:
My friend Rami sent me this: America, by now, is truly a land of addicts; but some junkies are just better than others. On this Christmas, let us all remember, whether we’ve struggled with depression, cocaine, cigarettes, or our weight; be we heroin addicts or sex addicts, there’s never been nor will there ever be a better, bigger, and more dangerous addict than that which stalks our dying country in the guise of the Wall Street Banker, the Wall Street Broker, the Wall Street Deal Maker. America’s a land of addicts: but some junkies are just better junkies than others, and some, as W. S. Burroughs reminds us, are better people. Happy Holidays!
Last night I went down to the park for the midnight celebration! I was astonished to see a group gathered near Ground Zero in remembrance of 9/11 victims… It was a beautiful group, they were busy reminding each other “we must remember we are people of joy – it doesn’t matter where we come from or what we worship” and guess whose watching!!!!
I couldn’t believe NYPD COUNTER-TERRORISM officers were patrolling the actions of a group of people grieving the loss of their loved ones due to the attacks on 9/11… merry police state ya’ll and I wish ya’ll a happy jail cell! Once in the park, the Occupiers were busy keeping one another warm and full of good cheer. People read a speech Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. read one Christmas Eve and others spoke of the plight many members of the Baha’i faith face on a daily basis. For those unfamiliar with the Baha’i, they’re a religious movement that seeks to show the interconnectedness of all faiths. It was a cold but beautiful night. And we were all reminded that Jesus was one of the first people to engage in a Direct Action when he overthrew the tables in the temple after the religious leaders of the day had lost sight of the spirit and had adopted an addiction to money. Jesus was a protester! Jesus would have been the first to enter Duarte Sq. Jesus would be here in the park with us. He/She would be with us, healing us, educating us, hugging us, possibly even shooting laser beams from his finger tips…
Hope to see you in the park today! The library will be there ready to give you a book for the holiday!
The Fiddler and a banjo beginner play old union songs in the night. And somewhere amidst the Beautiful Chaos of the Occupation comes whispers of what we are doing: “OCCUPY these areas [that we may] carry on [our]festive purposes for quite awhile in relative peace.”
this is a bootstrap operation
It was on October 9th, 2011, that the Temporary Autonomous Zone by Hakim Bey was entered into the People’s Library database on Librarything, making it the first cataloged volume.
It wasn’t too long after that when a few of us huddled under shapeless structures- makeshift and different everyday, like the rules imposed upon us by the men in dimly lit rooms- listening to the rain on the tarpaulin, discussing the T.A.Z., wondering just how ‘temporary’ our autonomous zone was.
the T.A.Z. must be capable of defense; but both the ‘strike’ and ‘defense’ should, if possible, evade the violence of the state which is no longer a meaningful voice.
the sound cannon, truncheons in gloved hands, the cleaning of pepper from the eyes of my friends, Orwellian visions.
often one returns to Liberty Plaza: vacant; lighted holiday trees; library space sans tombs; police-tape demarcating an unknown crime; strange encounters with uniformed men in mustaches.
there are waves nostalgia of course, but the sentimentalism dissipates, though never entirely; it lingers a safe distance away–never impeding future action– and allows me to somehow safely hold our encampment of guerilla ontologists in unforgettable synaptic locations.
“Why?” I heard a woman say today, as I rounded the corner to a crowd of hundreds, a march and Solidarity Act, for those immigrated to this country.
must we wait until the entire world is freed of political control before even one of us can claim to know freedom?
the rain fell on tarps that night in october, we huddled and laughed, the Fiddler played from his bivouac, from somewhere under the sky we knew our Zone was temporary, we knew these as processes, and not merely results.
there are those that cling to the space–what we call Liberty Plaza.
But the TAZ liberates an area (of land, of time, of imagination) and then dissolves itself to reform elsewhere, before the state can crush it.
as soon as it is named (represented) (mediated) it must vanish, it will vanish, leaving behind it an empty husk, only to spring up again somewhere else…
follow the seasons
[text in bold from the Temporary Autonomous Zone– Anti-copyright, but still… used with permission]
the following precursory text of the OCCUPY WALL STREET REVIEW was made available at the request of Peter Lamborn Wilson for the occupiers on the day of action, D17.
OWS Act Two
from the author of
the Temporary Autonomous Zone
“Week 9″ has officially been added to the OWS Poetry Anthology. And I have exciting news! This December 17th, we’re launching a website for the OWS Poetry Anthology so it’s more easily accessible and ever more beautiful and free. The anthology will remain at the People’s Library WordPress page as a PDF but will also be at owspoetry.org as a more navigable version. So everyone that isn’t going to the re-occupation of Dec. 17th, you can occupy the new poetry site! And you should write a love poem to everyone that is occupying the new space on Dec. 17th.
A Writing Prompt(For those that need a nudge in the poetic direction): What does occupation mean to you? The word has a few meanings: Occupation – noun 1. a person’s usual or principal work or business, especially as a means of earning a living; vocation: Her occupation was dentistry. 2. any activity in which a person is engaged. 3. possession, settlement, or use of land or property. 4. the act of occupying. 5. the state of being occupied. But none of those meanings seem to capture the meta-experience occupations across the country have offered people. When has a job ever allowed a worker to fully engage in their right to free speech, free sleep, free food, free books, free everything… So please think about what it means for you to occupy. Where you occupy. Why you occupy. How you occupy. And form those messy ideas in your mind into words. And put those words onto paper. Then send those ideas to the OWS Poetry Anthology – stephenjboyer@gmail(DOT)com.
In other news, “Week 9″ hosts the first Non-Latin language poetic contribution to the anthology! This is a huge step! We are breaking new ground! Incorporating more voices! A United Global Occupation that Occupies Everything is coming! The following poem doesn’t represent what the majority of occupiers feel, but that’s okay! Occupy Wall Street is about the freedom of opinion. It’s about people saying whatever they want. Anyone that has been to any G.A. knows the great lengthy arguments we go through to get anything accomplished. We believe in disruptors, for we are all disruptors.
And in closing, here’s the youtube video version of the poem the poet KJ Ink sent this past week… It’s called “Occupy There Minds”. I’ve been seeing more and more poets posting videos of their work on youtube… check out the OWS Poets!
Read, download, enjoy the OWS Poetry Anthology HERE!
Week 8 has been added to the OWS Poetry Anthology! About another 115 pages added… Keep writing poems! Keep sending poems! The anthology will soon be begin enough to crush Wall St. with it’s ever powerful poetic force and then the people of Liberty Plaza can take back their park!
Send poems to stephenjboyer@gmail (DOT) com.
All poems welcome!
All languages welcome!
Find out everything you need to know and the anthology here!