Poverty may have been beloved of St. Francis, but not so much by the rest of us. Nobody likes to look at advanced poverty, toothless and drooling, clutching the hands of children who have running sores on their filthy legs. Poverty is a crackhead who pisses on the pavement, and sleeps with fleas and stray dogs....more
Posts by: Charles Kruger
Socrates: All men are mortal.
The Storming Bohemian: I’m a man.
Socrates: Right, so…
The Storming Bohemian: Uh oh....more
Wednesday 3/8: The Museum of the African Diaspora, as part of their current exhibition Where Is Here (curated by Jacquelyn Francis and Kathy Zarur), celebrate International Women’s Day with a discussion featuring mixed media and installation artist Asya Abdrahman and writers Faith Adiele and Tonya M....more
This week, I’ve found myself thinking about heroism. What makes a hero, anyway? Who should we choose for our heroes?
When I was around fourteen, I developed a hero crush on W. C. Fields, of all people! I was delighted when I read about the time he and John Barrymore gave a ride to a hitchhiker on a country road, and then threw the poor man out of the moving car when he began preaching at them for being drunk....more
Wednesday 3/1: Journalist L.A. Kauffman, (The Nation, Mother Jones, The Baffler, etc.) reads from Direct Action: Protest and the Reinvention of American Radicalism. Free, 7 p.m., City Lights.
Poet Kendra Tanacea launches her debut collection, A Filament Burns in Blue Degrees, from Lost Horse Press....more
Yesterday, walking home along the wet pavement twinkling under the sunshine, I spied a flock of no fewer than twenty-four wild turkeys parading down the street, mostly chicks.
I don’t see them today, as the rain has returned, and all is gray....more
Roof Books presents David Buuck (Co-Founder and Editor of Tripwire), Jean Day (The Triumph of Life), and Deputy Director of Small Press Distribution Laura Moriarty (Who That Divines)....more
Politics has become a bloated balloon on the horizon of our days, marked with the face of the Pr*sident, grinning under his orange corona like a demented sun-god, a raucous Ra. It burns....more
Today is the day that Pr*sident Trump shut down the American borders to refugees, green card holders, and non-citizens with paid for and improved visas—if they were from certain “Muslim majority” countries… It is also the day his administration made it clear that, going forward, “Christian” refugees would be given priority over all other refugees—and then denied the existence of a religious test....more
Thomas Merton, the most prominent Catholic monk of the 20th century, famously left the world to live a cloistered life at the Cistercian Abbey of Gethsemini in rural Kentucky, taking vows and becoming Father Louis. As many will recall, he described his journey to the cloister in one of the century’s masterpieces of memoir, The Seven Story Mountain....more
John Else (True South: Henry Hampton and “Eyes on the Prize,” the Landmark Television Series That Reframed the Civil Rights Movement) in conversation with Spencer Nakasako and Orlando Bagwell....more
In my last column, the Muse inspired me to write about dreams. And since then, I’ve been thinking about other types of altered consciousness. As a guy who often hangs out with Catholic monks, and who practices “Will Rogers spirituality”—that is, I’ve never met a religion I didn’t like—I take an interest in miracles and myths of all sorts, and the season of Christmas, Chanukah, and the winter solstice (the pagan Yule), which all speak of the miraculous arrival of light in darkness, is a good time to reflect on such matters....more
Friday 1/6: Jon Sindell launches his new book of stories, Family Happiness. Participants in this event include Kyrsten Bean, Michael Crabtree, Steven Kacsmar, Lynn Mundell, and Sandra Wassilie. Free, 7 p.m., Octopus Literary Salon.
Saturday 1/7: Aggregate Space Gallery and Featherboard Reading Series will celebrate five years of literature and art with a Small Press Book Fair featuring Bootstrap Press, Nomadic Press, Featherboard Writing Series, SpeCt!...more
Do you keep a dream journal?
I started as a teenager, and continue on-and-off.
Sometimes I can’t tell the difference between a dream and a memory. Does this happen to you? Or am I confessing to something strange and pathological? Where is the line between pathology and creativity?...more
It is year’s end and a time for holidays.
Some folks will leave town, some will stay home and drink egg nog while others abstain, some will exchange gifts, some will get happy, some will get depressed. But few will schedule or attend literary events in the SF Bay Area, and we have little to list until after 12/25 has passed, and then, but one event....more
Oh better far to live and die
Under the brave black flag I fly
Then play a sanctimonious part
With a pirate head and a pirate heart!!
–The Pirates of Penzance
At fifteen years old, I was a runaway. It was perhaps 9:30 at night, my first night out, having hitchhiked a couple of hundred miles north towards Tallahassee, when they rushed me to the emergency room from the teen center where I’d gone to look for a crash pad....more
Wednesday 12/14: McSweeney’s presents Emily Carr (Whosoever Has Let a Minotaur Enter Them, or a Sonnet). Free, 7 p.m., Alley Cat Books.
Thursday 12/15: Poet and “political researcher” Peter Dale Scott reads....more
Wednesday 11/30: City Lights celebrates the publication of the magazine, Freeman’s: 2: Family: The Best New Writing on Family, from Grove Press. Editor John Freeman will be on hand. Free, 7 p.m., City Lights.
Thursday 12/1: Novelist (Exiles) and short story writer Cary Groner reads for Story Hour at the Morrison Library at UC Berkeley....more