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tv   [untitled]    December 24, 2010 6:00am-6:30am PST

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bring him food. i can no longer serve him drink. the jackel lies in his bed. you ask me about his reed pipe. the wind must play it for him. you ask me about his sweet songs. the wind must sing them for him. satur, the mother of dimusi, weeps for his song. once my boy wandered so freelly on the steppe, now he is captured. once dimusi wandered so freely on the steppe, now he is bound. the ewe gives up her lamb, the goat gives up her kid. my heart plays the reed pipe of mourning. in a place where he once said my mother will ask for me, now he cannot move his hands, now
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he cannot move his feet. i would see my child. the mother walked to the desolate place. she looked at the slain wild bull. she looked into its face. she said, my child, the face is yours. the spirit has fled. there is mourning in the house. there is grief in the inner chambers. the sister wandered about the city, weeping for her brother. gestanana wandered about the city, weeping for dimusi. oh, my brother, who is your sister? i am your sister. oh, dimusi, who is your mother? i am your mother. the day that dawns for you will also dawn for me. the day that you will see, i will also see. i would find my brother, i would comfort him, i would
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share his fate. when she saw the sister's grief, when anana saw the grief of gestana, she spoke to him gently. dimusi is no more. i would take you to him, but i do not know the place. then a fly appeared. the holy fly circled the air above anana's head and spoke, if i tell you where dimusi is, what are you give me? anana said, if you tell me, i will let you frequent the beer houses and taverns. i will let you dwell among the talk of the wise ones. i will let you dwell among the songs of the minstrals. the fly spoke. lift your eyes to the edges of the steppe.
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lift your eyes to arali. there you will find gestanana's brother. there you will find the shepherd, dimusi. anana and gestanana went to the steppe. they found dimusi weeping. anana took his and and said, you will go to the underworld for half of the year. your sister, since she asked, will go the other half. on the day gestanana is called, that day you will be set free. anana set dimusi's hand in the and of the holy, great is your renoun, holy aristagal. i sing your praises.
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thank you.
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>> in conjunction with an an exhi bigz we had ann an exhi bigz we had ann anan tholl have the same title. it's my pleasure to introduce some of the writers from this book. i will give you an introduction of each of them as i introduce them for their speaking turn. first up we have debbie yee. debbie yee is an attorney and poet and supporter and organizer of the nonprofit asian american arts community. she's received her undergraduate and law degrees from uc berkeley and bolt. born and raised in sacramento,
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california. she continues to call northern california her home. and now lives in san francisco. so, with that i'd like to introduce debbie yee as our first speaker. >> this is called jasper john's wagon. >> i have an idea of how the fifth star was killed dear empire not by gunfire at close range, not in the study with the pen knife, not by the umbrella, crushed by the revolving door not jostled or hemorrhaged the narrow drain. we caught the tar and the bullet we came to the body encostic casement of skin rig motor us framed the opened mouths scream. wail for your mother wrap our sons in silken ribbons in a galaxy. the cause has been perp traited. we are adrift on a baron sea.
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the fleet diminishes me. who shouts for us now, dear empire? this next one is a postcard for a reason that i kept of harold's club in reno, nevada. i don't know if it exists it's a really old postcard. harold's club made we think of harold and the purple crayon. harold's club. who would figure let loose the boy with the purple crayon. let him conkokt the loses slots in women. let loose his imagination. ended as high as sea gulls or the reverse w's topped with bold topped centers the rudeaments of the buzzum and life itself.
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>> pen and ink. in the way we demonstrate speech by quotation marks the ill administrator kapt urs speed by 2 lines of the pen much the trotting horse quoted at the knees all 4 and the lady side saddled atop him frozen in place by crossed hatched marks. courseut to indicate the petticoat aroused into activity by the muscular steed. unintended garden. whether o(inaudible) the propery line, i promise not to water the spring flower and plants that remain as brown stubbel on the chins of my train. take care of dry foilage. i let the japanese maybel swat
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the afi ds on it's own. purple spotted brush. 2 calla lillies take root. birds return listening to lost meats all day until dusk beckons them to come to the nest and try again in the morning. this next poem is indian an ina ontholingly. on telegraph avenue it's no longer in existence, the sadness of this. berkeley, late fall. um -- this is from forest hamer who is a bay area poet who wrote berkeley late spring. this is berkeley late fall. i have been browsing the peet ree section had come to lose the
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unconcern but persistant rain that followed me in as a trail of damp shoe prints and dripping conscientious hacompanied to a solitude. i ran my right index if anything are across each spine flesh going along volume and groove. imagine the book seller anding by to fold and flatten we down to on an oblong shape and reshelf me into an americay sandwich between the t's and v's stacked up along the unexpected and unknown. i notice that the pe ems i imagine crowding around you were the unquieted the unrequited. distant citizens far from the disposition of the safety of s's the determinant d's and resultant r's where the poems are make believe. unlike the bumpy organic one i
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find myself wandering into. this one is about the moon. mabel and maureen. the moon regrets it's father's avd vise, take the night shift. [laughter]. each evening he dressed his forehead in linseed oil and drying powerhouse the expansion of reflection. it's difficult to get shut eye the hours before how the sunshines and how dollar is no curtain wide enough to screen it's rays. he takes out his bag lunching mouthfuls of apple juice and pb and j. on his watchdog garts. diners are darkened, empty much we are not open for you, moon they seem to say. and so said the cart vendors the
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waitresses like mabel and maureen. how mabel and lauereen stroll indeed full skirted prichled merrily the moon lit evening arms in other men's arms. this next one is, the next 2, which are my last 2 are something about passing. among us. in the sunken spring as in winter and fall and every season that our teak of spring with souro and jubulation are fragile hearts are as children grabbing drink tumblers spilld and milky. teach finger tips reaches for the stars and night clouds hopeful that we might give respite to our orbegans our earth bound regrets. we ask or wonder in the moments when we catch ourselves
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breathing where do the beloved go. in the warm cham bers of the living. we imagine how they might wallow away our earthly number of days playing gin rummy with another grand mother. ladies of historical footnotes. telescope the heavens on capurncus's shirt tales. wounds and so spots pounding out quiet inner drum beats while we traverse the gravity boots. warmed bite disassistant c.j. hunt inner spaces is dusted with enchantments of what love has left us. this is tile. consider the corn's ear a tiling
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of pale yellow pillows, tiny. or hexagonal pearls addressed on the bathroom floor. i flip through a 12 month calendar each tile numbered, each 30, each sheet of a dozen passing, passing. thank you. [applause] >> our next speaker is nancy hong. nancy is an artist, writer, children's book ill administrator, curator and art's administrator. devoted her artistic career to the nonprofit art's sector creatingim mags for political, social and community events and causes her writing has been published in severalan tholologies. with that i introduce nancy hong. >> thank you for coming this is
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called bread and soup. beneath the bear bulb we gather to eat our evening meal of bread and soup. here behind the mission walls the kind speaks to us in euphemisms we avoids staring at our brown roasts faces, our hard boiled hands and violet veins he mouths his words like a fish careful not to mention china to us who are now fartherless and motherless in this new country. he does not know we created our own miracle that transformed the stale, hard crust into wrich crackling pork skinning. the soup and broth. our lips smack in satisfaction
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of this, our only taste of home. >> this piece is on angel island. the angel island immigration station where chinese and otherim grants were detained and interrogated from 1910 to 1940 before they were allowed into america. many adopted false identities in order to escape this strict act. our morning strolls to mountain lake park my wife of 50 years stays a step behind. she needs my arm for balance but avoids my touch. she counts the 10 sign posts. 5 stop signs and 2 mailboxes to our destination. she moves her lips as if remembering. before i came here, i had a
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name. 4 palm trees faced us when we landed loomed like guardians to pass the golden gate we tell them what they wanted to hear. on this island of desperate dreams we shed our skins and wore new once. we burned our parents name and let our past curl into smoke. no longer my father's daughter. no longer my husband's wife. only the sea gulls know who i really am. for months we were held in separate rooms the dampness went through the bunks and gnawed our bones the wales of ghosts kept us awake. 32 steps to my father's house.
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4 windows facing north. 24 steps to my uncle's house, 2 doors facing south. i have 3 sisters, 2 brothers, 4 cousins on my father's side. now i store the memory in a drawer along with bitter herbs and rhinoceros horns we dine at restaurants on the better side of towns with pink table cloths and real flowers in the vases. we hardly go to china town. before i came here, i held his hand. now my heart is a chinese box of riddels, no one understands. i blew hot soup for her on foggy nights. she trims the ends of my thinning hair, still she can't
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forget that day she faced the interrogation officers and said she was my sister. i have not told anyone we move like shadows in a haze of secrets and lies. now stairs fascinate her. she knows the neighbor's house by heart. 21 steps to the door. 9 windows. 1-1/2 bathrooms. she counts every timely visit just to make sure. in case one day she has to know. before i came here, i had a name. >> ships of wind. softly size the swaying trees in the secret place stilled by
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time. we toil between the deep brown earth crumbs past frommant toant in orderly procession surrounded by crushed new born grass and flattened flowers. many of us have died here. who's secret [inaudible] we do not know. nor the shift of wind the sudden wake that blocked the sun changes the course and brought with it the endless nights. we enl know the passing of formless clouds o pass the porch forced to forge a new since the coming of the black rain. number 2. there secrets here not ever known. we only carry the sudden weight of memories. not at hair pins, green tea, rice balls wrapped in silken
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cloth. melted crayons, moth and marbles. flightless wings in a brown bag. they are safe inside us. neither shift of wind nor sun's cruel wrath can force us from our charge into the endless night we stand our ground monolithic protectors of the broken spirit. 3. there was a place sacred beaconed by time. i remember. the new born grass trampled beneath the earth. no one else should die here. there was a flash, no, 2 secrets locked in a fire ball. the shift of wind the sudden weight of blue heat formless
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days worn past, changed since the coming of endless night. >> and my last poem -- speaks to world events. and now i'm also thinking about the atrocities in berma. called the world i leave you. once there were 2 towers then there were none. i searched among the rubble for bones of men. what kind of world i leave you, what's human left of race? what more can i give you to resurrect your faith?
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smiles, i give and laughter like rain, flakes of snow that gently splay against the window pain. light transformed to rainbow, sweat from a dancer's brow. giggles of rivers running down mountains, flowers unfolding to face the sky. pain from sclap nal's path. blood from solders punctured hearts still borns pushed from aching wombs this belongs to you. dirt and miracles reborn. sweetness made sweeter by bitter sun and shadow forged as one. once there were 2 towers then there were none. between the once and the then
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lay all the hopes and fears of men. this is the world i leave you. ripe and full as a mother's breast. a baby's licking tongue grabbing hand and glistened eyes. thank you. [applause]. our next reader is rashne. lived studies and work indeed india, pakistan, lebanon, the united states and mexico. she is the editor of living in america. poetry and fiction by south asian american writers. encounter people of asian decent in the americas her novel, braided tongue was published in 2003. i introduce rashne. >> i'm reading from a selection from a longer narrative. memory is no longer confused.
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it has a home land. from a farm by the late ali. sometimes the circle breaks and the woman meets the child. face-to-face. each one seeing for the first time her strength in the other. a poem by jenny. [inaudible]. after more than a year of e mails and phone conversations, amy,ling and i met at the university of wisconsin in madison. it was sometime during the mid 1980. calcutta was very hot, said amy. i wondered how our conversation about asian american literature veered to calcutta? calcutta was very hot but i got my first doll there. we spent some time in calcutta
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when we fled to the united states. the doll didn't look like me blond hair and blue ice bought from calcutta. she comforted me when i remember the sounds of the japanese bombs that forced us to leave our home. did you have a dog? an indian doll to comfort you when you were a child? i told amy about my doll named champy and my oldest paternal uncle who resembled chinese ancestors. my uncle was an astounding musician played the violin and k
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helo. i would pick up shanty's head and place her ears on the door because her ears were smaller than my ears. i wanted her to listen carefully to the wonderful sound. i may have know in the way children know but my uncle's music would disappear from my life far too soon. he died when he was 40 years old. i tried to tell amy how my grand mother asked everyone why no one could bring her oldest son back to life even after we made great progress in medical science. but in the end, broke my grand mother's heart was her 2 daughters could not come for their brother's funeral. when it explained to her that my aunts who lived in india and
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pack tan were considered enemy aliens we looked at us as we were inmates. we are brothers and sisters all of them are my children and went to grieve in the privacy of her prayers. we were quiet for sometime, both of us try to break away from the sounds of bombs and the sounds of grieve that accompany the tearing apart of people. 1 from the other. amy broke our silence. what do you mean pieces of your doll. i had 3 dolls all 3 were shanty. all 3 dolls were made of brittle plastic like material we called cutcha caw. they were hollow the different parts of their bodies were hooked with rubber bands.
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whatever held those 3 parts together they always broke within a few weeks and the dolls continued to exist in their separate components. i suspect my male cousin was the deconductor of the dolls. the grownups promised to reconstruct them but didn't have the time to follow up on their promises or forgot i was carrying around parts of dolls. except one aunt. she screamed every time she saw me carrying the 3 sets of legs and arms and 3 heads 234 thericcety carriage i pushed around. to assure my aunt the dolls were doing well. i would reassemble them mixing and matching the different parts of the dolls. may be it was a child's way


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