So I'm finally breathing again...
Man oh man, I've had a wild past few days... between working on a research project, grading my students' portfolios, reviewing gallies for the nth time, and working freshmen orientations at the university, enter, the Valley International Poetry Festival last weekend.
Anyway, I had a fantastic time. Even though I've been insanely busy, I think I finally see the light at the end of the tunnel and hopefully my life can start getting back to some sort of normalacy where I can focus on writing, submitting, and just... BREATHING :-)
Anyway... the valley international poetry festival... I'll blog a little bit about that!
By the way, I've been a VIPF regular since ::drum roll please:: 2009! Can you believe that? And the festival keeps getting better with age.
Thursday, April 26th
Here's the group picture of all the anthologized poets. Me, well, you know who I am. But yeah. The anthology this year I think is the best one yet! It's available on amazon and I have three poems included!
Ah, here's the man with the plan, Daniel Garcia Ordaz. He's the founder of VIPF, looking all spiffy here in his tie. Daniel's a Valley poetry staple. Not only is he a great poet, but I think he's the best M.C around.
Anyway, when I got up to the mic, I reminded everyone that my poem was about a flower, A FLOWER, a flower... but of course, of course, I have a reputation as a "sexy" poet and no one believed me. So for the remainder of the evening, people were declaring that their poems, too, were about "flowers" ahhhh.... right.
And here I am with two other antholigzed poets, Linda Romero and Lady Mariposa. See our official looking name tags?
Lady Mariposa WAS a Valley poetry staple, too, for years and years. She recently moved up to Washington State, but Daniel brought her down for the festival. It was great to see her again!
And Linda? Well, we're just really good friends :-) I met her back when I was working on my MFA.
Now, this is something I promise you'll never see again. Daniel came up to me and asked me, real nicely, if I would participate in the slam. "NO!" I shout. And then I get one of those sad faces...
He needed a "sacrificial lamb" to go first, get the judges warmed up. I don't know if it was the ambiance, or maybe the wine, or maybe I was just really not thinking straight but... somehow I agreed. And there I am up on stage, "slamming." This will never, I repeat "NEVER" happen again.
Oh! Here's the Slam crew! From Left, Edward Vidaurre, Sean Elliot, Lady Mariposa, and Amalia Ortiz. What a fantastic photo!
I was tired, ready to call it a night. After all, the big day of the poetry festival is always on Saturday! So this goddess needed her beauty rest.
Saturday, April 28th
Saturday at VIPF usually consists of early morning workshops, a whirlwind of readings throughout the entire Valley, from Mission to the Padre Islands and sometimes even a few across the river in Mexico (see, it's not called the INTERNATIONAL poetry festival for no reason!). I'm yet to experience this craziness to its fullest, mainly because we always have entering freshmen orientation this particular day at the university. And... well, work comes first. This year was no exception. Sadly, I missed the morning readings :( And didn't make it until the "Afternoon Delight" reading at Jitterz coffee shop in Mission (which is one of my favorite venues here in the Valley to read at, by the way).