P(ear): Margaret Randall and Mitch Rayes Poetics Talk
Sunday October 9th at 3 pm Local Poets Guild Presents another P(EAR): Poetics and Poems and you can catch Margaret Randall and Mitch Rayes talking craft and aesthetic concerns both in and out of country at Acequia Booksellers 4019 -4th St. NW that Sunday. You won’t want to tease..
Mitch Rayes was born breech in Detroit, 1958. First of six children to a former Irish nun and a Lebanese chemist. By the age of eight his stated ambition was to become “a bum”. A year after that he was chastised (parochial school) for walking out of church and across a parking lot on his knees. He attended Wayne State University in Detroit as a Merit Scholar, and Naropa Institute in Boulder before the school was accredited (1977), never graduating. He has traveled over much of the continent, by thumb, foot, car, bus, and train, from northern Ontario to Nicaragua, coast to coast. He once walked (with poet Lisa Gill) from the ruined pueblo of Paa-ko NM to the shrine at Chimayo, most of it in a pair of shoes he found along the way in a dumpster. Mitch has spent many years in Mexico, among other things working as a guide and outfitter specializing in remote areas of Chiapas. His mountain cabin near San Cristobal was seized by armed indigenous rebels in 1994. Distinguished in many fields: poet, translator, musician, sound engineer, arts organizer, outfitter, and construction tradesman. He writes stunning work and now also runs the Projects, a new warehouse theater at 36 14 High Street NE. Local poets guild does open mics with features there every Monday. More on that soon. It’s fun. 2-poem limit, always a feature, sometimes people read two of their own or on by a classic mixed inn.
r, outfitter, and construction trades
Mitch will be opening for the stellar Margaret Randall. Read a thoughful blog post she put up here:. Her bio and books are too extensive to do real justice to but i’m gonna pull a little teaser so you’ll have an inkling what kind of talks you’ll be in for.
Margaret Randall is a feminist poet, writer, photographer and social activist. Born in New York City in 1936, she has lived for extended periods in Albuquerque, New York, Seville, Mexico City, Havana, and Managua. Shorter stays in Peru and North Vietnam were also formative. In the turbulent 1960s she co-founded and co-edited EL CORNO EMPLUMADO / THE PLUMED HORN, a bilingual literary journal which for eight years published some of the most dynamic and meaningful writing of an era. From 1984 through 1994 she taught at a number of U.S. universities.
Margaret was privileged to live among New York’s abstract expressionists in the 1950s and early ’60s, participate in the Mexican student movement of 1968, share important years of the Cuban revolution (1969-1980), the first four years of Nicaragua’s Sandinista project (1980-1984), and visit North Vietnam during the heroic last months of the U.S. American war in that country (1974). Her four children—Gregory, Sarah, Ximena and Ana—have given her ten grandchildren: Lia, Martin, Daniel, Richi, Sebastian, Juan, Luis Rodrigo, Mariana, Eli, and Tolo. She has lived with her life companion, the painter and teacher Barbara Byers, for almost a quarter centuryMargaret had more than 80 books in print. A number of stores in the city can help you out finding them, including Acequia Booksellers where this talk will take place.
In 1984, Margaret came home to the United States, only to be ordered deported when the government invoked the 1952 McCarran-Walter Immigration and Nationality Act, judging opinions expressed in some of her books to be “against the good order and happiness of the United States.” The Center for Constitutional Rights defended her and many writers and others joined in an almost five-year battle for reinstatement of citizenship. She won her case in 1989. In 1990 she was awarded the Lillian Hellman and Dashiell Hammett grant for writers victimized by political repression; and in 2004 was the first recipient of PEN New Mexico’s Dorothy Doyle Lifetime Achievement Award for Writing and Human Rights Activism.