• Everyday is Christmas – In Venice – Tina Catalina Corcoran
  • Living in Venice – Mary Getlein
  • Venice as Mecca, Jerusalem – John Haag
  • The Sounds of Venice – Abigail Templeton
  • Dennis Hopper – Roger Houston
  • Venice Dreams – Jim Smith
  • Venice, Oh Venice – Cosmo
  • Seen on the Paloma sidewalk, near OFW – Anonymous
  • Into the Country of the Weak – krista schwimmer
  • The Gulf – Hal Bogotch

Everyday is Christmas
– In Venice!

Everyday is Christmas – In Venice!
Everyday is the 4th of July!
Everyday’s a play day,
A May Day, hey day, GAY Day,
“Ole!”, Shout hooray day! – We’re alive!

Everyday’s YOUR birthday – In Venice!
Celebrate your worth day everyday.
“Local Color’s real here,
“Magic fingers heal here
“Vegetables” can feel here – so they say!

Everyone is someone – In Venice!
Every “bum” is some Dear Mother’s Child!
Poets, punks, and preachers,
Health nuts, drunks and teachers,
Hippies, yippies, weirdoes, winos – WILD!

Venice is for Valentines and Lovers!
Saint Patrick’s Days – That never seem to end.
Stars play in the sunshine,
Blonds share all the fun time,
War wounds, of the worst kind, come to mend.

Commemorate the “Dream Town” – we call Venice!
Here, the University of Venice LIVES!
Addicts mix with purists,
Natives mix with tourists,
The rich mix with the poorest – Hey, what gives?

Venice, an oasis, to the traveler.
Yet, “Family Town”- This Kingdom-by-the-Sea.
“Roller Skating Cuties,”
(Barely) bathing beauties,
Music, mermaids, muscles – ALL for Free!

Treasure your “Vacation Days” – In Venice!
Participate – In all the ambiance!
Weight-lift, (if you’re able)
Share your cafe table,
Support “the local artists” – needs and wants!

Yes, Everyday’s a Holiday – In Venice!
Everyday’s an Easter Parade!
Halloweener’s “hang” here
(The V-13’s a gang here),
STREETSMART sings our “Sunset Serenade”!

When you think you’ve seen it all – In Venice!
SPECIAL guests drop in to “blow your mind”!
See friendly porpoise play here!
Spot Great Pacific Grays here!
Catch Krishna’s BIG Parade here – What a find!

Celebrate “The Spirit” – That is Venice!
“Live and Let” – “If you snooze you lose” –
“Don’t hit up the residents” –
“Cheers – to Independence!”

–Tina Catalina Corcoran
Living in Venice

You put my friend in handcuffs-
for playing music
in Venice!
a place, a holy place,
Where one can be buddha,
a jesus, a homeless monk looking for his dharma and
accidently pick up a drum,
or a guitar,
and get in touch with Divine Power…
Blissed out by life, we celebrate:
We SING to the power of the Lord, come down…
That’s what they say,
Those Bible folk always waving their books around-
Well, I got a book wide open in front of
my face!
Birds, currents, waves, ocean breezes, Love,
sons, daughters, come to the edge of the world,
as we know it,
and drink in the colors of the sky!
beautiful sky- blue- pink-purple bands of LIGHT
streaking across the sky!
God is talking to you-
A little present from God-
to remind you of how very Blessed
you are to live in this holy place:
a place where many a lost child has found solace-
Someone to hug you, feed you, love you…
be glad that you are alive-
be there for you until you can be happy…

You put my friend in handcuffs for playing MUSIC
you may as well try to lock up the OCEAN
we have to SING
That’s our job: we play music and SING-
we praise God,
Lift up our heads and SING!

Ibraiham in handcuffs-
he didn’t turn off the mic fast enough-
so the new cop started yelling
and put my friend in handcuffs-
The night before-
well, we had this great party at Sponto’s
we were all happy
everybody loving each other-
spinning round and round,
Through the wheels on the baby buggies,
through the wheels of people in wheelchairs,
through the circles in the AIR
through the shining eyes of the children
dancing through their days…
music provided free by various and different
street artists,
music people, joksters, coyote people,
Always laughing, when they ain’t bitching…
About what?
Try living on tips while feeling like a Mozart,
a Picasso- “outsider art” is what they call us.

And that’s when it got me:
That next day-
watching another pathetic attempt of LAPD
to abuse, fuck with,”pretend arrest”.
hey, “HELLO!”
It’s harassment, intimidation, false arrest,
“drive-by-fucking-with you”…

Why you gotta be so mean?
The Miamization of Venice is in full swing.
Police are on alert:
placate wealthy home-owners-
harass the poor people-
rich people don’t like to see poor people.

Police:new job:
shut down the vendors
shut down the music
try to crush the poor people into the ground.

People are not cockroaches!
You cannot get rid of us so easy
we ain’t going anywhere-
we are already HERE.
This is my home,
this is my land,
these are my brothers and sisters,

–Mary Getlein
Venice as Mecca, Jerusalem
By John Haag
I sit here on the sand,
a holy place on sacred land,
remembering the tribes and clans
that gathered here, took counsel
and dispersed; forseeing all
the ones that will arrive,
drink our blessed water and survive,
only to disperse in turn
to spread the word
amongst a disbelieving world.

Take heart, my heart,
for here is never lost
anything forever (but the soul
at times sent wandering
along some other plane).

It too returns safely,
found like a cache of nuts
the squirrel lays by against
a cold day in hell, forgets,
then comes upon in time
of need.

The promised land is here;
the time is near at hand.
The Sounds of Venice
By Abigail Templeton
A rip roar of tides
The breaking of water
The clacking of skateboard meeting pavement
A whirl of breath
Notes from a piano that has never known ceiling
Radio blast that almost reaches sky
The clanking of back alley cans
The Sunday swirl of rollerblades
The swiftness of brushes
Helicopters yowling overhead
The faint blur of sand hitting concrete
The hush of spray cans
Seagull squawk and the shuffle of pages turning
A high-pitched laugh where the Pacific has lapped up on bare thighs

The sounds of Venice pound through neighborhoods,
howl past LA freeway signs, cascade into open ocean.
The sounds of Venice are a small marking of this carousel town—
An eruption of kaleidoscope and sea.

18:01 Saturday 5, June 5, 2010, inside the Talking Stick, for Dennis Hopper….. The LA WEEKLY stares right up at me, As I compose my thoughts on what may be As sad a passing as I’ve known, of late. But let me render praise and counter fate. The memories come flooding. Numerous, Too numerous to list. It surely does Provoke imagination. And so I Reflect, in my attempt to have a try. Rebellion comes to mind. One might suppose That you would not sit still, nor would you pose, But taking Dean’s suggestions, you were great At simply being real. I contemplate The substance, effortless, and what may be One lofty Magnum Opus, easily….. Roger Houston, Venice
Venice Dreams
By Jim Smith
Venice, it seems, is buildings, streets, canals
but look again, it is built from dreams
and knitted together by we, the dreamers

The biggest dreamer, Abbot Kinney,
dreamed Venice out of the void
And into the soft fog of the world

By his side, Irving Tabor dreamed
of sunlight and good for his people
In a few blocks called Oakwood

When Abbot died, little dreamers
sat by the beach and dreamed
only for a family, a job and a home

Then came the poetic dreams of the Beats
set to the lonely bebop riffs
of seagulls’ cries and waves pounding

Stuart Perkoff dreamed
of the Lady, and the Lady
dreamed of Stuart

John Haag dreamed of freeing Venice
for the people, for all the people
to live in peace in a city of their own.

Philomene Long wove
her dream of timeless love
from her lofty perch by the sea.

Now, thousands dream
their dreams that everyday
recreate Venice in our minds.

Do you have a Venice dream?
If you do, make if real,
make if real.

Venice, Oh Venice

Venice oh Venice you cosmic whore!
Every one’s playground
our home away from home
I love you, I lust you
Your healing sunsets and
expansive views, ocean scents, people galore
music and shows
freaks and Sneaks add to the glue of Venice!
my soul got stuck here forty years ago.
home at last, home at last


Seen on the Paloma sidewalk, near OFW:

The Beauty

heart away
Into the Country of the Weak
(After Tereza in “The Unbearable Lightness of Being” by Milan Kundera)

i am leaving now
for the country of the weak
you who are so light
unable to see
that i am heavy now
in my darkness —
an overripe pear
bruised by sweetness
(too much i am told)
too much sweetness
that makes me heavy
and i fall on the wet green grass
my skin torn in the corner.

Will you eat me now?

i am weary
with the sweetness of myself,
i, who must go now
like brave Tereza
unable to forsake
the unbearable lightness of our beings
together. i write you
bruised and alone
wanting you, too
to come with me
into the country of the weak.

–krista schwimmer
The Gulf

The personal is personal
I harbor grave doubts

my black blood
seems to seep
from forever veins

million year old pelicans
hostage to a crude century

glossy sheen on the surface
swamp water, an elixir
an omniscient presence

adding limes and shellfish
to coat of arms shield
token knowledge

dark waters run deep
reason, a chasm
thunder of warring systems

as Big Plunder           (aha!)
gouges a gash in the fabric
of wholly-unified Tao field

after 76 libertarian days
of well-point doctors purchasing time
LoozyAnna’s womb

still bleeds
official explanations suck
black holes, pulling hydrocarbon mass

this scant matter
sticks in my craw.

–Hal Bogotch

Categories: Poetry

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