Tuesday, December 4, 2012

AFRICA POEM (4): HELPFUL ALIENS, TELL US YOUR SECRETS

A new book and beverage is on its way. But first, here's a recent Africa poem from Katie, my sister in Africa, who talks to me these days more or less exclusively via Gchat. Turns out secrets can be told from New York to Africa instantaneously in this here 21st C, and I can't tell you what the secret was, but one thing I will tell you is that Katie's Gchat status message has been a link to the Google doodle competition for way too long:


 me:  helpful alien
 Sent at 1:00 PM on Tuesday
 katie:  very helpful alien
 Sent at 1:02 PM on Tuesday
 katie:  so what's new
how is life
tell us your secrets
 Sent at 1:03 PM on Tuesday



A couple photos for good measure: 

KATIE'S VIEW:



BERTHA, KATIE'S CAT: 




Tuesday, October 16, 2012

SO BIG: BACKWATER RISING VIDEO


So I made an EP with my friends, the Vitti Brothers. We're called So Big and we had a great August together making the whole thing become something we can share. The EP is called August. Here's the video for the single, Backwater Rising, the lyrics of which are a modified (translated 8 times in Google Translate and then translated back to English) version of the blues classic of the same name. 

Enjoy this video with a glass of rosé, the weird, mellow, cool friend of the other wines. 

The rest of the EP will be available next week. I'll keep you posted, whomever you may be.




Wednesday, October 3, 2012

AFRICA POEM (3): YOU ARE A FLAME FLOATING THROUGH THE DESERT


Today, Katie taught me about Mwenge, a torch carried through Tanzania. Tanzanians talk to the torch "as if it were a person." It's like the Olympics. The torch is treated like a King: 

katie:  hahaha
so there's this torch that travels around the country
and it goes from village to village
it's called mwenge
and today we had to good fortune of having it come to kinampanda (my village)
 me:  nice!
who was carrying it
or was it floating
 katie:  hahaha
it's carried
and there's a big ceremony for it
they dance and sing for it
they sing about it like it's a human
referring to it as "you"
 katie:  it was so strange
the strangest thing i've experienced here and that's saying something
it's just this torch
but it's treated like a king

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

AFRICA POEM (2): SO WHAT WOULD YOU DO, TUNA JUICE

As soon as I get that Heather Christle poetry post written (will have to get the book first, it's in the mail) another book and beverage will be up. Or maybe I'll write about another book in the interim. 

For now, my sister needs help. If you have any advice to offer Katie, you should--she is a friend in need: what should she eat? Notice the internal rhyme between the a's in date and ache (second-to-last line). Good stuff. FamilyGchatPoems: 

katie:  sup bra
me:  ay sistong
how you do
katie:  i'm goooood
debating whether or not to open this can of tuna
it's the only dinner option since i dont have any water
BUT
if i open it i'll have tuna juice all over my hands and no water to wash them with
me:  perfect
that's a new africa poem
 katie:  hahahahh
i love it
these are the things i would never remember
 me:  let's start talking about this poem before i post it
 katie:  but now they're immortalized
it' perfect
hahaha
okay
me:  everyone on blogger is going to see this
that's like, 18mill
plus
 katie:  really?
 me:  no
just friends
 katie:  oh i was like
......
what
very confused
 me:  hahaha
 katie:  so what would you do
i'm not super hungry
because i ate a bunch of dates after school and then i got a stomach ache during my run/walk
but i know it's going to be a lot of hours until i can meal again

Water: 


Tuna Can: 



The Place Where Katie Eats:



Wednesday, September 26, 2012

TINY TINY FISH HEADS: A POEM FROM AFRICA

My sister is a member of the Peace Corps, and she's peace corpsing in a town called Singida, in Tanzania, in Africa. She lives in a small, pink home with a cat whose name is Bertha.

Here's a little GChat poem from my sister, who would not have called this a poem, and who did not send this to me, but a friend of hers recently sent this to me and it is worth reading (Katie tells me there's excellent ginger beer out there, so I imagine this poem is best read with a ginger beer in hand):


katie:  and this sunday i felt like s-h-i-t and couldn't stomach being in the market in singida
literally almost threw up
outdoor market
meat hanging up
90 degrees
you know
so i have no food even from town except rice beans and nuts
and it jsut gets old
like no veggies in the mi
x
went out today in search of bananas
figured they'd get me through until sat when ig o back to town
no bananas
i hate it when there are no bananas
so i went to a little shop to get some dagaa for my cat
it's these tiiiny dried fish
and people eat them out here
and so i was like AM I REALLY SO ABOVE IT?
so i soaked them
and just tried sauteeing them
i screwed it up
BUT
they're still edible
it's not so bad
and it's nutrition
sooooo
here i am.
eating fish heads
tiny, tiny fish heads

Dagaa:




Bertha: 

Photo: Hello, new friend!

Singida: 

Monday, September 17, 2012

HEATHER CHRISTLE THE TREES THE TREES

                                                     

Just ordered myself a copy of Heather Christle's The Trees The Trees here and soon I'll let you know what to drink while reading it. It's not her newest (she has another newer book from Wesleyan University Press, What is Amazing) but thankfully this isn't really a review website, it's an appreciation site, so I don't care much about chronology here, or staying up to date, and there's always time for more books and drinks in the future, right?

In the interim, explore this, a really cool project she put together with Slope a while back. Drink water while reading in order to prepare yourself for the main event.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

PUBLISHING THE WORLD


                                   
And also I'm excited that these people exist. They organize get togethers for young people to talk about translated fiction. Good things.