Venice, 2014 – By Mary Getlein
Necessity – By Hillary Kaye
1 Wanda – By Pano Douvos
Remembering Amnesia – By Suzanne Verdal
You Can’t Play Music There – By Ronald McKinley
Venice Drumbeats – By Marty Liboff
Dudley Avenue Pagoda – By B. Meade
Venice Nights – By Savannah B. Nolan
My Happiness Has Wings – By James Stone
Epitaph – By Humberto Gomez Sequeira-HuGoS
Venice, 2014
It’s bad enough – the air quality in California
All this construction –
gives local children asthma, dirty air
pollutants in the air, huge trucks going by,
Destroying our heritage – the funky old homes of Venice
rolled over by greedy developers
turning Venice into a series of concrete boxes –
all the boxes look the same –
no room for children, birds, air, sunsets
All that counts is money money money
relentless capitalism –
Once it’s gone, it’s gone
You are bulldozing our dreams
living in a funky little sea-town
where you can wear a slip and pajamas
and it doesn’t matter to anyone
Don’t let the homogenization happen
we are already surrounded by yuppies
who are so anxious to look alike, walk alike, talk alike
A big producer moves in,
took our post office and made it his private office,
right down the street from his empire,
a huge site is scheduled, a huge condo complex.
These guys are hand-in-hand with each other
Greedy capitalists come here to destroy, not create
Destroy our cultural heritage, our history
Destroy Abbot Kinney’s dream of a playground
for ALL, not just people with obscene amounts
of money.
Instead of a minimum wage, what about a maximum
wage? You can only earn so much and then you
have to use the rest of it to distribute income for
The rest of us?
We are not greedy developers –
We don’t know them –
We want to live here,
We were here first – before us were Beatniks:
poet-people, artists, singers, musicians,
people arrested for pornography when painting nudes
people beat up by the cops for belly-dancing
people arrested for singing after 6:00 pm in the winter
This is our home
This is an investment of time and love and memories
We love this place –
go find another place to bulldoze into a pile of dirt
we’re not having it here –
we’re sick of your “smile in our faces, stab us in the back”
Things can be changed –
it’s not over yet –
please don’t tell me it’s over
we need this place for our souls
for our children and our children’s children
don’t tell me it’s going to be a “used-to-be”
That we’ll have to show our children
pictures of how it “used-to-be”
and there is no wonderland here for them
no magic places to run for free, for fun
Don’t let this happen, Venetians!
We have to get together and fight this
We have to stand tall and fight this
We have to fight this, for our hearts and souls
for our brothers and sisters
the people still living here
and the people who used to live here
before they got evicted from their homes.
– Mary Getlein
The girl grew up by necessity.
She grew strong by necessity.
She grew wise  by  necessity.
She grew old, and no one ever
thought about what a strong, wise,
woman she had become.
So she has to go unappreciated
by necessity.
– Hillary Kaye
1 Wanda
“wear desperation like a birthmark
it’s too late to die young
and too early to die in my sleep”
your writer bursts  laugh-blips
through startled lips
his cocoon status breached
W. Coleman controls the game
captain of all  just repeat
captain on land and sea
wins swift with wicked change-up
they couldn’t see em coming
get your head out
she smokes one past the bastard
leaving him “shivering and kicking
down to the ass bone”
the strongest word-hurler   Wanda
great performer immensely on target
voted MVP  Most Valuable Poet
glides erotic across the stage   while
we pick up her trophy for her
she being out of town right now
– Pano Douvos
Remembering Amnesia
How words can scarce describe
Why she was left to hide.
Like pearl inside the shell
Rubbed squarely, years of Hell!
The portion large
When hopes were small,
I fought the cause
Or none at all.
My art sort a religion
Put dreams away
To boxes of forgetfulness
O Clown of God!
But then, momentous knowing
Won’t stop the tears from flowing,
While so many gathered ’round
To watch me falling to the ground.
Then melon came to holly
When Jupiter came to calley,
Dancing circles round the drumming
As Jesus, Krishna, did the humming.
Come down from your cross
You twit with gravitas,
Hurrying up to wait
Spending life for some mistake!
Oh God! Forgive the sinning
For you alone, knows where I’ve been.
The childish whims, the plunging grief.
As time does pass, bring on relief!
I told myself to lighten up
While pouring coffee in the cup.
– Suzanne Verdal
You Can’t Play Music There
By Ronald K. Mc Kinley
You can’t play music there
Only in your designated square
You can’t sit there
Someone might see you think that they are free
You can’t make love there
That is obscene
Show your passion
To be seen
The Po-Po said it’s after sunset, sometimes before
You can’t play it’s a crime
Guitar and Drums weapons to be held in check
You can’t leave your backpack there
with everything you own
it might get stolen by some statute
You can’t sleep there
Or there
Or anywhere
You can’t drink there
It’s the Law
The store can sell it
There logic and reason ends
Just regulation and decree
Yes this is America
If you have the capital
Funds to have fun
You can play your music
In your studio
You can smoke at home
In your smoking jacket
Make love in your vault
Atop your dough
Make a movie anytime, anywhere
leave your discords for the poor
Once a year declare peace and love
Keeping true freedom from their door
Abraham beats his Drum
His heartbeat drumming,drumming…
A rainbow of Musicians
A sunshine of instruments drumming,drumming…
Singers singing,singing…
Abraham drumming,drumming…
Vibrational Echo
Through time and Space
Music drumming,drumming…
Back to our Roots
Our heartbeats beating,beating….
To remember and Feel
Even for the moment ticking,ticking…
Between the drumbeats beating,beating…
A rainbow of souls drumming,drumming…
Universal Love beating,beating…
Abraham drumming,drumming.
– Marty Liboff
Dudley Avenue Pagoda
Under a Morrison moon
Chemical cowboys
Voodoo gearshift
The hourglass of life
Fierce angels
The edge of ruin
– B. Meade
Venice Nights
Venice nights
Life’s sweet delights
Spinning carnival lights
Cool jaded moon
Soft golden sand
We walk hand in hand
We walk onto the promise land
Hear the drums
When the time comes
follow the sound
Watch the mystics whirl around
Light our camp fire
snuggle up beneath the moon
Flames dance from the campfire
Young nights spent on the beach
Amongst the stars and your eluding speech
The bongos play
We are birds of prey
We are youth at play
– Savannah B. Nolan
My Happiness Has Wings
My happiness overflows its boundaries
Silencing my ever haunting deadness
I will let myself enjoy this moment
I feel I have wings to fly
And by them I ambush evil schemes
My love as wild as the wind
Flowing from the south
Bringing the warmth of the sun
I close my eyes and travel
The compassions of grace and mercy
Surround my poor nature
I will lift my hands to praise
Oh, the joys that fill my heart
Are better than lustful gold
Spread like butter on hillsides
Song birds singing a heart’s tune
Remembered in my memory
Softly strummed on the strings
That stretch across my heart
A vast corridor of passage
Lined with art on the walls
A stone floor covered with
An ornate carpet leading
Into the horizon, white
My journey takes its course
– James Stone
By Humberto Gómez Sequeira-HuGóS
Here lie desire and frustration,
sparks generated by the same fire,
which turned into words of ire,
without senseful concatenation,
when pleasure expired on the pyre
that the wind blew into desolation.