Posted in Interviews, Performing, podcast, poetry, Thoughts

Ep 3: Len Germinara – Polis Poet: backbone & all

The interview

I visited Len Germinara’s home to conduct an interview for Iambic Podcast due to Gallery portrait additions being placed at Sacramento Poetry Center for Second Saturday. Beside his dog’s infatuation for attention., we discuss about several topics:

  • Living in Nantucket
  • Writing 8 books
  • DIY to Publishing
  • His love to Slam poetry
  • The story of his Back Injury
  • His Wife and her endeavor
  • Famous Friends
  • Junior Rangers
  • Ecopoetry
Iambic Podcast EP 3: Len Germinara

To view his work and accomplishment: www.lengerminara.com

For more podcast episodes: www.Iambic.podbean.com

Posted in business, Interviews, Life decisions, Performing, podcast, poetry, Thoughts

Iambic (the podcast?)

What happen to Iambic (the Zine)?

It is the year 2020. I have been hosting at Sacramento Poetry center for 1 year now. It has definitely been a interesting experience. I thank Wendy Williams for asking me to do it. I bring local and distance poets to share their poetry and sell their merchandise. But I do recall when I also had a zine to give to people. My literary zine called Iambic. So, what happen to Iambic? Well, I ran out of money. From printing cost and no sponsorship, it did not take long to see diminishing returns. So, I stopped the presses after the one year anniversary. Evil. Iambic was not being utilize so, I donated a volume of zines to Sacramento Public Library and maintained the website.

Podcast Prequel

But in January 2019, I became the new Poetry reading host at Sacramento Poetry Center. This action brought me back into having an outlet to introduce poets and rappers into the Sacramento Poetry Community which was the mission of Iambic. So, Iambic became a show pamphlet but it was hard to maintain. But I still hosted shows under the Iambic moniker. Then I realize that I could make a podcast instead. So I had recorded a podcast introduction episode with the help of BYLO podcast group in August 2019 but I released the first two episodes in January.

Iambic the Podcast

So I started a podcast to give more depth to my feature Poets who have graced Sacramento Poetry Center. I started to notice that a lot of poets are not given an in depth interview after performing at Sacramento Poetry center. They sell books and talk to people but it is a short time. I figured I have the opportunity give them as much exposure before they say their first poem. Plus, it is what Iambic was about: making people aware of local poets. So, my first episodes will introduce Auntie Vice and Jorge Quintana:

Jorge Quintana
Auntie Vice

But check out the new Iambic Podcast. The link is the Logo in the Sidebar.

Posted in Interviews, Poems, poetry

Iambic’s Meet the Host: Wendy Williams

Wendy Williams extraordinary story goes beyond being a open mic host at Sacramento Poetry Center.  She is a speaker, published writer/ poet, English teacher, Coach, and visual artist. She considers herself an artistic Healer.  Her website, Restory your life, present her work and her experience with Post traumatic stress disorder.  I interview Wendy with 10 unique questions for July’s issue:

When did you start writing poetry and why continue doing it?

I started writing poetry in 1976. I was struggling in life and poetry provided me with an outlet for intense emotion and a way to get clarity by putting ideas onto a page.

When did you start hosting poetry readings and why?

I started hosting poetry around 2013. I was on the board for the Sacramento Poetry Center. After Paco Marquez, the previous host, left for graduate school in New York City, Bob Stanley asked if I wanted to fill the vacancy and I went for it!

Do you watch poetry at other venues like Mahogany, Shine café, or Luna’s café? Why?

I’ve been to Shine and Luna’s. I especially like Luna’s because of the super open mic where all types of folks read and react. There’s a lot of emotion from the audience and the poets, which feels good.

Did you ever wanted to go & hang out at Shine Café due to its LGBTQA following that is present there?

Yeah, I’m gonna check out the LGBTQA scene at Speak Out Sacramento. Haven’t yet.

As a PTSD survivor, is your message to help others people deal with their PTSD? Is that what your website’s main objective?

My main objective for the website is to help others see that they might unknowingly have PTSD or Post-traumatic Stress Disorder. (I don’t like the “Disorder” part of the term because, in my view, it’s inaccurate.) In any case, I have PTSD from an infant surgery without anesthesia. Many people experience symptoms from early trauma but don’t realize it. They conclude they are crazy, weird, or screwed up. Some drink or do drugs to deal with symptoms. I want people to know that they could be suffering from unresolved trauma and they can get help. They can work to resolve the trauma and find relief, understanding, and peace.
You have several poems published and a book. Impressive. Which way do you like better? Publishing a book or submit poems for publish books?

I like the process of getting a book published more than the act of sending out poems. Working with Dave Boles, my editor of Cold River Press, was easy and fun. He’s super professional. And he’s a real nice guy.

So, tell me about Restory your life?

ReStory Your Life is about using writing to heal from trauma and reclaim your authenticity. Oftentimes, trauma (past hurts) run our life and we’ve got to face our pain and resolve it so that we can become more of our real self. Freedom after trauma is what we’re after. I teach Writing as Healing classes and have done speaking engagements on this subject. I’ve also worked one-on-one with folks.

Viewing your website, poems, books, and art; what do you consider yourself? Artist? Healer?

I am an artist healer.

How do you feel about the current state of poetry presented by young poets?

I love the young poets’ poetry–lots of emotion, caring, concern for others, passion, anger about injustice, and experimentation. l like spoken word poetry and the slam experience. I LOVE all the slants rhymes because language is being used in a new way.

How would you feel if you were appointed poet laureate? What would you do?

Poet laureate? I’d feel overwhelmed. I’m still teaching at community college and getting a Writing as Healing class off the ground. Let’s say I were appointed for fun’s sake. Maybe I’d spearhead a big conference/celebration/slam week to showcase all the different poets and types of poetry in the Sacramento area. We’d have workshops running all day and ask the public schools to participate. It would be like a poetry lovefest for our region. We have so much richness, don’t we?  Let’s all get-together and see who we are and share it with everyone. We’d make most of the events free somehow and try to get grants or donations for use of a space. We’d also invite folks in from the surrounding counties to check us out. Sound grand? It could be.

Thank you for reading the interview with Wendy Williams. You can find more about Wendy and her life healing program at http://www.restoryyourlife.com

 

Posted in Interviews, Performing, poetry

Iambic’s Meet the Host: NSAA: Part 1

Lawrence “NSAA” Dinkins is a Renaissance man: Veteran Poet, Poetry Show Host, Blogger, Recording artist, photographer, graphic designer, podcaster, entrepreneur and book author. A Detroit native, his portfolio life has made him an active artist in the Sacramento art and poetry scene. He appears in June’s Issue of Iambic.

His latest event is Poet vs. Band on June 11, 2017 At Gold Lion Arts (2733 Riverside Blvd) at 3pm – 6pm. The event will be filled with poets and musicians & will be celebrating NSAA birthday.  For more information, visit his website: http://www.nsaa360.com

This is part 1 of our interview where we discusses his poetical Journey:

So, how long have you been doing poetry? When did you become a poetry show host?

I guess I started around 2009. The Sacramento urban poetry scene was slowing down. A lot of my favorite poetry spots was thinning out and falling off. Me becoming a host wasn’t about ego thinking, “I’m a poetry pillar” but instead it was an act of desperation. It was a finger in the dike. I didn’t know if I could save poetry at Mahogany but it was worth a try. So, I offered to host a Wednesday. I mean if one or two people are coming out I can host that. But we survived the drought and Khiry (Khiry Malik, founder of Mahogany Poetry Series) brought on more host. I am very proud to say that I helped save Mahogany in some small way. We also must give much love Zion and Queen Sheba for allowing Mahogany to stay there after they took over that location.

Do you enjoy form or academic poetry (sonnets, odes, Villanelle) or free verse?

I think all forms have their value. We are living in such an open time thankful to those like the beat poets that smashed the poetry rules making free verse a more acceptable poetry style. My love is free verse, of course. But occasionally, I write in form.

Did you perform or publish poetry in Detroit? If so, how were the poetry spots difference from Sacramento scene?

I didn’t start coming out as a poet until I got here in Sacramento.

As a sketch artist, how does it compliment your poetry?

Sketching allows you to really look at things, as does all art forms. But for me sketching allows me to really see things. You might say something is beautiful or interesting but what makes that something appealing to you. When you try to sketch it and really capture what it is that draw you to a subject you’re mind switches. In figure drawing class, you learn this. Nudity in public is a taboo because of its link to sexuality but in figure drawing class something interesting happens in your brain, a trigger, and you start to see the human body more than a sexual or shameful object but as something beautiful and difficult to capture.

You are known as a Poet veteran in the Sacramento Poetry community like Bob Stanley, Sean King, and Indigo Moor. But, you are still more active than them in streets and corporate realms. Why?

I don’t see myself as more active. Bob (Bob Stanley, president of Sacramento Poetry center) is everywhere. What I’m saying is that we just don’t know what they are doing, there is a lot of stuff going on behind the scenes. Now I will say I’m a grass root poet or a poet on the street. I believe in poetry, I believe in art, that it should be accessible, have meaning, help in some way. Theater, dance, visual, short story, storytelling, spoken and written poetry, song all the art forms should elevate, imagine, reflect, solve the human experience and plight. What does it mean to be human, right now? Who are you, right now? As an artist, this is what I reach for. The other poets you mention are doing that in their own way, probably in a better way than I am.