If interested in having me for a reading, class visit, or conference/festival, please contact me at lorcaloca AT aol DOT com

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Amazing. Wonderful.

CAREGIFTED was established by poet Heather McHugh to benefit long-term full-time caregivers of disabled family members, with all-expense-paid vacations including transportation, lodging, food and personal concierge services. Awardees are chosen for their need of rest and artistic stimulation; as host, McHugh offers not only chauffeur and guide services, but company and conversation as desired. More important, caregivers may choose to record their experiences and understandings, from which McHugh will craft an artist's impression in their honor.

More info here.


good morning!
i'm planning my whole day around a trip to luke's lobster, a joint that specializes in lobster rolls. don't the rolls look amazing? i might have two. just kidding. maybe.
my ears are burning...jory m. mickelson interviews andrew demcak.
i'm getting new eyeglasses on friday. i really love the frames. they make me look bookish. ha.
bernadette geyer talks about motherhood and finding time to write.
i need a haircut.
i need to learn some french for my upcoming trip. right now, the only thing i can say in french is: i like puppies.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Love this!

from the blog of Ryan Luz, an MFA student at UCSD:

The manuscript I am working on now explores the very same questions that I asked 10 years ago when I started writing poems. I find that I’m still sorting out that same New World of back then. My father and your father are dead and dying. But their bodies, for a time, will still grow hair. A full moon is audible on the sea at night. My father was a fisherman. My father was Portuguese. My father was an alcoholic, and my mother is still living, though she doesn’t understand poetry. I try telling her there is nothing to understand but she still says she doesn’t. I’d tell any child that poetry is a very simple thing and they’d agree. I wish I could tell my mom that I think of poetry just like this: a bird landing briefly in wet cement and then flying off.

Attention MidWest Writers!

Writers in The Heartland is now taking applications for its 2012 season.

Writers in the Heartland is a writing colony for creative writers in all genres.
The colony is located in Gilman, Illinois, approximately 90 miles south of
Chicago. It is located on a beautiful 32-acre wooded site with lakes and walking

A limited number of one-week residencies are available for August 31 - September
7 and October 7 - 12. All lodging and food is included. Writers must reside in
the Midwest region or have some Midwest connection.

Applications must be postmarked no later than April 30, 2012, to be considered. Decisions will be announced on or around July 1st.

Full guidelines here

Friday, January 27, 2012

Better Late Than Never

11/08/11: Harvard Reading with Rosa Alcalá, and Aracelis Girmay (Guest appearances by Francisco Aragón, Darrel Alejandro Holnes, and Martha Collins)

Monday, January 23, 2012

Rigoberto González: Interview and Poem

A writer is an activist and a citizen, and has a responsibility beyond the poem, story or novel to participate in the political arena. For some of us that means picketing and organizing protests, others take to the pen or the computer and articulate positions through essays and editorials, and some perform that activism through the classroom as teachers. Activism is defined by the individual. I understand not everyone is willing to accept the challenge, but I sure as hell know that everyone can. In any case, this is an old argument and usually the only ones who speak up are the ones who want to negate that premise for selfish reasons. At the very least, people who do not want to participate in these conversations should please cease from making such comments as “I don’t want to be known as a Chicano writer” or “I don’t want to be known as a gay writer.” We need role models, not cowards.
I think fossil, I think watermark...

Attention Chicano/Latino Writers

PALABRA invites Chicano/Latino writers to submit short stories, flash fiction,
poetry, standalone novel excerpts and short plays that explore new avenues of Chicano & Latino writing. Innovative/cross-genre/hybrid work is welcome. Especially interested in work that is fresh, engaged and takes literary risks.

Full guidelines HERE.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Freaking great news!

News like this makes me so happy. Heck, it makes me want to cry with joy.

The National Book Critics Circle finalists were announced yesterday.

Aracelis Girmay is a finalist in poetry.

Luis J. Rodriguez is a finalist in autobiography.


Complete list of finalists here.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


late next month i'm going to spend five nights in paris. did i really just type that sentence? i did!
i'm staying in the heart of paris. close to the palais garnier and the louvre.
i can't wait for shara lessley's first book. it comes out this march.
i'm sure i'm going to get lost walking around in paris or while using the métro. but who cares! i will be lost in paris.
Wander to the studios at 1:30 PM for an intentionally late lunch, because I can't handle the hum & scrum of the conversation.
i want to thank my little poems for sending me to paris. oh my little poems!
i'm a big fan of david welch's poems; spork press just published four new ones. i wish i'd written these lines: I told him I remember my father/asked me once to strangle/a still alive and wounded quail.
what am i going to do in paris? walk around. eat. walk around. eat. eat. eat. basically, the same things i do in nyc. ha.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

poems that i love

The Possibilities

After a wife’s death a man may talk
to his horse with a great tenderness
as if, just this morning, he had tried on
her pink slipper. And if he has no horse
he may crack his window a little
wider when it lightly rains to confirm
the roofs and trees are made
of paper. If there is no rain
he may make himself a meal at midnight,
sweet artichokes and Danish cheese,
a glass of red wine. If there is
no red, then white. He may suck the knife
clean with his tongue. Later

lying awake he may hear the wild lung
of a motorcycle far off on a far road.
If there is no motorcycle, a dog
trying for any syllable in any known
language. Something falling suddenly in
the closet, according to some law.

Nearness in the dark is a kind of beauty
though it is only a lampshade, a shoulder
of the walnut chair. If there is no chair,
then a shelf. A shelf of books with the devil’s
violet fedora tossed on top. Or something
exotic from the sea, manta ray

like the pulse in the ball of his foot.
A man may walk ten steps behind
his life. It may be sorrow of fear.
He may see her back like two doves rushing
up where a boy has flung a handful
of pebbles. If no pebbles, leaves
where a masked prowler hunches, his belt of
lockpicks, his bag of velvet like the one
from which memory snatches. These are

the possibilities, the immaculate
like miracles which are nothing
in themselves, but in this world a sign
of angels, ghosts, supernatural beings
who watch us. Who listen. Who sometimes
helplessly let us stumble on
their pyramids, their crude observatories
or let us, generation after
generation, speak to the broken horse
of the human heart.

Beckian Fritz Goldberg

Thursday, January 12, 2012


new york city is the city of great food. yesterday, i had ropa vieja. so good.
if you live in japan, you can order my book!
i ate caldo de mariscos tonight. the broth was so freaking good. lordy.
some good news: to the angelbeast will appear in best american poetry 2012, edited this year by mark doty. my thanks to mark doty and to the editors of poetry.
a few days ago i had some amazing nakji bokum.
i'm hungry!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The Forgotten Dialect of the Heart

this is one of my favorite poems. click this link to hear the poem read.

thank you, jack gilbert.

Monday, January 09, 2012

This makes me so happy!!

from the American Poetry Review

Tomás Q. Morín has been awarded the 2012 APR/Honickman First Book Prize for his manuscript A Larger Country. His book was chosen by this year’s guest judge, esteemed poet Tom Sleigh, who will also write an introduction for it.

Morín is a Texas native. He received his MFA from Texas State University, and MA from Johns Hopkins University. He is the recipient of scholarships from the Fine Arts Work Center, Bread Loaf Writer’s Conference and the New York State Summer Writers Institute, and was a fellow at the Idyllwild Summer Arts Program. He is a Senior Lecturer at Texas State University.

Sunday, January 08, 2012


Ray Gonzalez is the featured poet over at anti-.

2012 Reginald Shepherd Memorial Poetry Prize

from Knockout:

We're pleased to announce that the International Reginald Shepherd Prize is back in action! The contest, which seeks to honor the memory and work of Reginald Shepherd, who passed away on September 10, 2008, was first held in 2009, and then went on hiatus. Now, however, the contest is back. Here are the details:

The 2012 contest will be judged by C. Dale Young.

The submission deadline is April 30, 2012.

The entry fee is $15.

Full guidelines here.

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

beltway poetry quarterly: FLORICANTO ISSUE

Francisco Aragón, Guest Editor

from the introduction:

Guest editors of Beltway Poetry are asked to hone in on a local angle. Mine is the AWP Conference & Bookfair held in Washington. Or rather: the “off-site” event at the True Reformer Building on U Street that unfolded on February 4, 2011, an event called “Floricanto in DC: A Multicultural Response to SB1070” — in reference to Arizona’s anti-immigrant law.

But my duties as the AWP Conference Chair kept me from attending what, by all accounts, was a moving and stunning evening of poetry. Had I been able to participate, I would have shared this

to Jan Brewer

Cruelty is sensual and stirs you
Governor, your name echoing the sludge
beneath your cities’ streets. It spurs

the pleasure you take
whenever your mouth nears
a mic, defending your law…your wall.

Cruelty is sensual and stirs you
Governor; we’ve noticed your face
its contortions and delicate sneer

times you’re asked to cut
certain ribbons—visit a dusty place
you’d rather avoid, out of the heat.

Cruelty is sensual and stirs you
Governor, the vision of your state
something you treasure in secret

though we’ve caught a glimpse
in the jowls of your sheriff:
bulldog who doubles as your heart.


Read more poems HERE.

cold bits

it's 25 degrees right now. let me repeat that: it's 25 degrees today.
i just came back from the stores. i bought leather gloves and a furry hat, which makes me look like a fool. but who cares! my head needs to stay warm. i also bought some bottles of Snapple. love that stuff.
i'm staying in tonight!
jonterri gadson interviews saeed jones.
silly me: i walked out into the cold with my hair still wet. it froze quickly.
The magazine now has an inviting edge of criticism that does not spare established poets — and lively complaints from some loyalists that its 100-year-old mission is being compromised in a populist vs. elitist squeeze
hi, james!