COLUMN SEVENTY-EIGHT, NOVEMBER 1, 2002
(Copyright © 2002 The Blacklisted Journalist)
'WORLD KNEW OF COMING ATTACK, WHY DIDN'T WE?'
(Photo by Myles Aronowitz)
(Copyright - Myles Aronowitz)
New Jersey state Poet Laureate Amiri Baraka yesterday defended the poem that has prompted calls for his resignation, saying it was meant as an attack on imperialism, fascism and anti-Semitism---not a bigoted attack as his critics have alleged.
"It is a poem that aims to probe and disturb, but there is not any evidence of anti-Semitism,? Baraka told a supportive crowd at Newark Public Library.
Gov. James McGreevey called for Baraka's resignation Friday after Jewish groups objected to a poem in which he asserts the Israeli government had advance knowledge of the World Trade Center attacks. McGreevey said he cannot fire Baraka because state law includes no mechanism for removing someone from the position, which was created in 1999.
Yesterday, state legislators from both parties said they are looking at changing the law to make it possible for the Governor or the New Jersey Council for the Humanities to fire Baraka.
Steven Cook, spokesman for Sen. Peter Inverso (R-Mercer), said the senator plans to introduce a bill that would make the poet laureate serve at the pleasure of the governor.
And Democratic Senate co-president Richard Codey vowed to introduce a bill Monday giving the New Jersey Council for the Humanities the power to remove Baraka. In a letter to Codey, the council's executive director said Baraka has compromised his ability to fill the position.
"Free speech is a cherished freedom in this country, but a poet laureate for a state has a responsibility to be a model for children." Codey said. "Mr. Baraka continues to spread lies, spew venomous hatred and he oblivious to the fact that he was duped by the discredited Internet garbage which claimed there was advance knowledge of the terrorist attacks."
Speaking last night at Anti-Defamation League of New Jersey event in Livingston, McGreevey said he was working 'to ensure that (Baraka) is no longer the state poet laureate." The governor said he has asked Attorney General David Samson to review possible procedures for removing Baraka from the post.
Baraka's poem is "not only absurd, but I find it offensive to the notion of decency,? McGreevey said.
Abe Foxman, National director of the Anti-Defamation League, said Baraka is "not acceptable? as New Jersey's poet laureate, and told McGreevey that as Governor, he should have the power to remove him.
Earlier in the day, Baraka used his keynote address at a ceremony naming the Newark Public Library a "literary landmark? for a nearly 40-minute rebuttal of his critics. . .
"What is interesting is, this is the first time people realized I was poet laureate," he said. "Before this, I was secret poet laureate."
---Brian Donohue in the Newark Star-Ledger of October 3, 2002.
recent dishonest, consciously distorted and insulting non-interpretation of my
poem, Somebody Blew Up America, by the "Anti-Defamation? League is
fundamentally an attempt to defame me. And with that, an attempt to repress and
stigmatize independent thinkers everywhere.
trashy propaganda is characteristic of right-wing zealots who are interested
only in slander and character assassination of those whose views or philosophies
differ from or are in contradiction to theirs.
the poem's underlying theme focuses on how Black Americans have suffered from
domestic terrorism since being kidnapped into US chattel slavery--- e.g., by
Slave Owners, US and State Laws, Klan, Skin Heads, Domestic Nazis, Lynching,
denial of rights, national oppression, racism, character assassination---
historically, and at this very minute throughout the US. The relevance of this
to Bush's call for a "War on Terrorism? is that Black people feel we have
always been victims of terror, governmental and general, so we cannot get as
frenzied and hysterical as the people who ask us to dismiss our history and
contemporary reality to join them in the name of a shallow "patriotism? in
attacking the majority of people in the world---especially people of color and
in the third world.
is said to us, even as this counterfeit president has legalized the Confederate
Flag in Mississippi. Could the victims of European Fascism be as frantically
loyal to a regime that would fly a Nazi Swastika over their homes? So we cannot,
in good conscience, celebrate what seems to us an international crusade to set
up a military dictatorship over the world, legitimatized at base, by white
supremacy, carried out, no matter the crude lies, as the most terrifying form of
Imperialism and its attendant national oppression. All of it designed to drain
super profits bluntly from the colored peoples of the world, but as well, from
the majority of the peoples in the world. For all the frantic condemnations of
terror by Bush and company, as the single International Super Power, they are
the most dangerous terrorists in the world!
in my focus on various forces of terror Afro Americans and other oppressed
people of the world have suffered, slavery, colonialism, Imperialism, Neo
neo-colonialism, National Oppression, the ADL disingenuously makes no mention of
my probing into the creators of the holocaust, e.g., "who put the Jews in
ovens, / and who helped them do it, / Who said "America First?/ and Ok?d
the yellow stars?, which of course is a reference to America's domestic
fascists just before World War 2 and the Nazi Holocaust.
do these ADL purveyors of falsehood mention the poem's listing of some of the
Jews across the world, oppressed, imprisoned, murdered by actual Anti- Semitic
forces, open or disguised. The poem asks "Who killed Rosa Luxembourg,
Liebnecht/Who murdered the Rosenbergs/ And all the good people iced, tortured,
ADL apparently is not outraged by McCarthy-era frameup and execution of the
Rosenbergs, nor the assassination of German Jewish Communist leaders like
Liebnecht, Luxembourg. The ADL leaves these things out to try to make their lies
more believable, and also because these victims of imperialism were on the Left.
the [Newark] Star-Ledger published the entire poem, though including in a
box, supposedly identifying the offending phrases: my question,
"Who Blew Up The Reichstag?? as if the ADL had also claimed that the
poem was inferring that Jews did it. When it was Hitler's destruction of the
Reichstag that provided the pretext for the general imprisonment of Jews, after
incarcerating Communists, Social Democrats and Trade Unionists.
Why this was done one can only speculate, but this is the kind of sloppy
or intentionally slanderous journalism one can often find in the media. It also
reflects the kind of unprincipled attack that characterizes the ADL press
Reichstag fire parallels the 911 Attack in that after that "mysterious act of
terrorism," which Hitler blamed on Jews and Communists, the Nazis passed a
law, The Reichstag Enablement Act, that gave the Nazis much the same carte
blanche as the Bush administration used the 911 tragedy to pass the wholly
undemocratic Patriot Bill and begin rounding up suspects, even without
identifying them. Of course the actual arsonists of the Reichstag terror were
never found, though most scholars are certain it was the Nazis themselves.
the other lines of the poem, which the ADL termed an example of the Hitlerian
"Big Lie?, and the poet's 'spewing Anti-Semitic venom," the lines,
"Who knew the World Trade Center was gonna get/bombed?? Well now, certainly,
even the Democratic Party has affirmed that the Bush Administration knew. I
agree with this, and it is everywhere on the Internet that not only was the US
warned repeatedly by Germany, France, Russia, England but also Israel. Michael
Ruppert of the Green Party has issued a video stating clearly, "Israeli
security issued urgent warnings to the CIA of large-scale terror attacks. "And
that the Israeli Mossad knew that the attacks were going to take place'they
knew that the World Trade Center was the target.". This is from the British
newspaper, The Telegraph. (Copies of these documents are available with
In addition there are articles in all forms of media and of course on the Internet confirming or suggesting that the entire Imperialist world knew and had warned the US CIA in advance, but no action was taken. WHY? They "couldn't connect the dots," they say. The FBI agents in Minnesota
Why did Zim American-Israeli Shipping move out of the WTC one week before September, 2001
Arizona who said that FBI received a report in 1998 that a terrorist
organization "planned to bring
people to the US to enroll in flight schools. Zacarias Moussaoui, now charged with conspiring in the Sept
11 attacks, was arrested by the Minnesota agents of the FBI in August 2001 but
FBI HQ denied agents? request to seek a warrant even to search his computer.
And a prepared statement by a Minnesota FBI agent blamed legal restrictions but
principally FBI headquarters for impeding a more aggressive investigation of
this man. As for the other
agent's attempt to warn the FBI HQ of these attacks, he was rebuffed when he
made the report, but now FBI HQ says it has not record of such warning. (See
are other incredible dots on the media. For instance, the stockholders of
American Airlines and United, which were the carriers hijacked to commit the
terror, began withdrawing stock from these companies in August before the
most offensive phrase in the poem to my various attackers is, "Who told 4000
Israeli workers at the Twin Towers / to stay home that day/ Why did Sharon stay
away?? To infer that I am accusing Israel of committing the atrocity is
disingenuous slander and character assassination. But I do believe, as I stated
about England, Germany, France, Russia, that the Israeli government, certainly
it's security force, SHABAK knew about the attack in advance.
sources were, Ha?aretz and Yadiot Ahranot (two Israeli
newspapers) Al Watan (a Jordanian newspaper), "Manar? -TV and the
website of the Israeli security force SHABAK. There are myriad references to
this in Reuters and Der Spiegel.
Israeli newspaper Yadiot Ahranot first revealed that SHABAK had canceled
Sharon's appearance in New York City that day, Sept 11, where he was supposed
to speak at an "Israel Day? celebration. This was also mentioned in the Star-Ledger---to
the effect that Sharon was supposed to visit the US, but no dates were
is the Green Party's Ruppert who makes the most effective case for the 4000
Israeli workers (Not Jewish Workers!) but Israeli nationals.
He says in his video, "if
what I am showing you is known overtly although the media, how much more does
our thirty billion dollar intelligence community know??
goes on---and this seems true to me---?It is "Nonsense? to say the
Israelis did it. They were warning the U.S. hand over fist?? Ruppert
speculates further: "1. The US did not listen 2. They needed the attacks."
Which I leave to time. As Malcolm X said, Time will tell.
the most stunning revelation is this. Again Ruppert: "We reviewed the list of
former tenants of the World Trade Center at the on-line Wall Street Journal
site. And there's the website. It is an alphabetical list of tenants. Scroll
to the very bottom and notice the moving date for the office of Zim
American-Israeli Shipping to Norfolk Virginia. They were in the World Trade
Center. They must have had Mossad [or
Shabak?Amiri Baraka's note] input because they vacated one week before
September and they broke their lease. The Israelis didn't pull the attack, but
they were smart enough to get their people out of the way. How come our
government didn't do the same thing for us??
[Statement & Quote by George DeCarlo, Coordinator of Union County
Greens, Co- Founder of the NJ Lavender Greens---included in media package.]
poem was never saying anything else, i.e., why didn't the other slaughtered
Americans know? I WAS NOT SAYING ISRAEL WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR THE ATTACK, BUT THAT
THEY KNEW AND OUR OWN COUNTERFEIT PRESIDENT DID TOO!
is other disturbing facts surround the hideous 911 attacks, which my family and
I could see from the third floor bathroom window of our homes! And certainly one
day all this will be thoroughly investigated. The poem says "Who know why Five Israelis was filming the
explosion/ And cracking they sides at the notion." I got this story from The
Star-Ledger, where it appeared twice, and The New York Times.
reference to "cracking they sides? or laughing uproariously while filming
the 911 attack, apparently on the top of a truck from the Jersey side is a
direct paraphrase of the Ledger articles. In fact, the State Police, who
arrested them, stated that that is one of the reasons they did arrest them,
because they were laughing.
Again, these were Israeli Nationals, persons holding Israeli passports. The Times article even
the Air Force intercept
the hijacked planes?
on what their lives were like in Jail. And implied they would be deported.
So this reference is not more of the ADL's "Anti-Semitic venom? but
arrived at merely from studying the US media.
Why those five Israelis
were there filming and laughing I do not claim to know. That's why the poem
here and throughout continuously chants the question WHO WHO WHO?
That is, who is responsible for this horrible crime and WHY? It is a poem
that aims to probe and disturb, but there is not the slightest evidence of
Anti-Semitism, as anyone who reads it without some insidious bias would have to
agree. Why the ADL would do this, I can only speculate.
wish they and other concerned pundits would speculate on how an Airplane flying
in America, where the pilot has to file a flight plan before taking off, how can
such a plane--- or two or three of them---file such a route in which they would
travel, and in the case of the planes leaving Boston, make 45 degree turns south
and fly 54 minutes to the World Trade Center and 90 minutes to the
Pentagon---and not be challenged by US Air Defense Fighters, or brought down by
been in the Air Force I know those ADC fighters would normally confront such
"rogue? aircraft within a few minutes! Why was this not done? Let the ADL
and the media investigating me investigate that!
should know that Bush and his Right Wing crew want War against all the forces of
their so called "Axis of Evil." What a not so wild a coincidence that the
path of this Axis parallels the route of the proposed US oil corporations?
pipeline from Saudi to the Far East, apparently to oppose the spiraling economic
growth and influence of China. They scream "Bin Laden? and 'taliban? and
destroy Afghanistan, install a puppet president and a shadow occupation force.
in the Axis is Iraq---we should have known that. With no real proof at all,
again the people of the US---outraged and frightened by the Reichstag of
911---are hyped with chants of "Regime Change? and 'saddam Hussein." No
longer is the madness of crowds being aroused by the "Anti 'terrorist?
campaign. No longer is Bin Laden the Devil figure used to rouse the people to a
patriotic frenzy. Now it is Saddam Hussein. So forget last month's war and get
ready for this month's.
says he wants 'regime change." In Palestine, he wants to oust Arafat. Now in
Iraq, and he wants to oust Saddam. The Axis projects Iran next and then North
Korea. What is this, an updated version of 1984 or an American version of
Hitler's and Bush 1's New World Order?
change, why? Because these regimes are anti-democratic or terrorists or in the
case of Saddam, they have "weapons of mass destruction?? Well if being
anti-democratic were a good rationalization for foreign invasions of countries,
then the United States better watch out because the Florida coup---which tricked
the American people into accepting Bush as President---is anything but
democratic. Should we let foreign countries invade us to get rid of Bush? What
would be the American People's reaction to such Third Reich replay?
as for Saddam having "weapons of mass destruction? (or mass diversion as
some critics say), the US has these weapons, too. So do Israel, South Africa,
Germany, France, Italy, England, Russia, and now China, India, Pakistan. How is
it the US and its allies (except the Chinese) can have such weapons, but no one
else can. The answer to that, of course, is White Supremacy and Imperialism. And
what should be the growing understanding by the American people and the
democratic peoples of the world is what the far-right Bush coven wants is a
military dictatorship of the world.
The ADL, by attacking me by distorting what my poem is saying, is doing its usual ugly, as a well known running dog of imperialism, particularly by attacking anyone who takes an independent
'When we criticize U.S. Imperialism does that make us enemies of Christianity?'
or is critical of Israeli Imperialism and its attendant ideology, political
Zionism. As it is attempting to do with me, the ADL slanders anyone who is not
happy with Israel's ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians as Anti-Semitic, when
first of all Israel and its guiding philosophy have nothing to do, as
categories, with Jews. [See Zionism in the Age of the Dictators by
this is the trick such demagogues as the ADL use to hide the crimes of
Imperialist Israel. When we criticize US Imperialism does that make us enemies
of Christianity? Maybe only to Jerry Falwell and such Right-wing Christian
Zealots, perhaps Asscraft. But neither Israel nor Zionism is the same as
Judaism. (Op cit Brenner; also The
Dilemma of the Modern Jew by Prinz.)
the US our Constitution makes clear that this is a secular nation and by law
theoretically enforces separation of church and state, though Mr. Bush and Mr.
Asscraft have demonstrated they disagree. And Israel outright says it is a
"Jewish State? but if that is so then that explains why it can discriminate
against its Arab people living inside Israel and make them second-class citizens
in much the same way that South Africa, a close friend, did under Apartheid.
(See The Crisis of Black Jewish Relations" by Brenner & Bloom; Israel
and South Africa by Stevens & Ellmessi; The Arabs in Israel by
Sabri Jiryis, foreword by Noam Chomsky.)
ADL attacks so it can confuse people and show me as just another Anti-Semitic
attacker of their absolutely false depictions of Israel as a victim of
Palestinian Terrorism. This is absolutely in tune with the Bush
administration's frenzied "destroy-Iraq-regime-change "Jones" (a
street word for narcotics addiction) that the administration is chanting around
us like cheerleaders at a football game! So that US imperialism can transform
the whole of the Middle East and the Arab world into a gas station [See Bushwacked:
A Counterfeit President for a Fake Democracy by Baraka.]
So that we are supposed
to believe that if a little girl blows herself up in an Israeli Pizza Parlor,
she is a terrorist. But when Israeli Jets, made in the USA, destroy whole
sections of Palestinian cities, bulldoze neighborhoods, all but destroy the
Palestinian Center of Governance, with its President, Yasser Arafat, sitting
inside in the dark, it is the Israelis who are victims and the little
Palestinian girl or boy or young man or young woman or even elder---they are the
terrorists. We are supposed to be intimidated by demagogues like the Anti
Defamation League (who should be called the Anti-Anti Defamation League) so that
Israel as a junior partner of the Bush-led US goosestep to world military
domination can commit ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians in the name of
is the ADL that is actually guilty of what its leader, Abraham Foxman calls the
Hitlerian "Big Lie." And, ironically, it is the ADL that is 'spewing
anti-Semitic venom." The same ADL that became aware of "Black
Anti-Semitism," which it had earlier said has never been a threat---until
Stokely Carmichael and SNCC began to support the PLO and the Palestinian
Struggle as a Liberation struggle and condemn Israeli Imperialism and Zionism.
That is when, as Stokeley Carmichael says in the APRP's
Smash Zionism, the ADL smashed SNCC instead.
Israel drew closer to South Africa, politically, economically, militarily in the
"60s, (Op Cit, above &
others) the Black Liberation Movement and African Nations became more and more
guilty---according to the ADL---of "Black Anti-Semitism."
is the same ADL who opposed Affirmative Action, even though many Jews benefited
by the Civil Rights Struggle, and the most notable white comrades in that
struggle were young Jews. The same ADL that filed an Amicus Curiae
(friend of the court brief) in the historic and reactionary Baake Decision that
challenged and defeated the University of California's affirmative action as
"racist?---and was explained by the ADL as its opposition to quotas. So that
the university could now enforce a quota on Black students of none!
is the same ADL that---in league with the American Israel Political Action
Committee---just a few weeks ago sent millions of dollars into Atlanta, Georgia
to defeat progressive Black Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney because she called
for a more balanced American view of the Palestinian?Israeli Conflict.
same forces defeated in Alabama another progressive Black incumbent Congressman
because he, too, dared to support the Palestinians. (See New York Times, Amsterdam
Very much like the way Bush touts "Regime Change?---recently even hinting at an attempted
is an attack on . . .
of Saddam Hussein if the American People rise up and force our congress to deny
the Bush juggernaut-of-terror to attack Iraq---ADL and their "
bagman," AIPAC, didn't like the stance of these black politicians on
Israel. So, in a minute and a few million dollars, they are gone!
now, it's my turn. Using my poem, Somebody Blew Up America, they are
its press release the ADL says talk about "Jews being scapegoated throughout
history?? And then, "conspiracy mongers of the Arab world?have taken
Anti-Israel propaganda to a new level." Mr. Foxman, what is the Arab World?
Alan Dershowitz in his Chutzpah says the basis of bigotry is
"overgeneralization," so where is the "Arab World?? Is Detroit included?
Asscraft thinks so.
the press release mentions 'the Muslim World." Does that include Lyons
Avenue in Newark? But then from
"Anti-Semitism," the release goes to Israel, not Jews, and to the Israeli
Mossad as those victimized. So they fight Anti-Semitism
was first published 7/11/2000 as a press release. "In the past 24 hours, an attack is being mounted against
Gush Shalom. Knesset Member Collette Avital (Labor) has actually lodged a
complaint with the police, claiming that cartoons presented on our website
constitute "incitement." And the powerful American Jewish organization, Anti
"Defamation League, found time, even on election day over there, to
disseminate a message of defamation against "Gush Shalom," which already
resulted in hate e mails being sent our address."
a following message signed by Adam Keller, Gush Shalom spokesperson, the
organization defends itself from an ADL press release as "expressing outrage
at Gush Shalom's portrayal of Prime Minster Barak as a killer of Palestinian
children in a caricature on its web site, stating that the image of Barak
standing on the bleeding bullet ridden body of a Palestinian child is
Shalom replies, "Still after consulting with my fellow activists I am in a
position to make an offer. Should a complete week---seven days---pass in which
not a single unarmed Palestinian is killed by the Israeli armed forces which are
answerable to Mr. Barak, we would remove the above mentioned cartoon from our
The Gush Shalom statement ends, "As for the ADL---an organization which claims to "counter hatred prejudice and bigotry?---can you truly find no other places to search for such, with Israeli
Whoever is alleged to have told 4,000
Israeli nationals not to come to work in the World Trade Center on September 11,
2001 forgot to notify (1) London-born Leon Lebor, 51, who was working at his job
as a janitor in the twin towers when they were attacked; (2) Hagai Shefi, 34,
who was on the 106th floor of the north tower when American Airlines Flight 11
hit; and (3) Shai Levinhar, 29, who worked for a subsidiary of the Cantor
Fitzgerald brokerage in the north tower, according to the Jerusalem Post.
in its present condition, except at our modest website?? Was the ADL attacking
these Israelis for being Anti-Semitic or for criticizing rather forcefully the
continuous murder of the Palestinians? So in Israel itself, ADL is still
covering for and attacking anyone---even Israeli citizens themselves---who
oppose the Bush Zionist Plan to de-Palestinianize Palestine!
communication from Israel (firstname.lastname@example.org
) is signed by 95 Israeli Academics (copy included in package), Sept 23, 2002
that begins "URGENT WARNING: THE ISRAELI GOVERNMENT MAY BE CONTEMPLATING
CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY." It goes on, "We members of the Israeli academe are
horrified by US buildup of aggression towards Iraq and by the Israeli political
leadership's enthusiastic support of it. We are deeply worried by indications
that the "fog of war? could be exploited by the Israeli government to commit
further crimes against the Palestinian people, up to full-fledged ethnic
striking description of the Israeli Military by these professors is that in an
interview found in Ha?aretz Sept 19, 2002, Israeli Chief of Staff Moshe
Ya?alon describes the Palestinians as a "cancerous manifestation? and
equates the military actions in the occupied territories with ."chemotherapy."
the ADL will have to go after these "Anti Semites? using the "Big Lie?
and 'spewing Anti-Semitic Venom!" And the growing list of progressive
democratic people around the world who will have opinions about Israel and
Political Zionism independent of the ADL, the ADL will have to attack and
slander them as well
challenge the ADL to set up a national television program so that we might
debate this issue. We can project the poem on a wall and go down line by line
and discuss it. If not that then why not a forum or debate some place like NYC
Town Hall or at Symphony Hall in Newark.
not take a survey of those who heard the poem at the Dodge Festival? Those who
registered and the students brought by schools could be contacted and a survey
taken to reflect just what the majority of people hearing the poem thought, not
just some shadowy surrogates of Imperialism who are trying to convince people
that I and my poem are the enemy, not US and Israeli Imperialism.
have already gotten a great many communications praising the poem. A great many
E-mail letters and phone calls not only praising the poem and the poet for
writing it, but also opposing the attempt to violate my first amendment rights
by this oft-repeated ADL skin game of calling critics of imperialism
have already said---in answer to what Governor McGreevey is quoted as demanding
that I apologize and that I resign as NJ Poet Laureate---I have said repeatedly
that I will do neither. It is unfortunate that Governor McGreevey has been
stampeded---by paid liars and apologists for ethnic cleansing and white
supremacy, by bourgeois nationalists and the dangerously ignorant---to be
panicked into joining in the ADL's slander, belittling my intelligence, and
insulting not only my person, my family, my fellow artists and activists who
know all this is just the feces of a very small cow. But they are also attacking
my work in the arts and my social political views. By demanding that I apologize
to Evil and submit to some fundamentally racist and politically motivated call
for me to resign as New Jersey's Poet Laureate, he is insulting the broad
group of people who know he is incorrect and who have read and celebrated and
valued my work. And that is a grave mistake---one I am hoping he will correct.
Blew Up America! was written Oct 1, 2001. A month after the terror attack.
Almost immediately I circulated it around the world on the Internet.
Yet it was not until I read the poem at the Dodge Poetry Festival that I got negative response from three people that I know of. The overwhelming response was an almost thunderous applause. I even had to come out and take a second bow at one performance. So why now and Who, as the
I WILL NOT APOLOGIZE,
I WILL NOT RESIGN'
asks, is behind it? Perhaps the forces that have dishonestly tried to
characterize the poem as "venom?
or merely "a harangue? (just as they called John Coltrane's music, Barbaric
Yawps) are simply, the Charlie McCarthy voices for Bush & Sharon's
Edgar Bergens. Empty-headed devilish dummies constructed of wood and painted and
costumed to look like real people speaking, when all the time it is
the ventriloquist imperialism speaking through their mouths.
I WILL NOT APOLOGIZE, I WILL NOT RESIGN. In fact I will continue to do what I
have appointed to do but still have not been paid to do. Publicize and
popularize poetry and poets throughout this state. To set up new venues and new
networks for poetry reading and workshops in the state's libraries and schools
and other institutions. Hopefully initiated and given paradigm right here in the
Newark Public Library, its branches and throughout the school system. Therefore
giving more of our citizens access to poetry, involving poets of all
nationalities, both male and female, of diverse experience and styles. I have
already begun to enlist coordinators of poetry programs throughout the state, so
that we can network a tour of poets, hopefully beginning in January, throughout
do this I will be approaching local, county, state, federal and private funding.
And expand our budget with the cooperation of these other existing programs.
We will ask that poets POET-ON! That they begin to produce at least one
poem or publish a poem monthly, in the most modest forms, Kinko style, and give
them away if they have to. That they begin to set up readings not only in the
places we mentioned but also in parks and restaurants and in neighborhoods.
say this because we feel that this state and indeed this nation and this world
is desperately in need of the deepest and most profound human values that poetry
can teach. That is what Keats and Du Bois called for the poet to do, to bring
Truth and Beauty. To be like the most ancient paradigmythic image of the poet.
To be like Osiris and Orpheus, whose job it was to raise the Sun each morning
with song and story. To illuminate the human mind, and bring light into the
world. POET ON! ##
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