Just re-read TAPT'S Mission Statement. And glad I did. It encourages me, literally gives me courage, to continue, to go on, to fight the bastards, to throw ice water on my tired face, and to do the only thing I find really worth doing in this short dream of a life- Tell the truth to the best of my ability regardless of the consequences, the family I lose, the friends I lose, the enemies I make. All I really need to do is remember my former students- in places like Passaic High School, Brookdale Community College, Neptune Adult School, and Class Academy (formerly in Long Branch), and especially my Home Instruction students in Passaic and Lyndhurst- to refocus, remember, renew my own strength and conviction, and to remember why I started The American Poetry Theater in the first place. So, for you who are reading this entry, please do go to our Mission Statement right now and join us in any way you can in our fight against fear and ignorance, our own and others.
Like so many others, I'm still trying to process the Trump election victory. Very difficult. No, I didn't vote for Clinton. I knew Jersey would go to her, which thank god it did. So I had the luxury of actually voting my conscience- a straight Democratic ticket and Jill Stein. This is what it's come down to? Having to vote for a third party candidate who can't win. Justifying it by saying my vote adds to the momentum of growing a new party in time for the next election? Probably just bullshit, you know. Bottom line is I was enthusiastic about Sanders. And I knew from alternate media, certainly not corporate media, that he'd been cheated out of a victory in the primaries by the DNC and Clinton-backing Democrats in high places. Anyway- my own brother tells me I am now assigned to the "vestibule" of hell. And my niece/god child says I am an "accessory to a crime." Disappointment,anger, and most of all pointing fingers of blame rule the day. I didn't bother telling them that we ALL have a part in this current blow to democracy- this includes my brother and my niece.
So what am I writing about here? I'm simply writing. That's it.
On a very positive note, I went to an Asbury Park Dialogue Group pot luck dinner in Asbury tonight and met some terrific people, particularly three beautiful, brilliant, wise women. I'm grateful for this. It's good to know, good to connect with, such strong, intelligent folks during these times.
And finally, for this entry-- the Trump election has made deciding what TAPT's February production will actually be very difficult. The dates are set-- Feb 26, 27, 28 at the House of Independents in Asbury Park, which is our home- both the town and the theater. And thanks to Morgan Sackman and Dave Cruse for making it so. The next play? Originally going to be an all black production- black writers, actors, directors.
Topic was to be Black Lives Matter. However, with the current crisis upon us, with feelings going haywire, with the crazies, the fascists Trump is surrounding himself with-- the next play will have to expand. More to be said in the near future.
This is the third attempt to post this. BLACK STATES may well be the title of our next play, scheduled for Feb 26, 27, 28- Sun, Mon, Tuesday. Although it's not determined yet, the thought is to have an all black cast, black writers, and black director. The play will be about the conditions of black lives here in America. Whatever its title, and whatever its racial make-up, you can count on The American Poetry Theater giving you another informative, provocative play to generate discussion and changes in society... rpq
Today I met with Ryan Ward, TAPT'S webmaster, with the intention of taking full control of the theater website. Ryan went out of his way, came to my apartment, and after a lunch I made for us, he sat down to transfer the site. I'm laughing now because after maybe 45 minutes of his intricate explanations I said, wait, stop. I can't do this. It's too much. Ryan looked at me because he understood. So... what I learned is, hey, Ryan is the man to do the site, not me. Thanks, Ryan, for all your work today and always.... rpq