Monday, April 2, 2012


In our poetry community, there's the occupational hazard of poets reviewing their friends' books on websites or on sites like Amazon. In the case of the NEXT magazine (founded by G. Murray Thomas) anthology NEWS CLIPS AND EGO TRIPS , I'll recuse myself. I respect a lot of things Murray and Derrick Brown (Write Bloody publisher) have done professionally, but carry some personal and professional animosity towards them I can't put aside. Also, there's the fact of my entering the SoCal scene in the last months of NEXT's existence (fact: my introduction to the scene came from acquiring a copy at a record store on Balboa Peninsula in March of 1998), so my direct/secondhand knowledge of the pre-98 era is limited at best. And, as I have learned, it's useless to write about other people's books (even if I have favorable things to say) because I'll be thought of as someone tearing the community down and/or being destructively envious towards people of near-universal popularity--perhaps leading to more negativity and rude community in-jokes at my expense. So, all I'll do is await my copy in the mail, read it in solitude and let Murray's friends be the ones to proclaim NEWS CLIPS AND EGO TRIPS' reputation as a seminal document of SoCal page/slam/performance poetry history.

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