Friday, July 6, 2018



CHOLLA NEEDLES ISSUE 19 OUT NOW!!!

   Once again, I am appearing in a new issue of Cholla Needles, the High Desert's monthly literary anthology. With nine other authors / poets, I have my own six-page section in this installment - a triplet of poems ("If You Only Could Have Known Me", "Patina," and "Untitled") and a short story "Lucid Dreaming In D Major." The latter is a hallucinatory take-over of what may happen when you fall asleep listening to Roger Miller's version of "What Are These Things With Big Black Wings" in the middle of a heat wave if you happen to harbor moral baggage with your estranged editor.
 
   Rich Soos, the man behind Cholla Needles (which is now known as Cholla Needles Art and Literary Library now that non-profit status has been bestowed), has been publishing monthly collections like this since 1973. His early anthology series Seven Stars even published early works by Charles Bukowski, among countless others. Soos, a poet himself, has masterfully focused on the overlooked medium of the Haiku for his prolific output. For me, one of his most visceral efforts is his book "Fiddlin' Around In An Orchestrated War," a war-themed Haiku collection that contains a not just a lifetime... but a deathtime, in each economical, solemn outburst. Your stomach will churn with breathless empathy, thanking God you may live a life of trivial challenges in contrast to these realities of true sacrifice.
 
   A true man of God, Rich Soos has helped ignite a tight-knit yet ever-growing literary community up here through Cholla Needles and his monthly open-mic readings at Space Cowboy on the second Sunday of every month (see you this Sunday), creating a Church of The Word for many of us. While some believe writing is something that is earned for a select few, Soos believes that everybody should write, that it's an inherent other voice in all of us that he implores us to explore. A refreshing perspective, as he altered by own elitist attitude when he expressed this in his own "Personal Poetics" Teddy Talk last year.


Monday, July 2, 2018

A PAGE TORN OUT OF THE WEEKEND - A NON-LINEAR PORTLAND REPORT:




"In The Heavens, Not The Clouds" 6/28/18
   This pen observes me flying to Portland, OR interrupting a book I thought I couldn't put down (Susan Rukeyser's brilliant Not On Fire, Only Dying). The motives for this trip are multi-fold: Tonight, I do the voice and guitar thing at The White Owl, while Saturday I read from Nothing To See Here at Mother Foucault's. In between all of this I will see friends - a vital concentration of them, in fact. All... but one. The one who was often my shadow, and I often his. The one who no longer lives, among the many who also flipped the switch - and those I would never make pale in comparison. But Matty Rue went into the black with such a perpetually irreconcilable estrangement and I will never let the dust settle of his sudden kick up on St. Paddy's Eve of 2015 (St. Matty's Day).
 
   I used to blow through Portland once, sometimes twice a year with Jail Weddings and bands before. But I have not returned in five years, three years since his death. His passing nearly made that city dead to me as well. So, the real reason snaking its way through all of my work and pleasure will be a solemn swear to chase his ghost in order to let in some kind of peace, finally... A guy can hope.
 
   I often wonder if he is still stuck in that train station, where I saw him a week after his death, when Dr. Wagensomer hypnotized me in order to confront my grief head-on. There he stood, suitcase in hand, too ashamed to look me in the eyes. That station was his lonely purgatory, the autonomy of life forever out of his reach. He was now part of the scenery of transition, another sad face awaiting absolute uncertainty. He asked me if I wanted to know what he felt like when he died. Before I could answer, I was engulfed in the most terrifying full-body euphoria, so overwhelming that I too, felt I may have just dissolved into the ether. I heard myself moan, panicking for Dr. Wagensomer to bring me back up. I returned half-gasping, not feeling any where near "at peace," but much more accustomed to his consequence. Baby steps. The biggest step being that I had, without a doubt, made a clear connection to him beyond the urn.
 
   The irony here is that I write this under the unlikely but more practical influence of a kindred drug, having procured a Vicodin for help nurse the residue of a painful concussion I sustained last week, after a psychopathic man-child sucker punched me, apparently for having the nerve to relax on my own property. Fascinating what people do when they don't know how to peacefully break through to the other side.
 
   Ironically, on top of irony, this is how Jackee died. She hit her head and complained of headaches for days after, before finally succumbing to acute trauma. No one took her seriously and many believed she was trying to get attention. What kills me now: I loved her especially when she wanted attention. While I am likely in the clear, now ten days after the assault, I clearly should have seen a doctor. Funny, how we think we are aware of what is going on inside our heads. Like a two-way mirror interrogation, we are questioned on the outside but will never be completely privy to the spies inside of us.
 
   But here I fly, among the clouds. I am trying to feel close to Matty by convincing myself to believe in Heaven. It is not working. To achieve this, I believe we must get even higher. The Heavens, not Heaven. Absolute darkness, to return from whence we came.

                                                                                                        - Gabriel Hart





Reading at Mother Foucault's, Portland. 6/30/18
Photo by Azar Sherine Mahvash

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Video surfaces of my "Teddy Talk" Community Lecture in Joshua Tree from June 16th, 2018. Subject: The Gestation and Fermentation of The Creative Process." Filmed by Jean-Paul Garnier.


Friday, June 15, 2018

New ADULT THEMED short fiction "The Distant Prince" by Gabriel Hart on Space Cowboy's Simultaneous Times podcast episode 4!

Monday, June 11, 2018

Gabriel Hart does Joshua Tree's "Teddy Talk" this Saturday June 16th!



Hart will be speaking on "The Gestation and Fermentation of The Creative Process," an argument against the modern standard / pressure of vomiting your every output onto social media in the false name of being "prolific" or "staying relevant," and how our own "passion" can be our own worst enemy when we are trying to create works that should stand the test of time.